GBC Motorsports Spartacus Tire
I've been noticing more and more lately that the stock tires on my Arctic Cat Prowler were lacking the proper traction needed to climb hills and propel this 600-pound machine through slimy mud trails. I figured that it was about time to upgrade to something a bit more aggressive that would offer additional bite on muddy trails and be more suitable for a side-by-side machine's extra weight. And since I'd be upgrading, I wanted it to have a thicker-ply rating to better protect from puncture as well as less rollover in the tire while executing fast turns. I hooked up with GBC Motorsports to try a new tire called the Spartacus, which has a fairly aggressive lug pattern and was offered in an eight-ply rating. This eight-ply-rated tire would be the perfect match to deal with the heftier weight of my Prowler.
The Spartacus is designed to improve traction in mud and other tough terrains. While designing this tire for an array of off-road vehicles, GBC really targeted this new tire design to work well with heavier machines, such as two-up ATVs and side-by-sides. The extra two plies of rubber really help to hold up to the additional weight and the punishment that these machines inflict on the tires. The Spartacus is also dual-marked for weight. If your machine weighs in at around 700 pounds, GBC suggests seven psi. If your machine weighs in around 1000 pounds after adding a back seat, a new roll cage and other accessories, GBC recommends more along the lines of 14 psi. Finding the perfect psi is up to the operator, but we chose to go with seven psi since our Prowler came in on the lower side of the spectrum.
Once the tires were mounted up, I immediately noticed a slight weight gain, as these tires are beefier and hold quite a bit more rubber. The Spartacus also felt somewhat more rigid than the stockers, which means they offer a little less of a smooth ride. But that's to be expected if I wanted to improve the durability and traction all in one package. But climbing up a steep hill would be my first real test, as life on the stock tires left me spinning uncontrollably on most ascents. So up I went with ease and a smile on my face. I only experienced a bit of wheel spin. On the low bottom slime-ridden trails, I crept through them to find out how much traction my new treads had to offer. Surprisingly, these tires propelled me forward and to the other side of any danger. When tackling hard corners, these eight-ply rubbers didn't fold over, making the sweepers no longer uncontrollable. The tires did give a little, but it was just enough to maintain the proper amount of traction needed in those front tires to steer with precision. Yes, I jumped in some rock gardens a little harder than normal just to see what eight-ply rubber can really withstand, and yes, it withstood. This small-rubberized addition to my side-by-side made a huge improvement in the overall handling, traction and durability. I'd recommend them for sure at a price tag of $131 each. -Thad Josey
|HARD PARTS ||93 |
|Installation ||17/20 |
|Function ||49/50 |
|Durability ||10/10 |
|Design ||9/10 |
|Price ||8/10 |
Bottom Line: These tires offer extreme durability, excellent traction and much-improved handling.