PRODUCT: The Tech 2 Pro tires from STI use a varied-pitch tread in a pattern with fewer center knobs and a concentrated shoulder formation to maximize performance in both loose and packed terrain conditions. STI engineers strategically tuned the Tech 2 Pro’s four-ply carcass to be lightweight and have optimum balance of stiffness and flex. The goal was to maximize the contact patch for best traction, and preserves bump-absorption characteristics, keeping the tires planted for performance.
POSITIVES: With a price point ranging from $57 to $84 depending on the size, the STI Tech 2 Pro is affordable for the masses. The front tires have a better, more predictable traction feel, and the rear has a more connected feel on a wider variety of terrain than the previous Tech 2 models. We tested 19-inch rears on multiple types of terrain, and the Tech 2 Pro excels in loamy to intermediate terrain and offers a consistent feel on hardpack. Both the front and rear tires perform well above what we expected considering the price tag.
NEGATIVES: We noticed that larger or more aggressive riders will need to run higher air pressure to achieve the desired performance than what is normally ran in other brands of tires. What worked best for us was 14 psi in the front and 15 psi in the rear. Both the front and rear do show wear faster than previous-generation STI Tech 2 tires. Also, no mini-size option is available.
BOTTOM LINE: The STI Tech 2 Pro tires provide noticeable performance improvement over the first-generation Tech 2 tires. Both ends have a more consistent, predictable feel on a variety of terrain, and although they wear faster than the last generation of tires, the performance upgrades are well worth it. You can’t argue with the price, either.
Price: $56.99, 80/100-21; $79.99, 110/100-18; $80.99, 110-90-19