The tire wars are going full steam ahead right now. We are not talking about 18-inch MX tires or big lugged mud tires; these are 30-inch UTV tires. The most popular aftermarket tire choice for the 1000 high-performance sport machine is 30×10-14. However, some of us don’t like to follow the norm, and so we searched out something different. Instead of just putting the new Moto Race Tire Hammer tire to the test, we tried to create a tire and wheel package that would complement each other and provide a great end result.
MOTO RACE TIRE
This relatively new company has hit the UTV market hard, offering a good variety of all-terrain tires with an eclectic choice of sizes. What caught our eyes is the 30×9.5-15. The reason is that not one of the 1000cc machines available right now needs a full 10-inch- wide tire up front. None of the manufacturers run that wide of a tire up front as stock equipment. Plus, in most cases when you wrap your new tire around an aftermarket wheel as most people do, those wheels are wider than stock and affect the handling. Furthermore, adding more rotating weight further from the engine actually slows a machine down.
The Hammer tire we are using is DOT compliant, is an eight-ply and has a 1330-pound load rating. It’s priced at $265 each through www.moto racetire.com. They claim the 30×9.515 tire weighs in at 36 pounds, which puts it about right in line with the other popular tires out there but about 7 pounds heavier than the stock Maxxis Big Horns. For comparison, we weighed an eight-ply 30×10-14 Duro tire, which has the same tread pattern as the stock Maxxis Big Horn tires, and it only weighed 29.6 pounds. One of our favorite tires in this size category, the ITP Ultracross R-spec, weighs in at 33 pounds.
For this tread style, only one size is available. The company does have a handful of other styles and sizes available including a mud option. According to Moto Race Tire, this product is triple armor belted with Kevlar and eight-ply rated, so we expect it to be tough.
Included in this test we are trying out OMF’s brand-new High Positive Offset (HPO) wheel, which is as close to stock as you can get as far as offset. The wheel is actually sold as 14 or 15 inches tall and only 5.5 inches wide. So with the 30×9.5 tire mounted up, the package gives it a wide, rounded buggy-tire look. The HPO wheel sells for $399 and is available for Polaris or Can-Am bolt patterns. OMF has also recently released a conversion they can do, turning your stock Polaris 14-inch wheel into beadlock for a significant cost savings.
To put some miles on this tire combo, we equipped our Desert version RZR with the complete set. We used this machine on a pre-runner at a local desert race, so it was easy to put a lot of miles on the tire quickly in a variety of tough terrain. For most of the day we took it easy on the tire and just learned the course and monitored tire wear.
Like most tires we test on the RZR, the rear was showing a bit more wear than the front, even though we drive strictly in four-wheel drive. The grip was excellent, the 3/4-inchtall lugs were very predictable and the wrap-around lugs gave excellent side bite. What we liked even more was the rock deflection. The rounded tire soaked up the rock extremely well, and we didn’t feel a disadvantage of flex, even though we were running a lower-profile 15-inch tire. The tire’s weight didn’t seem to be an issue as far as dragging down the motor, but we did feel that the shocks might have been working extra hard, especially on rebound.
For our last three laps (100 miles) of pre-running we tried to abuse the tire. We aimed for the sharp rocks and slide sideways over all the embedded ones. The tire performed excellent. We never caught an edge, nor did we cut a tire down. Upon further inspection, we didn’t see any slices, punctures or close calls. We did notice a bit more rear-tire wear than we have seen with other tires, but it wasn’t excessive.
The Moto Race Tire Hammer performed well. We couldn’t puncture it even when we tried. The traction was predictable and very controllable. The only downside to the tire may be its weight, but in most situations having flat protection is a lot more important, and the Hammer provides exactly that. We are going to keep these tires on our Desert RZR for a few more months and see how well they are looking after the 500mile mark, and we will report back to www.dirtwheelsmag.com with those results. If you can’t wait that long, give Moto Race Tire a call at (844) 8849759 and tell them Dirt Wheels sent ya. Do the same thing when you call OMF to order you High Positive Offset wheels. They will keep your RZR turning sharp and predictably. Call OMF Performance at (951) 354-8272.