AMS EVIL SBR TIRE TEST
— Evaluating a new tread design —
By the staff of Dirt Wheels
There are times where we receive products that we scrutinize intensely. Other times it is a “judge a book by its cover” standpoint, and that is what we did with the all-new AMS Evil SBR tire. The tread design is interesting, with flat and wide lugs that wouldn’t seem like they would track well in desert terrain. AMS claims they are designed with truck tire technology in mind. Of course, we sent a set of 32s through some intense desert testing to see how they would hold up.
The AMS Evil SBR tire is a dual steel-belted ATV- and UTV-specific tire. It is an eight-ply-rated radial tire, which means it has more layers or plies in the carcass to resist cuts and tears from encounters with rocks, sticks and other trail debris.
There is no doubt that this tire is tough, and the tread blocks are big, so the surface area and contact patch are large. The tread blocks are claimed to be made of a special, long-lasting compound to ensure a long tread life. Another plus for the Evil is that it is rated for on- and off-road usage. If only sunny southern California would catch up to other states that allow UTVs to use some roads to link trails.
AMS recommends that this tire be run between 12 and 14 psi, but even at that relatively low pressure, this tire is stout. Sizing starts at 28- to 30-inch tires for 14-inch wheels. You can also get the Evil in a 32-inch to run on a 15-inch wheel. Pricing runs between $204.95–$239.95 each.
TEAR IT UP
We are fortunate that we get to torture all the products that we test. Part of our job is to show our readers how well parts will hold up against abuse short term and long term. We didn’t hold back with these AMS tires. We weren’t sure the SBR Evil would be that good at what they designed it for; however, it surprised us. Traction in our dry desert terrain wasn’t the absolute best tire around, but it did quite well in everything we sent it through. We climbed steep hills, trudged through sand washes, ran through rock piles and skipped over whoop sections.
Our favorite aspects of the SBR are that it is tough and lasts. The tread showed minimal wear in comparison to the miles we drove. Tires we have used that had more desert traction did not offer this much wear resistance. We never managed to get a puncture even at lower pressures. The Evil SBR dug through sand well and was impressive through some rocky sections.
The downside to the tire is that it is heavy. It weighs in at 45 pounds. This can affect handling on a machine not designed to handle 32-inch tires. Fortunately, we have the Polaris RZR XP Turbo S that comes stock with 32s to test the AMS rubber on. Out in the dirt, the SBR would tend to drift in very dry and loose dirt that sits over hardpack. There is some tire flex, but all around, the Evil felt quite stiff. We kept lowering the tire pressure down to about 10 psi from 15, and that felt like a sweet spot to get great traction.
We are a fan of AMS tires. They tend to make tread designs that do what they are designated for, and this tire is no exception. If you want something that will last a long time and can hold up to abuse, then this is a great option. It hooks up very well in most situations, but just know you will feel the 32s in the steering wheel while turning. The smaller versions will most likely handle even better! Find out more at www.amstires.com.