Onza Citius Tire - Review

Aug 1, 2017
by Paul Aston  
Onza Citius - Review


Onza Tires are now based and designed in Switzerland, although this is an entirely different company than the one that gave us the white Porcupine rubber you may remember from the 90's. The Citius has been around for a few years and is available in 26" and 27.5" size in a 2.4" width.

I opted for the 1230 gram DHC downhill casing, though Onza also makes a lightweight FRC casing, along with an EDC casing which was one of the first 'enduro specific' tires that weighed in at just over a kilo with a great casing. There are also three compounds to choose from with two dual compound rubbers in 45/55a and 55/65a, and this super soft, single compound, 40a Visco GRP rubber.
Onza Citius Details
• 27.5" x 2.4"
• 40 x 40 TPI
• Wire bead
• DHC casing
• Visco GRP 40a compound
• Weight: 1230 grams (actual)
• MSRP: €70.90 EUR / $84.90 USD
onza-tires.com

Being Swiss, the Citius is not cheap, and the DHC/Visco model is the most expensive Onza option retailing at €75 / $90 USD

Onza Citius Tire - Review
Onza Citius Tire - Review


Impressions

At 1230 grams, my tire weighed 60 grams less than Onza's stats and falls in line with other downhill tires. The dual layer of 40x40 TPI casing is tough and has a similarly well-damped feel to Maxxis DH casing tires. Even though the tire is not officially tubeless ready, it set up easily and sealant and air didn't seep through the sidewalls, something that can happen over time with other DH tires that aren't tubeless ready. Onza do offer a TLR version combined with other carcasses.

We found the Citius to suit 25mm rims best; 30mm rims seemed to be the limit as the tire started to become too square and we didn't entertain the idea of going wider. The casing measured up at 56.5mm (2.23") on a 25mm rim and nearly 60mm (2.36") on the 30mm rim.

There are many great tire choices out there, and the most important factor in performance is matching tread to terrain. The Citius is best suited for rocky and dry trails, where the dirt doesn't get too deep. Under braking, the Citius doesn't squirm on hard terrain but lacks a shovel like edge for hooking into soft ground. The traction area of the tire has been maximized by using sipes and shapes and this really helps the tread to mold and track on to harder surfaces and edges, especially immovable rocks and roots, wet or dry.

The super soft Visco compound and not-so-chunky side knobs were vague on fast, hard packed bikepark turns, the feeling being closer a Maxxis High Roller edge than the sturdier edge of a Maxxis Minion, for example, but they loved biting and tracking through softer, but not deep dirt. That deep dirt was where the Citius would lose traction with its 4mm deep central tread.

The damping qualities of the Swiss formulated Visco rubber are superb, and although it's a soft 40a durometer, the rubber has worn much better than some equivalent softer tires, with no cracking or knobs tearing off.


Onza Citius - Review
The Visco compound rubber compound may be super soft, but it was more durable than some other tires of similar durometer.
Swiss Performance.
At 4mm deep, the central treads aren't the best for loose terrain but roll well



Pinkbike's Take
bigquotesThe Citius is another great option in a modern world of quality DH tires. Choose this if you want grip and control when riding technical rocks and slower, fixed surfaces. For high-speed bike parks and deep, soft terrain there are better alternatives. Paul Aston







