Pro-Line Traxxas X-Maxx Wheel/Tire Review
While the crew at Pro-Line Racing are best known for their tires winning countless world and national titles, they are also hardcore about bashing. To help give all you owners of the X-Maxx more performance, a couple of months ago Pro-Line announced a unique wheel and tire combo for your Traxxas. Their Badlands MX43 Tires and Impulse Pro-Loc Wheels were not only designed to give your truck more traction, but to also reduce tire ballooning. Better still, with their proprietary Pro-Loc system, they were designed to keep you from ever throwing another tire off the bead. Do the Pro-Lines work as promised? How easy were they to mount? Do you need a set for your X-Maxx? You know the drill, read on to find out…
Review By: Cubby
Pics By: T-Mohr
Badlands MX43 Tires
* Molded from a durable, anti-ballooning, tire compound
* Motocross tire inspired tread design
* Pro-Loc bead lock system
* Street price- $42 per pair
* Pro-Loc bead design that mates with MX43 tires
* No gluing required
* Highly detailed design
* Stone gray beadlock rings
* Utilizes extra thick plastic for durability
* Street price- $38 per pair
Set-Up And Install Notes- You should probably set aside a couple of hours to mount up a full set. Our units went together without fault, but there are a lot of screws used in each wheel/tire. You will definitely want to use a cordless drill and Pro-Line even has a “how-to” video to make sure your install goes buttery smooth. You can watch the how-to video Right Here.
We bolted the Badlands up to our original 6S X-Maxx that has been converted over to the newer 8S power system. We run heavier springs on our X-Maxx, an upgraded servo, and a pair of 4S MaxAmps batteries to make sure it rips hard.
How They Drive- Now we finally get to the important part, how well the Pro-Line’s work on the X-Maxx. We found them to be arguably the best tires we’ve ever used on grass. Just like a full sized motocross tire, the Badlands love to churn up and annihilate the tall green stuff. The Badlands provided copious amounts of forward bite, as well as loads of side bite. They were truly amazing to our test drivers.
For pavement driving, we found the harder P-L rubber compound worked really well. The Badlands are molded from a compound that is quite noticeably harder than the stock 6S X-Maxx tires and that actually helped improve the handling of our X-Maxx on-road. The harder compound not only allowed them to live longer than the stock tires, but also loosened up the truck a bit, keeping it from traction rolling as much. While not designed for on-road use, we were quite surprised at how the harder compound helped to make our truck easier to drive in the corners.
Speed runs. If you bash, you do speed runs. With a stock 6S X-Maxx, the tires quickly become the limiting factor when doing high speed passes. The stockers love to become pizza cutters at speeds above 40 mph, thus making the truck hard, if not impossible, to drive. That was not the case with the Badlands. The harder rubber compound instantly made our truck much easier to drive at high speeds. While they still balloon a bit, they don’t do it nearly as much as the stock 6S X-Maxx tires.
In the dirt we were also super impressed. Deep loam is where they are at their best, and they were spectacular. The Badlands also gave epic traction in normal soft dirt that you find in most bashing areas. Side bite in the corners was great, as was their forward bite. In these conditions (soft, loamy dirt) it was incredible just how much bite these tires had, a huge improvement over the stock kicks. Not that many people (or any people at all???) race the X-Maxx, but on the hard packed dirt of our local track the hard rubber compound was not as glued to the surface as a race style tire would be, but they still did a solid job.
Durability- Yes, we tortured them. No, we didn’t have any issues. We didn’t break a wheel like we have with the stock units and the tires showed much less wear than we ever expected. You should easily be able to get a full summer’s worth of bashing in with these unless you do a lot of driving on pavement. Also of note, we tried our best with the power system that we were running to throw a tire off the bead, with absolutely no success.
The amount of details on both the wheels and the tires is quite incredible. The wheels are literally small works of plastic art and the overall tread design on the tires was absolutely top notch.
Yes, there are a lot of bolts used (160 in all), but that is for a good reason. The beads on all our tires stayed firmly planted, even when doing all sorts of speed runs and over-revving when back-flipping jumps. The Pro-Loc system worked perfectly for us, keeping the tire beads stuck exactly where they should be, to the wheels.
How much did they balloon? Not much. Our truck was geared for about 50 mph and we noticed just a tiny bit of ballooning when we flipped the truck on its lid and pinned it WFO.
The stock foams are open cell units that worked well for us. They were neither too firm or soft, they were pretty spot-on for what we like running in bash trucks.
One stock wheel/tire weighs in at 610 grams, while we measured one of the Pro-Line’s at 817. That is a significant gain in rotating mass which has its upsides and downsides. The upsides are that the P-L tires make it easier to back-flip and do crazy stunts. The downside is more rotating mass for the power system to turn over and more unsprung mass for the suspension to handle. On a smaller truck the weight would probably be noticed more, we didn’t really notice the extra weight at all on the X-Maxx.
Be sure and properly set the clutch on your drill before installing all those bolts. We accidentally put a bolt head through a bead lock ring because our clutch was not set soft enough.
Final Verdict- It is obvious that Pro-Line set out to make the ultimate set of bashing wheels/tires for the X-Maxx and we think they are right on point. The Badlands/Impulse combo drastically cut tire ballooning while massively increasing traction on loose surfaces and on grass. With a modern badass look and much greater traction than the stock units, we very highly recommend the Pro-Lines to you.