Maxxis Rekon+ review

Semi-aggressive, fast rolling plus-sized trail tire with great grip

2018 Tire Buyer's Guide 27.5 Plus Tires
Maxxis Rekon+ 27.5- 2.8 EXO/3C

The Maxxis Rekon+ is pricier than similar tires in its class, but offers a full range of performance advantages and terrain capabilities.

What is it

The Maxxis Rekon+ is billed as an aggressive trail tire inspired by the Ikon+ for intermediate and technical terrain. Wide knobs down the middle provide control under braking and L-shaped side knobs assure support when carving loose turns.

  • Reasonable weight for a plus tire
  • Accelerates quickly
  • Fast rolling on mixed conditions
  • Good sidewall protection
  • Impressive grip on rocks and roots
  • Expensive
  • Narrower than advertised
  • Accelerated knob wear
Maxxis Rekon+ 27.5- 2.8 EXO/3C

Our test tire came with all the extra ingredients.

Mtbr’s Take

The Maxxis Rekon+ tread design is one I am very familiar with, as it’s inspired by one of my favorite XC race tires, the Maxxis Ikon which is reviewed here. Designed for intermediate and technical terrain, the Rekon+ uses wide center knobs to provide control under braking, while L-shaped side knobs stabilize when carving loose turns. Well-placed siping enhances grip, while ramped center knobs lower rolling resistance.

Maxxis Rekon+ 27.5- 2.8 EXO/3C

Sharp leading edges and ramped center knobs make the Maxxis Rekon+ a fast rolling tire.

For this test we counted the Maxxis Rekon+ on a set of Stan’s Baron wheels with an internal rim width of 35mm. Tubeless setup was a tad finicky, requiring use of a compressor to seat the tire completely. The bead was loose compared to similar tires in class. The casing is more substantial than others in this class, yet weight is reasonable at 835 grams.

Maxxis Rekon+ 27.5- 2.8 EXO/3C

Wide knobs down the middle provide control under braking and L-shaped side knobs assure support when carving loose turns.

We started our Maxxis Rekon+ testing at 17psi and found the grip to be incredible, but ride quality was a little rough. After dialing down pressure to 14psi, the casing’s soft and supple character began to shine through. Depending on terrain and riding style, I would suggest riding the Rekon+ at 15-16psi and dial down from there.

Braking performance was superb and carving in and out of berms was a pleasure. When approaching fast, scrubbing speed, and then sprinting back up to speed, you can literally feel the knobs bite. And there was no slipping down wet off camber sections, nor did the sidewalls ever fold, even while tackling less than predictable terrain. By the end of my first ride, I trusted the Maxxis Rekon+ and was taking chances I normally wouldn’t.

On fire roads and smooth singletrack, the Rekon+ roll fast and smooth. I could see using them for bike packing or even a long distance endurance race.

Maxxis Rekon+ 27.5- 2.8 EXO/3C

Our test tires measured the equivalent of 2.64, considerably less than what’s printed on the hot patch.

Bottom line, the Maxxis Rekon+ is a fantastic tire for riders that like to go fast and appreciate a little extra grip. The tire is excellent option for cross country riders looking to add some trail capabilities to their tire arsenal without adding too much weight or adding rolling resistance. And while it’s narrower than claimed and I did notice some knob degradation near the end of this test, performance did not change. So while the Maxxis Rekon+ is on the pricier end in this tire category, it offers a full range of performance advantages and terrain capabilities that arguably make it worth the price of admission.

Rating: 4 out of 5
Price: $111

More Info:

About the author: Jordan Villella

Jordan comes from the steep streets of Pittsburgh PA, where he learned to dodge cars and rip single track. He has been involved in nearly every aspect of the cycling industry: from turning wrenches, store design, clothing production and bike park creation. Jordan spends his free time racing cross country and cyclocross around North America, though he has been know to enduro every now and then. His love of cycling is only second to his love of his family and punk rock.

