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Guide to Selecting Motorcycle Tires: Types, Features & Tips

Different Types Of Motorcycle Tyres & How To Select The Correct One For Your Bike

Whether you are a novice or a seasoned rider, you may require some insight into the various types of tyres. With so many different types of motorcycle tyres on the market, it can be difficult to determine which ones are appropriate for which machines and riding styles.


  • There are a total of five kinds of bike tyres available in the country.
  • They include tyres for adventure bikes, cruisers, supersports, streetfighters and all-terrain ones.
  • Different tyre brands offer tyres for all your needs, whether adventure or commute. 


You can’t be a motorcycle rider unless you pay attention to your tyres. Tyres are one of the most important components of any motorcycle and play an important role in your safety while riding. The key to riding safely is knowing everything there is to know about your motorcycle’s tyres and using that knowledge to make informed purchasing and maintenance decisions.


Let us start by saying that there are no one-size-fits-all motorcycle tyres. Each tyre serves a specific purpose, which means that no one type of tyre will perform well in all situations. In this post, we’ll go over the various types of motorcycle tyres, how to use them safely, and which tyre is best for your bike. Let’s have a look at which tyres are for whom: 


1 – Dual Sport/All-Terrain/ADV Tyres

Adventure bikes and/or scrambler motorcycles are typically designed for long-distance travel on both pavement and off-road terrain. This means that the construction of ADV/Dual sport tyres should be smooth enough for highway use yet with just the right amount of tread pattern for the loose surfaces of off-road usage. 

Dual-sport tyres are frequently labelled with percentages indicating their intended use, such as 70% offroad / 30% on-road. Knobby tyres are more suited to dirt use, whereas less aggressive tyres are better suited to road use with some light off-roading.

These are typically the tyres chosen by adventure riders who enjoy spending more time off-road, as their knobby construction provides superior traction on loose dirt, sand, or mud surfaces. So if you identify yourself as a light off-road enthusiast too, here are the tyres available for you: 

Apollo Actizip - Dual Sport/All-Terrain/ADV Tyres

Dual Sport/All-Terrain/ADV Tyres

Tyre Brand & Pattern Name Front Tyre Size Rear Tyre Size Compatible Bikes Price (approx.)
Apollo Actizip 80/100-18  80/100-18 Honda CD 110, Honda Shine, Honda Livo Rs 1,750 – Rs 2,200
MRF Nylogrip Plus  2.75-18 3.25-19 Hero Achiever, Bajaj V, Bajaj Caliber, Mahindra Centuro, Hero Glamour, Hero HF Dawn, Royal Enfield Bullet, Royal Enfield Thunderbird 350. Rs 1,799 – Rs 2,122
CEAT Gripp X3 2.75-17  100/90-17 Bajaj CT100, Bajaj Discover, TVS Victor, Yamaha Saluto, Bajaj Pulsar, Honda CBF Stunner, Yamaha SZ.  Rs 1,385 – Rs 2,098
JK Blaze  90/90-17 100/90-18 Hero Impulse, Royal Enfield Bullet/Classic 350, Royal Enfield Thunderbird, TVS Apache 160, Bajaj Avenger, Bajaj Pulsar.  Rs 1,421 – Rs 1,920
Ralco Speed Blaster  90/90-19 120/80-18 Royal Enfield Bullet 350, Royal Enfield Classic 350, Hero Karizma, Royal Enfield Thunderbird 350/500. Rs 2,629 – Rs 2980


2 – Sport-Touring Tyres

Sport tyres are designed for lightweight corner carvers and high-performance street bikes. They are lighter than other types of tyres, made of softer compounds, and generally have a more rounded shape that is meant to provide more grip to give you more confidence when laying the bike deep into corners, as most sport bikes are capable of. 

Its carcass, or the “body” of the tyre beneath its tread, has a stiffer radial construction to ensure stability and support, as well as better heat dissipation, especially during high-speed cornering and braking, when the tyres are under the most stress.

They usually only have a few tread patterns to ensure a larger surface area for grip, but they can still handle some wet weather conditions. While most sport tyres have a rounded shape, some sport tyres have a flatter profile to ensure that your bike doesn’t lay down at the sight of every corner and to intentionally give it more stability for straight-line riding — for people who don’t like dipping into corners too much. 

