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Pirelli Diablo Rosso's

Discussion in 'Riding Gear and Bike Accessories/Parts' at netrider.net.au started by [FLUX], Apr 17, 2008.

  1. Well, I have just fitted a set of these to the bike. I'm going to post regular updates in this thread as to my observations over time.

    Minor snag though, the battery isn't charging in my bike. Seems to be a regulator/rectifier fault. Easy fix once idenfitied as the cause, but waiting on parts. I'll be about riding again as soon as possible.

    In the short ride I had them on through traffic before the battery died and the bike stopped, I observed them to offer a slightly more plush commuting ride than my old tyres (OEM Supercorsa Pro), and turn-in into corners appears to be very progressive. You keep rolling the bike over further on the lean and it's not like the tyres want to be leaning at a different angle than the one you're on like some of the racier profiles can feel like. The Rosso's are happy with where-ever you put them.

    Unfortunately, that's about it for observations so far.

    I've been reading up extensively on the Rosso's, so perhaps it might be better to explain my expectations from these tyres, and why I opted to try them out.

    Pirelli are marketing the Rosso's as a replacement for the straight up sport-touring Diablos. Reading through Pirelli's technical material though, the Rosso's are meant to be offering 10% more traction which would put them in about the same ballpark as the old Diabo Corsa's (before the Corsa's got recently replaced by the Diablo Corsa III's). I've ridden on the old Diablo Corsa's at the track, and on the road, on the old R1. Yes, while the ~145rwhp of the R1 could overwhelm the traction of the rear tyre, I was scraping the pegs while winding the throttle on strongly when that happened. On a super-sport capacity bike I'm not perceiving that this is going to be an issue, and certainly not on the road. I have no plans to head back to the track in the near future anyway, so track performance is not a concern for me.

    One thing that I've observed with the OEM Supercorsa Pro's is that I don't seem to be wearing them out fast enough before they're going off due to heat cycles. Started having a few slides here and there, and so I'm hoping that the newer compound on these Rosso's are able to hold up for longer.

    A few of the videos I've found online have shown people at the track getting the tyres right to the edge, balling up, and not breaking traction even then. The advantage with more racier compound tyres is that when at the track you can keep leaning even further than the edge and still have grip even though you're operating on a diminishing contact patch portion. For me, on the road, I've observed that I am taking my road tyres to the edge but with some feathering on the last 1mm indicating that I'm not absolutely on the edge. That's at about a 50 degree lean angle too, so given that, I'm not expecting any traction issues even given my fairly enthusiastic road riding style. If guys can take the tyres right to the edge on the track (but not beyond) and not experience any loss in traction, then that's all that I realistically need for the road.

    More updates after I get the bike back. I'm looking forwards to seeing if in practise these tyres hold up to my expectations above.
  2. LOVE THEM!!

    Righto, scrub in and initial fun report.

    Executive Summary: As a sporting road tyre, these tyres rock!

    Got the bike back and headed for the hills to scrub the tyres in, and have some fun. Tyre pressures were set to 34psi front, 36 psi rear. The initial new-tyre greasiness lasted about 40kms, which was about the distance to the hills. Some progressive cornering, gradually increasing the lean, and the over-riding word that strikes me to describe the tyres is STABILITY. Didn't matter what I was doing, braking hard, cornering hard, whatever, the tyres always felt stable. They only wanted to move off-course if I told them to do so.

    A word about how quickly these tyres come up to operating temperature. Within a few corners and they're feeling like they're up to their correct working pressure and providing good levels of feedback. The old OEM Supercorsa Pro's did used to take a fair while (~5 mins) to warm up to a decent operating temperature and feel.

    The added stability is an odd feeling next to the Supercorsa that I was running before. Almost like an extra click or two on the steering damper settings, but the good thing about them is that when I did ask them to change direction or the line, they did so without protest at all. No resistance to change due to rider input, but they would happily track whatever line I put them on.

    The other word that springs to mind is that they are very progressive. Doesn't matter what lean angle you're on, they don't feel like they want to be somewhere else (* slight caveat - read towards the end). Their profile must be reasonably rounded to give this behavior. Where I found this really helped me was into some steep downhill corners. On the Supercorsa Pro's I was using before, downhill corner entry was a nervous affair. The old tyres didn't really like being at intermediate lean angles while rolling the bike over into the corner. With the Rosso's, I found that I could progressively tip the bike in with greater control and confidence. When leaned right over, they seemed to be more responsive to changing one's line than when upright. This is a nice trait. Stable in a straight line, but very response to line changes mid-corner should the need arise. Rapid full lean to full lean transitions are slightly slower than with the track profile Supercorsa Pro's I had on before, but this shouldn't be taken as a negative as they still transitioned very quickly, just not as quickly as SC Pro's.

