e*thirteen TRS tire review

Best tires this tester has ever ridden

These tires come in 27.5 and 29x2.35 versions.

These tires come in 27.5 and 29×2.35 versions.

Editor’s Note: This article was written by Scotty Ender of Art’s Cyclery. The original post can be found here.

Lowdown: e*thirteen TRS Tire

Buy these tires immediately — they changed my life and will change yours, too. Here’s why.

  • Super supple (and durable) casing
  • Heavy (but great traction)
  • Predictable traction
  • Did we mention traction

Review: e*thirteen TRS Tire

I’ve never been much for getting my bike perfectly tuned. Whether you slap a 15mm or 25mm rise handlebar on my bike, I wouldn’t notice the difference. The same went for tires, or at least did, until I rode e*thirteen’s TRS tires. For the first time ever, I understood what real traction was, how dramatically a tire’s casing affects ride quality, and the nuances of a tire’s tread pattern. e*thirteen put an incredible amount of effort into this tire and it shows.

Tread life was reasonable, especially considering they were tested on the tire-destroying trails around San Luis Obispo.

Tread life was reasonable, especially considering they were tested on the tire-destroying trails around San Luis Obispo.

Note: TRSr tires feature an ultra-tacky triple compound rubber, while the TRS+ tires sport a more long-lasting dual compound rubber. Because e*thirteen’s TRSr and TRS+ tires are otherwise identical, the reviews are the same for both sets of tires.


I truly had no idea that a casing could so dramatically alter and enhance a tire. Fact: my test trails in San Luis Obispo eat tires. Pinch flats are common and extra tubes are a must. I can sum up the TRS casing by simply saying, I no longer carry extra tubes. It’s a bad habit, I know, but it’s true. I just don’t pinch flat anymore. The casing, which is called an “enduro” casing in the current parlance, utilizes an extra layer of protection as well as an ultra-slow-rebound rubber, which makes this tire predictable and forgiving through rocks. The casing offers the feel of a DH tire without the extra weight.

Large side knobs increase cornering traction.

Large side knobs increase cornering traction.


The TRS’s tread is reminiscent of a few other tires on the market, namely Michelin’s Wild Rock’R and Maxxis’s DHR. The only difference is that the TRS is better… by a longshot. Not only do both TRSr (“race” triple compound) and TRS+ (“durable” double compound) offer insane amounts of bite thanks to their compounds, but the well-spaced, ultra-beefy, and super-angular knobs grab hold of anything and everything. From loam to loose rocks, even on hardpack, this tire has traction for days. Initially, it felt a little bit slow while pedaling, but the tradeoff of monster traction on the descent is well worth it in my opinion.

Another thing worth mentioning is how predictable e*thirteen’s TRS tires are. These tires let me know exactly how hard I could push before they’d let go and when they finally did, I knew precisely where they’d go, how far they’d go, and how quickly they’d get there.

Deep siping on the top of the large side knobs help to soften the corner of the knob in deeper lean angles, giving you that extra bit of traction when you need it most. Also designed to help at extreme lean angles, the sides of the cornering knobs feature accordion sipes that promote controlled folding. This tire utilizes both perpendicular and parallel siping on the center knobs, offering more than enough braking and cornering traction to keep you upright and focused on the next corner.


At 950 grams, these tires punch well above their weight class in terms of both traction and durability. I’d previously loved WTB’s Vigilante for its predictability and traction, but at around 1100 grams, I got more flats and less traction than with the TRS tires. Being able to ride with the type of confidence that these tires offer, knowing that your tires won’t leave you flat and bummed is well worth an extra 100 grams or so.

The reinforced sidewall reduces the chance of getting stranded on the side of the trail with a slashed tire.

The reinforced sidewall reduces the chance of getting stranded on the side of the trail with a slashed tire.

Bottom Line

This tire’s tread pattern lends itself to predictability in corners, regardless of surface. Without transition knobs to get you from the center to the cornering knobs, e*thirteen has designed the center knobs to roll you over to the cornering knobs without that split-second of “in-between” that can be incredibly unnerving if you’re not ready for it. Bottom line, e*thirteen’s TRS tires are, without a doubt, the best tires that I’ve ever run both front and rear. Incredible casing, monster traction, and ultra user-friendly. I’d recommend a TRSr (race) up front and a TRS+ (plus) out back.

For more info, please visit bythehive.com.

About the author: Arts Cyclery

This article was originally published on the Art's Cyclery Blog. Art's Cyclery is dedicated to offering free expert advice, how-to videos, and in-depth product reviews on ArtsCyclery.com to help riders make an educated decision when selecting cycling gear.

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  • Suns_PSD says:

    You need to try WTB’s Convict up front and Breakout in the rear in the 2.5 sizes. Those tires will alter your perception of how much traction a mountain bike can actually have.

    • Randy Cougars says:

      Convicts will be my next tire after magic marys, but to answer the other dude – of course they’re tubeless ready and I run e13 valves and e13 Plasma.

  • eb1888 says:

    Reno, these tires have a sidewall designed not to give the tubeless problems of your past tires. For a review and the weight savings you should give tubeless another shot.

  • Scott says:

    I tried a Convict (Light/Highgrip) over the TRSr and it:

    1. Is heavier (1042g vs 900g)
    2. Is more prone to sidewall cuts (you have to go up almost 200g to the tough casing to even get sidewall protection)
    3. Doesn’t grip as well at aggressive angles
    4. Rolls slower
    5. Has a lower volume casing (59mm vs 61)

    Because they measure the width at the shoulder knobs to get the 2.5 (63mm/2.48″ actual) width, the convict is barely 2.5 and only until you corner a few times and wear the sharp edge off the knobs . Also, the center knobs are inline with the cornering knobs meaning at aggressive lean angles, the center knobs are interfering with the cornering knobs ability to dig in. The bottom line on the convict is that it’s a smaller, more delicate tire, that is limited in it’s cornering and rolling ability by it’s design who’s only advantage is that it’s $2 cheaper.

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