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The top 4 fastest road bike clincher tires

In this article I’m going to give you my list of the fastest road bike clincher tires.

I’ve written quite some articles on the subject of tires in general, and road bike tires specifically. And the same tires seem to float to the surface when creating these type of lists.

This list is like that with the entries listed here almost mirroring the entries for the road bike tires with the lowest rolling resistance, or the lightest road bike tires. That’s of course because those two components are very important when it comes to speed. And what you see is that the best tires score high across paramers such as low weight, low rolling resistance, high TPI count, and probably not the best durability.

Because if you want to be the fastest you have to give something in return, and speed comes at the price of possibly runner more flats.

I’ve only included foldable tires, not tubeless ready. So, provided you have the proper set of rims these tires can be mounted almost universally on any other bicycle as well, making any of them the perfect choice for your vintage road bike. But be prepared to dig deep into your wallet as well, because some of these tires are very expensive indeed.

Here’s the list of the fastest road bike clincher tires.

Continental Grand Prix 5000

The Continental Grand Prix 5000 is a clincher tire and dubbed as the best allrounder in the field.

And on paper at least the numbers are very impressive. A 330 TPI tire (very supple) at a claimed weight of 200 grams for a 23 mm width version. It has the exact same Vectran breaker as the other ones on this list, so as far as puncture protection is concerned, this tire performs equally impressive.

And this tire comes in a tan wall version or transparent as Continental calles it. But if you want the lightest version of this tire, you’ll have to stick to black.

Continental Grand Prix 5000 Value
Brand link
Reasons to buy
Best allround road bike tire in the market, supple, light, good puncture protection, tan wall option available
Reasons to avoid
None

Continental Grand Prix TT

The Continental Grand Prix TT actually has two entries sitting below 200 grams. With the 23 mm width at 170 and the 25 mm at 190.

It’s a very supple tire at 330 TPI meant for time trials. So apart from Continental’s proprietary vectran breaker for a bit of puncture protection, its center line is a slick with the amount of rubber down to an absolute minimum.

It’s a clincher tire so you will need tubes to run this one on your wheels.

Continental Grand Prix TT Value
Brand link
Reasons to buy
Light as a feather, supple
Reasons to avoid
Race tire, need tubes

Michelin Power Time Trial

The Michelin Power Time Trial is, as the name suggests, another time trial entry to this list. It sacrifices durability and puncture resistance for pure speed.

The two sizes of 23 and 25 mm tip the scales at 180 and 190 grams respectively, so considering their widths, this is truly one of the lightest tires on the planet.

You’d expect from a time trial tire that it performs well in the rolling resistance department, and the Michelin Power Time Trial does indeed. Together with the Continental Grand Prix 5000, the tire has one of the lowest ones.

Michelin Power Time Trial Value
Brand link
Reasons to buy
Blisteringly fast-rolling tire
Reasons to avoid
Meant for race day

Schwalbe Pro One Tube Type

The Schwalbe Pro One is a top-tier tire from the German brand, which can also be used for time trials.

It’s very light and has one of the best low rolling-resistance numbers. Like many super-fast tires it’s still a clincher tire.

The 23 mm version weighs 215 grams and the 25 mm version 235 grams. The 25 mm version also comes as a tan wall.

Schwalbe Pro One Tube Type Value
Brand link
Reasons to buy
Super fast, lightweight, tan wall option available, one of the very best race tires in the market
Reasons to avoid
None

Specifications fastest road bike clincher tires

Name
Size
ETRTO
Weight (gr)
Tread color
Sidewall color
Compound
Puncture protection
Tire bead
Buy at Amazon
Continental Grand Prix 5000
700Cx25
25-622
230
Black
Transparent
BlackChili
 
foldable
Continental Grand Prix 5000
700Cx25
25-622
255
Black
Cream
BlackChili
 
foldable
Continental Grand Prix 5000
700Cx25
25-622
225
Black
Black
BlackChili
 
foldable
Continental Grand Prix 5000
700Cx23
23-622
200
Black
Black
BlackChili
 
foldable
Continental Grand Prix TT
700Cx25
25-622
190
Black
Black
BlackChili
 
foldable
Continental Grand Prix TT
700Cx23
23-622
170
Black
Black
BlackChili
 
foldable
Michelin Power Time Trial
700Cx23
23-622
180
Black
Black
Gum-X
 
foldable
Michelin Power Time Trial
700Cx25
25-622
190
Black
Black
Gum-X
 
foldable
Schwalbe Pro One
700Cx23
23-622
215
Black
Black
ADDIX Race
 
foldable
Schwalbe Pro One
700Cx25
25-622
235
Black
Black
ADDIX Race
 
foldable
Schwalbe Pro One
700Cx25
25-622
235
Black
Transparent
ADDIX Race
 
foldable

Bicycle tire puncture resistance

EXO, GreenGuard, AGC, AEC, ATC, do you ever get confused with all the jargon related to puncture protection. I know I did? That’s why I’ve written a separate article about puncture resistance technologies. That way, you’ll be able to better understand what’s out there and if it’s worth your money.

Johan van Seijen

FoundeR Restoration.bike

Johan van Seijen is the founder of restoration.bike. His passion for cycling in general, and restoring older bikes turned into a website to share his knowledge with a broader audience. Starting out on his father’s road bike and riding classics as the Amstel Gold Race and Liege Bastogne Liege he has shifted his attention to trail, XC, and gravel riding since. No matter how much he loves writing about everything related to cycling, nothing beats actually using his ever-expanding bicycle collection.

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