    How do they grip I hear you ask? Well, I didn't find their limit today, and I was even dragging the knee in a semi-race-track pose. That means that I wasn't hanging right off and sticking the knee right out ala knee-down newbie style, so much as I was pushing the butt right back, dropping the elbow and upper body right down to the inside of the corner, and just letting the knee just hang out naturally due to gravity. Rolling through corners like this saw the rear tyre feathered to the edge as is my typical road-riding lean "limit". Winding the throttle on strongly out of the corners early saw the tyre grip the road really well almost with a very slight tendency to rear steer the front into the corner more rather than running wide on exits, and the front just hung in there and tracked true. The front tyre has a steeper profile to the rear, and while the rear was scrubbed in fully with light feathering towards the edge, the front still had around a centimeter of unscrubbed rubber left. You'd need to take the tyres to a track to get the front over that far in confidence.

    Overall, we're talking about 50-51 degree lean angles here which is my usual road-riding limit. Braver (more foolhardy?) souls could lean further in confidence I feel. Not at any stage did I ever feel like I was approaching the traction limits of the tyres. In fact, I've had the rear on the street compound OEM Supercorsa Pro's starting to protest at the sort of lean angles and power application that I was putting down today, that's how good the Rosso's gripped.

    If anyone is thinking that due to Pirelli's marketing positiong for this tyre that they're somehow lacking in grip or suitability for extremely quick sporting road riding, then think again. I'm not the absolute fastest guy around, but I do pretty well thanks, and if you're not impressed at how well they grip for regular road riding use then I'll happily admit that you're a braver soul than I for pushing limits that hard on the road.

    If I had to give the closest comparible competitor tyre, I'd say that the Michelin Pilot Powers would probably be it, but the Rosso's are more progressive and more stable (IMO), and don't have that half-lean drop-off that I've personally found the Powers to have.

    Ride quality I found to be improved as a result of these tyres over the Supercorsa Pro's. Not a huge difference, but they do seem to soak up bumps just that little bit better. A number of dips and ridges that used to upset the Supercorsa Pro's a fair bit and causing road induced steering input, on the Rosso's such sections just resulted in a gentle thukking feedback through the bars and a slight weave that recovered from immediately. I was extremely impressed.

    There is one slight quibble, but it's quite minor. Early on the in the day, at around a 15 degree lean angle it felt like the rear was wanting to run a bit wider than the line of the front tyre. It's not major issue, and it only occurs at that particular lean angle. Almost like the rear is trying to drive the bike over into a slightly higher lean angle. Towards the end of the day, after 250kms, this feeling almost totally disappeared. Whether it was due to new tyre greasiness, a minor quirk in the rear tyre profile, typre pressures, or just a slight mismatch between the tyres bike, I'm not sure. It does seem though that as rear tyre starts to wear more, this matter has almost completely sorted itself out, and that's why I mention it here as more of a footnote.

    So, overall. Even for very aggressive road riding (haven't been to a track on these of course), the Rosso's offer excellent levels of grip, easily exceeding my expectations I have to say. They offer sublime levels of stability when braking, turning into, and through corners, track very true on corner exits, offer a very progressive lean-in action and allow for corrections to one's cornering line in a snap, especially so at high lean angle.

    As a sporting enthusiast road going tyre, I'm feeling that Pirelli have hit the nail on the head with the Rosso's. Of course, tyres are a personal choice and I'll happily admit that for me the Pirelli and Metzeler's just "gel" more with my style than some other brands do. I reckon the Rosso's would see anyone through the odd track day as well, suiting up to a "Fast" group track-day pace. Truly fast track day riders would want to look elsewhere, but then the Rosso's are not positioned as a dedicated track day tyre, and truth be known, the more dedicated track day tyres do suffer from heat-cycling and warm-up issues that compromise their effectiveness even in aggressive road-going use.

    The Pirelli Diablo Rosso's get a solid two-thumbs-up from me for what is probably one of the most ideal aggressive sporting road-based tyres that Pirelli have put out. In the Pirelli road-going range, only the Diablo Corsa III's would offer a grippier alternative, but the Corsa III's really are a true cross-over road/track day for road riders who regularly go to the track and don't want to have to change their tyres. I would imagine that the Corsa III's would wear out faster as a result.
  3. Great Review Stew :)

    What I'm really interested in with these tyres though, is their wet grip. Pirelli are marketing these (much like Dunlop are with the Roadsmart) as a superior tyre in the wet. I'm curious as to how this can be the case, seeing as the Pirelli has a slick like surface on the edge of the rear of about 3/4 of an inch (on the rear at least)? ie: no grooves.

