GOODYEAR TRANSIT SPEED TYRE
682g 700x35c (35-622) (as tested) £34 each
Fundamentally an urban phenomenon, Goodyear’s Transit Speed tyre, is a bike-path and city asphalt all-rounder taking on a big field of competitors. Actually, it’s got wider potential for general leisure riding and more spirited blasts about the country lanes.
Pros: rolls and responds well.
Cons: a 32mm section would be welcome.
Our 35-622 version was the wired middle-weight of the range. Also available in 40 and 50 mm versions. Each size offers two wired models and a tubeless type. The heftier Secure model and the tubeless Dynamic flank the S3:Shell Transit Speed. There’s a good range for the modern commuter and leisure rider here, though those with older frames or sportier runabouts might like something to suit their narrower clearances. So, check clearances first, especially as mudguards are de riguer for many commuters. Mind, you can’t blame Goodyear for focussing on modern tastes. Continuing along that line, the Speed Transit is e-bike ready, too.
The Dynamic Pace 70 compound is Goodyear’s design for asphalt and firm surfaces, as opposed to the Dynamic Pace 60 used for their multi-surface County Premium. Puncture protection comes in the form of a 3mm aramid-infused rubber
layer beneath the tread, which seems a fair compromise between bomb-proofing and a responsive urban ride. Goodyear are secretive about threads per inch, but stress the durability of this range of tyres.
Inflation is recommended between 50 and 80 psi. I’d tend toward the higher end with a wired, clincher tyre, until I lost a good deal of weight. Some folk may prefer a softer ride. The tread is neat. The narrow, slick centre strip seems merely coincidental, but should aid rolling. The pattern should give greater adhesion on firm, wet surfaces.
Suitably for urban settings, there’s a reflective strip. There’s no bottle dynamo strip, but this is, again, reflects modern lighting preferences of many enthusiastic cyclists.
It’s worth noting that Goodyear point out that the 35 and 40 versions are based on a 21mm rim width; the 50 mm version on a 23mm rim width.
There’s a rotational arrow on the sidewall, but the tread pattern makes things pretty obvious anyway. Gentle persuasion with a couple of Pedro’s tyre levers was required on a venerable Mavic 319 rim, but thumbs alone served for a Ryde Sputnik. A quick check of the seating and we were ready to go. They’ve come off with basic tyre levers and minimal effort.
There’s no doubt that these tyres roll well and respond nimbly on the surfaces they are designed for. Nipping along amidst traffic, they aid decent acceleration, and, thankfully, sound stopping in wet conditions. I’ve found them very comfortable around the 17mph mark, but very adaptable to varying traffic conditions.
Along the crushed lime cycle paths along the canal commute, handling has been excellent with speeds of 15mph plus easily obtained. I’ve tended to keep the psi high, though dropping to 65 made the ride more sluggish and softer. I’m a good fourteen stone – and that was before the festive season.
Keeping the pressure at the top end has also aided handling with panniers loaded with the booty of a supermarket shop, not to mention tugging a trailer of recycling. In those circumstances I’ve appreciated the 35mm profile.
There’s been no disheartening hiss post negotiating urban detritus, or, indeed a few winter country lanes. Short of deliberately – and totally artificially – puncturing, protection is hard to gauge, but the S3 has been sufficient for a reliable arrival at the station and on semi-rural crushed lime/gravel canal towpath commutes, too.
On the latter front, I’ve found that the narrow slits in the tread can pick up the odd gravel sharp here or there. A post ride inspection with a scrub, if necessary, has prevented any unwanted consequences. That said, I don’t think the Transit Speed are especially prone to picking up muck. Two hundred miles in and there’s no sign of ant damage.
In some ways the Transit Speed put me in mind of Vee Tire’s Easy Street. They are £9 or so more expensive, but this is reflected in a subtler feel and sprightlier persona, not to mention the higher top pressure. Frankly, in my opinion, they seem to me to be well worth looking at if you’re after a responsive, speedier urban style tyre for commute, leisure, and weekend ventures on country lanes. I’d have few qualms about weekend road touring, too.