Tire Review: Metzeler ME 880 Marathon
by Jesse Wright
(Round Hill, Virginia)
Near Devil's Tower, Wyoming
The tire I'm reviewing is the Metzeler ME 880 Marathon.
I got these tires in August of 2009. They were installed on a 1986 Honda Goldwing Aspencade SEi 1200. The installation was done by Shenandoah Honda in Winchester Virginia. They also installed, at my request, tire balance beads, instead of rim weights.
I have used them mostly on a cross country trip from Virginia to S.Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Colorado and back, 5200 miles in 12 days, on secondary roads, highways, twisty mountains and even some dirt and gravel where roads were being resurfaced.
Unusual or important exceptions to my normal driving were tight (10-15 mph) mountainous switchbacks in rain, hail, and high temperatures of Wyoming flats. Up until now I have put on about 8,000 miles.
On the big trip, tire pressures were checked every morning prior to departure and once every other day around midday. Balance was never an issue or concern with the balance beads installed.
Performances was exceptional. I migrated from Avons to these tires and have never looked back.
Road noise is minimal from the front tire, a little "buzzy" from the rear on hard, deep leaning curves. Traction is excellent, and stopping is also.
The only time they slipped noticeably on me was crossing a yellow line on a turn in the rain. But I'd ascribe that to the paint, not the tire.
We descended from 14,000 feet on Mt.Evans Colorado in some rain, and hail, and my total confidence in the tires was fully justified. My feeling about using these same tires again is absolutely. If a better tire is available, it'll probably be made by Metzeler.
My recommendation to anyone else thinking about buying them is do so. This is the best tire I've ridden on. The only one I've found close is the Avon Venom. They're also a good looking tire, nice tread pattern, shed water extremely well.
The rear has held up remarkably well considering that I often had my wife on board, saddlebags full of any-weather gear and pulling a trailer with our dog in it.