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TESTED: Vee Mission XC Tires

Better than you think

 

Vee Rubber Group was founded in 1977 as a manufacturer of car and motorcycle tires. In 2013 Vee Tire Company was created with a focus specifically on bicycle tires. The bicycle tire market is competitive with other established brands, pushing the envelope on research and design. Vee offers a range of treads, covering cross-country racing to all-mountain riding. The Mission is a dedicated XC race tire focused on speed and efficiency. We put this tread to the test on our dusty singletrack in Southern California.

Tech info: The Mission is a cross-country tire that is designed with a slightly aggressive tread and a lightweight casing. It could be used for either XC racing or general trail riding. Vee makes the Mission for 26-, 27.5- and 29-inch wheel diameters and 2.10 or 2.25 widths for each size. Our set of test tires came with a folding bead that is tubeless compatible, but Vee also offers a wire bead for riders on a budget.

The tread is a unique design with diamond-shaped transition knobs and subtle square shoulder knobs for extra bite when cornering. Down the center is a directional tread offering minimal rolling resistance. Our test tires are available with either a standard sidewall or skin walls for an additional $15. Vee uses their dual-tread compound in the rubber and 120 tpi in the casing for extra strength and a more supple feel. The 29×2.10 Mission came in at 702 grams on the scale. Retail price on the base 29×2.10 Mission is $40. Our test tires have a retail price of $55 and can be ordered online.

On the trail: We installed our test tires on a pair of RideFast Racing wheels with an internal width of 19 millimeters. The 2.10-inch width measured true and had a nice round profile once inflated. We had some issues getting the tires to seat and seal properly, even after our first couple rides. We added a couple extra ounces of sealant, and we didn’t experience any more leaks during our testing. Vee recommends 22.5–50 psi per tire; our test riders found 24 in the rear and 23 in the front to be a good balance of keeping the tire stiff but maximizing traction.

The Mission is a fast-rolling tire, especially on loose-over-hardpack terrain. At high speeds the Missions held their line confidently and tended to wander. Cornering the square-shouldered knobs, it dug into the dirt effectively and allowed our test riders to lean the bike over comfortably. At 24 psi in the rear tire, our test riders found plenty of traction to grind up steep pitches or spin away at long fire-road climbs. On some more technical sections of trail, the Missions showed they could handle some rocks well, although we wouldn’t recommend smashing these through gnarly rock gardens. The braking performance is on par for what we’d expect from a lightweight tread, but don’t expect these to stop you on a dime. Still, we felt there was ample control overall for the intended riding use.

We put plenty of miles on the Mission tires and noticed they wore more quickly than we would have liked. Given the lower price tag, though, we think most riders will be able to justify buying a replacement. The Mission was a bit of a surprise to our test riders, with competitive performance and a modest price tag compared to other tires in this category. www.veetireco.com

HITS

• Fast-rolling

• Skin walls are always a bonus

• Available in 26-inch

MISSES

• More difficult to seat than other tubeless-ready tires

• Slightly heavy


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