While they provide the most grip, they are not typically designed for long-term use. These types of tyres are typically found on Kawasaki’s Ninja sportbike lineup. If you have intentions to munch miles on your sportbike, check out what tyres you have as options here:

Michelin Pilot Street 2 - Sport-Touring Tyres

Sport-Touring Tyres

Tyre Brand & Pattern Name Front Tyre Size Rear Tyre Size Compatible Bikes Price (approx.)
Apollo Actizip 2.75-17 110/80-17 Bajaj Pulsar 135LS, Bajaj CT100, Bajaj Platina 100, TVS Sport, TVS Apache 160, Bajaj Discover 125 Rs 1,550 – Rs 2,700
Michelin Pilot Street 2 100/80-17 130/70 R17 TVS Apache 160/180, Yamaha Fazer, Yamaha FZ, Yamaha YZF, Suzuki Gixxer, Harley Davidson Street 750 Rs 2,240 – Rs 3,678
Michelin Scorcher 11 100/80 R17 140/75 R15 TVS Apache, Suzuki Gixxer, Yamaha Fazer,  Harley Davidson Street 750, Harley Davidson Fat Boy Rs 10,610 – Rs 22,400
JK Blaze  100/80-17 140/70-17 Bajaj Pulsar 150, Yamaha Fazer, Suzuki Gixxer, Harley Davidson Street, Harley Davidson Street 750, Hero Xtreme, Honda CB Hornet 160R, Suzuki Gixxer, Yamaha Fazer, Yamaha FZ Rs 1,479 – Rs 3,222
CEAT Zoom 100/80-17 130/70-17 TVS Apache, Bajaj Pulsar 150, Yamaha Fazer, Suzuki Gixxer, Harley Davidson Street, Harley Davidson Street 750, Hero Xtreme, Honda CB Hornet 160R, Suzuki Gixxer, Yamaha Fazer, Yamaha FZ Rs 2,346 – Rs 3,508


3 – Cruiser Tyres

Touring tyres differ from cruiser tyres in that touring motorcycles are more capable of cornering than cruiser-style motorcycles, which are built for straight-line stability. Because cruisers are not designed to attack corners as aggressively as sportbikes, their tyre construction and design differ. They are designed to be strong enough to support heavy bikes while also providing long mileage and good wet-weather traction. 

Similar to touring tyres, they have a combination of deeper tread depth and harder compounds to provide less wear and much more mileage. Because cruiser tyres are made of harder compounds, they are heavier than most types of tyres.

They’re built with stiffer sidewalls to withstand heavier loads from saddlebags or tandem riding. These are the types of tyres found on large V-Twin cruiser bikes such as the Harley-Davidson Softtail and Roadglide models. If big-capacity comfort-oriented cruisers are your thing, you can check out the tyres offered by different tyre brands in this segment: 

CEAT Gripp - Cruiser Tyres

Cruiser Tyres

Tyre Brand & Pattern Name Front Tyre Size Rear Tyre Size Compatible Bikes Price (approx)
Apollo Actisteer (TL) 90/90-19 120/80-18 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, Royal Enfield Classic 500  Rs 2,300 – Rs 2,900
CEAT Secura Sports 90/90-19 120/80-18 Royal Enfield Bullet 350 Rs 1,846  – Rs 3258
JK Blaze BF11 90/90-19 120/80-18 Royal Enfield Bullet 350 Rs 1,854 – Rs 3,678
CEAT Gripp 90/90-19 120/80-18 Royal Enfield Bullet,  Royal Enfield Electra, Royal Enfield Machismo, Royal Enfield Thunderbird 350/500 Rs 2,148 – Rs 3,900
Michelin Sirac Street 90/90-19 120/80-18 Royal Enfield Bullet, Royal Enfield Electra, Royal Enfield Machismo, Royal Enfield Thunderbird Rs 2,830 – Rs 4020


4 – Supersport Tyres

Sport tyres are typically smaller than other types of motorcycle tyres because they are designed for high-speed cornering. These tyres usually have rounded shoulders that allow for a smooth transition from the contact patch to the sidewall.

This reduces drag by decreasing turbulence at these points. They provide less mass but more speed than larger versions because they are smaller in size. Street sports tyres may be what you’re looking for if you want something that can handle corners well and get you around corners quickly without losing too much speed or control of your bike.

Current trends among riders and users of superfast motorcycles indicate that investing in these tyres is worthwhile, provided that such a purchase is made with caution. The ride, no matter how dynamic or exhilarating, should ideally take place on an even, dry surface, as this is what these tyres are specifically designed for.

More advanced users of sports tyres frequently carry infrared thermometers, so that once the tyres have warmed up to the appropriate temperature – taking into account other factors as well – they can ride with greater confidence in a sporting style. If you too, have intentions to have your litre-class supersport to the track and set some hot laps, here’re the options you have:

Apollo Alpha H1 - Supersport Tyres

Supersport Tyres

Tyre Brand & Pattern Name Front Tyre Size Rear Tyre Size Compatible Bikes Price (approx)
Apollo Alpha H1 110/70 ZR17 150/60 ZR17 Mahindra Mojo, KTM 200 Duke, KTM 250 Duke, TVS Apache RR 310, KTM RC200,  KTM RC390, KTM Duke 390 Rs 4,950 – Rs 6,250
Michelin Pilot Street 110/70 ZR17 150/60 ZR17 Bajaj Dominar, Benelli TNT, Benelli TNT 25, Benelli TNT R, BMW K1600 GTL, KTM 200 Duke Rs 7,100 – Rs 11,250
Michelin Road 5  110/70 ZR17 150/60 ZR17 Bajaj Dominar, Benelli TNT, Benelli TNT 25, Benelli TNT R, BMW K1600 GTL, KTM 200 Duke Rs 9,070 – Rs 14,052 
Metzeler M5  110/70 ZR17 150/60 ZR17 Bajaj Dominar, Benelli TNT, Benelli TNT 25, Benelli TNT R, BMW K1600 GTL, KTM 200 Duke Rs 7,740 – Rs 8908 
Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR 110/70 ZR17 150/60 ZR17 Bajaj Dominar, Benelli TNT, Benelli TNT 25, Benelli TNT R, BMW K1600 GTL, Bonneville, Honda CBR250R Rs 10,420 – Rs  13,190


