Monday, March 21, 2016

Maxxis Bighorn vs Maxxis Zillas - Tire Review

Spring is almost here and it is tire buying season. I found this article while trying to get ideas for new tires for my RZR. This comes from somebody who has had both and therefore qualified to give an opinion.

Original article located here:

Maxxis Bighorn

Maxxis Zilla
 *Edited forum post:

After approximately 5500kms on my 28" Zillas and now about 600km on my 26" bighorns there is no doubt in my mind that the bighorns are a Tire that will last longer...but that is it...the Zillas IMO are a FAR superior tire...

Better in Snow for handling and traction
Better in Mud (of course)
Better on Dirt Trails
Better on Paved (but wear faster)

There is not one thing better for the Big Horns other than that they will last longer...

The Zillas with hard riding should still last a good 10,000km.


One word SLOPPY. I’m spinning all the time...never any traction and just all over the place.

Spin some still but they dig. The handling is crazy they dig around corners, traction is unbelievable for snow riding


They are fine and smooth riding but traction is lacking in dry grass. I have trouble wheeling my machine (with a rear seat). Handling is still good but when going fast around corners the front slide more than they should and it's hard to drift around corners when the fronts are sliding.

Smooth and traction is incredible. In wet grass I can wheelie my machine sitting on the air box. Handling is good even for a 28" tire. I can drift and the fronts stick to the ground.


These tires actually perform really well in the mud, you do get a sloppy feel, and they spin like crazy but very seldom will you get stuck. Water wheelies are a lot harder but can still be done

Hands down perform a lot better than horns in every aspect.


This is where the radial of the Big Horns come in. The Big Horns are a tough tire. I have seen some with holes in the sidewalls and tread but they are all around a tough tire. They do grip better on rocks than any other situation but that is obvious.

Not as tough as Bighorns but still pretty tough. I have put a sharp rock through the tread in one of my Zillas but nothing a plug couldn’t fix. Again the Zillas do grip better but Big Horns are the tougher tire.


On paved, the only good thing about the BHs is that they will last a long time. They have a slight wobble at a higher speeds (80km/h plus) but if you look at the big horns there is a little yellow dot with a black dot in the middle on the white lettering side because theycome balanced from factory and those little dots are supposed to be lined up with the valve stem. If you don't line them up you may get a bit of a wobble. Mine are not lined up so that is most likely where the wobble is coming from. With this in mind the BHs are probably as smooth as the Zillas.

Again traction is awesome, they are extremely smooth at high speeds and even smoother than the big horns. But they will wear fast if doing a lot of paved riding. I don’t mean just being on paved the odd time...I mean paved all the time.


The 28" Zillas weight in at a total of 98.6lbs for all four tires. The 26" Bighorns weight a total of 103.4lbs. Other than the bigger diameter the 26" Big Horns are on a 14" rim.

So I was able to gain two inches in tire size and still shed some weight.


There is no doubt in my mind that the bighorns will last longer, but that is the only advantage I can see. The Zillas are a far superior tire and even with hard riding they should still last a good 10,000km.

After buying the bighorns and retiring the Zillas I plan to switch back and the Big Horns will be up for sale. I hope this helps someone else with their purchase decision.