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Item # CON001X

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  • ProTection + Black Chili, 29x2.20 ($47.98)
  • ProTection + Black Chili, 29x2.40 ($46.98)
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Item # CON001X

Roll like a king.

The Topeak Ergon pro team collaborated with Continental in the creation of the X-King 29-inch Tire, and as a result, have ridden them to success after success. Fast but full of grip, the X-King rolls smoothly and quietly despite its pronounced knobs, making it the ultimate all-around tire for anything from cross-country racing to Alp'cross.

The tread pattern of the Continental X-King tire is the same as the rest of the X-King line, and needless to say, it was developed for racing. It gets offset and lowered center knobs that are ramped for consistent speed. The offset also provides a steadier grip, power transfer, and smoother braking. The shoulder knobs are taller than most in order to dig into the surface of the trail for more stable cornering. Between the center and shoulder knobs there's a column of siped transitional knobs, and this siping gives the tire better grip in wet conditions. Additionally, these knobs help smooth the transition between the center surface and the edge of the tire, making that nanosecond of weight transfer from straight-line gas to braking and turning more confident and sure-footed.

Making this possible is that Continental heavily relies on its proprietary Black Chili rubber compound in order to help the tire be all things to all conditions. And an added perk of this process is that it has succeeded in enhancing the grip of the tire, making it tougher and lighter on their treads. Essentially, the Continental engineers in Germany refined its synthetic rubbers with nano-sized particles to create a compound that reacts to surface objects more quickly, thoroughly improving grip. These particles also form a tighter bond to improve compound strength, lengthening tread life and reducing the chances that lugs will rip and tear. Compared to Continental's earlier-generation tire compound, Black Chili tires provide 20% less rolling-resistance, 30% more grip, and an improved tread life of around 5%. The combination of Black Chili rubber with Continental's high-TPI ProTection casing results in excellent durability and minimized puncture risk.

The X-King 29-inch tire is tubeless-ready, and Continental recommends the use of its Revo Sealant to protect against the odd mini puncture. There are a ton of advantages to having a tubeless setup, including the ability to run a tire at lower pressures, and increasing the contact patch and grip of a tire without risking bothersome snakebites.

The Continental X-King 29-inch Tire is available in the color Black and in 2.2- and 2.4-inch widths. It's also good to note that this tire has an ideal inflation level of between 50 and 65 PSI.

  • High volume
  • Black Chili compound
  • Available in 2.2 or 2.4

Tech Specs

29 x 2.2 in, 29 x 2.4 in
Claimed Weight:
[2.2-inch width] 752 g
Recommended Use:
Manufacturer Warranty:

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Adding more cushion to the hardtail

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I got these tires in a 2.4 for my hardtail. I am not quite ready to make the jump to a true plus tire yet so I figured a high volume 29er tire would fit the bill for now. The tire certainly gives a lot more flotation and cushion, however, the protection sidewalls make it a bit difficult to gauge appropriate tire pressures. 30psi is a bit too firm while 25 feels a bit squirmy. I think finding the correct pressure is key in getting the most out of these tires.

Avg. ride time: 15h 34m per week
  • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

Best all around XC tire?

    The X-King feels like the perfect compromise between grip and rolling resistance. I ran an X-King in the front and a Race King in the back all season and was never left wanting for grip. Black Chili puncture protection works too! Amazing XC tire.

    Weak Sidewalls

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    These don't perform (grip) as well as my mostly worn out Specialized Ground Controls that they replaced. Now, at 5 months, I realized why the sidewalls always look wet! It the Stan's seeping through! I lose about 4 lbs. of pressure on a 2 hour ride.... I used to hold Continental in high regard.... :(

    I don't recommend and will not buy again.

    Weak Sidewalls

    Fast and smooth

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    I agree with Kevin's review below (posted Oct 24, 2013). I've been riding my X-King 2.2 protections this past year on both front and rear on my Niner hardtail. The front is holding up well but the rear tire looks like the pic Kevin posted, complete with a missing knob. They hold air pretty well despite visible seepage of sealant on sidewalls (which tells me it's doing its job). It's a great xc tire - fast and smooth, but a bit skittish in the loose stuff. I live in Utah and they're great on our mountain trails (Park City, Snowbasin, Corner Canyon, etc). Yesterday evening however, I barely finished the weekly Snowbasin race with about 10 lbs of pressure left in the rear tire confirming it's now time to replace. I'm considering a pair of Conti Mountain Kings.

    Fast and smooth
    Avg. ride time: 4h 28m per week
    • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

    Oddly narrow tread

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    I got a set of these as a gift during the winter. They set up tubeless on KOM i25s fine - I did need a compressor to seat them, but they seal well enough to inflate from zero with a floor pump.

    Initially I was a bit underwhelmed. They don't have great traction when it's muddy. I know it's not a mud tire, but other manufacturers' full knob XC tires have been more versatile for me.

    As conditions dried out, I started to like these tires better. Not that it's that challenging to make a tire that grips well on hero dirt. I do like the volume, although the 2.4s only measure 2.3" on my rims. One thing that's very odd to me, though, is that the carcass actually measures wider than the widest measurement I can get over the knobs. At 550 miles, there's quite a lot of wear to the rear sidewalls, and the cords are working their way out through the rubber. The tire has also been weeping sealant a little bit, though it's still holding pressure okay. Finally, I'm tearing the corners off some of the knobs, and undercutting them some.

    I won't be buying another set of these - I think the tread on a mountain bike tire should protect the sidewall better than that. They might sit a little better on a narrower rim, though.

    Unanswered Question

    Hi, To confirm, is this Continental's...

    Hi, To confirm, is this Continental's "Protection" version of the tire? The weight listed on your webpage is not the same as Continental's website.


    Avg. ride time: 3h 41m per week
    • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

    Fast Rolling, Not as Durable

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    Disclaimer: I’ve only ran this tire as a rear. I really want to like this tire, but I’m on my second rear tire and not sure I will be moving on to a third. The pros of this tire as a rear is that it’s fast rolling, lightweight, and offers pretty predictable traction. The major downside to these tires that I found out was their durability. I was never really able to trust these tires since they would let me down in the most elementary of situations and loose air. The Protection casing, while lightweight with a high TPI, did little to protect against sidewall punctures and wear. I did not suffer any punctures into the thread area however. Tread wear was alright for a rear tire, but I think compared to a Trail King front tire you will be replacing 3 of these to every 1 of the Trail Kings up front. During aggressive descending with this tire, it is possible to shed side knobs quickly (as seen in the photo). When it comes down to it, I was probably over using this tire as I wanted a fast rolling tire without too much of a weight penalty, but the durability was not acceptable. I would save this tire as a strict XC tire, otherwise look elsewhere if durability is a concern.

    Fast Rolling, Not as Durable

    Your picture with the miss side knob looks shockingly familiar. I just found a similar issue on my front tire. Disappointed by Continental.

    How many hours/miles on the pictured tire? Not for nothing, but it looks pretty well 'loved'.


    I don't have the exact mileage, but this was maybe 2-3 months of use (maybe 300 miles).

    I have about 1,000 miles on my x-king protection 2.2 and my tires look good. The rear is worn much more then the front but I say I can probably clock another 400 miles on the tire. I ride in mix, hard pack, rooty and rock gardens (with some sharp edges) in Raleigh NC including some trails in west NC. I really like the tires and have not complains about it.