MONTEREY, CALIFORNIA – April 20, 2017 – Last year, WTB introduced Road Plus with the intention of providing riders with a dependable high-volume tire that would allow them to expand road rides beyond their usual paved loops. WTB is now expanding its Road Plus line with the dirt-centric Byway Road Plus TCS tire to encourage riders to stray even farther into the dirt. While WTB’s introductory Horizon Road Plus tire allows riders to deviate from pavement as an exception, the prominent outer knobs and increased resilience of the Byway is intended for riders who prioritize dirt and gravel yet find themselves on paved roads to get there.
Keeping within the constantly expanding road category, the Byway’s slick centerline borders angular hatching to keep everything smooth on sections of pavement while intermediate, diamond-shaped peaks provide steadfast traction under power. Consistent and more substantial side knobs make up the outer section of tread and provide the traction needed on loose dirt and gravel roads.
Doubling as a second level of protection, the outer knobs extend substantially down the side of the casing to protect the sidewall from sharp rocks and other unsavory road hazards. Intended to see a majority of its usage in the dirt, the Byway employs the proven reliability of WTB’s Lightweight Casing to deliver TCS tubeless simplicity and reliability, without sacrificing supple ride quality.
“The Byway augments Road Plus’ capabilities, taking things one step further into dirt.” stated Will Ritchie, WTB’s drop bar category manager. “It [the Byway] still retains a smooth center to avoid road vibrations but gains protective side knobs for extra bite while resisting flexing on harder conditions. Riders now are looking to test what Road Plus can and can’t do. The Byway proves that dirt is part of the equation too.”
All of WTB’s Road Plus tires have the same overall diameter as a 700 x 28-30mm road tire and are intended to be used with endurance road and gravel applications. Road Plus originally built upon the same school of thought as WTB’s 27.5+ system for mountain bikes, where an oversized 27.5-inch tire could be snuck into a 29-inch frame. However, frame manufacturers are now equally on board with the Road Plus movement and are designing frames with 650b Road Plus as a forethought rather than a possibility. WTB has compiled a list of frames currently compatible with Road Plus tires, which can be viewed at https://www.wtb.com/pages/road-plus.
“The Horizons have been my favorite tires for the last year, but the Byway takes the polyvalence of the Road Plus concept a step further!” asserted Marc Gasch, XPDTN3 explorer and photographer. “I can now set out on any of our XPDTN3 bikepacking adventures knowing that my tires will always be ready for any condition, no matter the terrain. Being particular about tire pressure, I go with 28psi for riding dirt or gravel, then pump them up to 50psi for paved sections of the trips.”
WTB Byway 650 x 47c Road Plus TCS tires feature WTB’s Lightweight Casing and Dual DNA Rubber Compound with preproduction sample weights of 535g. Mirroring the cost of the original Horizon Road Plus tire, the Byway 650 x 47c Road Plus TCS tire will retail for $67.95 USD and is currently available and shipping from the WTB warehouse in Novato, California. WTB recommends pairing its Road Plus tires with its KOM i23/i25 TCS alloy rims or Ci24 TCS carbon rims to maximize the high volume profile.
WTB will be awarding all Trans Iowa finishers with a set of Byway Road Plus tires, as well as Riddler 37 & 45, on Sunday April 30th at the conclusion of the 13th annual Trans Iowa Event in Grinnell, Iowa. The Byway Road Plus tire will be displayed during Sea Otter on a 3T Exploro gravel bike at both the 3T (#102) and WTB (#110) booths. Please stop by to view the first public display of the Byway Road Plus tire.
Review – Coming Soon
Gravel Cyclist possesses a sample pair of WTB’s Byway Road Plus tires, and will be reviewing them here, and on behalf of our friends at BikeRumor.com
WTB’s proprietary sealant tubeless system, TCS (Tubeless Compatible System,) revolutionized rims and tires in 2009 when combining ETRTO, ISO, and UST standards with light tubeless rotational weights. Never before had a standards-based tubeless system weighed so little. Certified as the first sealant-based tires for the UST system in 2012 by Mavic, TCS continues to push the boundaries of what’s possible through purpose-built tires and rims tailor-made for every discipline of cycling. Learn more about what’s possible at wtb.com/tcs
Founded in 1982, WTB was formed in the birthplace of mountain biking to design better bicycle products. Renowned for saddles, tires, rims, and grips, this rider-driven company continues to push the boundaries of what’s possible through an unrelenting spirit of innovation and passion for two-wheeled adventure.