The Schwalbe Ultremo range of tyres have enjoyed a massive success for the best part of the last decade, with the ZX being one of their best selling tyres giving them almost a cult following. But then a couple of years ago, the German manufacturer released the Schwalbe One Tyres. Claimed to be their fastest and most reliable tyre, the Schwalbe One Tyres had some pretty big shoes to fill among the faithful. The Schwalbe One is available as a Tubular, Tubeless and a Folding bead tyre. The folding comes in 23, 25 and 28mm sizes and for those who like a little colour in their tyres, the 23mm are available with a white, red, blue or dark silver stripe. Or for the traditionalists, there is just good old black. We thought we’d give the 25mm clincher (folding) model a spin.
Good Looking Rubber
Some tyres just look, well – good. And the Schwalbe One Tyres fall into that category. The tyres are soft and supple and the casing has a super-slick tread which, from the moment you remove them from their stealth-like box you begin to imagine the speed they will produce. Schwalbe have been hard at work to produce their OneStar Triple rubber compound, which they claim has be developed to adapt to the specific purpose of the tyre. Combining this with their V-Guard puncture protection and SnakeSkin side walls, the Schwalbe One promises a lot.
On The Road
Sadly the All About The Ride budget won’t cover any lab-controlled testing so I tested the tyres the old fashioned way and hit the road. Fitting the tyres produced the same result as many pedigree folding tyres – they are a tight fit. When it comes to inflating, Schwalbe recommended pressure is between 85-130 psi (6-9 Bar). I’ve been riding with the 25mm version of the Schwalbe One and tend to ride at around 110 psi (in dry conditions) to support my 96kg frame. Something I always find interesting, in particularly with road bike tyre manufacturers, is the advised maximum load. In the case of the Schwalbe One tyres, the German tyre experts suggest a maximum load of 70kg (for the 25mm tyres). Clearly these companies have a target market but considering just how phenomenally popular cycling is now and how diverse the people using these tyres will be, it seems strange to put such a definite stamp on something like maximum load.
As always, testing involved a number of rides of varying distances in various weather conditions. As you would probably expect, the Schwalbe One’s slick outer casing means they roll very well on a dry road surface. The OneStar Triple rubber compound gives the tyres a reassuringly impressive grip. A little more surprisingly though, this proved to be the case in the wet too. Testing the tyres on a morning that would put even the best waterproof clothing to the test, they really stood up and proved themselves as an all-rounder. Riding at a steady average of 16-18mph, at no point did I feel out of control or like the tyres were going to slide from under me.
Having said that though, cornering with the Schwalbe One’s took a little getting used to. On my first few rides I found that the soft SnakeSkin sidewalls seem to produce a reasonable amount of flex. Despite this, the traction through a corner or flying round a roundabout was very good at speed. And speed is where the Schwalbe One tyres excels. This is an incredibly fast tyre that just seems to want to be pushed hard. With test rides varying between commuting to work on city roads to weekend rides on country lanes, these tyres handled everything that was thrown at them and did not falter at any time under pressure.
When it comes to puncture protection, the folding tyres are fitted with Schwalbe’s V-Guard fiber layer under the impressively cut resistant casing. In around 250 miles of test riding, I’ve yet to get a cut in either tyre, let alone a puncture. This is also taking into account that test rides did (mistakenly) encounter a gravel track and a 2 mile stretch of un-surfaced road.
Schwalbe One Tyres Review Conclusion –
Before I decided to test the Schwalbe One tyres, I have to be honest and say I had a brand favourite and Schwalbe wasn’t it. However, as hard as I have tried not to really like these tyres, they really are quite fantastic. I think that most peoples requirements for a summer tyre is something that is fast, durable with good grip. The Schwable One tyres so far has proved to be very durable, despite its 225g lightweight racing appearance. They offer excellent grip in both dry and wet weather conditions and they are an impressively fast tyre that will want to go faster. The 25mm we tested offered a great amount of comfort, even on the rough road surfaces and, although a little difficult to be 100% confident about, they give a very good level of puncture protection. Being the new flagship in Schwalbes road range, the Ones have an RRP of £44.99 but shopping around, likes of Wiggle or Chain Reaction Cycles, at the time of this review have a remarkable 38% off.
All in all, this really is a great tyre that is hard to fault for fast summer riding.