Like most technologies, motorcycle tires are constantly evolving to meet customer needs, which is why we put together this motorcycle tire buyers guide. The tricky part is that customers have a lot of needs. As the list of motorcycle categories grows, so does the list of what tires are expected to do. Sport tires need to be grippy but aren’t expected to hold up on a cross-country trip. Touring tires need to be able to carry heavy loads over long miles and perform well in the rain. Adventure tires must find the right balance between on-road and off-road performance.
Besides tires needing to perform well on different types of motorcycles, tire manufacturers also must take into account different customer preferences and budgets. All things considered, there are a lot of tire options out there.
Sport-touring tires need to meet somewhere in the middle, offering sport-like performance as well as touring longevity. They don’t need to carry as much load as touring tires, nor do they have to be quite as grippy as sport tires. However, they should be able to take the rider on long trips while providing enough performance for riders to dig into curves and get the most out of their sport-tourers.
For this motorcycle tire buyers guide, we’ve compiled a list of sport-touring tires from 10 manufacturers to help you make an informed decision about which tire is best for you.
Many tires in this guide feature multicompound construction, with the center of the tire being harder for longevity and the shoulders being softer for better grip while leaned over in corners. Another thing to keep in mind is wet-weather performance. Rain grooves, or sipes, that evacuate water are essential when it starts to pour, but they sacrifice some ultimate grip when the roads are dry. Another factor to consider is the speed rating of your tire. Tires rated H are approved up to 130 mph, V for up to 149 mph, W for up to 168 mph, Y for up to 186 mph, and Z/ZR for over 149 mph.
Tire prices vary by size, and most of the tires on this motorcycle tire buyers guide are available in several sizes. Instead of listing all prices for every size, we’ve listed the lowest MSRP in the range. Keep in mind that you can often find deals for tires below MSRP, so it pays to do a little research.
We hope this list helps you find the perfect sport-touring tires for your bike. Enjoy the ride!
Rider’s Sport-Touring Motorcycle Tire Buyers Guide
Continental RoadAttack 4
These “hyper-touring” tires offer supersport levels of grip, agile handling, wet/dry performance, and high mileage for sport, sport-touring, and adventure-touring motorcycles. A new rubber compound provides faster warm-up times in cold and wet conditions, and an updated tread pattern offers a “slick” area on the shoulder for optimum grip at high lean angles. RoadAttack 4 tires incorporate Continental’s proprietary TractionSkin, RainGrip, MultiGrip, EasyHandling, and GripLimit Feedback technologies. Most sizes are W-rated, and pricing starts at $293.95.
Bridgestone Battlax T32
These tires have a tread pattern and rubber compounds designed for endless riding, rain or shine. Pulse Groove technology evacuates water by combining pulse-shaped sipes with center deflectors to equalize waterflow. A silica-rich compound in the front tire provides grip in wet conditions and at low temperatures, and a multilayered compound in the rear tire provides a balance of performance and mileage. A 13% larger rear contact patch increases cornering grip and improves feel. Most sizes are W-rated, and pricing starts at $201.95.
Shinko 011 Verge Radial
Designed for sport and sport-touring motorcycles ranging from small to large displacement, these tires combine performance with extended mileage and reliable grip. The rear tire features Zero Degree Jointless Steel Belted technology for added stability and strength, while the front tire is aramid belted for high-speed performance. The tires have a round profile for neutral transitions from side to side at speed, and the tread compound is designed for dependable grip and extended tread life. Most sizes are W-rated, and pricing starts at $126.95.
Avon Spirit ST
These high-performance sport-touring tires include plenty of silica to ensure good traction in a variety of weather conditions. They feature Avon’s 3D Sipe technology of interlocking three-dimensional points hidden within the sipes to improve stability by limiting tread flex while also allowing for a quicker warmup time. The multicompound rear improves longevity, while a softer, grippier compound at the edges allows for enhanced grip in corners, making these tires a great option for sport-touring applications. Most sizes are W-rated, and pricing starts at $199.95.
Dunlop Sportmax Roadsmart IV
These tires are the latest generation in the Roadsmart series with a new tread pattern, construction, compounds, and technology. The tire profiles have been changed for 15% lighter steering on turn-in. More durable treads and narrower tread grooves contribute to more even wear across the life of the tire. The tires also benefit from new technologies, including Hi Silica X, which increases silica content for better flexibility, and the MT Multi-Tread layer in the rear tire for improved grip. They are ZR-rated, and pricing starts at $219.56.
Metzeler RoadTec Z8 Interact
These tires provide predictable and easy turn-in thanks to their sport-touring profile with a Greek Pi tread pattern and Interact multitension technology, which uses differentiated tensioning of the steel belt underneath the tread compound for a tailored performance. High-tension belts in the center of the tires reduce compound movement and increase stability, which in turn reduces wear. Low-tension belts allow for flexibility and energy absorption while offering more grip while leaning. They are ZR-rated, and pricing starts at $194.95.
Michelin Road 6
Ideal for inclement weather, these tires offer 15% more grip in wet conditions than Michelin Road 5 tires thanks to improved silica tread compounds and a new tread pattern that features Water Evergrip technology. They also offer 10% longer tread life compared to previous generations. The 2CT+ dual-compound technology, formerly used only on the rear tire, is now applied to both tires and provides better stability when cornering, especially under strong acceleration or heavy braking. They are ZR-rated, and pricing starts at $262.95.
Pirelli Angel GT
These tires bring a sporty attitude to a wider range of usage conditions and for longer distances. They feature excellent wet-weather grip and confident handling capabilities, with performance remaining consistent until the end of the tires’ life. The multiradius contour design creates a uniform contact patch area and contributes to regular wear to extend mileage. These dual-compound tires have a tread pattern that drains water efficiently and provides good cornering grip as well as long life. They are ZR-rated, and pricing starts at $205.55.
The K65s are unique in this list because they include sizing options that can suit everything from cruisers to tourers and even vintage bikes, and they are the only bias-ply tires in this group. They have a rounded profile that delivers neutral handling, and the carcass is designed to deliver strong lateral adhesion in corners while maintaining longevity and mileage. The rubber compound provides a solid balance of durability, grip, and wet weather performance to add to their versatility. They are H-rated, and pricing starts at $131.
Mitas Touring Force
These tires were designed to meet your sport-touring needs no matter what riding conditions you encounter. They feature Multi Compound Tread technology to deliver excellent mileage and cornering grip even at low temperatures, and the high silica content and 3D-modeled tread sipes ensure confident grip on wet roads. Optimum Steel Cord technology provides high stability and smooth handling even with heavy loads, making these tires compatible with larger touring motorcycles. The tires are ZR-rated, and pricing starts at $159.60.