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Michelin Pilot Power 3 Tires Review

The tread of my Michelin Pilot Power 3 Tires has now seen more than 1000 miles of highways, city streets, and twisty two-lane back roads. The only difference between now and when they went on the bike is slightly less shine, and a few less rubber feelers.

At this point there is no point talking about tire wear because it still looks brand new. Unfortunately, tire wear is usually the number one concern for most riders. Many riders don’t even pay attention to their tires beyond the occasional pressure check. But tire wear, man tire wear always comes up in the conversation, and it is the easiest thing to spot by just glancing at your wheel.

The simplest way of getting longevity off your mind and focusing on the important aspects of modern rubber – grip, traction, lean angle – is to unintentionally enter an unfamiliar corner too quickly. All of the sudden, you are pushing elements of the bike to the limits. All of a sudden grip, traction, and lean angle are brought to the forefront and you realize that new tube of rubber on your bike just saved you from a spill.
I was riding my Suzuki SV650 down an unfamiliar bit of road on a wet evening with the sun setting and light fading. Exiting the highway, I was caught off guard by a downhill, decreasing radius off ramp. Already rocking a decent lean angle, it was pretty obvious heavy braking was out of the question. I came off the throttle and started dialing in more lean angle, while waiting for the front end to wash out and low side into the grass run-off. Instead the front remained stable, the bike’s line tightened up, and I ended up going through the corner quicker than I ever would have intentionally tried to in those conditions. With the previous tires I had, there is no way I would have made it through that situation drama-free.

At that moment, I completely believed all the marketing and advertising about how much better Michelin tires perform in the wet compared to the competition.

Dry stability is likewise very impressive. The grooves run in the same direction as the rotation of the tires, and that make a huge difference. The last set of tires I was running would squirm and feel loose at certain speeds and lean angles as the tread blocks moved under load. No such issues here.

No matter what kind of bike you ride, tires are the only point of contact between a bike and the road. Without a good set of tires, even the best suspension in the world will not work properly; the same thing goes for power. For racers, a great set of tires can mean the difference between winning or losing. On the street, a great set of tires can mean getting home safe in tricky conditions instead of taking a trip to the ER. Thus far, the Michelin Pilot Power 3 are the best tires I have had on my bike.    

-- Filip L.