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Thread: Michelin Pilot Road II vs III

  1. #1
    Pusser's Pyrate Society Zygmund's Avatar
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    Michelin Pilot Road II vs III

    Need tires soon, looking for some feedback on II vs III.
    '02 R1150RT

  2. #2
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    It was explained to me that the RP III has the hardened rubber compound in the center of the tread for longer tread life for slabbing it. I went with the Metzelers because I do a lot of rain riding and I know what they feel like in the rain (great grip). The RPIII's are the only tire my dealer carries now for RT use, so I had to order the Metzelers. I'll watch for feedback here, because I wasn't about to shell out the big bucks for something I don't have experience with. I've always used Metzelers and never have tried Michelins. I got 15,000 + out of the original Metzelers.

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    First set of IIIs now in use on an 1100S. Previously used some IIs including the B rear on an RT and just using up the last of those.

    The III is supposed to give better wet performance especially when braking due to siping.
    It may run a little quieter- the IIs make some tread noise when new that is readily noticeable compared to truly quiet tires- I think it comes from their large tread blocks,
    Near the end of life and just as the rear was approaching the wear bars my last set of IIs got extremely noisy on turns (though not in a straight line) to the point that I stopped to double check my FD and no longer tracked as true when leaned to the point where it was running on the meeting point of the two compounds.

    Many people consider IIs longer lived than most tires but for me they didn't last as long as Dunlop RoadSmarts on the same bike - around 7K on the rear and nearly 1 K less than the RoadSmarts. Fronts last a bit longer. Too early to comment on tread life of the IIIs.

    Am currently using a Michelin PR on the rear and a Pilot Power II CT on the front- handles well and the PP is definitely a quieter tire than the PR either II or III. On the 1100S, the PPs go about 7K on the front be interesting to see what they do on an RT.

    FWIW, on bikes as is true for cars, tires should generally be selected with heavy weighting for wet road handling where differences are greater than dry road handling- unless you live in a very dry climate or know you will never ride in the rain.

  4. #4
    Certifiable User Mike_Philippens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weasel View Post
    I went with the Metzelers because I do a lot of rain riding and I know what they feel like in the rain (great grip)
    I have yet to find a test that apoints any other tyre than the Michelin PR2 as the 'rainmaster'. It's supposed to be the best tyre in the rain. Apart from the lone person with a bad or weird experience, everybody who has them, loves them.

    I've had them on my RT since day 1, and have only put on a weird tyre on the rear because of my expedition to Morocco and the Continental Trail Attack (allroad tyre) is supposed to have a tougher carcass which would make it more resistant to sharp stones.

    I got a bit over 20,000kms from the front tyre (MPR2). Drove around for a couple of days in a monsoon and nothing but confidence from the Michelin. That is not to say that Metzelers aren't ok. If you feel comfortable with them, that's ok. I can imagine that someone doesn't want to experiment with other tyres unless you can get them for free
    -=- if you always see the road ahead of you, it's not worth the trip -=-

  5. #5
    Registered User dirtmerchant's Avatar
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    I've done a lot of reading on this very subject and while most of it is fairly subjective I ordered a set to replaced my badly hashed Bridgstones. I called Michelin and spoke to a customer service guy who said that B-Spec was not needed since I am not riding with a pillion the majority of the time. I was also considering using a Pilot Power 2CT on the front which the rep recommended against. He said it would be great on dry roads but that they would be less effective then a full set of PR3's.... YMMV

  6. #6
    Certifiable User Mike_Philippens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DirtMerchant View Post
    I was also considering using a Pilot Power 2CT on the front which the rep recommended against.
    The power is a bit overkill. The PR2 provides more than enough grip for the RT (and lots of other bikes). It's not that you're in a Grand Prix with Mr.Rossi on your tail... A friend of mine (who knows how to race) even has PR2 under his Kawasaki superbike type of thing. Only on a track you need tyres with more grip.
    -=- if you always see the road ahead of you, it's not worth the trip -=-

  7. #7
    Registered User LMIWA156120's Avatar
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    Had the PR2's and got 11K miles out of the front and the rear still had tread left - maybe another 2K. Changed both to PR3's. No noticeable difference on dry roads. A bit more confidence inspiring in the rain. But realistically, I don't really push my tires that hard - I leave a HUGE safety margin!
    Loch Miwa
    Crestwood, IL
    2004 R1150RT

  8. #8
    Just me rad's Avatar
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    I have run 4 sets of PRII's on three different bikes and with out question they are the best tire I have ever run. Just did a 2,000 mile up and back to the Pacific North West with about 1,500 miles of nasty blinding hard rain and the tires were perfect.

    Ordering PRIII's now for my S.

  9. #9
    Registered User 119240's Avatar
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    Check some other sites - I seen tire splitting. I got 20K out of my old PR2's gotta another set for $250 mounted. I'll wait until these are gone to switch over.
    '91 K75S, '06 K1200S
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  10. #10
    Proud Veteran SteveAikens's Avatar
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    I just completed the IBR on PR3s - on all but the last 1000 miles. Weather was a factor in my changing the rear tire in Colorado Springs for the ride to Ontario. Checking the tire in Austin TX before heading to OK for gas, the tire was fine. Following a hard 600 mile run in 108 degree temps, across abrasive desert road, checking the rear again on Boise City, OK found the tire questionably safe for another 1200 miles if the weather was wet. Checking the forcast, it was clear the run across CO, UT and a slice of NV was going to be in at least one severe storm. I opted to swap the rear in the Springs for safety sake.

    The PR3s were mounted by Jay Kuhns in Colorado Springs on 6/13/2011 with 60,003 miles on the RT.

