Support road.cc

Like this site? Help us to make it better.

TECH NEWS

New Continental GP 5000 tyre is 4.3 watts faster than outgoing GP 4000 say aero testing specialists

Aero testing specialists say Continental's new GP 5000 is 4.3 watts faster than the old GP 4000 in aero and rolling resistance testing

Aero specialists Aerocoach have tested the brand new Continental GP 5000 tyre at the Boardman Performance Centre and found it to provide a 4.3 watt improvement over the outgoing GP 4000 at 45kph (28mph).

Continental launched the GP 5000 just over a week ago and made some impressive claims for the new tyre in all key aspects of its performance compared to the previous GP 4000. It claimed the new tyre offers 12% lower rolling resistance, 20% improved puncture resistance, more grip, comfort and less weight.

- First ride: Continental GP 5000 clincher tyre - 500km first impressions

After 500 km of real-world riding, I delivered some first ride impressions based on feel, concluding them to be every bit as good as the tyres they replaced with good grip and low rolling resistance. You can read the full story here.

As their name suggests Aerocoach is an outfit that specialises in aerodynamics, it's headed by Dr B Xavier Disley. Aerocoach put the new tyre through its paces at the recently opened Boardman Performance Centre. Now, disclaimer time: we weren’t present at the test and we can only report the company’s findings, so take it at face value.

continental gp 5000 aero testing4

In its test, Aerocoach used the GP 4000 and new GP 5000, along with the GP TT. The tyres were 23mm wide, fitted to a shallow aluminium rim with an internal width of 19.6mm and inflated to 90psi using Vittoria latex inner tubes. The bike used was a Cervelo P2, it only changed the front wheel during the tests.

Aerodyamics

It first conducted an aerodynamic test at 45 kph, a speed chosen because it says it provides “good clean data” from which it can then calculate savings at lower speeds.

continental gp 5000 aero testing4

At low yaw angles (the direction of the wind is mostly coming from the front) there is not much to choose between the three tyres. Increase the angle of wind up to 5-degrees and the older GP 4000 actually tests better, but as the yaw angle increases past 6 to 7-degrees the GP 5000 provides noticeable lower aerodynamic drag.

- 29 of the best road cycling tyres

What is behind that change? We can only assume it’s due to the new laser printed shoulder tread pattern of the new GP 5000 tyre.

continental gp 5000 aero testing3

Rolling resistance

Rolling resistance is hugely important in a tyre and Continental says the new GP 5000 offers a 12% improvement over the old GP 4000. Aerocoach tested both tyres on rollers measuring speed and power and recording atmospheric conditions and bike and rider weight to calculate the Coefficient of Rolling Resistance (Crr). A lower Crr is better - in that it requires less power to travel at the same speed.

The GP TT, as you might expect of a tyre designed for time trials, proved best in the test, requiring 7.1 watts less power than the GP 4000s when travelling at 45kph. The newer GP 5000 proved to be 4 watts faster than the GP 4000.

Conclusion

continental gp 5000 aero testing2

Taking both aerodynamic and rolling resistance tests into account, Aerocoach concluded that the GP TT is the fastest of the three tyres tested, but more importantly, the GP 5000 is, in fact, more aerodynamic and provides lower rolling resistance than the GP 4000 which it replaces, with a 4.3 watt improvement at 45kph. At a more modest, but still fast, 35kph, the difference is still 3.3 watts.

"Given that Continental took so long to bring out an update to the GP4000 we were expecting them to have done their homework. It was interesting to see the profile of the tyre change from the GP 4000 to GP 5000 (the GP 5000 is narrower when installed) but without a hit to rolling resistance, as narrower tyres are generally worse for rolling resistance but better for aerodynamics. Although not as good overall as the GP TT for performance, given the expected better puncture protection it’ll be a good upgrade to a GP 4000," explains B Xavier Disley, Director or Aerocoach.

So it’s clear, if we’re to believe Aerocoach’s testing, that the new Continental GP 5000 tyre is indeed better in terms of rolling resistance and aerodynamics than the tyre it replaces and backs up the German tyre company's claimed improvements.

And the new GP 5000 tubeless tyre should be even faster given it's claimed to offer 5% lower rolling resistance compared to the clincher tyre it's based on.

David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes

Add new comment

37 comments

Avatar
Cugel replied to Welsh boy | 5 years ago
1 like

Welsh boy wrote:

Yet again road.cc is regurgitating meaningless crap from manufacturers which means absolutely nothing.  The watt is not a measurement of speed so nothing can be "X number of watts faster" than something else.  Please road.cc, question what you are publishing, dont make yourself look like a publicity machine for the big manufacturers.  If you want to promote their meaningless figures have the courage to publish a disclaimer that what you are reproducing is meaningless.

