Urban Velo

Freedom ThickSlick Elite Tire Review

The latest crop of flat resistant tires are pretty incredible when it comes to preventing punctures from tacks, glass and other common road debris, and double thick rubber for resistance to skidding works out well for those looking for long term durability as well. The Freedom ThickSlick Elite combines a thick rubber tread surface and their Kevlar based Urban Armor Casing undertread to provide a long lasting tire that in my experience is near impervious to flats. I rode the pictured pair of tires for about six months on my lock-up bike and can’t remember a flat tire in that time, and through countless miles at home and on road trips to NYC and Boston I was impressed with how long the rear tire lasted as used on a brakeless track bike. It wore to a squared off profile and then just kept going and going until finally the casing was showing through and the rear retired, lasting much longer than I’d anticipated, even for the double thick tread.

The wire bead ThickSlick Elite is heavy at 480g and certainly isn’t the most supple tire on the market, but neither is it meant to be. These are flat resistant city tires, not performance road versions and shouldn’t be compared to such in ride quality. While marked a 25c, the tires measure 27.5mm wide on my bike, confirming that the tires are larger than some competitors 28c tires—worth taking into consideration depending on frame and fender clearances. People either love or hate the graphics, but I must say I’m a fan of the dragster effect. For next year larger 28c labeled versions are slated to become available, along with white ones to match your belt.


  1. shyam dhruvNovember 15, 2010 at 6:46 pm

    I am riding some 700x25c thick slicks as well, I have had them only for about 3 weeks and I am pleased with them on DRY Denver roads. but I have to add I am using extra thick tubes as well. my track bike is definitely just a urban bike. skid pattern will show but I think I could go for rotating them and continue riding.

    how do you like them in the rain, snow or? other riding experience would be great.

  2. Rae MerrillNovember 16, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    Nice review. Don’t know if we will get them here in UK but currently I’m using Bontrager Hardcase and they are doing fine. No penetration punctures and 1 rear pinch puncture.

    Prior to that tried Panaracer Extreme Duro. These were not so good, punctured readily, wore out fairly quickly but did offer great grip in the wet.

    Then before that used Continental Gatorskin and had no punctures until they were worn out. Highly recommended.

  3. rocoNovember 18, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    I’ve rode Kenda kwest for ever an never had a problem just got a set of thikslicks on an other ride of mine I hope they don’t let me down or should I say walking.

  4. mikeDecember 11, 2010 at 5:41 am

    i got this tire for about 30 bucks >.< so far its been a month and it has been trough so much and no damage at all i have it as a front tire wanna knoe if its good for skidding 2 any 1 let me knoe =]

  5. svolanskiMarch 19, 2011 at 2:48 pm


    after i read a bit about the thickslicks i’m so hot for wanting them on my bike. but as far as i could find out there is no supplyer in germany or europe until now. so i will have to wait or until someone will tell me, where to get me a pair of these hotrods!

  6. dontcoastSeptember 4, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    @ svolanski
    not as cheap but schwalbe durano plus and panaracer ribmo are tough as nails too.

    for me, I like my tires supple.

  7. shore1rDecember 14, 2011 at 10:28 am

    ive had thickslicks for about a month now and have had absolutely no problems. i have even pulled out a 1 cm shard of glass from the rear with a set of tweesers after a ride and im still riding. no problems in the rain either. this tire is tough as nails.

  8. NicfixMay 8, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    I just bought these thick slicks yesterday today was my first ride and I am more than pleased with these I am a heavy skidder and just went through a brand new tire off of one skid. I believe that they kenda tires anyways I can’t beleive how much grip these have and I’m am not a fan of the logo but I’ll get use to it. If you do wheelies these tires are for you.

  9. BrunoJuly 6, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    I have ridden a few different tires on my fixie and my thickslick was definately one of the more durable ones in terms of skid resistance. However, I do not think they are any better in terms of puncture resistance. As for rain riding, they do slip more than most tires I have ridden. I am now riding a vittoria rubino as I ran through my slick in about 2 months, they cost around 50$ at my local shop and are quite a bit heavier.

  10. [BIKING] Freedom THICKSLICK Review | Life, the Universe, and EverythingMay 28, 2013 at 3:37 pm

    [...] If it matters to you (I’m not a pro, I’m a “butt-dyno” kinda guy), the reviews seem to agree with what I’ve found, too: Road.cc, UrbanVelo.com [...]

  11. VicSeptember 2, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    Hi .. bought a couple of white thickslicks one month ago .. used for commuting to work every day .. about 450 km .. used only on tarmac and at right pressure (6bar) ..
    In one month they’re completely worn out on both walls with deep cuts on the rubber that keep getting bigger day by day ..
    I wrote to WTB with pictures and they said it’s not a product issue .. it’s due to bad usage .. but i’m sure it’s not so at all ..
    Well publicized tyres but that for my experience are totally rubbish …
    Do yourself a favor and DON’T BUY THESE …
    Vic .. an angry consumer ..

  12. CoreyOctober 20, 2013 at 5:17 pm

    I’ve had the ThickSlick Urban Elite tire on the rear of my fixed bike for about a month now and it’s already showing the casing underneath. I bought this tire thinking it would last longer than some of the other tires out, based off of internet reviews, but I guess not. I do run a front brake on my bik, although I do like to skid quite a bit. I won’t be buying another thickslick.


  13. DanNovember 22, 2014 at 1:39 am

    Can’t flaw them, yes you do expect them to be heavy, but I’ve had a pair on my fixie that gets ridden hard and far over much less than perfect surface, i couldn’t say how many time’s I’ve ran over glass and other puncture causing obstacles, Over a year and i can safely say just the one puncture, and to be fair on the tyres that was after I had looked at them and thought they would be getting a bit thin in the middle and should think about replacing, if i was riding my roadie for all the kilometres on all these surfaces I would have gone through several sets and I’m not a weight weeny (at 100kg the best weight saving to be made is me)

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