Published on January 11th, 2016 | by Joe0
DWT Moapa ATV / UTV Tire Test: WITH VIDEO
DWT Moapa Tires, all-terrain tires for your all-terrain vehicle.
For our upcoming Generation 1 Grizzly 700 Project, we wanted to try a tire designed to perform in all conditions from hard dirt to mud, rocks, and even sand. This is the type of tire that is best suited for the largest number of riders, as choosing a tire designed specifically to excel in mud or hard surfaces hurts their performance everywhere else. As a tire, we planned on using a 700cc, single-cylinder ATV; weight was also taken into consideration. Finally, with our planned switch to wider offset DWT Stealth Wheels for added stability, we wanted to switch from the stock 25” tires to taller 26” tires. 26” tires are the standard on the latest full-size ATVs as they roll more smoothly through bumps and over obstacles. Be aware, though, switching to a taller tire should be accompanied by recalibrating your clutch with an aftermarket clutch kit on CVT-equipped ATVs to maintain performance and drive belt durability, or you could simply stick with the stock tire size. With all this in mind, we decided to test a set of 26×9-12 front and 26×11-12 rear DWT Moapa tires.
Features and Benefits
As premium tires go, the Moapas are most comparable to the Maxxis Bighorn, but with a slightly different and more open tread pattern that appears a bit more focused on delivering side bite. The Moapas feature a wide contact patch and aggressive tread pattern designed to work in a variety of conditions. Their tread wraps around the sidewalls to enhance puncture resistance and improve traction in deep ruts. With a multi-directional design, the tread works equally well rotating in either direction. This allows you to periodically swap the tires from one side to the other, promoting even tread wear, longer tire life, with more consistent performance throughout, compared to a directional tread design.
The Moapa’s six-ply construction offers enhanced durability over most OE tires. While tires with radial construction are known for offering a smooth ride, they are also typically heavier and more expensive. The Moapa’s bias-ply design makes them around two to three pounds lighter per tire than other comparable tires featuring radial construction. Saving 8 to 12 pounds of unsprung, rotating mass makes a big deal in handling and acceleration on an ATV. We also found them to be notably less expensive than similar use, premium brand, radial tires.
After bolting up the DWT wheels and tires, we headed to Haspin Acres Off-Road Park located in Laurel, Indiana, offering the variety of terrain needed to put the Moapa tires to the test. DWT recommends running 12 pounds of pressure in the Moapas, which is probably fine for UTVs, but seems excessive for ATVs, which are typically much lighter. We ran 7 pounds of pressure providing a better ride over bumps while keeping the side-walls stiff enough to help resist pinch flats and punctures.
The Moapa tires delivered everything we were looking for in a tire and then some. First, they worked well in every condition we threw at them. They ride smoothly and provide predictable traction on hard-packed dirt. Their performance was very good negotiating steep rock ledges with no detectable wheel spin sapping forward momentum. Instead of burying themselves in sand, the Moapa’s broad footprint helps keep them on top of the sand driving forward. In mud, they seemed to do a good job of cleaning themselves out with a little throttle and the lugs are tall enough that four-wheel-drive was an afterthought traversing smaller mud holes. Forward and braking traction was good in all conditions; as was directional control, only pushing a bit in slick, muddy conditions when we were riding hard in two-wheel-drive. Lateral traction was well balanced. We felt we could trust the Moapas on side hills where we didn’t want to break traction, yet we could get them to break loose and come around for power slides making them fun, aggressive, sport riding.
We rode them hard over rocks with no puncture or pinch flats. The Moapa tires are a bit heavier than the stock, thin-skinned, shorter tread tires they replaced, and you can feel it somewhat under acceleration. This made us especially grateful for the weight savings the Moapas provide over comparable radial tire designs, which would further tax performance.
We wanted a rugged, good performing, all-terrain tire that was somewhat weight conscious, and the Moapa tires fit the bill nicely. Their bias ply design not only saves a little weight; it also makes the Moapas a little easier on the wallet as premium brands go. You might find a tire that will perform better in a single particular environment, but if you want all-terrain performance, DWT’s Moapa tires work great!
Product: Moapa Tires
Price: See Dealer
DWT Moapa Tire Rating
Summary: We wanted a rugged, good performing, all-terrain tire that was somewhat weight conscious, and the Moapa tires fit the bill nicely. Their bias ply design not only saves a little weight; it also makes the Moapas a little easier on the wallet as premium brands go. You might find a tire that will perform better in a single particular environment, but if you want all-terrain performance, DWT’s Moapa tires work great!