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LAST UPDATED: December 23, 2019

Best Dual Sport Tires: Enhance Your All-Terrain Adventure

A quality dual sport tire improves street and trail riding experience

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PUBLISHED ON December 23, 2019

A dual-sport motorcycle has two purposes: to go on and off the road with ease. To accomplish this, it needs a matching pair of tires to conquer tough terrain conditions. The tire you choose should be durable and provide comfortable handling and reliable traction in different terrains. Considering all these factors, we have compiled the three best dual sport tires on the market.

  • Best Overall
    Continental Twinduro TKC80-Dual Sport Rear Tire
    Summary
    Summary
    Featuring 40 percent on-road and 60 percent off-road ratings, the Continental Twinduro is suited for both highway and off-trail use. To enhance the off-road suitability even further, it has a wide block tread pattern for optimal grip and performance.
    Pros
    Pros
    This tire has optimized braking and traction capabilities. It also enhances handling and cornering stability. It has excellent self-cleaning properties.
    Cons
    Cons
    Tire may not wear evenly. It is expensive compared to most other options.
  • Best Overall
    Continental Twinduro TKC80-Dual Sport Rear Tire
  • Best Value
    Kenda K270 Dual Dual/Enduro Front Motorcycle Bias Tire
    Summary
    Summary
    If you are looking to replace your OEM tire, Kenda Dual sport would be a nice choice. It has a rating of 40 percent on-road and 60 percent off-road application for a perfect balance between a comfortable on-road ride and improved traction on the trails.
    Pros
    Pros
    This tire offers improved handling and cornering capabilities. It is also DOT-approved and affordable. It features a maximum tread depth for improved all-terrain grip.
    Cons
    Cons
    The speed rating of this tire is C, which may not be suitable for some users. It is not the best for riding on snowy trails.
  • Best Value
    Kenda K270 Dual Dual/Enduro Front Motorcycle Bias Tire
  • Honorable Mention
    Shinko Dual Sport 705 Series Front/Rear Tire
    Summary
    Summary
    This Shinko dual sport tire is designed for 80 percent on-road and 20 percent off-road riding. It features a versatile tread pattern for enhanced all-weather traction as well as smooth riding on the highway.
    Pros
    Pros
    All its sizes are designed for front and rear fitment. It features a high-quality rubber compound that resists tearing during off-road use for enhanced durability. It is DOT-approved and has excellent loading capabilities.
    Cons
    Cons
    The tire has a lot of noise and vibrations when speeding on the streets. It does not have self-cleaning capabilities and does not perform well on snow.
  • Honorable Mention
    Shinko Dual Sport 705 Series Front/Rear Tire

    A dual-sport motorcycle has two purposes: to go on and off the road with ease. To accomplish this, it needs a matching pair of tires to conquer tough terrain conditions. The tire you choose should be durable and provide comfortable handling and reliable traction in different terrains. Considering all these factors, we have compiled the three best dual sport tires on the market.

    Best Dual Sport Tires Reviews & Recommendations 2020

    Best Overall

    This rear tire from Continental’s Twinduro range of dual sport tires is rated 60/40, meaning it’s ideal if you’re looking to spend a decent amount of time out on the trails but also need reliable, precise performance on the road, too. This is reflected in the wide block tread pattern, which is the ideal shape and depth for optimal traction on both loose and hard-packed surfaces. 


    You can also be confident of stable cornering on soft ground alongside decent self-cleaning capabilities. It’s approved by the DOT and, according to the manufacturer’s specifications, it’s 130mm wide and weighs 14 pounds, while having an S-rating for speed. This 17-inch tubeless model is designed for Kawasaki KLR600/650s from 1985 onwards but it may be compatible with tube-wheels and on other makes and models of bikes of a similar size.


    With Continental being a big-name brand, this is relatively more expensive than others with similar specifications. It also might not wear evenly, but it should last you around 3,000 to 4,000 miles, as long as you don’t live anywhere with excessive temperatures. This tire may not hold up so well in the Nevada desert heat, for example.

    Best Value

    Our best value pick from Kenda is an affordable, DOT-approved front tire that would be an ideal replacement for your OEM tire. It’s also rated for a 40/60 street to off-road ratio and therefore offers the perfect compromise between off-road traction and smooth highway riding. You can see this from the depth of the tread combined with even, widely-spaced but not particularly nobbly knobs. It features 4- and 6-ply rated casings, but the rubber is fairly soft, resulting in a quieter ride with much less vibration than you’d expect from an aggressive tire. This does mean that it’s not exactly stiff enough for top speeds on the highway (it’s rated C for speed), but it is superb in sandy and even deep mud, even without side lugs.


