TVS Eurogrip recently invited us to the Madras Motor Race Track (MMRT) to experience the range of tyres used by the TVS Motor Company for its one-make championship (OMC) race bikes.
Story: Azaman Chothia
Photography: TVS Eurogrip
TVS Eurogrip has been the technical partner for the TVS OMC series for the last four years. To give us a taste of the performance levels of their flagship Protorq Extreme tyres, we were all invited for a session out on track.
To start off, I headed out of the pit-lane astride the race-spec RTR 200 4V. This is a motorcycle that I am familiar with as I had got a chance to race in the 2020 edition of the TVS Young Media Racer Programme, which is one of the classes in the series every year.
The first change that I noticed in the bike is that the rear is now using a slimmer 110/70 ZR17 Protorq Extreme XF Pro tyre compared to a wider 130-section tyre that the bike was using back when I had raced in 2020. This new rear tyre is a W-rated tyre, meaning that it has a higher speed rating (tested at speeds of up to 270 km/h). The front, on the other hand, was using a 90/90 Remora tyre. With the slimmer rear tyre, I could immediately feel the bike ever ready to tip into corners. It has been a while since I visited the racetrack, so I decided to take it easy at the beginning. Although, given the good level of grip offered by these tyres, I was quickly able to get up to speed and tackle the fast-flowing corners with confidence. Even under hard braking, the tyres provide great feedback, which allows you to cut down speed swiftly before attacking a corner. With just three laps at my disposal, I was able to make good use of the first part of the session. With the slimmer profile rear tyre facilitating quick direction changes, the tyres could keep up and provide good grip without any slippery moments.
After the three laps were done with the RTR 200 4V, I headed into the pits to swap it for the RR 310 OMC Race-Spec bike. This bike has undergone many changes compared to the stock motorcycle and is a much more powerful and lighter version of the bike. With this bike, I had another three laps before the flags were waved as the session came to an end. This bike uses Protorq Extreme tyres at both ends (110/70 at the front and a 150/60 at the rear). Again, the feedback and grip were sensational for a bike that is so aggressive and sharp through the corners. It did take me some time to get acquainted with this extremely committed riding position, shorter throttle action, and the sharp brakes took some getting used to as well. While I was doing my thing and trying to go faster, the tyres were always accommodating and allowed me to start getting the confidence to lean further and get on the brakes later.
Overall, it was nice to get a feel of these TVS Eurogrip tyres at the racetrack. A good set of tyres always inspires a rider towards superior performance, confidence, and safety and these tyres surely tick all the boxes.
The TVS Eurogrip range of tyres is clearly evolving with their team working on making big improvements each year and now offering tyres for almost all segments of motorcycles in India. Apart from this track session, we were also given insights into some of their upcoming products. The most interesting is the Roadhound range which is being developed for large-displacement motorcycles (600-cc to 1000-cc). With international tyre brands increasingly becoming harder to source in India, this will be a game-changer for big-bike owners. We await testing these tyres to bring you a review in the near future.