WTB makes good tyres, and recently the company has been on a roll, releasing a few new and revised treads and some pretty cool tyre technology. The 29 inch Bronson ticks the first box (new tread) but not the latter. The 26 inch Bronson is available in a Tubeless Compatible System (TCS) version, but the 29 inch comes only in WTB’s race configuration, with a supple casing and fast-rolling rubber. It’s light (700 gm) and fast—that’s the modus operandi.
This tyre is by no means as technically advanced as WTB’s new Weirwolf, but everything the brand set out to achieve with that tyre somehow seems to have come to fruition with the Bronson. Honestly, I haven’t loved one tyre so much in a long while. My set has been through a dry and dusty summer and so far a pretty wet winter, and one thing stands out—predictability.
The Bronsons bite in at almost any lean angle and provide a serious amount of confidence-inducing traction. In fact, I’m dreading taking them off as I fear I may find myself getting into a bit of trouble on other rubber. The large, round profile makes the 2.2 inch seem more like a 2.3 inch as it eats up rocks and roots. A fast rolling nature (both with and without tubes) and standout braking ability means these tyres are super fun to point down.
I chose to run them tubeless, using Stan’s NoTubes, which was a tiny bit of a gamble as they don’t have WTB’s Inner Peace reinforced sidewalls. Setup was easy and I survived without a flat until recently, when a nail from a homebuilt bike trailer ripped a gash in the sidewall. After six months of use, there’s still a good amount of tread left. They’re starting to lose the odd knob here and there, but on the whole, durability has been excellent.
WTB has recently announced it will be adding more new tyres, including the redesigned Weirwolf, to its ten-strong 29 inch lineup. If you need something to tide you over until then, the Bronson should be it—it’s one versatile and predictable piece of rubber. CALEB SMITH
Sram/RockShox – May 27th, 2022
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