85 Comments

  • + 59
 Looks great! But it's probably five thousandths of an inch too thick.
  • - 3
 That's what he said?
  • + 35
 2006 called. It wants its Maxxis Advantage back.
  • + 7
 clearly it must have been 2006 that called because now we text hieroglyphics know as emojis as far as the Onza Citrus, I will keep riding my Maxxis Minions.
  • + 5
 Being August 1st I'm ready to be bombarded my MSA coverage!
  • + 1
 History has repeated itself
  • + 11
 Except for the fact that the Advantage is a cross country tire that looks nothing like this Facepalm
  • + 6
 Etu Citius?
  • + 3
 Smells like oranges
  • + 4
 @scary1: Et me, buddy.
  • + 1
 The late 90' called to say Tioga tires made a Advantage back in the late 90s so I guess Maxxis tires took advantage of their design
  • + 1
 you tyre nerd
  • + 1
 @properp: speaking of Tioga tires. Where they gone? The old white Tiger was a good tire, especially on the back. Only ever heard of them in 26". ..........
  • + 1
 @slowrider73: I had a Tioga in 24" rear front 26"
PB did a write-up on the Foes mixer like it was something new. 27.5" 29". The industry tried pushing two different Wheels sizes on the same bike long ago. Now they're at it again.
  • + 22
 Reminds me of ... *insert whatever tire you want*
#everytirereview
  • + 4
 It's like there's only a small handful of tire designs that you can think of, and they've already been done before.
  • + 11
 I do not think, that Onza will sell many tyres but will be fun to see them try
Maybe they should make bar ends?
  • + 5
 Or pedals.
  • + 1
 Actually i've seen onza tires a lot here in europe. Im using them since the start of the season and can't complain. They are just like Maxxis tires, the only difference is that tubless works better.
  • + 6
 I read that as Clitoris! Aaron Gwin after finally winning Champs: "I owe it all to my Onza Clitorises! They helped me find traction and really dig in."
  • + 3
 I'm no lady, but I don't think the Clitorises (Clitori?) want traction...
  • + 2
 @ecologist: i think you confused a couple of people
  • + 4
 "...although this is an entirely different company than the one that gave us the white Porcupine rubber you may remember from the 90's" I do, and now I feel old and somewhat disappointed at the same time. Wink That Porcupine was a beast!
  • + 1
 With Herbold running them on his rear disc wheel while wearing his Etto helmet.
  • + 2
 "choose this if you want grip and control when riding technical rocks and slower fixed surfaces"
...uhh, no but the little "x" things look like Lucky Charms, so maybe they make the $90 magically deliscious?
  • + 1
 Pinkbike reviews would have significantly more credibility if they gave product feedback based on the opinion of more than just one person's opinion. Pinkbike, why don't you get reviews in from a variety of credible sources who are clearly not drinking other brands Kool-Aid? These tires are awesome and there are many racers with far more credibility who would agree.

Aaron Gwin has done extremely well, as have many other pros, on ONZA tires and yet this review smells of arterial motives and really doesn't do this excellent quality brand close to enough justice. ONZA is try to offer the bike industry some much needed competition in the tire market. Ideally, the hope for consumers like us is that with some healthy competition, we will see downward pressure on the ridiculous prices being charged for bike tires at the moment.

But I guess if your sheep enough to buy into everything you read before trying something your self, you get what you deserve right?
  • + 1
 OK Dudes: Aaron Gwin (and his 5 thousandths of an inch insomnias) have given a better visibility to that brand that I love and that deserves a certain respect (including for its patience with Master Gwin), and that's already a pretty good thing.
I use Onza tires for a couple of years now and I'm really happy about them, especially when I find them on sales at 25/30€ instead of 60/70€!!! :-D
I love Maxxis as well and their range of products is much wider, but for equivalents (I prefer the Ibex to the High-Roller for instance), Onza tires are often lighter, a bit wider, and definitely more resistant as I normally keep them almost twice longer than a Maxxis product.... whereas they seem to be manufactured in the same factory (please tell me why). And indeed, I spend sometimes a bit more money for almost twice more pleasure! Smile
The Citius is the last Onza I've been testing not later than this summer as I rode it front wheel in Spain: HxC-chaotic-rocky-dusty-tricky tracks and hardpack mostly. My impressions were positive as this a really fast rolling product yet completly reliable, with an impressive and predictable grip on cornerings, dust, roots, smooth gravel surfaces, as on any rocky terrain... as long as it doesn't get (too) wet though.
Rolls better front than an Ibex at an equal width (2,40") but stays less versatile than the Ibex.
Could be excellent rear but only for DH&freeride purposes, as it must be a bit heavy to bring up hills.
Rolled between 22 and 24 psi depending on the terrain, the amount of grip and efficiency was always excellent.
No bloody puncture and no slashed sidewalls despite of the not-so-thick carcass on such a terrain, hum: well done bro' Smile

PS1: I don't work for Onza.
PS2: I won't buy the Aaron Gwin's Aquila because I find it too thin for about 4 thousandths of an inch. ;-)
  • + 4
 Minion DHF/High Roller....nuff said.
When they don't make them anymore, I'll quit riding...
  • + 1
 Tire review can't stand rocks though how many races Gwinn flat the past 2 years to many for him to still be using them and a procore flat like jus make a tire where he doesn't need procore duh ...what a stupid review we all seen Gwinn flat to many times since using these tires obvious that can't stand 1 or 2 runs why would I get when I would need them to last atleast a month and they can't hold up to race speeds and rocks and punctures maxxis or specialized dont need to try new tire and it flat 6 miles into the woods to common for these new companys
  • + 1
 Does anyone know of someone who has measured actual tyre widths of different tyres on a standardised rim and pressures? ie 25mm rim at 25psi? Ideally manufacturers would agree on one but I doubt the marketing department would like that. Even if you personally used a different set up it be a great reference point. Even Pb users could just post up widths on their give rims and air pressure. The discrepancies between advertised and actual dimensions are redonkulous.
  • + 3
 my Onza Ibex 2.4 Tyres have a width of 60mm (sidewall 58mm) on a 25mm inner wide rim

