Pirelli PZero Velo 4S road tyres review
We put the Pirelli PZero Velo 4S tyres to the test after the company comes rolling back into the cycling market following a substantial time out
Easy to fit
No tubeless option yet
After years out, Pirelli has made a much anticipated return to the cycling tyre, releasing a new line that includes standard road tyres, time trial options as well as the Pirelli PZero Velo 4S all-season tyre.
The very first experience of the tyres, the initial mounting of them, is great, and getting them on the Zipp 302 wheels on a Cervélo R5 was a breeze, with no tools, grunting or swearing necessary.
As is often the case with Zipp wheels, the tyre is spread large on the rim, and our 25mm Pirellis actually measured a whopping 30mm across.
While this is enormous, it's no bad thing, as the tyres are supple enough to take the sting out of the harsh ride of the Zipp 302s and offer stability when riding.
Watch: Tubular vs Clinchers vs Tubeless – which is fastest?
While the initial setup bliss was appreciated, it did leave questions about the toughness of the sidewalls, and the possible fragility of the tyres. Happily, the autumn roads and the debris hiding under the leaves are yet to puncture them.
The Pirelli PZero 4S tyres didn't feel sluggish, despite their supposed extra winter bulk, and Pirelli boasts the importance of its SmartNet Silica and also the semi-slick centre of the tyre in helping them skip along.
Of course, as equally important is the 127tpi casing, which will definitely have contributed towards making it supple and fast rolling. Although, in comparison to something like the Vittoria Corsa G+'s 320tpi casing, it's relatively low.
The number of flash grooves is increased on the 4S model to three, which according to Pirelli is supposed to increase grip and thus far they've held their own on greasy autumn mornings.
So far, there's no tubeless option for the PZero 4S, but following what Pirelli said at the launch, we might see something soon.
The tyre enters the market at £43.90, still a good £15 cheaper than the Continental Grand Prix 4S tyres, which some see as the benchmark for winter riding.
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