 

Indeed. RoadCC (and other websites or magazines of their ilk) do themselves no favours by regurgitating PR blurb from manufacturers, especially when it's obvious that this is what it is. If there's supposedly some sort of independence about the review, it ought to derive it's own figures for watts-saved or whatever other claim is being made.

The cry will be, "We don't have the facilities". If that's so, they don't have the competance to do a review that quotes hard data "facts", then. And frankly, one bloke riding about a bit on something is hardly a "test".

What should they do, then? Why not just note the fact that a new tyre has come on to the market (please don't say "unveiled" or "revealed" or "uncovered") with certain claims from the manufacturer. Leave it to others to do independent tests of a more convincing kind, if RoadCC can't do them.

I know the website is free to we readers and that it has to be paid for somehow. But finding itself beholden to manufacturers, advertisiers and similar commercial concerns reduces, degrades or even eliminates it's credibility as a reviewer.

Cugel

Avatar
aerotuck338 replied to Cugel | 5 years ago
0 likes
Cugel wrote:

Welsh boy wrote:

Yet again road.cc is regurgitating meaningless crap from manufacturers which means absolutely nothing.  The watt is not a measurement of speed so nothing can be "X number of watts faster" than something else.  Please road.cc, question what you are publishing, dont make yourself look like a publicity machine for the big manufacturers.  If you want to promote their meaningless figures have the courage to publish a disclaimer that what you are reproducing is meaningless.

 

Indeed. RoadCC (and other websites or magazines of their ilk) do themselves no favours by regurgitating PR blurb from manufacturers, especially when it's obvious that this is what it is. If there's supposedly some sort of independence about the review, it ought to derive it's own figures for watts-saved or whatever other claim is being made.

The cry will be, "We don't have the facilities". If that's so, they don't have the competance to do a review that quotes hard data "facts", then. And frankly, one bloke riding about a bit on something is hardly a "test".

What should they do, then? Why not just note the fact that a new tyre has come on to the market (please don't say "unveiled" or "revealed" or "uncovered") with certain claims from the manufacturer. Leave it to others to do independent tests of a more convincing kind, if RoadCC can't do them.

I know the website is free to we readers and that it has to be paid for somehow. But finding itself beholden to manufacturers, advertisiers and similar commercial concerns reduces, degrades or even eliminates it's credibility as a reviewer.

Cugel

I think both of you should take a little time to research subjects before posting aggressively. Just a little google search would have saved you from being so grossly misinformed. You have kind of obtained the wrong end of the stick  1

Continental manufacture the GP series of tyres. Did you just buy your first bike last week??

Aerocoach sell some products, but I believe the main thrust of their business is aero testing. If you search up some aerocoach stuff online (and try youtube) you will see aerocoach testing time trial and track riders in the wind tunnel and on tracks. They do exhaustive testing to determine which components are fastest, and crucially, which equipment / components test the quickest for individual riders.

Now I don't work for Aerocoach and I've never had any dealings with them, but I'm a time trial rider so I've been hearing about them for years. It's totally obvious that if they were promoting the GP5000 over other tyres that were better, they would be completely shooting themselves in the foot. They are not the only company doing aero testing, so if they publish garbage they might get found out. TT and track riders go to them for an honest appraisal of what works best for them.

Welsh boy - you really don't know anything about time trial or track at all do you. Things are indeed measured by being "x number of watts faster". It's really a way of indicating that a certain piece of equipment wil save you a certain number of watts, and if something saves you watts it allows you to go a little bit quicker.

Aerocoach business model - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S7Wz2SmWaKY

Continental business model - https://conti-tyres.co.uk/

You're a pair of twits  1

Avatar
aerotuck338 replied to Cugel | 5 years ago
0 likes
Cugel wrote:

Welsh boy wrote:

Yet again road.cc is regurgitating meaningless crap from manufacturers which means absolutely nothing.  The watt is not a measurement of speed so nothing can be "X number of watts faster" than something else.  Please road.cc, question what you are publishing, dont make yourself look like a publicity machine for the big manufacturers.  If you want to promote their meaningless figures have the courage to publish a disclaimer that what you are reproducing is meaningless.

 

Indeed. RoadCC (and other websites or magazines of their ilk) do themselves no favours by regurgitating PR blurb from manufacturers, especially when it's obvious that this is what it is. If there's supposedly some sort of independence about the review, it ought to derive it's own figures for watts-saved or whatever other claim is being made.

The cry will be, "We don't have the facilities". If that's so, they don't have the competance to do a review that quotes hard data "facts", then. And frankly, one bloke riding about a bit on something is hardly a "test".

