Michelin Anakee Wild ADV Tires Review

Cycle News Staff | May 20, 2020

The Michelin Anakee Wild ADV tire is a single-compound tire with an innovative tread inspired by their winning Dakar Rally tire.

Michelin Anakee Wild ADV Tires Review
The Michelin Anakee Wild has proven to be a solid-performing and long-wearing ADV tire that can still hold its own against comparably newer offerings.

While it looks like an aggressive DOT knobbie, I was surprised to find that Michelin categorizes it as a 50/50. Designed with an emphasis on longevity, the sidewalls of this radial-design tire flex independently from the crown, which is said to improve the footprint and reduce wear, especially on the pavement. Michelin says that with these tires, you can finish your long adventure trip on the same tires you started on. The front tire is available in 19 inches and 21 inches, and the rear in 17 inches and 18 inches, and several new widths have been offered since it was originally introduced in 2016. They are a bit pricey, with MSRPs for the 21-inch front tire at $151.95 and the 18-inch rear at $286.95.

Michelin Anakee Wild ADV Tires Review | The Lowdown

Stand-Out Feature: Good all-around performance on- and off-road and higher mileage than 80/20 tires.

MSRP: $151.95 (21 in.); $286.95 (18 in.)

wheelie-up Good all-around performance
wheelie-up Stable and predictable on all surfaces
wheelie-up Higher mileage than an 80/20 tire
endo-down A bit pricey

Michelin Anakee Wild ADV Tires Rider Analysis

Having recently reviewed several of the newest 80/20 ADV tires on the market, I was curious as to how the veteran Anakee Wild would stack up against the newer offerings.

Michelin Anakee Wild ADV Tires Review
Despite the aggressive looks, Michelin categorizes the Anakee Wild ADV tire as 50/50.

First of all, I love the look of a big ADV bike with aggressive tires. To me, it just looks cool, but a lot of people don’t run them because they simply wear out too fast. Michelin focused on addressing that issue with the Anakee Wild. These tires look great, and the sidewalls are pliable enough that they can easily be mounted by hand, which is what I did. I usually balance new tires with my Motion Pro Axis Truing-Balance stand, and while some tires require a lot of patience and additional weight to get them just right, the Anakee Wild tires were almost perfectly balanced right from the factory.

For this test I took my typical off-road ADV route that actually starts with some awesome twisty tarmac and then turns into national forest service roads quickly thereafter. The on-road manners of the Anakee Wild tires are fantastic. Stable and predictable when entering fast corners and really quiet for such an aggressive tire. That said, if you’re not used to riding on knobbies, you may find them noisier than what you’re used to. To me it’s worth the compromise for the performance gained off-road.

When the pavement turned to dirt, the fun began—fun, in terms of sliding the rear from side to side, a little more than I expected. I was a bit surprised since they really do well when the bike is straight up. Compared to some of the 80/20 tires that we’ve recently tested, I started to understand pretty quickly why Michelin calls this tire a 50/50. The rear slides around a lot when you’re hard on the throttle in rocks and sand. However, the front tire makes up for what’s lacking in off-road lateral stability in the rear. I was impressed with how well the front of the bike turned in initially and then held its line throughout the turn.

Deep mud, however, wasn’t so pleasant in the front because the mud packed in and didn’t clear out as quickly as I’d like. That said, the rear fared much better in the mud and, similar to how the front helps the rear in loose rocks and sand, the rear really comes to the rescue in the mud—staying on the throttle quickly cleans it out and keeps you moving in the direction you want to go.

Once back on the pavement, Michelin’s categorization of this tire as a 50/50 makes perfect sense. It works much better on twisty tarmac than the full DOT knobbies I’ve ridden recently. Hard braking on all surfaces was excellent, and while the Africa Twin I tested them on will not let you disengage the front ABS, the rear was off completely, and I had loads of fun sliding the rear Anakee Wild into and out of the turns supermoto-style. The electronics on most of the newer-model ADV bikes will keep the power slides predictable, depending on your settings, so the fact that the rear tire breaks loose often in the dirt just means that you’ll have that much more fun riding it. All in all, the Michelin Anakee Wild may be the perfect “do it all” tire. You can ride it aggressively both on and off the road, and when you consider that this tire should last most riders five- to six-thousand miles (especially up front), depending on how active your right wrist is and other factors, it’s definitely worth the slim difference in off-road performance versus a full 80/20 DOT knobbie. CN ~Keith Dowdle

For more information, visit motorcycle.michelinman.com

 

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