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  • Plusbike Nerd says:

    I sure would like to see Maxxis produce a 29×2.8 version of this tire. 29er’s need more 2.8in wide tire choices. And of course, I would want it to measure a true 2.8in when mounted on an i40 rim (or 2.75in when mounted on an i35 rim).

  • Jason says:

    This tire came on my Scott Spark 720.. In the NE it’s one rock garden after another..The tire is great!!!

  • Ben says:

    I switched to the Recon+ (71-584) from the WTB Bridger on my hardtail last fall. Also changed from tubes to tubeless. Absolute night and day difference. i35 rims. 19 psi rear, 17 front. Rider weight is 165 lbs. Dropped 2.25 lbs off the bike. The tires completely changed how the front fork felt and how the bike handles. Traction improved dramatically. Corners where the Bridger would wash out, the Recon+ grabbed all the way through. When I purchased my full suspension bike this spring, I had the LBS swap the Bridgers for the Recon+ and run 16PSI front, 18 rear, tubeless. The FS bike has i45 rims. Maxxis states to run these tires on i39 or wider, but I do like the way they work on the i35 vs i45. The i45 does widen the tire to 2.7″ vs. the 2.6″ on the i35. Purchase price was closer to $80 per tire for the 780 gram version. Between the two bikes I have approximately 600 miles on the Recon+ tires. The wear has been acceptable, better than the Bridgers. I definitely recommend.

  • kyle242gt says:

    I’ve got about 1K miles on my front 27.5*2.8, only just starting to show undercutting on the side knobs. I predict another 500++ miles out of it.
    I run a 27.5*2.6 on the rear, at about 800 or so, no notable wear yet.
    Compared to the Ardents I’ve used previously, these things wear like iron.
    Only issue I’ve found is they load up with mud pretty fast.

  • josh says:

    I’m running the 2C “2.8” (actually 2.67″) version on the back of my hardtail. It’s probably halfway worn out but it has served me quite well thus far. Local dude uses this tire front and rear with excellent and fast (Strava!!!) results. Might use a 3C version up front when my current HRII wears out.

  • MDW says:

    I agree with the comments above. Switched to these (780gram version) from the 3″ Nobby Nics that came on my 2017 Cannondale Bad Habit 1 Carbon with 40mm wide carbon rims. Totally impressed with the speed and climbing abilities of 27.5 plus. Mine measure just a tad under the 2.8″ width.

    When plus started to gain momentum in 2015/2016, the number of tire choices was very sparse. Now there are plenty of choices with very little weight penalty. Life is good!

  • MDW says:

    You can buy online for around $75 a tire.

  • Plusbike Nerd says:

    Hey, isn’t a tire that measures 2.6 on an i35 rim the definition of a 2.6 tire? A true 2.8 tire should measure 2.75 on an i35 rim (or 2.8 on an i40 rim). Is this tire mislabeled? Maxxis makes a 27×2.6 Rekon also. Maybe the 2.6 and the 2.8 are both the same tire! Is Maxxis scamming?

    • Ben says:

      Just a guess, but I would expect the sidewall heights to be different between the 2.6 non plus and the 2.8 plus measuring out at 2.6 width. Has anyone measured? My FS with the i45 is in the shop right now, but I can put a caliper on it when I get it back. Still need to change my hardtail back to the Rekon+ for dirt (use homemade studded WTB Rangers for snow/ice, and WTB Bridgers for snow/slush/dry pavement during the shoulder ride seasons when the off road is closed).

    • Ben says:

      Put the Rekons back on my Hardtail tonight an put the caliper o. To measure the height difference between the 3.0 Bridger and 2.8 Rekon. The Rekon is about a 1/2″ shorter sidewall so about an inch smaller diameter. So maybe you are right. I took pictures and will add them to my mtbr folder.

    • Mark says:

      They are not the same width. I run a 27.5×2.8 on the back and a 29×2.6 on the front, and the difference in width (and ride characteristics) is clear.

  • Ben says:

    Update – 500 miles on the Rekon+ on i45 rims, the rear now measures 2.8″ and the front 2.7″. So I guess they stretch with use…

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