What should they do, then? Why not just note the fact that a new tyre has come on to the market (please don't say "unveiled" or "revealed" or "uncovered") with certain claims from the manufacturer. Leave it to others to do independent tests of a more convincing kind, if RoadCC can't do them.

I know the website is free to we readers and that it has to be paid for somehow. But finding itself beholden to manufacturers, advertisiers and similar commercial concerns reduces, degrades or even eliminates it's credibility as a reviewer.

Cugel

I think both of you should take a little time to research subjects before posting aggressively. Just a little google search would have saved you from being so grossly misinformed. You have kind of obtained the wrong end of the stick  1

Continental manufacture the GP series of tyres. Did you just buy your first bike last week??

Aerocoach sell some products, but I believe the main thrust of their business is aero testing. If you search up some aerocoach stuff online (and try youtube) you will see aerocoach testing time trial and track riders in the wind tunnel and on tracks. They do exhaustive testing to determine which components are fastest, and crucially, which equipment / components test the quickest for individual riders.

Now I don't work for Aerocoach and I've never had any dealings with them, but I'm a time trial rider so I've been hearing about them for years. It's totally obvious that if they were promoting the GP5000 over other tyres that were better, they would be completely shooting themselves in the foot. They are not the only company doing aero testing, so if they publish garbage they might get found out. TT and track riders go to them for an honest appraisal of what works best for them.

Welsh boy - you really don't know anything about time trial or track at all do you. Things are indeed measured by being "x number of watts faster". It's really a way of indicating that a certain piece of equipment wil save you a certain number of watts, and if something saves you watts it allows you to go a little bit quicker.

Aerocoach business model - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S7Wz2SmWaKY

Continental business model - https://conti-tyres.co.uk/

You're a pair of twits  1

Avatar
fukawitribe replied to Welsh boy | 5 years ago
5 likes

Welsh boy wrote:

Yet again road.cc is regurgitating meaningless crap from manufacturers which means absolutely nothing.  The watt is not a measurement of speed so nothing can be "X number of watts faster" than something else.  Please road.cc, question what you are publishing, dont make yourself look like a publicity machine for the big manufacturers.  If you want to promote their meaningless figures have the courage to publish a disclaimer that what you are reproducing is meaningless.

Their quotes from the manufacturer were listed as 'claims' and compared against the report from Aerocoach. Also, although Aerocoach might be viewed as a reasonably independent tester, to their credit road.cc also said "Now, disclaimer time: we weren’t present at the test and we can only report the company’s findings, so take it at face value."

Avatar
1cyclist replied to Welsh boy | 4 years ago
0 likes

Welsh boy wrote:

Yet again road.cc is regurgitating meaningless crap from manufacturers which means absolutely nothing.  The watt is not a measurement of speed so nothing can be "X number of watts faster" than something else.  Please road.cc, question what you are publishing, dont make yourself look like a publicity machine for the big manufacturers.  If you want to promote their meaningless figures have the courage to publish a disclaimer that what you are reproducing is meaningless.

 

The idiom "watts faster" is well defined and well understood.  Not every review is going to stop to define the math to you.  The term means that at the same speed, the watts needed to propell the bike will be X less.  To linear approximation (which is VERY good for such small changes), dv/dP will be reasonably constant over a range of small changes in v (speed)or P (power), and so it makes very little difference if you measure change in wattage at the same speed or change in speed at the same wattage.   This argument fails as changes becomes large, but works very well for relatively small changes.  In reality then what that means is that at your same TT wattage output that would get you 35kph on the old tire, you'll go faster on the new tire  by an amount equivilant to how fast you'd go on the old tire with X watts more.   Now do you expect every reviewer to write all that EVERY time, when to most of the world it's actually fairly obvious?  Is that their fault for poor writing or your fault for poorly keeping up with your understanding of the topic?

 

As for the data, yes it's from a third party.  They say that quite clearly and the HUGE logos on the plots make it pretty clear.

Avatar
ChrisB200SX | 5 years ago
0 likes

5% lower Crr would take it down to 28.2W total, marginally less than the GP TT.

Regardless, I may well get a pair for my Tri bike and make the current 4000s spares for one of my road bike(s).

I presume these watt savings are for the one front tyre, so you can add on nearly as much again for the rear tyre?

Avatar
dave atkinson replied to ChrisB200SX | 5 years ago
3 likes

ChrisB200SX wrote:

I presume these watt savings are for the one front tyre, so you can add on nearly as much again for the rear tyre?

the front tyre is more important in terms of aerodynamic drag as it's hitting clean air. obviously the rolling resistance gain will be very similar.

Pages

Latest Comments