Michelin have certainly understood the challenges. The Wild is firmly a 50/50 on- and off-road tyre, they say, while also addressing the traditional limitations of this type – on-road stability, comfort, and longevity.
The block pattern looks suitably aggressive; open enough to find grip in everything but slick mud. Stability is dealt with by clever design of the tyre’s blocks (knobblies), particularly allowing a little more rubber contact when cornering on tarmac, while maintaining said fairly open pattern in the centre section for good grip on the dirt.
As for longevity – here’s the interesting part – Michelin say they’ve been testing this tyre since 2013, much of that time in conjunction with adventure tour specialists T3 Aventure. They go on to say, when tested on R1200GSs, the Wilds have lasted whole tours intact and that includes a 12,500km tour across Mongolia and a 15,000km ride across South America. Those are the kinds of distances usually achieved by less performance-oriented but still relatively rugged tyres like Heidenau Scouts and Mitas E07s.
The Wilds are being distributed worldwide now and they’ll have sizes to suit most common adventure bikes, including those with 21” front (no 18” rears though at the moment). We’ve been offered a set and just as soon as JB here has stopped with the travels (two more extended tours coming up in the next few weeks) we’ll get them tested. And, sure enough, let you know how they fare. If you get onto them in the meantime, please do share your feedback (email: firstname.lastname@example.org).