Pirelli enters MTB with the Scorpion tyre range

Pirelli today announced their Scorpion mountain bike tyre range. The Scorpion range is offered in 29-inch and 27.5 sizes with varying widths starting at 2.2-inch up to 2.6-inch. There are three models from which a rider can choose based on the terrain (hard, mixed, or soft) they wish to ride the tyre over as well as a rear specific model. The Pirelli Scorpion tyres will be available later this month.


Read the Pirelli Press Release below for further details on each of the Scorpion tyre models.

Pirelli expands its presence to the off-road world: the company presents Scorpion MTB, its first line of tires dedicated to mountain bikes.


Scorpion MTB offers every consumer the most suitable tire for his/her riding habits, whatever the terrain, style and rims type. The result is a line of tires that guarantees top-level performance in each size or version, regardless of weather conditions.




The Pirelli off-road tire is called, not surprisingly, Scorpion MTB (company trademark). As was the case for the PZero Velo, Pirelli road tires that saw the return of the company in the bike field, its MTB tires required a meaningful name. Scorpion, in fact, is the name of the historical motocross tires of the company, that can boast over 70 world titles in MX.


Like all other Pirelli bike tires, the new MTB range was also developed in the centre of Pirelli innovation, the R&D laboratories of Milano Bicocca: the main location among 11 Pirelli research centres in the world, with over 1,000 dedicated researchers and that allocates around 200 million euros each year for the development and innovation of its tires.


The SmartGRIP Compound, the heart of the new MTB tires, was produced in Pirelli’s Racing factories, where the engineering of the well-known F1 tire compounds takes place.


For its tests, prototype development and field testing, the company relied on its proven Field Testing department in Sicily, a key component in more than 35 years in the Motorbike field. Eight dedicated testers carried out over 450 tests on different surfaces and 40 data recording sessions, performing checks, measurements and assemblies on more than 800 different tire


prototypes and 7 different rim sizes. Pirelli Testing Department managed over 30,000 km with 95,000 m of total difference in height, testing and stressing the new MTB Scorpion tires on all types of terrain and in different weather conditions to ensure success.




Tires for every terrain and climate

Over time, the concept of "all terrain bike" has moved in favour of a definite classification of the bike types. From XC to Enduro or Trail: each bike was more and more specific. The same happened with the tire.


Today, attention and trends return to the origins: simplicity. The current bikes are increasingly capable and efficient, both uphill and downhill, making the traditional classifications less important and shifting the focus on the rider's riding style and no longer on the bike they use. Pirelli, in line with its consumer-centric approach, also focused on the way one rides a bike on different terrains and not on the bike itself.


Pirelli started from here to create a line of tires that would be suitable for each type of terrain. The range had to be understandable, clear and simple: where simplicity, as often happens when the essence is reached, encompasses great complexity of development and high technology.


The Pirelli range dedicated to the mountain bikes consists of four models, defined by a name that is self-explanatory and by a colour code, which immediately identifies the terrain for which the tire is designed.



Scorpion MTB H: Hard Terrain (Red)



Low profile and compact tread spacing for riding quickly and confidently over any kind of hardpack terrain, whether for dry or wet. They are dedicated to hard terrains, compact surfaces and with embedded rocks.


LITE is the version of the H for an even lower rolling resistance and weight.


Sizes: 29x2.2; 29x2.2 LITE; 29x2.4; 29x2.4 LITE; 29x2.6; 27,5x2.6; 27,5x2.4




Scorpion MTB M: Mixed Terrain (Yellow)



Medium profile and tread spacing for riding quickly and confidently over a mixed variety of terrains, from hard to soft, whether for dry or wet. They are ideal on mixed terrains, where changes can also be unpredictable or sudden, from hard-packs to sand, pebbles and roots.


LITE is the version of the M for an even lower rolling resistance and weight.


Sizes: 29x2.2; 29x2.2 LITE; 29x2.4; 29x2.4 LITE; 29x2.6; 27,5x2.6; 27,5x2.4




Scorpion MTB S: Soft Terrain (Light Blue)

Tall profile and widely spaced tread to cut into and grip any kind of loose and soft terrain, whether for dry or wet. They give the best on soft surfaces.


