Tis’ The Season, Shorty Season | Maxxis Shorty Review

Maxxis Shorty mountain bike tire on a colored background

About the Maxxis Shorty

    As someone who has always run the same mountain bike tires regardless of condition (i.e. lazy), I took the opportunity to try something different when building up a new bike and going straight into the wet PNW Fall and Winter seasons. It was an easy decision to go with the revamped Maxxis Shorty Gen 2, labeled from Maxxis tires as a “Versatile mid-spike for soft terrain.” It seemed to fit the bill for the riding I'd be doing in my foreseeable future.

    The Maxxis Wetscream is their true mud spike, but the Shorty is Maxxis bike tires ideal tire for when you are riding more than just the sloppiest DH track.

    Oh yeah, and to round out the insane acronym list from Maxxis MTB tires, I opted for the 3C MaxxGrip rubber compound and Double Down sidewall casing option.

Tire tested:

Maxxis Shorty Double Down,

3C MaxxGrip 29" x 2.4WT

From Maxxis:

After gathering years of data and feedback from our World Cup Downhill and Enduro World Series athletes, the Shorty is completely new for 2021. The knob layout has been altered to improve wet traction, cornering performance, and mud shedding abilities. The narrower 2.40" casing improves frame and fork clearance for when things get really sloppy and reduces weight.

  • 3C MaxxTerra and 3C MaxxGrip compound options
  • Trail, enduro, and downhill specs available
  • Tubeless ready (TR) casing
  • Wide Trail (WT) casing optimized for 30-35mm wide rims
maxxis shorty wide trail mountain bike tire on a rockshox zeb
detail of the tread on a maxxis shorty mountain bike tire

A versatile mid-spike that sheds mud well

First Impressions

    I noticed a couple of things after installing the tire (which set up tubeless without a hitch, BTW). First I thought “woah, this thing is skinny,” and then“woah, check out those spikes.” Just from the looks, it seemed like the Shorty would excel at holding a rail on sloppy trails. Typically an Assegai in 2.5" width lives on the front of my bike, and the Shorty in 2.4" has a very obvious and distinctly different look to it when seen from behind the bars.

    The 27.5" Maxxis Shorty and 29" in 2.5" are no longer made - all Shorty Gen 2's are 2.4" wide.

    To round out the setup, I went with a Maxxis Dissector outback to provide better rolling speed and to keep it loose and playful. I knew the Shorty would provide plenty of braking traction, so I sacrificed a little in the back to keep the ride exciting.

raw knolly chilcotin with a maxxis shorty and a maxxis dissector mountain bike tires

A Knolly Chilcotin standing proud with a Shorty in the front and a Dissector in the rear.
This has proven to be a popular tire combo at Lost Co

Ride Impressions

    It should come as no surprise that this tire is very good at what it was designed for - finding traction in loose, steep, and deep terrain. I have gotten slightly off-balance in the “main” line on some steep chutes and I could literally feel the spikes clawing away at the side of the rut. I can thank the Shorty for keeping me upright when I definitely shouldn't be, especially in muddy conditions.

    Another scenario where the tire really shines is cornering in the same, soft, conditions.

    It took a bit of practice and ride time but you can really lean the bike over and push into turns, so long as you trust the tire and stay off the brakes. Beyond that crazy side knob bite, it has decent braking traction and sheds mud much better than a tire with more tightly spaced knobs. One look at the tread pattern and you would expect nothing less.

alex ripping down the trail on a maxxis shorty wide trail mountain bike tire

The Shorty really excels in loose Fall and Winter conditons

    Where this tire really surprised me was on more typical hard-packed trails. I mean yeah, it isn’t the most ideal setup for that kind of terrain and rolls pretty slow, but let's be real, you aren’t going for a mid-spike if you're concerned about rolling resistance. Simply put, it gets enough traction everywhere. Enough so that you kinda just…forget about it.

    With that being said, the Shorty is not a year-round tire. Once things dry out and warm up I will be back on an Assegai or a Minion DHF. The higher volume of these tires in combination with flatter, more tightly spaced knobs will be a welcome change when it comes to dry rocks, roots, and hard-pack turns. More rubber on the ground provided by the Assegai or DHF will provide ample traction.

    With the consistently wet, sloppy trails we have in Bellingham, the Shorty will live on the front of my bike for about 6 months and the Assegai for the other 6 months.

    If you are looking for a new front tire, and not sure exactly which one to go with, we gave an overview compared the Assegai, Minion DHF, Minion DHR, and the Shorty.


    After a couple of months of riding the Maxxis Shorty is wearing great, even with that super soft and sticky rubber compound. I plan on keeping it on the bike until the start of Spring. We’ve had a dry spell mid-winter (a classic Northwest June-uary) and the tire did great in conditions it wasn’t really designed for. I know once the rain starts up again I will have the perfect tire for the job.

detail of the maxxis shorty wide trail mountain bike tire

Well that's my review on the Maxxis Shorty Gen 2!

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Maxxis Dissector Mountain Bike Tire Product Photo
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Adam Chapman



Bellingham, WA

Current Bikes: Knolly Chilcotin

Bike Size: Medium

Favorite Trails: The Finger, Galbraith

About Me: Pick up the phone and give us a ring! Adam will likely be on the other end. An Appalachian boy at heart, Adam is genuinely helpful and posesses an impressively strong knowledge of the mountain bike industry. He loves Bellingham's steep and loamy trails and is The Lost Co's two-time Monkey Bike World Champion.