Sunday, December 5, 2010

Tire Review: Hutchinson Intensive

Of the three tires currently in the Hutchinson Road Tubeless lineup, the Intensive is probably the least well known.  If I had to guess, I would say it sells the least as well.   The Atom is easily the choice for racers and weight weenies, with the Fusion 3 close behind, while the Hutchinson IntensiveTubeless is marketed as a training tire. 

When I first purchased the Intensive, I intended to use it on my commuter bike, as it was claimed to be the largest and most durable tubeless road tire offered.   In that respect, I was disappointed.   Hutchinson's website claims the Intensive to be 25c in width, while they list the Fusion 3  as 23c in width.    Despite those specifications, my micrometer shows both tires to be identical in width.

Width issues aside, the Intensive offers a thicker, more durable casing, as well as some tread on the sides.   The tread is so thin, and so off the centerline, as to be merely cosmetic.  I simply wouldn't consider the Intensive as capable of any terrain that the Fusion 3 couldn't handle.   

What I do like is that the Intensive is both less expensive and more durable.   I was able to purchase the tires for around $45, as opposed to $50 for the Atoms and Fusion 3.    While I am only able to ride about 2-3,000 miles on Hutchinson's other tires, I am confident the Intensives will last significantly longer.    The rubber compound seems more durable, and it's additional weight is indicative of a thicker tread depth.   
As for it's ride, I find it a bit more harsh than the supple Fusion 3.  This is a tire that wants to be ridden long distances, yet it is sturdy enough to stand up to harsher roads.   In that sense it works for me on my commuter bike, however it fails to provide the comfort normally associated with a actual commuter tire.   That tire just isn't in Hutchinson's or any other manufacturer's tubeless offerings,...yet.

Ultimately, this tire is more about economy and training than commuting comfort.   While it is only a mere 10% less expensive than their more racing oriented road tubeless tires, I feel it will earn it's keep through longevity.  A side effect of it's longevity will be ease of maintenance.   I often wear through a Fusion or Atom tire without having to deflate it for any reason, and I suspect the Intensive will provide almost anyone months of maintenance free duty.  

So until Hutchinson or one of it's competitors will see fit to offer a tubeless tire that is genuinely geared towards commuters, the Hutchinson IntensiveTubeless will be the link between the road and the rim on my rides to and from work for the foreseeable future.   For casual road riders who are less concerned about weight than about durability, longevity, and economy, the Intensive should be your choice as well.


  1. Are there any real 25C tubless tires out there.
    I love riding and racing on 25C tires, but can't find any tubless tires in that size.

  2. I just mounted up two of these 25c tubeless and they came out to 25mm width exact on one and ~ 24.5mm on the other.
    for a rubber part, I'd consider that within spec.

  3. Jason - Has anyone experienced any unusual failures with these tires? I just noticed today multiple small tears on both my front and rear sidewalls near the bead/rim. They are .5-1 cm in length and fairly deep - scary enough looking that I'm not going to ride the tires and see if I can file a warranty claim.

  4. Was told by the retailer that they would not process a warranty claim because I used Stans sealant in the tires and Hutchinson will only warrant their own sealant - beware.

  5. I did have to return an Intensive tire as it had some kind of sidewall leak that would not seal.

  6. What kind of sealant were you using? I'm curious if you were using Stans and were able to return a tire because that is where I am being shot down. Very disappointing as I have less than 500 miles on these tires and both front and rear have developed these tears and I can't get a warranty claim processed because I used Stans sealant.

    I just ordered a pair of Fusion 3s and Hutchinson sealant but as soon as someone else comes out with a reasonably priced tubeless tire I am likely done with Hutchinson.