Bridge­stone Bat­tle­cruise H50 £286

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Tyre Guide -

Bridge­stone may be, in their own words, ‘the world’s largest man­u­fac­turer of tyres’ with some of the great­est sports and sport­s­tour­ing bike rub­ber avail­able any­where, but if you like your mo­tor­cy­cling Amer­i­can-style, it’s quite pos­si­ble you’ve never no­ticed. And that’s be­cause, un­til the tyre gi­ant’s cre­ation of this, their first ded­i­cated cruiser tyre, the Ja­panese firm had been miss­ing out on a fair chunk of busi­ness.

The all-new Bat­tle­cruise H50 aims to change that, and has been launched to ap­peal specif­i­cally to rid­ers of Amer­i­can V-twins. Two waves of fit­ments will be avail­able. This first is on sale now, and has cross-ply con­struc­tion, comes in eight dif­fer­ent sizes front and rear and is aimed at smaller, lighter models such as the In­dian Scout (whose OE Kenda tyres have been widely crit­i­cised) and Har­ley Sport­ster – al­though it’s also suit­able for some Har­ley big twins, such as the Sof­tail Slim.

A sec­ond wave, in­clud­ing some ra­di­als, is sched­uled for Jan­uary 2018 and comes in 14 larger sizes (right up to a 240-sec­tion rear), de­signed for heav­ier tour­ers.

What con­nects them all is a fo­cus on typ­i­cal Bridge­stone sport­ing at­tributes mostly un­heard of in the cruiser cat­e­gory – namely classlead­ing per­for­mance, ex­cel­lent grip and, as a sur­prise bonus, tyre life claimed to be up to 90% bet­ter than con­ven­tional ri­vals, most of which was borne out by our Florida test ride.

On the down­side, no white­walls will be of­fered (ap­par­ently they com­pro­mise per­for­mance); prices will prob­a­bly be un­der­cut by some ri­vals and, de­spite the firm own­ing the his­toric US Fire­stone brand, the Ja­panese Bridge­stone name was cho­sen for the H50s.

What are they like?

They work. Steer­ing, ride and grip are bet­ter than most cruiser tyres, and thanks to less rigid side­walls they give a more plush ride too, so they should be a no-brainer for any spir­ited Scout or Sport­ster rider. We are less con­vinced about big twin own­ers, but if they’d been badged Fire­stone and came with a white wall op­tion, who knows...

Sizes avail­able:

Front 130/90 16 73H, 130/90 16 67H, 100/90 19 and 80/90 21. Rear 130/90 16, 140/90 16, 150/80 16 and 160/70 17.

Con­tact www.bridge­

They work a treat but if you want white walls you’re out of luck

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