LITE is the version of the S for an even lower rolling resistance and weight.


Sizes: 29x2.2; 29x2.2 LITE; 29x2.4; 29x2.4 LITE; 29x2.6; 27,5x2.6; 27,5x2.4




Scorpion MTB R: Rear Specific (Green)



Medium profile and tread spacing and added traction and durability without compromising performance over a mixed variety of terrains, whether for dry or wet. They offer more traction to the rear wheel and are also dedicated to mixed terrains.


The R model is our rear specific design.


Sizes: 29x2.2; 29x2.4; 27,5x2.6; 27,5x2.4;29x2.6




SmartGRIP Compound: on dry and wet, without losing performance

The heart of Pirelli MTB tire technology is the innovative SmartGRIP Compound. Thanks to this specific compound, the variable of climate or temperature do not affect the performance of the new tires at all. This means they have been designed to offer grip and handling with all atmospheric conditions.


As was the case for the SmartNET Silica, which solved the tradeoff between rolling resistance and wet grip on the PZero Velo road tires, so is the SmartGRIP Compound, which in the Scorpion MTB closes the gap between tear resistance and wet grip.


In the off-road application, the knobs of the tires profile are mechanically stressed in a much higher way than those of any road tire. The grip properties, therefore, must always be guaranteed, without compromising the rubber’s resistance to tearing.


With incomparable expertise acquired in the formulation of compounds in over 110 years of competition at the highest levels, Pirelli has solved this critical point, thanks to the new


SmartGRIP compound. At the same time, the engineers also customized the properties of the compound, from the static ones (hardness and breaking strength) to the dynamic ones (damping and dynamic stiffness) for each model and size.
This is to date, the first "Tailored Development" in the field of bicycle tires.


Each tires size earned a dedicated development process

The great experience gained by Pirelli in years of presence in the motocross field has been put to good use in defining the tread patterns of the Scorpion MTB range: shape and height of the knobs, distance, cross-links and angles, have been studied for the maximum efficiency of the tire footprint on the different specific terrains.


Scorpion models sizes.jpg


By basing the new tires’ design on the consistency of each terrain, Pirelli engineers also had to take into account many other variables: from the rider’s riding style to the most recent developments in terms of profiles and rim sizes. Therefore, in the new Scorpion MTB, the construction technology is not the same for all tire sizes: each size earned benefits from a dedicated development.


The combination and interaction of structures, reinforcements, static and dynamic properties of the compound, sizing and different designs for the various terrains, has been a technical area of innovation for Pirelli, in terms of approach to product development.
As from Pirelli DNA, which develops all its products by focusing on the specific consumer’s needs, the Scorpion MTB range allows riders to freely choose the type that best suits their riding style, without fear of compromising the tire performance.


Standard vs LITE Casing

2.2" vs 2.2" LITE





2.4" vs 2.4" LITE



Technical Details

Pirelli Scorpion technical details.png


ChUkKy, Mar 01 2019 10:15

Maybe they can do a calendar for us, I can pick a few ladies from the XCO circuit that id like to see without sports bras on...

Just saying.

keithbe, Mar 01 2019 10:19

Great call ChUkKy!!!!

BLACK96, Mar 01 2019 11:59

Hopefully they cheaper than the new Goodyear and Conti's...

Shebeen, Mar 01 2019 01:33

So they've all realised the massive margins on mtb tyres....

greg_sa, Mar 01 2019 01:40

Seems pretty XC focused.

BikeisLife, Mar 01 2019 01:49

Seems pretty XC focused.

They fairly heavy though...

Think the back focused tyre weighs close to 800grams for the 2.2 in the LITE version...

DieselnDust, Mar 04 2019 04:14

slightly lighter than equivalent Vittoria tyres

Skylark, Mar 05 2019 01:53

Now just to see the prices... made in Italy?

heartrunning, Mar 14 2019 05:19

Now just to see the prices... made in Italy?


Nope, even Pirelli car tyres, made in China.