BIKE TECH: Michelin Krylion Carbon Tire Review

The Michelin Krylion Carbon is arguably the finest fast road training tire available at a price that won't break the bank.   


When it comes to tires on my road bike, there is one tire that you will always find mounted to my wheels - the Michelin Krylion Carbon.  I started riding this tire's predecessor back in the early 2000's, which was then known as the Axial Carbon.  Since then, I've ridden tens of thousands of miles on these tires and I only recall ever having 3 flats on them in that time. 

The Krylion Carbon clincher tire is a very high performance training tire - in fact it feels like a race tire.  It has the low rolling resistance, cornering characteristics, and smooth ride that many racing tires (yes even comparable to some tubulars).  In fact, I and many others have done a fair bit of racing on this tire and been happy with it's performance.

Despite it's high end performance, this tire is incredibly durable.  Michelin claims that these tires will last 3000 miles, which is an average life span for these in my experience.  Michelin says that there is 30% more rubber on this tire than it's Pro Race 3 model and that the rubber has a higher carbon content to it, which make it a more durable, high mileage tire.

Earlier I mentioned that this tire is very flat resistant.  This is largely due to the fact that Michelin has put in their "bead to bead puncture protector", which drastically reduces flats due to punctures and adds minimal weight.  

While it is very rare to get a flat on a 'newish' Krylion Carbon tire, I have found that flats happen much more frequently when the tread is getting wore and toward the end of the life of the tire.  Once you start to notice a flat wear surface across the top of the tire running surface, it is likely time to replace the tire.  This flat wear surface usually happens after 2500 - 3500 miles of riding on this tire.  I believe that 2 of the 3 flats I've had on this tire were when the tire tread was getting very thin and I thought I'd try to get in "one more ride" on the tire before changing it out.  Do yourself a favor and change the tire once it's wore and avoid changing a flat out on the road.

This tire is available in 700c x 20, 23, or 25 sizes.  I've historically always used the 23 width and been very happy with it.  However, I've recently became a huge fan of the 25 width.  If you're simply looking for a fast riding, very smooth, durable tire, give the 700c x 25 size a try.  You'll find that it is even more smooth riding than the 25.  Riding a 25 also allows you to run a bit less pressure in the tire without slowing you down as we recently outlined in this recent tech post on riding rough roads or cobbles.

The Michelin Krylion Carbon Tire definitely gets 2 thumbs up in my book.  Check it out and enjoy the miles!

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