Maxxis Minion EXO 3C – 26 x 2.5
One of the most anticipated tire offering I have been waiting for. The single-ply 2.5 Minion tire. Well, it’s been available, but like many riders, I hesitated trying a tire that was only available for the front. Odd why they didn’t make a rear as well.
I’ve been waiting for this design to come out for a long time, so I wasn’t about to wait much longer for the DHR to be made, I decided to run these on the front and rear.
Tires Tested: Maxxis Minion DHF EXO
Size: 26 x 2.5
Durometer: 3C – Triple compound
Recommended Use: Agressive AM / FR
PERFORMANCE & HANDLING
Coming from the dual-ply DH tires, it’s comforting to have the same expectations going into any terrain or situation. This tread design being the same does the job as always. I find the weight savings has been a boost in making the bike more lively in diving in and out of turns. The only trade off that I can see is the thicker dual-ply tires did offer a little more top end stability for big landings and absorbing vibration. This was easily remedied though by turning up the dampening on the suspension a couple clicks.
Running the tire on the rear also has some pluses. With the center tread being closer and more symmetrical, the rolling resistance is noticeably reduced. The bike feels like it’s going fast and braking performance doesn’t seem to be compromised. In wet conditions is where you’ll be making a slight trade off as the DHF tread does not shed mud and debris as well as the DHR pattern — this ultimately effects traction and braking.
I would be hesitant about running these on a DH rig; as you’re moving much faster and the conditions are usually rougher – you want your stuff to be bomb proof. Although I have had racer friends run them on the front only… that might be the best way to go.
MATERIALS & DURABILITY
The obvious benefit is weight savings. A normal dual-ply DHF/DHR will run 1300g +. Right away you can shave nearly a pound on each wheel. Based on my conversion, to the single-ply EXO’s, I achieved a 1.8 lbs weight savings. Dollars per gram, this is the most cost effective way to shed lbs.
Maxxis basically used the single ply design and added exterior sidewall protective layering (the EXO). Looks pretty cool with almost a snakeskin like appearance. The jury is still out on the tire for heavy duty rocky trail riding. I have heard others who have pinch flatted easily in this terrain. Since I’m running them tubeless, I’ll be skirting that issue. The only worry would be burping them or tearing the sidewalls. So far, 1 month of riding, at 25-30 psi, I have not had any issues.
WHERE TO GET EM:
Best price on them is $46.95 at ebikestop.com
GOOD: This tire works. A reliable old friend you love that’s lost 1/3 of the weight. Triple compound!!! Fast tire for the rear as an alternative. Makes climbing noticeably easier.
BAD: Lack of a DHR (rear) tire offering and no UST. Expensive at $50-$60/tire at most LBC.
Reviewed by Qwan Pham