    The rear was removed by Pikes Peak Motorsports BMW in Colorado Springs on 6/30/2011 with 70,269 miles on the RT.

    It was replaced with a PR2 because that's all the dealer had.

    Quick note about the dealer. I was waiting at the door when the dealer opened the service dept - unexpected - at 8 AM. Dan, the BMW Service Manager - got the bike in and out in less than 45 miles, sharing my frustration at having to stand in a shop when I really didn't have time to do so. Awesome support from these guys. I can recommend them if you're traveling and need to keep going. More on this later in another thread.

    Under normal riding conditions, I would not have even considered pulling a tire with the remaining tread at that point. However, under normal riding conditions, where I would keep riding in the rain, I would not continue riding into severe thunderstorm conditions unless it was absolutely necessary. Rain, even heavy rain, is one thing under normal conditions. Flash flood conditions during an Iron Butt Rally ride is an entirely different circumstance. IMO, that rear could easily have been safe to ride another 2,000 or more miles normally.

    The PR3 is a far superior tire to the PR2 on my RT.
    Mileage is about the same or slightly better.
    Transitions to lean angles are far better.
    The PR3 is the most neutral tire I've had on a bike. Lean the bike into a turn and it stays where you put it. No oversteer, no understeer.
    The PR3 is quieter.
    The PR3 is the best tire in the wet that I've ever been on.
    The PR3 is a very confidence inspiring tire. I ride fairly hard and have yet to feel any drift or any traction/stiction concerns. I rode the PR2 beyond it's limits a couple times - I don't seem to be able to do taht on the PR3s. That really makes me happy.

    The PR3 is as bad - maybe a little worse - on tar snakes than the PR2. However, I believe that comment to be subjective to the specific tar snake compound used, and how heavy it's applied. If it's the emultion type of crack sealer, the PR3 is good on them. If it's the vinyl compund and it's heavily applied, the PR3 seems more affected by it. In this type sealer, I doubt any tire wi going to feel stable because the sealer rolls under the weight of the tire. Tough call but I penalize the PR3 a point here.

    Oddly, the PR3 is more succeptable to temp and altitude changes when parked over night. Pressure fluxuations were a bit of a surprise. Not a problem if you're like me and check or adjust daily before you ride but following the run down to Jacksonville, TX from Jacksonville, FL [where I rested] - the front PR3 was down 4 lbs, the rear down 5 lbs in the morning. OTOH, checking pressures at Buffalo, NY before riding in the morning, I found the rear one pound high and the front 2 pounds high. I use a digital gauge and run 39 pounds front, 42 pounds rear. I do not make adjustments to the pressures while riding but always start the day with those pressures. I do monitor pressures witha tire pressure monitor - however, that's only to let me know if I'm losing pressures when I shouldn't be. Tire pressure monitors are not generally accurate to the degree I want them to be.

    Overall, I think the PR3 is the best tire I've even ridden. I'm in Tucson at the moment and plan to try to replace tires tomorrow at Iron Horse BMW in the morning - with a new set of PR3s. I'll keep the PR2 rear that's on the bike, now with 1800 miles on it, stored here at the house in Tucson in case I need one later. I will be riding out of here - if possible - on PR3s.
    Last edited by SteveAikens; 08-03-2011 at 01:45 PM.
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    Steve Aikens, Clovis, NM
    BMW MOA #6218
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  11. #11
    Motorradfahrer
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    The Pilot II's will be much cheaper till they are all gone. So unless you plan on riding in a lot of rain get the II's. I just put a set on and the price is less plus the the rears were on backorder. Search online you can find a deal on these right now.

  12. #12
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rad View Post
    Just did a 2,000 mile up and back to the Pacific North West with about 1,500 miles of nasty blinding hard rain...
    I was there. It only seemed like 1500 miles of rain.
    David Brick
    Santa Cruz CA
    2007 R1200R

  13. #13
    Pusser's Pyrate Society Zygmund's Avatar
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    Thank you for the reports, that is what I was looking for!
    Congrats on the IBR finish Steve.
    '02 R1150RT

  14. #14
    IBA #44567 Ken F's Avatar
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    Yep Big Congrats on the IBR Steve and thanks for the report on the tires!

    That's the real-world kind of road test that has been lacking...

    Ken
    IBA #44567 Pres. Springfield BMW Roadriders
    "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."
    -Albert Eienstein

  15. #15
    D-Mac
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    I second what Steve said.

    I've run two sets of PR3s on my RT. I changed one set at about 7000 miles (right before the IBR; it caught a sharp piece of metal and went flat, although both looked good), and I've run a second set since the start of the IBR (close to 13,000 miles and counting since I also rode home with it).

    While I liked the PR2s, the PR3s are even better. Mine showed NO noticeable wear on the rear until after 12,000 miles. Even then, you'd be hard pressed to notice any squaring-off on the rear of my current set. The tread looks to be well over 50% left!

    The front is showing only slight scalloping. It's still very, very good. Deep tread and good shape.

    PR2s looked like this at about half the mileage (still very good mind you, although I would generally replace them before they wore out due to the squaring off in the rear). I generally change my tires early, but I suspect I can get at LEAST 16-17,000 miles out of this set! And that's running with full bags. Crazy eh?

    I also agree with Steve about tar snakes. These tires behave a bit erratically on them (no tire is great on tar snakes, but these seem to drift a little more than other tires I've run). They are FANTASTIC in the wet and they got a great work-out on the rally. I never lost traction anywhere with them.

    Michelin has raised the bar again with these tires. PR2s are excellent. PR3s are even better and worth the extra cost I think.

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