Marketing jargon is always littered with superlatives. The latest product update makes something naturally the best, until the next one comes out. We were already impressed by the handling and wet weather grip of the ContiRoadAttack 3. How much better could the ContiRoadAttack 4, which Continental calls a hyper-touring tire, be?
At first glance, you’ll notice that the new tire, with a shoulder profile like a slick, puts a lot of emphasis on sporty riding. That makes sense as our touring and sport-touring bikes are becoming increasingly powerful. The tires have to keep up—otherwise that power won’t show on the road. Here, the ContiRoadAttack 4 (CRA 4) does exceptionally well. They provide great feedback and stability during spirited riding with a healthy lean angle on dry roads. Unless you’re going to a track, even the above-average rider won’t outride these tires.
The CRA 4 works well in lower temperatures, too, and warms up fast. With the amount of dry grip, this tire is an excellent choice for bikes like the Super Duke and other high-performance tourers. As with any tire offering superior grip and handling during sporty riding, don’t expect a high-mileage tire. However, based on our initial testing, the CRA 4 is comparable to other tires in this category.
RainGrip and TractionSkin
Continental calls its full-on silica mix Conti RainGrip, which was already a standout feature on the previous model. During my own testing on North Carolina and Virginia backroads, the CRA 4 exceeded my expectations. I consider myself an expert in wet weather traction, as all three of my road mishaps stemmed from losing traction on wet roads. Confidence in my tires is always the first step in knowing how far I can push it. As I ride many motorcycles that aren’t mine, I look at the tires first to understand what I can and can’t do. If you don’t ride only when the sun is out, you should prioritize wet weather handling characteristics.
TractionSkin eliminates the need to break in the tire. The CRA 4 tires are ready to go as soon as you spoon them on. This is not a new feature, but has become a favorite Continental technology. Thanks to the absence of tire release agents in the baking mold, a micro-rough surface forms on the tire, which adds more safety from the very beginning.
If you have a more touring-oriented motorcycle, you’ll benefit most by the tire’s handling and agility characteristics. Touring tires usually don’t boast about their handling, but this is a standout feature of the new Conti. This light-footedness exemplifies the sport characteristics of the ContiRoadAttack 4, which comes in a variety of sizes for 17-inch front and rear tires.