    At 3 inches wide and only 8.3 pounds, this is a fairly lightweight tire. It’s available in a range of wheel sizes, but the manufacturer specifies a maximum load weight of 430 pounds, so if your bike is on the heavier side, this isn’t going to be suitable. We also don’t recommend this tire for use in the snow due to the fairly flat tread.

    Honorable Mention

    Taking the honorable mention spot is this dual sport tire from Shinko, which is designed for 80 percent street-riding and 20 percent off-road riding. The Shinko construction resulted in a 4.3-inch wide tire that weighs 13 pounds and has a speed rating of P. Its rubber compound, 4-ply construction holds up well and resists tearing on rocks and uneven surfaces. 


    This tire is DOT-approved and fairly affordable. Conveniently, it’s designed to fit either your front or rear wheel. It should fit a 13-18 inch wheel, but you should measure it first to be sure.

    It features a versatile tread that channels water well on the road, yet maintains stability on loose or wet ground.


    However, performance on loose deep gravel leaves a little to be desired. Unfortunately, the shape of the thread also results in a particularly noisy ride, even on smooth ground, which is not found with other 80/20 rated tires.

    Why Trust Us


    All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, and practical experience with most products we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.

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    Benefits of Dual Sport Tires

    • Superior all-around performance.Dual sport tires are specifically designed to perform both on-road and off-road, which means you can be sure of decent traction and predictable handling over a range of different surfaces.
    • Versatility. Everybody wants to have the best of both worlds, but most people don’t have the budget—or space—for two different bikes. Dual sport tires give you the freedom to hit the trails whenever you want while still being able to ride to work.
    • Cost-effectiveness. Dual sport tires are no more expensive than regular motorcycle tires and they offer much better fuel efficiency. Plus, it’s way cheaper than maintaining separate bikes.
    • Safety. Wherever you’re using your bike, safety should be paramount. Dual sport tires give you the peace of mind and confidence to spend time riding both on and off the road.
    • Fun factor. A motorcycle is intrinsically fun, but it can get tedious if you’re just up and down the same bit of highway every day. Dual sport tires might be just what you need to fall in love with riding again.

    Types of Dual Sport Tires

    90/10

    These tires are for people who are likely to spend most of their time riding on the street and, when they occasionally go off-road, stick to gravel roads anyway. They’re definitely not recommended for any serious off-roading.

    80/20 and 70/30

    Still mostly designed with regular street riding in mind, these will hold their own on their trails if you’re a bit of a weekend warrior. However, they are by no means the best tires for off-roading.

    60/40

    If you do nearly as much off-roading as you do on-roading, these tires are probably your best bet. They’re much better for off-roading than anything above and still perfectly fine to use on the highway. As long as you don’t mind sacrificing a little precision and responsiveness when it comes to corners, then they’ll work well.

    50/50

    As you’d likely expect, a 50/50 tire doesn’t give superior performance either way. You’ll get decent performance in both environments and if you’re not quite sure what to expect, they’re probably a good bet.

    40/60

    This type of tire is a solid choice if you want a decent performance on the trails. The improved off-road handling translates to better stability at high speeds, so highway and street use is still quite admirable.

    30/70 and 20/80

    Although street performance remains high, these tires are primarily intended for use on the trails and other off-road conditions. A good choice if you do a lot of regular on-road riding but like to let loose on weekends on the less demanding trails.

    10/90

    These tires are legal for street use, but very much designed with off-roading in mind. Although you can still ride on the road, long trips are not recommended due to considerably diminished handling and precision. It’s probably best limiting street use to just the ride from your house to the trails and back again.

    Top Brands

    Pirelli

    Italian company Pirelli was born in 1872 when Giovanni Battista Pirelli starting making elastic rubber goods. Today, the company they have production plants in 12 countries and an annual turnover of around $5.5 billion. Since 2011, Pirelli has been Formula 1’s tire supplier of choice. Their dual sport offerings include tires in the Scorpion range.

    Michelin

    In 1889, Edoard Michelin took over a factory in Clermont-Ferrand, France that manufactured farm equipment and rubber balls. In 1891, Michelin developed the world’s first detachable bicycle tire. They’ve since expanded into a whopping 171 countries and some alternative markets, including tourism, restaurants, and sustainable mobility. The Anakee lines are specifically designed for dual use.

    Continental

    Continental has been making tires for all kinds of vehicles since they were founded nearly 150 years ago. Founded in Hanover, Germany, in 1871, they took over General Tire in 1987 and successfully established a subsidiary company, Continental Tire North America, Inc. for a significant presence in the U.S. Check out their Twinduros here.

    Mitas

    Mitas started making tires designed for agricultural, industrial, and off-road riding use in Prague, Czechia, in the 1930s. They now operate in 14 countries worldwide and have three international production bases, including Charles City, Iowa, which has been operational since 2012. The DAKAR range is where you’ll find their dual sport tires.

