The tire market never ceases to amaze and our latest sets of tires from Vittoria are no exception. The Terreno series of tires consists of three models of which we have two on test here- the “Mix” and “Dry”. You can catch up on all the tech features here in our “Getting Rolling” post. This post will deal specifically with the Dry model. The next post, Part 2, will cover the unique Mix model. Ride Performance: The Terreno Dry was impressive right out of the gate for the supple ride feel it has. I was wondering how the Graphene infused rubber would react and it seems to be almost invisible in straight line riding. At least I couldn’t feel anything remarkable other than the well damped feel of the casings. Obviously, with such low and fine tread in the center, the Terreno Dry rolls fast, and quietly, I might add. Once out on the gravel the tire seemed to roll over gravel and deeper loose patches with an ease that belied its thick casing and sidewalls. Perhaps it is the Graphene? Hard to say. The outer rows of blocky knobs seemed to do what those knobs do for most tires I test with such tread patterns- they promote lateral stability. So far, so good. Now I had an opportunity to check out the mud shedding capabilities of the tire as well, so I headed out to the local Level B Maintenance road. You can see the results of my mud testing in the image above. Surprisingly the “Dry” Terreno tire doesn’t do too badly here. The lower knobs help the tire slough off mud well and the wider, flatter crown of the tire offers a modicum of float. One thing I noted on this section of road was a bit of a surprise though. That was in the drier ruts where the Terreno Dry seemed to grip and not slide down into the rut like a low/no tread tire would have. Vittoria claims that the Graphene will act like a grippier, lower compound rubber when traction is needed and in this instance, I felt something like that was happening. It was a very notable thing, so perhaps there is some substance to Vittoria’s claims here. The Terreno Dry also seems to mute rumbles and rough sections, like the tractor treaded dirt shown above, and makes for a nicer ride. I found that on gravel roads it did what I expected, but it was on these muddier, looser, rougher sections where I felt the tire came to life. That was a surprise for me. Typically I find that smoother tread tires seem to lose their charm in the rougher, softer grounds. While these sorts of tires may be capable, they are often at their limits when tested in this way. Not so the Terreno Dry, which was remarkable and actually did quite well in my test. I suspect that stickier mud would still collect to the point of stopping the wheels from rolling, but in all other aspects the Terreno Dry was a tire I would not hesitate to try on looser, deeper terrain. Obviously under heavy braking and heavy torquing of the rear wheel when traction is at its limits this tire may not hold up. That may still be a weak feature of this tire, but then again, perhaps not so fast there! That Graphene component seems to be having an effect here. I will be looking to test that out in the next and final installment of this review. So Far…..The Terreno Dry: The familiar TNT bead design works well, but some rims may not agree with the tighter fit TNT beads typically have. True to measure, the 40mm tires are a bit heavier than many in this class. The Terreno Dry has the expected fast roll and with the blocky side knobs, good lateral stability on loose gravel. The Dry also rides quite smoothly, having a very nice, damped feel. (Some might call it “dead”, but lack of vibration transfer is often mislabeled this way.) There are some questions to answer yet here. Does Graphene infused rubber really do anything? Perhaps it does have an effect. So far, I am thinking that there is something good happening here, which was apparent on looser dirt, mud, and off camber ruts. Stay tuned for more in my “At The Finish” post on this tire and look for my next installment on the Terreno Mix coming soon here. Note: Vittoria sent over the Terreno Mix and Dry tires for test and review at no charge to Riding Gravel. We are not being paid nor bribed for this review and we will strive to give our honest thoughts and opinions throughout.
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