Maxxis Minion DHF 2.5 measure 62.5mm (sidewall 57.5mm) on the same rim

both with 2bar (30PSI) of pressure
  • + 2
 There are a lot of tires, feel free to register and contribute:
www.reifenbreiten-datenbank.de
  • + 1
 @whoopsy: that is awesome!
  • + 3
 Yet another manufacturer who prints sidewall width as a work of fiction.

Why do they all do this???
  • + 4
 Nah... I prefer the coitus more
  • + 0
 "The Visco compound rubber compound may be super soft, but it was more durable than some other tires of similar durometer."

Code for: No, they didn't really just start making "1 day at the bike park & they're done" Slow Reezay tires again.

Or at least that's what they're claiming here, I remain suspicious.
  • + 1
 I ran the Ibex in the 40a front/ 45/55 rear compound for a week at whistler last year following a weekend racing at MSA and they help up really well. It wasn't until the last day or 2 where the tires really didn't feel normal anymore
  • - 1
 So for trail riding are we more concerned with puncture proof and traction or rolling fast and easy on the legs with no traction? 900-1250 g on a climbing trail is taxing when compared to 600-700g. Have a wild Rock'r 2 reinforced up front 1100g and rock razor super gravity on back right now. Great feel, support and grip, not worried about tears or punctures on baby trails I ride, but they require twice the pedal effort
  • + 3
 Super-Sticky, dry conditions tyre? o.O

Okay then...
  • + 1
 maxxis hookworm
  • + 4
 90 freakin dollars?
  • + 3
 don't get a fat bike then...especially a used one that needs new tires.
  • + 6
 $90 is expensive but I do not think you could make one at home for that
  • + 0
 @properp: That's the huge discrepancy of consumers like you or I buying things, "OF COURSE WE'RE NOT GOING TO START A TIRE FACTORY, ALMOST UNANIMOUSLY, NO MATTER HOW SHITTY THE TIRES ARE!"
  • + 0
 @properp: I don't feel it's up to us to make better tires.
  • + 1
 @Kramz: if I don't have the skill to do it better I won't complain about it. I have the skills to build a frame but not a tire.
  • + 1
 @ecologist: Thanks for the tip. @properp of course no one is going to make a tire at home but that doesn't make it any less ridiculous. I take it as an insult to my judgement as a consumer.
  • + 2
 @mrgonzo: I can go online and purchase about any tire for 50 to 75% off retail pricing. It just takes a little shopping and patience. If you want it bad enough there's always a deal or a way to get it. I purchase Bontrager team issue tires off of eBay regularly. A set of them cost me half of what one cost at a retail bike shop.
  • + 2
 @Kramz: buy a pair of Tire snips. Get yourself a cheap big knobby Tire. Learn how to cut it down. This will teach you what altering tread does and what you actually like in tread.
  • + 1
 @properp: okay....I wasn't sure, so I looked it up and couldn't find anything called "tire snips." So is there such a thing, or do you just use some tin snips or end cutters or something? What snips work best?
  • + 2
 @ecologist: www.pinkbike.com/photo/15017399 you can cut the Nobbies off with anything you see fit. It does not have to be tire Snips specific. They also make electric irons to knock the nubbies off of motorcycle tires. This may be overkill for a mountain bike tire but I'm sure it would work. Some of my friends use safety edge razor blades. This is pretty dangerous though. And the rubber on tires is usually much tougher than you think it is.
  • + 2
 @properp: Good info...cheers!
  • + 1
 @ecologist: good Tire Snips will have a depth gauge. Consistency in every cut is key. I forgot to tell you that part. It is kind of a art to cut down a tire. You sound serious about it so I thought I would give you that info. Cheers
  • + 2
 Great tire - I own them, but didn't know that they were DH tires, so trying to ride them around XC trails was painful.
  • + 12
 1230g, did you look at the weight prior to purchase? That screams DH tire.
  • + 2
 @PHeller: They make a few different variants. I'm running one of their lighter casing ones as a "trail" or "e-word" tire and it's great.
  • + 1
 @PHeller: or a Dependable tire for an enjoyable ride that will not go flat. Not everyone chooses a tire for a fast time. Sometimes dependability on an Outback ride is way more important than being a gram weenie
  • + 1
 @properp: I ride EXO and Snakeskin casings in the desert and rarely get flats. The key is line choice and proper pressures. @orastreet1 indicated that he's riding XC trails, for which a DH tire is obviously overkill. There are plenty of tough tires in the 900g range that are sufficiently tough for a trail bike.
  • + 1
 @PHeller: It was an expensive lesson for sure! What a I really wanted was the Skinwalls - I did end up with the Ibex, much better fit for Middle Tennessee.
  • + 1
 @PHeller: I tried running Continental X King snake skins. They all grew mold on the sidewalls. I live in a tropical environment and these tires got as hairy as my cat. I've never seen a tire grow mold like black chill Continentals. Sent photos of this to their customer service department never got a reply back. How amazing.
  • + 2
 $90 and undersized. Come on Swiss, we thought you were good at measuring!
  • + 2
 Just have to wait 2 years now for a 29" tyre
  • + 3
 Minions for everything
  • + 2
 $90, get f_cked, still made in china/taiwan.
  • + 3
 Looks aight
  • + 2
 Get a grip!
  • + 1
 minion + ninja stars, gotta be good
  • - 3
 Reminds me of an Ardent. Therefore, no thanks! I like my teeth.
  • + 9
 I hate the ardent as well but these absolutely do not look like that tread pattern at all.
  • + 1
 I HATE the Ardent, but this tire rides nothing like it. I'd compare it to a Bontrager SE5 that's a little wider. I'm a huge fan of this tire in all conditions (though I haven't tried it in truly wet conditions yet).
  • + 3
 @rewob: Clarify, the description reminds me of an Ardent. Agreed the patterns don't look anything alike.