    Dual Sport Tires Pricing

    • Budget range (under $50):Even at the low end of the price range, you should be able to find a perfectly good set of 4-ply or even 6-ply tires with decent enough grip that are also approved by the Department of Transportation.
    • Premium range (over $150): Unsurprisingly, at the top end, you’ll get tires that last much much longer while also providing better off-road precision and grip, particularly in wet conditions.

    Key Features

    Tread Pattern

    When it comes to performance, including grip, handling, and precision, it’s all about the tread. Different types of tire feature different tread patterns and manufacturers will favor one design over another. Some patterns will be designed for superior grip in wet conditions, some for riding on sand, and still others for improved traction on bare rock or mud. 

    Tread Depth

    As you’d likely expect, tread depth is massively important for safe and predictable handling in off-road conditions. The deeper the tire’s tread, the greater traction, and grip you’ll have in soft surfaces like sand or mud. Deep tread also makes it easier to drop rocks that may stick in the gaps and compromise your performance.

    Knob Size

    The knobs that make up the tread pattern determine the surface area of the tire. Large, wide knobs means a smooth flat surface will be in contact with more of the tire at any given time. This is therefore recommended for street-riding. More frequent but smaller-sized knobs provide a more uneven but greater surface area, which can get into the nooks and crannies of an uneven off-road surface, and vice versa.

    Other Considerations

    • Technical Specifications. Buying dual sport tires is a little trickier than buying regular tires because there are a lot more factors to take into consideration when you’re trying to have the best of both worlds. If you feel like it’s too complicated, ask an expert for help.
    • Roadworthiness. The deal with dual sport tires is that they can be used both on and off-road. It’s vital to make sure that any tire you buy meets these requirements and is certified street legal.
    • Street to Off-Road Ratio. The best type of tire for your needs will depend on how much of each type of riding you’ll be doing. There’s no point sacrificing precision handling on the highway for superb off-road capabilities if you spend very little time on the trails, for example. If you’re not sure of your expected ratio, start with a 50/50 tire and adjust accordingly when you come to buy your next set.

    Best Dual Sport Tires Reviews & Recommendations 2020

    Best Overall

    This rear tire from Continental’s Twinduro range of dual sport tires is rated 60/40, meaning it’s ideal if you’re looking to spend a decent amount of time out on the trails but also need reliable, precise performance on the road, too. This is reflected in the wide block tread pattern, which is the ideal shape and depth for optimal traction on both loose and hard-packed surfaces. 


    You can also be confident of stable cornering on soft ground alongside decent self-cleaning capabilities. It’s approved by the DOT and, according to the manufacturer’s specifications, it’s 130mm wide and weighs 14 pounds, while having an S-rating for speed. This 17-inch tubeless model is designed for Kawasaki KLR600/650s from 1985 onwards but it may be compatible with tube-wheels and on other makes and models of bikes of a similar size.


    With Continental being a big-name brand, this is relatively more expensive than others with similar specifications. It also might not wear evenly, but it should last you around 3,000 to 4,000 miles, as long as you don’t live anywhere with excessive temperatures. This tire may not hold up so well in the Nevada desert heat, for example.

    Continental Twinduro TKC80-Dual Sport Rear Tire}
    Amazon

    This rear tire from Continental’s Twinduro range of dual sport tires is rated 60/40, meaning it’s ideal if you’re looking to spend a decent amount of time out on the trails but also need reliable, precise performance on the road, too. This is reflected in the wide block tread pattern, which is the ideal shape and depth for optimal traction on both loose and hard-packed surfaces. 


    You can also be confident of stable cornering on soft ground alongside decent self-cleaning capabilities. It’s approved by the DOT and, according to the manufacturer’s specifications, it’s 130mm wide and weighs 14 pounds, while having an S-rating for speed. This 17-inch tubeless model is designed for Kawasaki KLR600/650s from 1985 onwards but it may be compatible with tube-wheels and on other makes and models of bikes of a similar size.


    With Continental being a big-name brand, this is relatively more expensive than others with similar specifications. It also might not wear evenly, but it should last you around 3,000 to 4,000 miles, as long as you don’t live anywhere with excessive temperatures. This tire may not hold up so well in the Nevada desert heat, for example.

    Click Here to See Prices on Amazon

    Best Value

    Our best value pick from Kenda is an affordable, DOT-approved front tire that would be an ideal replacement for your OEM tire. It’s also rated for a 40/60 street to off-road ratio and therefore offers the perfect compromise between off-road traction and smooth highway riding. You can see this from the depth of the tread combined with even, widely-spaced but not particularly nobbly knobs. It features 4- and 6-ply rated casings, but the rubber is fairly soft, resulting in a quieter ride with much less vibration than you’d expect from an aggressive tire. This does mean that it’s not exactly stiff enough for top speeds on the highway (it’s rated C for speed), but it is superb in sandy and even deep mud, even without side lugs.


