Kev, I just read your review in the Telegraph (I think it was) and was somewhat concerned about your comments regarding the new Bridgestone S20 tyres and their "lack of outright grip". This is a major surprise since Bridgestone are trumpeting these as their latest and greatest with better grip and longevity then their previous BT016 Pro, itself a step up from the original BT016. Could you elaborate on your findings. Is there a problem with this new tyre? Did you (or any other journalist you spoke to) get to ride a new 'Blade with the alternative Dunlop rubber fitted? If so, how did that compare?
I used to always use Bridgestones, but have deserted them for Dunlop SportSmarts over the last few years as those Dunlops were just so good. I have been lead to believe that the S20 is another leap ahead of even the SportSmarts, but your comments seem to disprove that. Would really appreciate some more info on this.
Is no-one else concerned that Bridgestone's latest and greatest tyre is turning out to be somewhat below par? Or is it?
Could really do with some feedback about this from Kev.
Frightening really... the new blades suspension and the s20's are supposed to increase grip and when halfway through a track test the s20's are removed (replaced by the superb R10's) it is obvious why. My local Honda dealer only sells blades with Dunlops fitted but said he'd happily put bridgestones on... (pause) if that's what they really want (knowing look). He feels that the dunlops will generate more sales on the demo bike than the bridgestones. TBH I have only had bridgestone tyres since the brilliant BT 010's and the bt 011's were a little um nervous the bt 014 was great the bt 015 a little nervous and the bt 016 that I currently use are great so perhaps we have to alternate as previous patterns dictate these will have nervous moments but the next ones will be great...
I really should be more open to tyre choice and manufacturer
I finally decided that I was not happy with how the S20s have been reported and have accepted a new 'Blade with the Dunlops. Not the best Dunlops it has to be said, but they'll do for what I want.
So far, all the new 'Blades have been supplied with Dunlops which means either the S20s just weren't available in time for the first production runs, or Honda have not been using them yet due to unfavourable test reactions.
It will be interesting to hear more about the S20s as time goes by.
I read elsewhere that 'Blades for the UK will only be on Dunlops (very strange), but that the OE S20 is a very different tyre to that available aftermarket, which is less surprising. However, I cannot verify the source of that info so it might be nonsense. But, if true, it might help to explain things.
Notwithstanding that, Ash's test of the new 'Blade is noticeable by its absence on Bridgestone's site which lists reviews of other bikes shod with its tyres - although none on the S20. Also, I'm kinda surprised by his reluctance to comment here. Have Bridgestone exerted some kind of pressure to prevent any further unwanted bad publicity I wonder, although a quick search reveals I'm not the only one asking this exact question.
On the plus side, a ZX6R user reported he had fitted S20s and was delighted. So maybe the aftermarket ones are good after all?
I'm still tempted.
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