Deciding what tyre width to go for?

Here’s some advice from Pirelli to help you out…

The majority of riders will be running the same width tyres that were on the bike when they bought it. The type of bike you are riding will be the main factor when it comes to tyre width. However bicycle tyres are available in a wide range of widths – so what difference does it make?

The Pirelli P Zero range of tyres currently come in three different widths: 23c, 25c and 28c, this is the measurement of the tyre at the widest point and is the standard sizing used by most tyre manufacturers.

Pirelli Tyres


Narrow tyres are often lighter and can give the sensation of being faster. However, they will provide a harsher ride quality than a wider tyre. A wider tyre will be a little heavier but much more comfortable. Therefore many riders will choose a 23c tyre for time trial events were comfort is less of a priority.

Pirelli Tyres

The recent trend has been for most riders to lean towards a wider tyre width of 25mm or 28mm for general road riding. This gives a perfect combination of light weight, good rolling resistance and comfort. (And for what it’s worth, this is definitely what we here at Touro HQ use and would recommend for the Borders roads.)

However, you may wish to go even wider if your frame will allow and you’re planning on riding on particularly rough terrain. More often than not wider tyres give similar levels of rolling resistance to their narrower counterparts but will give the ride a feel of being slower due to the decreased road vibrations and road feedback.

There are lots of considerations to take into account when choosing your tyres but most importantly start by ensuring that whatever you’re going to purchase will fit your bike. If you are considering going wider than you have used before, you need to ensure you have ample clearance through the forks and in the stays of the rear triangle of your bike. Secondly you need to consider what is best for speed, comfort and the type of riding you will be doing.

Pirelli Tyres

Learn more about the technology Pirelli use to give their tyres the perfect balance of performance by clicking the link below:

Keep a look out for Pirelli’s next blog explaining the much-debated topic of tyre pressures.

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This post was written by Alex Simpkin