5 – Off-Road Tyres 

The only pavement its bike would see would be from a trailer or a truck bed for true off-road riders. Its tyres are solely intended for use in the dirt. Its construction would be extremely knobby, providing exceptional traction in soft terrain, as seen in enduro or motocross riding. Its tread extends out at an angle to the central knobs and wraps around the sides of the tyre, allowing the rider to maintain grip as he leans around sharp berms with soft surfaces. These are commonly found on enduro bikes such as the KTM 690 Enduro R.

Bike tyres with low and tightly clustered knobs are used for dirt riding in harder terrain, as seen in American flat track racing, to increase surface area and grip as the bikes race at speeds of up to 160 km/h while maintaining control on an unpredictable dirt track surface. If you want to get down and dirty on your adventure bike, check out the following tyres:

Pirelli Scorpion Trail - Off-Road Tyres

Off-Road Tyres

Tyre Brand & Pattern Name Front Tyre Size Rear Tyre Size Compatible Bikes Price (approx)
Apollo Tramplr XR 110/70 R17 140/70 R17 Suzuki Gixxer, Suzuki Gixxer SP, Yamaha Fazer, Kawasaki Z250, Kawasaki Ninja 300, Honda CBR 250R, Yamaha FZ Version 2.0, Yamaha YZF-R15 V3, Yamaha Fazer 25, Yamaha FZ 25, Yamaha FZ S Version 2.0, Honda CB Hornet 160R Rs 4,300- Rs 5,000
Apollo Tramplr ST  90/90-17 110/80-17 TVS Apache RTR 160, TVS Apache RTR180, TVS Apache RTR180, Honda CB Hornet 160R, Honda CB Unicorn 160, Bajaj Pulsar NS160 Rs 1,900 – Rs 2,600
CEAT Gripp XL (TT) 90/90-21 120/90-17 Royal Enfield Himalayan Rs 2,544 – Rs 3,802 
Pirelli Scorpion Trail 90/90-21 100/90-19 Royal Enfield Himalayan, KTM Duke Enduro Rs 9,460 – Rs 9,770 
Michelin Anakee Adventure 90/90-21 120/90-17 Royal Enfield Himalayan, KTM Duke Enduro Rs 9,460 – Rs 10,580 


What Are Radial Tyres?

Radial tyres for bikes are a type of tyre construction where the tyre’s casing plies are positioned radially from the centre of the tyre, perpendicular to the direction of travel. In other words, the cords that make up the tyre’s structure run from the bead of the tyre to the tread in a straight line, which creates a more stable and sturdy tyre than bias-ply tyres. This design allows the tyre to have a larger contact patch with the ground, providing better traction, stability, and cornering ability. Radial tyres are commonly used on sportbikes, touring bikes, and cruisers due to their superior performance characteristics compared to bias-ply tyres.


Advantages Of Radial Tyres

Now that we know what radial tyres are, let’s check out what advantages they have over normal tyres: 

  • Radial tyres have a larger surface contact area than bias tyres due to their flexible sidewalls. While the footprint of a radial tyre is not as long as that of a bias ply tyre, it is much wider, providing better grip when taking sharp turns. These tyres are better suited for high-speed cornering because the sidewalls can flex depending on the change in weight on the tyre when the bike is leaning into a corner. When the motorcycle comes out of the corner and straightens up, the tyre quickly returns to its original shape.


  • Radial tyres provide better grip not only in corners but also in straight lines at both high and low speeds. This also aids braking and keeps the vehicle from sliding in wet conditions.


  • When compared to a bias ply tyre, the pressure in the contact area on a radial tyre is more evenly distributed, allowing for more uniform wear over time.


  • The heat, like the pressure, is uniformly distributed inside a radial tyre. Radials run cooler than bias tyres because of this. Steel belts on radial tyres dissipate heat more effectively than nylon plies on bias tyres. Even at high speeds, heat is not concentrated in a single direction or area of the tyre. This keeps the tyres from bursting at high speeds and increases overall safety and tyre life.


  • As previously stated, the sidewalls are independent of the cord ply and crown, making them more flexible. This allows the tyre to absorb any irregular surface deformities. This improves the ride quality and cushioning, especially at higher speeds.

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