Urban Velo

Panaracer Gravelking


If all is going well your tires are the only thing in contact with the ground, the final connection to the road that ultimately determines a good portion of the ride quality and handling characteristics of a bike. Good tires are like fine wine, not always necessary but appreciated by the connoisseur. I’m guilty of running a lot of “box wine” tires, but will admit that I can appreciate the better rubber when I’ve got it on hand. The Panaracer Gravelking is the latest from Panasonic’s tire division, and upon pulling it from the box it was immediately clear that this was a top quality clincher tire with performance in mind. Meant for those bent on taking their road bikes off of the blacktop, the Gravelking is clearly targeting the burgeoning gravel race scene though it should go over well with real-world riders looking for a serious tire with more flat protection than standard road rubber. The tire is light (the pictured 28c version weighs 267 g), the casing supple even if it hides full bead to bead anti-flat protection. A road tire for the way a lot of us choose to ride, without the weight and relatively terrible ride quality of the various urban “flatproof” tires out there. Can’t wait for the weather to break and get a chance for some time on these. Available in March 2014 in 700 x 23, 26 and 28 sizes for about $50 each.


  1. BrandonJanuary 28, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    “Panaracer’s” not “Panasonic’s” tire division, ;)

    Unless Panasonic is the parent company???

  2. robertJanuary 28, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    not sure of the logic behind a 23mm “gravel” tire. Or even a 28mm width. Would love a quality tire is 32-35 that is not Pasela.

  3. DavidJanuary 28, 2014 at 7:06 pm

    @Brandon, Panasonic IS Panaracer’s parent company. Panasonic is a fargin huge company, very diversified. http://panasonic.net/

  4. JeffJanuary 29, 2014 at 11:43 pm

    Hi All. This is Jeff from Panaracer. Just to confirm what David said, Panasonic is Panaracer’s parent company. And Robert, we will have a 32 and 35 early summer. We see Gravelking as a tire that can be used on a wide variety of bikes and surfaces. And the decision to do a 23 and 28 was based on the research we did showing a lot of road riders want to switch up their tires too, but don’t have stay clearance for wider than 28′s. Ideally we would have come with the 32′s and 35′s at the same time but it didn’t work out that way this time around.

  5. shiggyJanuary 30, 2014 at 1:15 am

    Also note the “Panasonic” on the label.

  6. S. MolnarJanuary 30, 2014 at 8:11 pm

    Actually, there are some excellent box wines: you can get much better value because of the lower packaging and shipping costs, and very few wines improve with age, anyway. Still not a great selection in the U.S., unfortunately.

  7. RaiynJanuary 31, 2014 at 2:29 am

    @ Jeff

    I’m glad to see that the 35 and especially the 32′s will be coming out soon. Will they be true to size or will they run narrow like so many others?

  8. Ronald NgJanuary 31, 2014 at 10:57 am

    Interesting that there were no 25s. That’s what I ride now. I guess this may be one way to get me on 28s.

  9. JeffJanuary 31, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    @Ralyn, good question and one that isn’t easily answered. I’m trying to be evasive. So much depends on the overall shape of the tire and whether people perceive it to be narrow, spot on, or other. Traditionally our tires have been a little on the narrow side but recent releases have been received as more true to the sizing.

  10. TonyFebruary 1, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    28c is nice but not something I’m taking on a gravel road

  11. JeffMarch 6, 2014 at 3:55 pm


    Any chance the bigger sizes (32 & 35) would be available for DK200 at the end of May?

  12. MichaelApril 21, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    Just this past Saturday, I saw a dude on a road bike hit a soft spot in a rut in the gravel and go over the bars. The guy behind him was too close and did the same. Nothing seemed to have been too badly hurt with the possible exception of a couple of egos.

    Personally, I think 23-28c tires have no real business on gravel, especially in the upper midwestern US. I wouldn’t have all that much fun on anything smaller than a 32, and I generally run a 35 or 40 because conditions vary so much.

    That said, these look like they’d be great tires for less-than-perfect paved roads of the sort we have in southern Wisconsin. Planning to get a set of 26 or 28 for my road bike.

  13. SteveApril 21, 2014 at 8:33 pm

    I’ve had great luck with Panaracer tires. If you’d consider tan sidewalls in the 32mm size, I’m in for a pair!

  14. MattApril 22, 2014 at 12:15 am

    I haven’t used these tires. But have been rocking the 28 Panaracer Ruffy Tuffys and they are the real deal. I was skeptical to but a panaracer tire as I’m pretty snobby about my rubber and that name wasn’t in my short list. But my tires are really good. the 28s are a good volume (more than my Challange Frangos 32s), have a minimal tread and take a beating. 1 flat from a bad stem. nothing caused from rocks/thorns/glass. Panaracer is on my short list.

  15. THAugust 26, 2014 at 10:45 am

    Just a note that my 700×28 set measures 27.5mm on a 20.8mm (outer) rim. So they appear to be fairly true to size.

  16. frezzleSeptember 28, 2014 at 11:32 pm

    It’s funny that people are dissing the idea of riding 28s on gravel/dirt/whatever. I prefer fatter but I also like riding the old bike that won’t fit fatter. 28s are fine most of the time, but do get me in trouble sometimes. Riding bike is fun.

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