Honda CBR 250 Forum banner

1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
220 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is a review of the ContiGo tyres fitted as OEM on the Honda CBR250R

For whatever reason , this tyre provoked a lot of strong emotions from day1 among different owners, some loving it, some hating it to the point where they ran out to replace it with Pirellis (or anything else at hand) at the earliest . The set that came with my bike has been replaced now at both ends and I think I can go over the pros and cons of this tyre.

First impressions

Personally, I was pretty happy with this tyre (fr + rear) once I started to push the bike. Stoppies were there for the asking, and once I figured out the bike’s dynamics, I did not have any issue reaching the edge of the tread while cornering. The bike felt absolutely and completely planted taking corners at triple digit speeds – there as never even been a hint, till date of the tyre losing grip leaned into a turn. I’ll come to the reason behind the italics later. The great grip in turns has been there as late as 17000km+ into the life of the tyre, which is pretty good. As I had not used any other brand on this bike till date, can’t compare, but just for the record, I’ve had to replace most tyres on my CRRF 230 derived Hero Honda Karizma (which produces 50% less power) by about 18 - 20K km, sometimes a LOT earlier. Bear in mind that a lot of the running is on the highway (almost 75% of it) which leads to far more tyre wear than normal city running, due to the higher sustained speeds. If your running is only city, they should last a lot longer.

Wet performance

I took delivery of the bike in May – within a month and a half, the monsoon was in full swing. That’s when I discovered that the large footprint and reduced weight per unit area translated to rather poor grip on low friction surfaces like the steel plates used to close manholes etc on our roads. Ditto slush on the roadside, and slush covered newly wetted tarmac after the first rains. That apart – you have to be careful on these surfaces with any road tyres, the tyres did not throw up any surprises in the wet. It felt rock stable at 110 kph in heavy rain, through 3” of standing water on the roads, as well as high speed curves. It’s not just one isolated instance, but the tyre clears the water well at speeds that are usually in excess of what we drive at in the rain (the running at speed in the rain was done on dual carriageways). Stopping distances are not as good as in the dry, but I did not feel it dangerously low - just not as good as in the dry.

Dry performance

Personally, it felt more than adequate at whatever speed the bike was at, except at the *** end of the tyre life. The cornering though, stayed good until the very end as the rubber on the edge of the tread lasts much longer due to obvious reasons. Here's a pictures of the tyre pushed to the edge after 17K km – gives an idea as to how confidence inspiring the cornering on this tyre is, allied as it is to the rigid trellis frame and swingarm.



That said, I think it is pretty easy to get till the edge of the tread at a lean of about 45 degrees.

Mileage related deterioration

In an effort to keep the tyre light, the manufacturer has given it a carcass that is too thin, leading to a scuffed wear pattern at both ends. The tyre does not wear uniformly and towards the end, this makes a big difference in straighline performance. The amount of rubber touching the road changes depending on the portion of the tyre making contact with the road – this can lead to a slight wobbliness at low lean angles for the rear tyre and poor braking performance for the front tyre. In fact the front tyre grip becomes snatchy, almost what you’d expect if the brake rotor is slightly out as the amount of rubber actually contacting the road is different at different places on the diameter of the tyre. This leads to suboptimal braking performance (don’t even think of stoppies!) but was cured completely on the tyre change.

Interestingly all this happens while there is still tread on the tyre (at least 1mm short of the TWI). The rear, replaced at about 20K km looked good for another 3000km, and the front tyre looked good for another 2-3K km to, when replaced at 24K Km. Yes, that’s a heck of a lot of mileage! It’s the most mileage I’ve got out of a tyre and the touring has been at an average of 15 to 20 kph faster than possible on the Karizma. Not bad at all.

IMO, I ran the front tyre too long (had a couple of front wheel skids) – once the scuffing gets prominent, it’s time to get rid of the tyres. Both. The TWI is there as a legal requirement only, the tyre performance drops unacceptably well before it wears till there.

Summary

These are very long lasting, reasonably grippy tyres, good in the dry or wet but their performance is much reduced well before they reach the TWI. Not very good off road, but then, they are not designed to be.

Would I buy them again? Yes, probably, but I'd change them rather earlier, with at least 3m of tread still left on it. Having heard good initial reviews, though, I was keen to try out the new MRF 110/70/17 that does duty on the KTM, and I managed to get a good deal on a Battlax BT 45 rear, so it will be interesting to see how the ContiGo stands against those.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
i am sure for Indian market, the oem tires might go forever for price and maintenance sensitive Indian buyers.
i liked your saree protector.:)It reminded my days in India. Is the bikes in India still coming with crash bars and saree protector?
I lived in India 1,5 years man.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
220 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
The CBR has no crash bars/sliders as stock.

Yes, the saree guard is still fitted (has to be, stupid ARAI requirements put them on the R1 too), but they are not bent as shown here. That was my handiwork to convert an ugly and useless piece of railing into a very usable rack for heavy and compact luggage such as tools, spare fluids, etc.

You're absolutely spot on regarding the price sensitivity of the Indian market - just see the number of 100 -125cc commuters (and watch them fight viciously in service centres for an hour over a INR 25 component which needs replacement), but in the main, this bike does not cater to that segment. The customers for this segment are prepared to pay for perceived quality, which partly explains the initial disappointment over the poor quality paint and plating on the initial bikes (problems since sorted out by Honda India)
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
Top