@ratedgg13, Good to know they don't ride like the Ardent. Nothing should!
  • + 6
 Which ardent? 2.4 is way better from 2.25.
  • + 2
 @ssliu7: My bike came with 2.4 Ardents. Still convinced it's one of the worst tires on the market. Rode them 3 times before I took them off and put on things like Bontrager XR4's. Currently on Onza Citius on the front and WTB Trail Boss on the back (both 2.4).
  • + 5
 What do you guys hate about The ardent's? I run 29 2.4 f&r and like them, but I'm riding some sandy, dry soils. On my trip to Squamish/Whistler last summer I rams Ardent rear and DHF front and they seemed to work well for me...
  • + 3
 In my experience, they climb like shit, corner like shit and brake like shit. Shoulder knobs are too far apart to do anything. Any weight off the saddle when climbing turns you into that Saudi bike drifiting video.

I am not a tire snob. Ill run almost anything & I love semi slicks in the rear. But seriously, f*ck the ardent.
  • + 0
 @unrooted: that's a good combo, ran the DHF F, Ardent R, last year and it was good. Ardent front is sketchy in for loose/wet, decent for hard packed, but rear is good to go being light with still good grip. 2.4 for sure though. Switched to DHR rear for last years wet season, now just doing DHF front and back for rotation and grip for days.
  • + 2
 @unrooted: Generally I agree with @rewob. I find that they especially tend to drift sideways (not in a controlled manner), loose traction on any standing climbs, can't handle any type of loose material and are absurdly prone to puncture and sidewall cuts.
  • + 1
 Noooo man, no!!! If you want an Ardent equivalent (better actually), use the Canis in 2,25". Best rear tyre ever. 600g in 120tpi in 27,5", and the impression that you bike weights 3 kg less when you pedal... and it's a really solid tyre. It lasts almost twice longer than a Maxxis. That's why I use Onza for years... when I find them on sales ;-)
  • - 3
 Magic Mary front + Helldiver rear - you'll only see the dust settling on the trail ahead - I'm gone.
  • + 7
 you mean your rear wheel will skid permanently until you crash - we'll only see your sore body after the dust has settled ?
  • - 5
flag endlessblockades (Aug 1, 2017 at 13:24) (Below Threshold)
 @zede: HAHA rad. I rarely brake.
  • + 6
 @endlessblockades: Must be going pretty slow if you're not needing to brake
  • + 3
 @cdmbmw: Just collecting downvotes during a slow work day....I ride normally.
  • + 1
 @endlessblockades: haha.. I spend all my time on pinkbike during slow work days also. Take a brake, kick up some dust with your brakes Wink

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