We have been exploring the capabilities of the CEAT Zoom Rad X1 tyres with which we shod a KTM 390 Duke. This is the concluding part of the series.
Story: Azaman Chothia
Photography: Apurva Ambep
It has been a really exciting journey testing the CEAT Zoom Rad X1 tyres so far. We have managed to clock around 5,000 kilometres with these tyres fitted to the motorcycle. In the previous part of this series, we had given you a report on the performance at around 2,500 km as well as a few tips for maintenance and safety. In the last and concluding part of this series, we dive deeper into the performance aspect and tell you why they would be a great pick if you are searching the market for a set of tyres .
With our road conditions getting worse by the day, riding has become an even harder task in the city and on the highways. Despite that, the CEAT Zoom Rad X1 tyres have been a great companion to the KTM 390 Duke over the last 5,000 kilometres. An important point to note is that these tyres have not suffered a single puncture over the duration of this test, which is a clear indicator of how durable they are. This also has a lot to do with the fact that CEAT have designed these tyres keeping our road conditions in mind.
As we know, the CEAT Zoom Rad X1 tyres have earned the “H” rating that certifies their high-level performance. These radial tyres have a sturdy construction which makes them more responsive. The H rating signifies that the tyres have been tested at speeds of up to 210 km/h. While I have embarked on a few highway rides, the tyres have been really confidence-inspiring in how they handle high-speed runs. Twisting open the throttle at higher speeds does not upset the bike’s stability and propels it forward in just about any situation. This makes overtaking a much easier task.
In our tests, we were able to get to 80 km/h from a standstill in just 3.89 seconds and the 0-100 km/h run took 5.78 seconds. These are commendable acceleration times and they go to show how the tyres complement the “hooliganism” of the KTM 390 Duke. Because of the more flexible side-walls of the tyres, a larger patch remains in contact with the ground. This leads to uniform tyre wear and greater comfort at highway speeds.
I was able to cruise comfortably at speeds of over 100 km/h knowing that the tyres were always ready to deliver while keeping me safe. The well-designed grooves of these tyres provide a channel for the water to escape on wet sections of tarmac. This allows the tyres to stay in contact with road surface and avoids slipping.
Even though these are road-biased tyres, there are many situations where we come across broken roads or off-road sections. All I needed to do was cut down speed and be gentle with the throttle as the tyres found traction through the dirt, pebbles, and gravel.
While high-speed runs can be exciting, it is always important to pay attention to all the vehicles alongside and be ready to apply the brakes when the need arises. Over our unpredictable roads, that situation arises very often. Be it in emergency situations or when I have got on the brakes really hard, the tyres assist in sharp braking and swiftly bring the motorcycle to a halt. The feedback from the tyres is solid and they were forgiving even when I got on the brakes a little too late. In the braking test that we conducted, the bike was able to come to a halt from 60 km/h in just 1.62 seconds and stopped in 16.81 metres. From 80 km/h, the bike took 2.25 seconds to come to a halt and did so in a distance of 29.63 metres.
In my opinion, the most exciting part about riding is cornering. Apart from the rider’s skill, tyres play a very important role while slicing up a set of corners. The KTM 390 Duke is a nimble machine that is ready to be flicked around the twisties all day. While cornering, the edges of the tyres grip the road and this means that a very tiny portion of the tyres is in contact with the ground. Even at maximum lean, these tyres grip well and are able to hold a line with the bike feeling stable and planted throughout. I was able to brake hard before entering and get on the gas earlier to power out of a corner without the tyres losing any traction. This performance is impressive and, more importantly, instills a lot of confidence in the rider while being leaned over.
Coming to the end, a noteworthy aspect is tyre life. Even after 5,000 km, there is ample life left and if I were to guess, this set would easily do another 15,000 km. Overall, the feedback from these tyres is really positive. Considering the price and the features that they offer, they are surely a bang for the buck and will do justice to the motorcycle. We highly recommend this set of tyres as they offer the rider high levels of performance, confidence, and safety.