Hutchinson may not be an obvious choice for many riders but they make some great tyres – and the Griffus 2.5 is one of them. It shares many similarities with the Maxxis Minion DHF but the Griffus’ compound, casing and shoulder tread may just trump the king of trail/enduro tyres.
This 29” version gets a Hardskin reinforced casing, and all versions have the RR Gravity compound (it's also available as a dual-ply without Hardskin, and in 27.5" diameters). In this spec it's a pretty hefty 1080g, though the 27.5" variant is 100g lighter.
The knobs on the Griffus are pretty chunky and look very similar to those of the Maxxis Minion DHF, but the shoulder on the Griffus is taller, with a different shaping and spacing.
Inflated on a rim with a 30mm width, the Griffus sits round but not overly so due to those tall shoulder knobs.
Those aggressive looks are deceiving when it comes to rolling resistance. In fact, it rolls rather nicely. Even when used on the rear, pedalling is a pleasure and there's little obvious drag.
In the corners, however, there’s not much surprise at all. Those tall shoulder knobs dig in early and confidently, and it's versatile tyre that performs impressively well in the wet too. While rolling very well, the centre knobs provide great braking – great for when the trail gets steep and loose.
While it grips and rolls impressively, what makes the Griffus stand out is its excellent casing. It’s not overly stiff and it’s not too floppy either, instead hitting a lovely middle ground that's compliant yet supportive in the turns.
Having ridden the Griffus on the driest of hardpack, loose gravel, some lovely loamy goodness and on truly soggy trails, I can say that grip is consistent and confident. It makes for a great all-round tyre – it's a little nervous on seriously steep and sloppy trails, and obviously not light or fast enough for cross-country work, but for general trail and descending fun it excels.
At a glance, the Hutchinson Griffus 2.5 looks a lot like the classic Maxxis Minion DHF, but it survives the expectations extremely well. Its comparitively stickier compound, taller shoulder knobs and superbly damped and supportive casing create a grippy, fast-rolling and great feeling tyre. The fact it's almost half of the price means it's a seriously tempting proposition.
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