Continental Mountain King Tire - 26in $60.00
Rule the roost.
This is not the 2010 Mountain King ProTection. Nor is it the rockin' Mountain King UST, or Mountain King Race Sport. Head spinning yet? Don't sweat it. The reason for the similar naming convention is that Mountain King indicates a tread pattern, and each additional feature that comes with that pattern is tagged on. Think of it like the displacement of a motor added to the name of a car, and you have the gist of it.
So first, Mountain King indicates Continental's extraordinary, open-spaced Mountain King tread pattern, which is particularly astute at mud shedding, but it's now revised with stiffer side knobs for enhanced cornering on hard pack. And in the case of the ProTection, it's a lower volume, and therefore lighter (by 230g), package than its big-volume, Mountain King UST, brother.
That makes the ProTection a little faster rolling as well, but as the name would indicate, also better armored against punctures. Why? Well, because it's a four-ply tire, not a three-ply, and that extra ProTection tech comes in the form of a continuous, high-strength rubberized nylon wrap that encompasses the entire casing. This puts three plies of rubber at the sidewall and four beneath the tread.
Note as well that this is not the same knob pattern as the first generation Mountain King ProTection. This second generation tire trades that race-specific, low-knob pattern for far more aggressive knobs.
The Mountain King tire will also corner better in wet mud, because its side knobs are taller than on the older tire design. The Black Chili compound (tiny fragments of embedded carbon) improves grip by allowing faster rubber deformation, so you get a sensation of the tire clinging through corners rather than suddenly breaking loose. Black Chili is estimated by Continental to decrease rolling-resistance by 26%, have a higher friction value of 30%, and to increase durability by 5%.
The Continental Mountain King 26-inch Tire is available with a 2.4-inch width. It's also foldable, weighs around 650g, and is available in the color Black/black.
Ground: All Conditions