Maxxis Assegai Tire
The Maxxis Assegai wasn’t designed around rolling speed; it’s purely focused on traction. Greg Minnaar spent a lot of time with Maxxis trying to create a product that would take all of the tires he had raced with during his career and roll them into one. The Assegai was developed based on 28 years of Greg’s riding and racing experience. Inspired by and named after the Zulu iron-tipped spear from Greg’s home country of South Africa, the Assegai is a battle-ready, extremely versatile downhill tire designed to cling to wet rocks and roots while still rolling well on hardpack and hooking up in loamy turns.
Tech info: We tested the Maxxis Assegai 29×2.5-inch on a 160mm-travel enduro bike. We mounted the tires on a pair of DT Swiss wheels for photos, then tested them on a set of Roval Traverse wheels. These might have been the tightest beads we’ve ever encountered. Though we usually don’t advocate using tools for tire installations, these tires made us rethink our position. We used steel tire levers for both removal and installation with the Assegais due to the dual-ply downhill casings. It is fair to say that with this tight of a bead these could be run-flat tires. Maxxis recommends 30–35mm-wide rims, and that makes perfect sense. We recommend that you carry a steel lever in your toolkit if you expect to be able to do any kind of trail service during your ride.
The Assegai expects a World Cup downhill course. The terrain has to justify need for the heavy sidewall casing and the slow rolling resistance of the soft-durometer rubber. When it does, this tire is next level. Maxxis produced exactly what Greg asked for.
- Amazing traction and compliance
- Provides confidence when cornering
- Bulletproof casing
- On the heavy side
- Slow rolling
- Hard to install
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