Review: Dunlop Sportmax Roadsmart III Tires

Jun 28, 2017 View Comments by

Dunlop RoadSmart

We all want tires that wear like iron but stick like glue. Dunlop is doing its part by upgrading its existing Sportmax Roadsmart II line of sport-touring motorcycle tires to create the Roadsmart III (RSIII). The RSIII is designed to give long-haul performance with near-sportbike-like grip that lasts the life of the tire. As tires age and wear, their grip, ride compliance, and other qualities diminish. Aimed squarely at the Michelin Pilot Road 4, Dunlop reports that the RSIII is made to not only last longer, but to perform at a higher level throughout its lifetime.

According to Dunlop, the RSIII line uses optimized construction for longer mileage and better wet performance. New tire rubber compounds enhance wear resistance, and Dunlop’s exclusive MT Multi-Tread design binds a high-mileage compound to the center for longer wear, and high-adhesion compound to the lateral flanks for higher cornering grip. The rear tire profile increases the footprint and improves mileage. An innovative new cross-groove tread pattern on the rear achieves better dispersal of water in wet conditions for more grip. Additionally, new sidewall construction improves shock absorption and aids precise handling.

Independent testing on a 2016 BMW R 1200 RT yielded more than 12,000 miles on the Dunlop Roadsmart III, 3,000 miles more than the Michelin Pilot Road 4 GT in sizes 120/70ZR17 and 180/55ZR17. Independent tests performed by Texas Test Fleet also compared handling of the Roadsmart III to Michelin Pilot Road 4 tires. Putting 3,000 miles on each of them showed the Roadsmart has a significant performance advantage in several categories, including wet and dry grip and steering response and compliance. Dunlop’s tests on a 2015 BMW R 1200 RT on 120/70ZR17 and 180/55ZR17 tires also showed that Roadsmart III maintains its performance advantage over its longer lifespan.

Our test bike was a 2016 BMW R 1200 RT. Out on the road, I found the tires warmed up and were able to deliver confidence-inspiring grip quickly. Riding in cool weather right after the rain stopped, it was possible to put the tires through their paces in a variety of situations, including wet roads, water running across the road, sand and gravel left over from the passing storm, and later in the day, warmer, drier conditions. On everything from tight switchbacks to slick off-camber downhill decreasing radius corners the tires never let go once. They also felt stable and planted, even at triple-digit speeds. Overall tire performance was excellent, and RSIIIs should also work well on sportbikes that aren’t ridden to their limits on the street.

Dunlop Sportmax Roadsmart III Tires
Price: $171 – $254
Front Sizes: 120/60ZR17, 120/70ZR17, 110/80R18, 120/70ZR18
Rear Sizes: 160/60ZR17, 160/70ZR17, 170/60ZR17, 180/55ZR17, 190/50ZR17, 190/55ZR17

Get them at your local shop or online.


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