Soon after publishing the review of the new version of the folding Vittoria Mezcal (read review), I received a message from Vittoria telling me the non-TNT (TNT = reinforced sidewalls) version of the new Mezcal does not use the new 4C G+ compound. This means I mistakenly called this new Mezcal the Mezcal G+ and assumed I was testing their new G+ compound. I've made this mistake because the Vittoria website (at this moment) does not explicitly state only the TNT version of the Mezcal uses this new compound and assumed both the non-reinforced and reinforced products were top of the range products.
Here is the exact message I received from Vittoria: Hi guys, #### from the Mktg Dept of Vittoria. I was checking your test about the Mezcal. I would like to highlight that 4C and G+ compound are technologies used only on top of the range products, so for us in Vittoria in the TNT (tube no-tube) options. You tested the foldable version (the lightest version without sidewall protection and no stronger tubeless casing) where G+ and 4C are not featured.
After receiving this message, I immediately ordered the TNT version of the Mezcal. After I received the Mezcal TNT G+, it's obvious that this tire does use the new 4C G+ compound as it's clearly marked on the sidewalls. The tread pattern appears to be exactly the same as the regular folding version. Before you read on, I can tell you the new 4C G+ compound is the real deal! The Mezcal TNT G+ comes very close to the top performing tires. Definitely get the TNT version instead of the regular folding version as they both cost the same.
|Model||Mezcal TNT G+|
|Supplied By||Bought in store|
|New or Used||New|
|Specified Weight||690 grams|
Size and Weight Measurements
|Size and Weight Measurements (Bike Wheel: 622-17C, Pressure: 35 psi / 2.4 bar)|
|Specified Weight||690 grams|
|Measured Weight||712 grams|
|Measured Width Carcass||54 mm|
|Measured Width Tread||55 mm|
|Measured Height||55 mm|
|Measured Knob Height Center||2.6 mm|
|Measured Knob Height Edge||3.8 mm|
|Measured Total Thickness Sidewall||0.75 mm|
|Measured Total Thickness Center (excluding knobs)||1.90 mm|
The specified weight of the Mezcal TNT 29x2.25 is 690 grams; my sample is a bit heavier at 712 grams. I've measured the regular folding version at 681 grams; it looks like both tires are quite close in the weight department. The measured width on a 17C rim, at an air pressure of 35 psi / 2.4 bars is 55 mm which is the same as most other 2.20 / 2.25 rated tires.
Surprisingly, while the knob pattern is the same, the TNT version of the new Mezcal has slightly smaller knobs. The center knobs have a height of 2.6 mm while the regular folding version came in at 2.9 mm. The edge knobs have a height of 3.8 mm Vs 4.3 mm for the regular folding version. The Mezcal TNT is a bit thinner at the center of the tread; Total Tire Thickness Tread has gone down to 1.9 mm from 2.4 mm. As expected, the thickness of the sidewalls has gone up a bit as this is a reinforced tire.
Rolling Resistance Test Results
|Rolling Resistance Test Results (Speed: 29 kmh / 18 mph / 8 m/s, Load: 42.5 kg / 417 N)|
|Inner Tube||Conti MTB 29 (225 gr butyl)|
|Rolling Resistance 55 psi / 3,8 Bar||
|Rolling Resistance 45 psi / 3,1 Bar||
|Rolling Resistance 35 psi / 2,4 Bar||
|Rolling Resistance 25 psi / 1,7 Bar||
|Use the formula: RR (watts) = CRR * speed (m/s) * load (N) to calculate rolling resistance at a given speed and load|
In the rolling resistance test, the Mezcal TNT G+ greatly outperforms the lighter regular folding version! At the most important low air pressure of 25 psi / 1.7 bars, rolling resistance comes in at a low 24.6 watts as compared to the 30.9 watts of the lighter regular folding version of the Mezcal (read review). At higher air pressures, rolling resistance is much lower as well. I don't think most people expect the non-reinforced version of a tire to be faster than the reinforced version.
Rolling resistance of the new Mezcal TNT G+ is very low; it's so low that Vittoria is now competing with Schwalbe and Continental in the MTB section. The Mezcal G+ comes very, very close to the Schwalbe Racing Ralph SnakeSkin (read review) that is a top performing tire with reinforced sidewalls and similar knob height. At the low air pressure of 25 psi / 1.7 bars, rolling resistance of the Mezcal comes in at 24.6 watts which is just 0.6 watt more than the Racing Ralph SnakeSkin.
Puncture Resistance Test Results
|Puncture Resistance Test Result (higher is better)|
|Puncture Resistance Tread||9|
|Puncture Resistance Sidewall||5|
Puncture resistance of the tread of the Mezcal TNT G+ is great for a tire this fast. With a score of 9 points, it scores 2 points higher than the Schwalbe Racing Ralph SnakeSkin. The sidewalls are a bit weaker and come in at 5 points Vs the 6 points the Racing Ralph scored.
It's great to see Vittoria finally released some mountain bike tires with their top performing compound. The Mezcal TNT G+ comes within 0.5 watts of the "gold standard" Schwalbe Racing Ralph SnakeSkin (read review) while providing similar puncture resistance. I do find it a very strange choice to only use this new compound on the TNT (reinforced) versions of the new tires and not the lighter folding version as well. In my opinion, the regular folding versions are only mid-range tires while both pretty much cost the same.
The mountain bike section has been dominated by Schwalbe and Continental over the past two years. Vittoria has now closed the gap to the competition thanks to a much more advanced compound. Competition among the tire manufacturers is a good thing, let's hope rolling resistance can come down some more in the next few years.
VERDICT: Highly Recommended