  4. Thanks for the write-up Stew.

    Right now I'm running old ex-race dragon supercorsas at 38 and 42psi to get more life out of them, and while I'm not the steam off your piss in lean angle, corner speed or acceleration out, I'm finding them quite nice and not having any traction issues. I expected not to feel as good in the corners without the tyres heating up like they do at lower pressures, but so far it hasn't proven an issue.

    I don't like the way they steer nearly as much as I like the old BT002s though, those tyres are pure gold. They feel like they're higher in the centre and steeper on the sides (I have no idea if this is actually the case) which makes my old heavy bike steer much more sharply and change direction with ease - plus they grip for england and are totally neutral on a decent angle and willing to change lines with less input than the Pirellis.

    I'd like to hear your thoughts on them if you ever get a chance to give 'em a belt.
  5. Don't let the nude shoulder bother you. That nude shoulder is for knee-dragging lean angles. Unless you regularly find yourself at lean angles sufficient to drag the knee in the wet, I don't feel that the ~25mm of nude shoulder is going to be an issue. The front tyre is reasonably heavily grooved, and Pirelli claim that the front will act to funnel water away fairly effectively to allow the rear to do its thing. The front tyre looks like it'd do the business, and the rear tyre's tread pattern isn't going to be an issue at wet road lean angles.

    I'll be honest here, I'm not a regular rider in the rain. I can go decently quickly by focusing on being super-smooth and hanging loose, but overall I have the attitude of pushing limits in the rain to be a pretty silly idea. Unlike in the dry, if you get a slide you can recover it pretty quickly, in the wet a slide can all too easily keep on going. I ridden on puddle ridden wet roads on the Supercorsa Pro's, and the Pro's have way less tread than the Rosso's, and I never had any issues with them. The Rosso's are definitely better than the Supercorsa's, so unless you're out to win races in the wet, I can't see the Rosso's letting you down.
  6. The race Supercorsa Pro's are really insanely grippy tyres at the edge. We're talking rolling past the edge of the tyres, front and rear, and winding the throttle on almost full open, and they'll still grip. The problem that they have is that they WILL heat cycle and become slippery at the edge, and when you least expect it, they'll just let go.

    If you're not taxing the tyres to that extent, you're not going to run into this issue with the Supercorsa Pro's.

    What you describe of the Pro's is pretty much how I feel about them too. They're a racier profile and really like to be either upright, or at full lean. While, for a race profile tyre, they're progressive enough, they're not really happy at your typical road-riding lean angles and feel like they want to be somewhere else. This is what caused my downhill corner entry issues with the Supercorsa Pro's.

    The Rosso's are definitely more rounded and more progressive than the Supercorsa Pro's. The BT-002's are, by all reports that I've heard, also quite rounded and progressive.

    For your riding style Loz, it would seem to me that the Rosso's are pretty much all that you'll need. Heck, at the moment they seem to be fitting my needs pretty well too.

    I've wanted to try the BT-002's, but every time I've tried to get a hold of them they've been out of stock (due to the Stoner factor), or I've even had a few people try to talk me out of them, with them mentioning that the BT-002's have a long edge warm-up time. I'm sure that one day a set will find its way onto a bike I own though, but until then, be assured that the Rosso's would be far more like the Bridgestone's rounded progressive profile than the Supercorsa Pro's are.
  7. I've been really happy with the BT002's. They come in 2 flavours, Street and Race. Race is the same tyre, different compound, with much reduced heat cycles but amazing grip. I've used them as a front on the SV and they are simply awesome. The roads I've used on the Aprilia. Due to not being able to get myself organised, I've had to use the 180/55 rear when I really want the 190/55. This is an OK compromise but you can meet the edge of the tyre quite quickly.

    Edge grip does take a little while to get good and until they're bedded in, they feel quite strange. Once that's done they offer huge amounts of grip and feel and they've never given my any cause to think they're going to let go. Front tyre is simply magic.

    Initial wear on the 002's is high. They then tail off and the wear settles down, though I am sure the grip isn't there to the same degree. Rear is good for 4,000km (on the Aprilia - front is good for 300km on the SV!).

    I've been warned off the Pirelli's since the OEM's on the Fireblade. Too many slides, too little feel. I am 100% positive that they are now brilliant, but I've been put off by that experience.

    The 002's got me down from Thredbo in the wet, though you've never seen anyone ride so slow in your life.

    Perhaps time to try the Pirelli's?
  8. Thanks for the advice Stew :) I never really thought about it that way, I guess I think I'm leaning further than I am in the wet :oops:

    I've got a set of BT015's on the 600RR at the moment and am keen to try them in the wet to see how capable they are compared to the old
    GPR-ALPHA 10's I had on the two-fiddy, which were bloody awesome! If they're not quite what I'm after then I'll gladly follow your recommendation and grab a set of these Pirelli's :grin:
  9. Any sort of update or comments on mileage Flux? The Diablo Rosso's sound like a good choice of tyre for when the Qualifiers need replacing. :)
  10. Oh yeah. I ended up replacing the tyres at 4500kms, but that's because I had worn out the front tyre!! Never had that happen before. The rear tyre still had maybe another 1500kms of life left on it, and it was fairly evenly worn the whole way around, but the front tyre I had worn the front right down to the wear indicators on the edges, but if not for that, it probably still had another 1500kms of life left in it too.

