A New Adventure Dawns: Dunlop Launches Trailmax Meridian

  • ‘Escape from the ordinary’ - extreme performance for powerful adventure bikes

  • Dramatic tread pattern for outstanding dry, wet and off-road ability

  • ‘Stronger for longer’ - Performance throughout the life of the tyre

  • Up to 15% mileage gains* proven in testing

Dunlop has launched the Trailmax Meridian, declaring ‘a new adventure dawns’ for the sector. Sitting above the acclaimed TrailSmart MAX, the Trailmax Meridian has been developed around the very specific and complex requirements of the most technically advanced adventure bikes. 

Rider demands are changing

With sales of on/off road machines such as the BMW GS, Honda Africa Twin, Suzuki V-Strom and Triumph Tiger growing faster than the overall market, riders are expecting greater versatility from their machines - and tyres.

“Over the last decade we have seen a change in the market. Sports bikes used to be the star of the sales charts, but the main growth area is now adventure bikes. Riders are attracted to the high riding position and long-distance touring ability, but still demand the potential for off-road adventure. After researching these rider needs, we set a tough challenge for our research and development team.” stated Luca Davide Andreoni, Marketing Manager, Dunlop Motorcycle Europe.

Ambitious target gains: Up to 15% mileage gains* achieved

The research had also shown Dunlop that the Trailmax Meridian had to have the versatility to conquer challenges as diverse as off-road adventures and long pan-European tours - as well as harness the power and performance of the latest high-end bikes. 

Dunlop is particularly proud of the mileage gains seen in spirited riding. On the rear Trailmax Meridian, testing versus the best performing competitor tyre proved a 6% mileage gain in straight-line riding, increasing to over 15% with 40-degree lean angles*. Dmitri Talboom, Product Manager, explained more: “Our research tells us this is exactly what riders need. They need the durability for long commutes or touring rides, with the ability to retain high performance for the twisty roads of a mountain touring holiday or a weekend blast in the countryside” 

There was an even greater gain in front tyre mileage, with the by-product of synchronising the predicted tyre-change time for both tyres, meaning only one dealer visit is needed rather than separate bookings for both front and rear. 

Enduring grip - wet or dry

The dramatic tread pattern on the Trailmax Meridian not only looks spectacular, but it is purposeful and highly effective. It is designed to efficiently expel water at speed, but still retain a high level of dry grip. The magic continues under the pattern with Dunlop’s MultiTread technology. This includes a Hi-Silica compound that provides outstanding wet grip and makes the tyre more flexible at lower temperatures. This, coupled with a Rayon Ply Casing brings the dual benefit of increased mileage and a much quicker warm-up time benefiting riders who increasingly use adventure bikes all-year-round. The rear tyre also features a new centre compound which extends to run under the shoulder compound. This helps promote the overall stiffness of the rear tyre, providing sporty handling and increased traction when power is applied.

Both the front and rear tyres feature a two layer version of this Rayon-Ply Casing which, when combined with Jointless Belt (JLB), provides confidence-inspiring handling. “Many of these adventure bikes have the power that is in the hypersport league and riders expect the tyre to hide the bike’s relative bulk so they can enjoy nimble and dynamic handling. Trailmax Meridian’s mix of technologies achieves this.” added Dmitri.

Off-Road ability comes as standard

An adventure bike needs to have the ability to perform off-road as well. In Dunlop’s own tests, the Trailmax Meridian, with its distinctive claw-like tread pattern, showed improved traction over the three closest competitors and the existing TrailSmart MAX on soft mud terrain**. In hard mud or gravel, the performance was at the same level as the test-winning*** TrailSmart MAX, proving that Dunlop’s focus on exceptional outright performance and handling hasn’t been to the detriment of off-road versatility.

Wide range of fitments

The Trailmax Meridian is available in four front and three rear sizes to cover a wide range of models including the BMW GS, Honda Africa Twin and Crosstourer, KTM Adventure, Suzuki V-Strom, Triumph Tiger and Yamaha Tenere and Super Tenere.

* Internal Mileage and handling testing was conducted using a BMW R 1200 GS at Mireval circuit, France.
 On the rear Trailmax Meridian, testing proved a 6% mileage gain in straight-line riding, increasing to over 15% 
 with 40 degree lean angles with a 170/60ZR17 fitment. On the front tyre (120/70R19) testing showed a 19% 
 gain versus the nearest competitor, rising to 36% at 40 degree lean angles
**Off road testing conducted using a BMW R1200 GS at Monteils, France
***Motociclismo 2018 test - ‘Quality guaranteed’

Dunlop Europe is one of the world's leading manufacturers of motorcycle tyres with an impressive track record of motorsport successes. Dunlop Europe is a technical partner of Suzuki Endurance Race Team and Honda Racing in Endurance World Championship Racing, the official tyre supplier to the FIM Moto2 and Moto3 World Championship and the most successful tyre brand in the history of the Isle of Man TT. Off-road, Dunlop is the choice of MXGP race winners and champions.