As the name would suggest, Panaracer purpose-built the GravelKing tire to perform on secondary roads which includes dirt and unpaved surfaces, but also have solid handling manners on smoother paved roads. Add this duality with the ultimate in durability and you have the world's greatest alternative road tire. It is one of the few tires in it's class that is light and handles exceptionally well. That's a sharp contrast to many gravel tires that have less than desirable ride qualities for the sake of durability. Think of the GravelKing as a crazy-durable road tire with a file tread pattern for added traction in adverse conditions that is available in wider diameters.
At the heart of the tire lies a 127tpi casing which offers a subtle ride quality. On the top of the casing is Panaracer's familiar PT protection belt. This component is responsible for preventing flats and for those who are already Panaracer users, the PT belt is the reason you can go a season sans flatting. This belt is cloth-like in texture so while adding protection, it will not interfere with ride quality. The natural rubber compound used in the GravelKing has a great balance of grip and low rolling resistance. And while we wouldn't quite classify the compound as mileage-crunchers, you should easily get a few thousand miles out of a pair. Panaracer wisely choose file tread for grip an all-conditions with solid road performance. No matter how you slice it the GravelKing is a clear winner for it's category and beyond due to it's low weight and exceptional handling manners. Gravel riding, winter training and overall bomber road tire, the GK does it all.
I ordered the 26mm version. Be forewarned that they are a narrow 26 (I measured more like 24mm on a normal road rim). However, they roll very fast on the road, and so far have handled everything I have thrown at them in dirt and gravel. These are the perfect tire for those exploratory road rides where you might encounter an interesting dirt detour. I will echo the comment that the beads were kinked from the packaging, so be careful mounting them for the first time. I will try the 28mm version when these wear out.
Bought a 28mm and it fit in my road frame (which might have a bit more clearance than most). Mounted easy and rolled well. Surprising how they are a durable gravel tire and perform in the rough stuff, but feel like a race tire on the tarmac. Very cool.
Pros: handling, durability
Cons: none so far
God I love these tires! They're like Vittoria Open Corsa tires, except durable. I've got 2k on the pair and hardly a sign off wear.
Pros: light durable and rides like a tubular
The tires mounted easily and securely, which was a great first impression. The tread is evenly laid and designed well. I paired them with the same brand inner tube for a matched look. The side wall is void of large logos but provides the necessary information. They provide nice dampened road feedback, which says they have a supple casing to conform to the roads ever changing surface. Installed on DT SWISS RR1.1 with DT SWISS rim bands. I am very happy with this choice for my fun and fast mountain road rides.
Pros: small logo/label, light yet durable, easy to mount
Cons: oem package folded,unfolded leaves corners in bead