    I guess that just indicates how confident I felt in the front tyre that I was able to pitch it in hard and chew out the edges before any other part of the front or rear wore out. Here's the thing though. I had also taken the bike up Reefton Spur a few times and the new coarse bitumen coupled with the cold weather seemed to be what did most of the damage in shredding the front tyre.

    So, with less aggressive riding than I do, I reckon that 6000kms should be definitely achievable under spirited riding conditions, especially if tyre pressures are kept at 36f/38r. I run mine at 34f/36r for a little more traction.

    Have a shiny new set of Rosso's on the bike. Love them. Definitely my favorite tyre.
  11. I've got a Rossi on the front of the blade now, with a Corsa3 on the back.
    Excellent combination!
    I had lost alot of confidence in the Corsa front after it had about 8k on it, but up until then it was very good, even though I managed to scrounge a total of 10K out of the thing. After 8k it had lost it's shape, and while it still had grip it was pretty squirrely and gave me the shits!...Not much fun at higher lean angles. :shock:

    But the Corsa rear hung on brilliantly to the end. whoa! :)

    Now with the newer "3" version on the rear and the rossi front I'm cooking with gas...The front-end has ALOT of good feel to it...very confidence inspiring, and I NEVER had any rear tyre probs, even when I was actually trying to find it's limits of grip (whacking the power on hard out of corners, before I had stood the bike up etc)

    One thing I have to say about the Pirelli's in general is their very forgiving nature when they lose traction...I've had front end drift mid corner shifting me 1-2 ft off my line, and it was sweet...no big screaming washout...just a gentle loss of traction - gently running me wider...even had it happen two up!!, and found it quite controllable. And you all know my Mantra "Front end grip is Life"

    While I can't ride with quite the same skill level as Stew, I still manage to punt things along pretty well - and the Pirelli's are an excellent tyre choice, as a road/sport tyre.
  12. Do they make a 190/55 rear?
  13. nah mate...looks like they are all /50's
  14. checked the Pirelli website and they do sell the Rosso's in 55's. Given the raps you guys are giving these tyres, they're my next change.
  15. Thanks for that.
  16. I'll be giving these a crack in the next few weeks also. I was going to go the roadsmarts but haven't found anyone that can give me a review yet.
  17. You can get Corsa III's in 190/55

    <------- has one :grin:
  18. Okay, there's a traction report floating around on the net somewhere, that compares the lateral acceleration (ie. cornering grip) available with a range of the top road-focused sporting tyres.

    The BT-016 just edged out the Rosso's for outright cornering grip, but the Rosso's were in front of tyres like the Conti Sport Attacks, Dunlop Qualifier RR's, Metzeler M3's (!), and even significantly ahead of the Michelin Pilot Power 2CT's (!!).

    I guess the BT-016's would perhaps be the other tyre for me to try, but I know from riding with others in the real world that the BT-016's take longer to warm up, and aren't as sure footed in dicey/wet conditions.

    I seriously have no idea why Pirelli market the Rosso's as sport-touring tyres in Australia. They are provably one of the grippiest sporting tyres on the market (outside of the true track-day compounds).
  19. I'd be interested to heaqr what you think of the 016s Stew, I haven't ridden Rossos but I've had a bunch of stuff by pirelli from dragon and diablo supercorsas to corsas and stradas, and I reckon the bridgestones have a noticeably better 'feel' to them.

    On my bike, bridgestones seem to make it much easier to flick from side to side. They also don't give me the feeling that I'm pushing the front like I get at a certain lean angle on a pirelli. They feel extremely neutral, as in they're happy to change lines with the slightest steering input midcorner etc.
  20. after reading your review a while ago i have just put a rosso on the back, first impression was i wasn't all that happy with it after coming off the super's. It felt like it gave very little feel/feedback as to what was happening, also had a very tough/stiff feel to it which i wasn't sure i like, after a few more ride on it, i don't mind it, it's seems to grip from the word go. So i have mixed feelings about the tyres, it's certainly wears a shitload better then the supers and so far i haven't had any mid lean issues, it's just the feel i am struggling with atm. Waiting to put a front on hopefully this week, and will see how i like them at the front. At the moment i still like the way the Pirelli handle/feel over the Michelin, next set will be a set of bridgie's new dual compound 014's or whatever they are going to be called.