The Schwalbe Lugano is the entry-level road bike tire from Schwalbe. This is a review of the 700 x 25C folding version of the Lugano. An even cheaper wire bead version is available as well. After comparing all specifications, the wire bead version should be very comparable to the folding version. The Lugano has a 50 TPI casing, a diamond tread profile, silica rubber compound, and a K-Guard layer for extra puncture protection.
On paper, the Lugano seems like a great tire that should perform well on our tests. Most tires that fit the lowest price category seem to have a 20-30 TPI carcass, no silica compound, and no advanced "K-Guard" style puncture protection. When you combine these specifications with the Schwalbe brand name, which is known for producing excellent low rolling resistance tires, you can only expect the Lugano to be a decent performer.
|Tire Type||Tubetype (clincher)|
|Supplied By||Bought in store|
|New or Used||New|
|Specified Weight||280 grams|
Size and Weight Measurements
|Size and Weight Measurements (Bike Wheel: 622x17C, Pressure: 100 psi / 6.9 bar)|
|Specified Weight||280 grams|
|Measured Weight||275 grams|
|Measured Width||25 mm|
|Measured Height||23 mm|
|Total Tire Thickness Center||3.5 mm|
|Total Tire Thickness Sidewall||0.65 mm|
The specified weight of the folding version of the Lugano is 280 grams. I've measured my sample of the Lugano at 275 grams, which is an acceptable weight for a 25 mm road bike tire. The wire bead version is much heavier with a specified weight of 350 grams. With a measured width and height of 25 and 23 mm respectively, the Lugano is smaller than most other 25C tires which come closer to 26/27 mm on my 17C rim.
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 Race28 (100gr butyl)|
|Rolling Resistance 140 psi / 9.7 Bar||
CRR: Not Tested
|Rolling Resistance 120 psi / 8.3 Bar||
|Rolling Resistance 100 PSI / 6.9 Bar||
|Rolling Resistance 80 PSI / 5.5 Bar||
|Rolling Resistance 60 PSI / 4.1 Bar||
|Use the formula: RR (watts) = CRR * speed (m/s) * load (N) to calculate rolling resistance at a given speed and load|
Rolling resistance at an air pressure of 120 psi is 21.9 watts, which is very high already. At lower air pressures, rolling resistance rises sharply to 22.6, 24.4 and 28.4 watts at 100, 80 and 60 psi respectively. Something else I noticed during the test is that the Lugano had a gigantic height stroke. Most tires have this, but the Lugano was awful, you will probably notice it on the bike. This is a sign of low-quality control.
I must say that I did not expect rolling resistance to be so high. As of this writing, the Lugano has the highest rolling resistance of all tires that have been tested. It´s funny that Schwalbe now occupies the first and last position in the rolling resistance chart. Materials and quality control can make a big difference.
Puncture Resistance Test Results
|Puncture Resistance Test Results (higher is better)|
|Puncture Resistance Tread||14|
|Puncture Resistance Sidewall||4|
Unlike the rolling resistance part, puncture resistance seems to be decent with a score of 14 points in the puncture test. This is slightly above most summer tires and much better than the Vittoria Zaffiro which is a tire in the same price class. I must add that the Zaffiro does have a much lower rolling resistance.
Based on the rolling resistance test results, I just can't recommend the Schwalbe Lugano to anyone. These tires will seriously slow you down; some mountain bike tires even have a much lower rolling resistance. On top of that, quality control seems to be low as the Lugano used for this test came with a severe height stroke. To keep the price low, they probably just don't bin the bad tires.
If you don't want to spend a large amount of money on tires, I do recommend to slightly up the budget and read my reviews of the Continental Grand Prix and Vittoria Rubino Pro. Those aren't that much more but perform close to top-of-the-line tires. They will save you up to 20 watts of power for a pair of tires.
TEST VERDICT: Not Recommended