Maxxis Bighorn tires have a stellar reputation in the off-road world and are used as stock tires on many machines. Here’s why.
If you look at the tires many manufacturers choose to run as the stock tire on the recent crop of UTVs, the number-one choice is a variation of the Maxxis Bighorn. The tire has won races and championships across multiple forms of competition and is a proven tire option. What makes this the tire of choice? It’s a couple of things, really. While new tire designs are always in the works, the Bighorn will remain a strong favorite and with good reason.
The Tread Pattern
One of the biggest reasons for the success of the tire is the non-directional tread pattern. A mix of knobs and bars highlights the footprint of the tire. It has enough open space to clean up from mud. Wrap around tread on the sidewalls give extra traction in ruts and rocks, too. The profile of the tire is semi-flat, giving the Bighorn a wide footprint. This makes the tire a good choice for desert, rocks, and most dirt situations. While not an ideal mud tire, compared to the specialized tire for that application, the Bighorn will hold its own in the slop, too.
Maxxis Bighorn 1.0
There are currently three variations of the Maxxis Bighorn tire on the market. The Maxxis Bighorn Radial is a 6-ply, radial tire. It can be found for 12-, 14- and 15-inch rim sizes and comes in both front and back versions. You can find a set for your very own at dealers near you, or online.
Maxxis Bighorn 2.0
The Maxxis Bighorn 2.0 Radial is a lighter-weight version of the Bighorn. This may well be the most popular version of the tire. Maxxis reduced the weight of the tire by making the bars in the tread a little slimmer and a little shallower. Like the Bighorn, it is a 6-ply tire. It is available in 12-inch and 14-inch rim sizes. It has a front and rear model, to completely cover your machine’s needs. Being that is uses a little less rubber, the Maxxis Bighorn 2.0 tires tend to run a little less money.
Maxxis Bighorn 3.0
The Maxxis Bighorn 3.0 Radial is the latest version of the legendary tire. It has an all-new tread pattern that is based on the original. The front version is directional, while the rear keeps the non-directional pattern going. The tread is a little closer packed to increase the smooth ride and some sipping in the tread blocks adds grip in rocky terrain and on other slick surfaces. The goal for the 3.0 is to increase grip while retaining the legendary versatility and large contact patch the Maxxis Bighorn is known for. The 3.0 is also a 6-ply tire and it also comes in 12-inch and 14-inch rim sizes. Be prepared for a serious boost in traction with these tires! They are really that good. Go see your local tire guy, but you might want to get them online, instead.
A while ago, I was sitting in a new machine briefing as the company was going over its latest UTV and why it was made the way it was. When it came to the tires, the product manager simply said, “We ran the Maxxis Bighorns on it because we hate flat tires as much as you do.” Can you get a flat in a Maxxis Bighorn? Yes. In fact, I’ve done it. But it isn’t easy. My one experience with a flat came in Moab while I was traversing down a rutted trail. I picked the wrong line and ended up with a pinch flat. I can’t blame the tire for my driving.
I know a guy who raced the Baja 1,000 who said they used one set of Maxxis Bighorn tires for the whole race. He then added that the tires were in good enough shape after the race that he used them in a different race a few months later, and then used them on one of his personal machines for trail riding for a few years. The rubber compound wears really slow and the sidewall tread protects from punctures, unless you’re driving like a goon and get a pinch flat in Moab.
If you’re looking for a seriously good, all-around tire that will last as well as it performs, consider the Maxxis Bighorn in one of its three iterations.