    At 3 inches wide and only 8.3 pounds, this is a fairly lightweight tire. It’s available in a range of wheel sizes, but the manufacturer specifies a maximum load weight of 430 pounds, so if your bike is on the heavier side, this isn’t going to be suitable. We also don’t recommend this tire for use in the snow due to the fairly flat tread.

    Kenda K270 Dual Dual/Enduro Front Motorcycle Bias Tire}
    Amazon

    Our best value pick from Kenda is an affordable, DOT-approved front tire that would be an ideal replacement for your OEM tire. It’s also rated for a 40/60 street to off-road ratio and therefore offers the perfect compromise between off-road traction and smooth highway riding. You can see this from the depth of the tread combined with even, widely-spaced but not particularly nobbly knobs. It features 4- and 6-ply rated casings, but the rubber is fairly soft, resulting in a quieter ride with much less vibration than you’d expect from an aggressive tire. This does mean that it’s not exactly stiff enough for top speeds on the highway (it’s rated C for speed), but it is superb in sandy and even deep mud, even without side lugs.


    At 3 inches wide and only 8.3 pounds, this is a fairly lightweight tire. It’s available in a range of wheel sizes, but the manufacturer specifies a maximum load weight of 430 pounds, so if your bike is on the heavier side, this isn’t going to be suitable. We also don’t recommend this tire for use in the snow due to the fairly flat tread.

    Click Here to See Prices on Amazon

    Honorable Mention

    Taking the honorable mention spot is this dual sport tire from Shinko, which is designed for 80 percent street-riding and 20 percent off-road riding. The Shinko construction resulted in a 4.3-inch wide tire that weighs 13 pounds and has a speed rating of P. Its rubber compound, 4-ply construction holds up well and resists tearing on rocks and uneven surfaces. 


    This tire is DOT-approved and fairly affordable. Conveniently, it’s designed to fit either your front or rear wheel. It should fit a 13-18 inch wheel, but you should measure it first to be sure.

    It features a versatile tread that channels water well on the road, yet maintains stability on loose or wet ground.


    However, performance on loose deep gravel leaves a little to be desired. Unfortunately, the shape of the thread also results in a particularly noisy ride, even on smooth ground, which is not found with other 80/20 rated tires.

    Shinko Dual Sport 705 Series Front/Rear Tire}
    Amazon

    Taking the honorable mention spot is this dual sport tire from Shinko, which is designed for 80 percent street-riding and 20 percent off-road riding. The Shinko construction resulted in a 4.3-inch wide tire that weighs 13 pounds and has a speed rating of P. Its rubber compound, 4-ply construction holds up well and resists tearing on rocks and uneven surfaces. 


    This tire is DOT-approved and fairly affordable. Conveniently, it’s designed to fit either your front or rear wheel. It should fit a 13-18 inch wheel, but you should measure it first to be sure.

    It features a versatile tread that channels water well on the road, yet maintains stability on loose or wet ground.


    However, performance on loose deep gravel leaves a little to be desired. Unfortunately, the shape of the thread also results in a particularly noisy ride, even on smooth ground, which is not found with other 80/20 rated tires.

    Click Here to See Prices on Amazon

    Tips

    • Always remember to inspect your tires thoroughly before any ride or after a long trip.  This maintenance practice ensures you minimize flat tire occurrence when riding.
    • Since there is no tire that can perfectly fit dirt, gravel, sand, on-road, and other off-road conditions, it is vital to know your riding habits in order to choose the tire that best suits your needs.
    • Ensure your tires are correctly balanced to improve your riding comfort and safety in all road conditions. If you do not know how to balance them, it is advisable to visit a mechanic.

    FAQs

    Q: What are dual sport tires?

    A: Dual sport tires are designed to be used with a dual-sport motorcycle. These tires can be used in both on- and off-road conditions.

    Q: How long do dual-sport tires last?

    A: The durability of any tire depends on the construction technology and the user’s riding habits. On-road tires last longer than off-road tires. However, a dual-sport tire can last 4,000 to 9,000 miles. 

    Q: Should I replace both tires at the same time?

    A: Most tires on the market are made to wear evenly. It is, therefore, advisable to replace both tires for improved traction, riding safety, and comfortable handling.

    Final Thoughts

    We recommend the Continental Twinduro TKC80-Dual Sport Rear Tire, as it is durable and optimized for both on- and off-road use.

    If you are looking for an economical tire, the Kenda K270 Dual Dual/Enduro Front Motorcycle Bias Tire enhances all-terrain performance and has excellent handling capabilities.