The E-09s are an aggressive, open-knobby tubeless tire for big adventure tourers. They are 80% dirt / 20% street, and that’s no exaggeration. They are superb on dirt roads, offering lots of bite even when the top layer is loose. In mud, they clean out better than most adventure tires. Riding my ’05 R1200GS on a muddy, uphill, wooded road in Vermont with two other riders, the tires gave me ultimate confidence. The further we rode, the worse the trail got. Eventually we reached a tree across the trail; it wasn’t that thick, but it was resting high enough off the ground that riding over it wasn’t an option. My riding companions seemed relieved that we would have to turn around, but that quickly changed when I whipped out my folding saw, cut the large branch, and cleared it off the trail. Onward!
The rear is great and had no drawbacks on the road. So, after 1,723 initial miles, mostly on the street, the front knobs are still 5mm and the rear knobs are 10mm. I’d hoped to get more miles in before winter came to New England, but I’m no hero when it comes to cold weather. I predict I’ll get at least triple the miles I have so far before the tires are toast.The trail continued to get more technical, but the E-09s never missed a beat. The place they don’t shine, obviously, is the street — the front in particular. The small, widely spaced knobs mean the contact patch is even smaller than on a 50/50 tire. The bike is stable but it feels like it isn’t, especially at speeds of 70 mph or more. This feeling was more pronounced when the tire was new. It got better with more miles, but never completely went away. For the type of rider this tire is meant for, this is likely a non-issue.
Final Thoughts On The Mitas E-09 Tires
While I hate to admit it, the Mitas E-09 knobbies are too much tire for me. I will take my GS on almost any trail, but the harsh reality is that I ride a lot more miles on the road. The magic combo might be a 50/50 tire on the front and an E-09 rear. But that’s just me — they might just be the perfect tire for your style of adventure riding. To learn more about choosing the right kind of dual-sport tire for you, check out our tire buyer’s guide.
Final final thoughts on them
Today I changed out the E-09s with a total of 3,923 miles on them. Most of that was street unfortunately but I did get in a good amount of dirt riding including the Dirt Daze obstacle course. Their dirt performance was excellent. On the road they never gave me any scares but then I don’t push it when I have tires like these. I don’t even brake hard most of the time but you can see quite a bit of cupping on the front tire. The rear tire still looks great and I will pair it with a new front in the future, something with a bigger contact patch.