I had two Schwalbe tires fail on me on the same day.
I've written about the Schwalbe Marathon Supreme before. One review was good, one not so good. The latter, I wrote just after a catastrophic failure and I guess I was kind of emotional in my assessment. I feel that enough time has passed that I can give an unbiased review, so here goes.
I would not buy the Schwalbe Marathon Supreme tire again, at least not for heavy touring. It's just not tough enough. When I left the West Coast in May, my Supremes already had a couple of thousand miles on them and they had held up brilliantly. But just three weeks into my ride across North America, things started to go wrong, tire-wise. My first flat occurred just a few days in. Then I got a flat outside Havre, Montana at about two and a half weeks. I got four flats in a row after that because a little pinprick of metal that was part of the tire itself had come undone and kept puncturing my tube.
Although there was plety of tread left, I wound up throwing that tire away. That same day, outside Glasgow, Montana, my rear tire split and I had to discard that tire, too. Luckily, I had two spare Marathon Supremes's with me and I was able to continue, but while riding on the Erie Canal in Upstate New York, I noticed that my rear Supreme had gone bald. Again, luckily, I had had two new tires shipped to me in Minneapolis and I was able to keep going.
I got another flat a couple of days before I reached the East coast.
The Marathon Supreme that I installed on the front that day outside Glasgow is sitll running fine and I think I'll probably start out my Baja trip in February with it still on.
My friend, Bob, whom I met on the road, suggested that I try the Marathon Tour Plus, so when I got to Boston, I had one sent to me and I put it on before I left for Europe. I've got close to 2,600 miles on that tire and it's holding up well. I'm running it on the back and there's still plenty of tread left. I've never had a flatting problem and believe me, that tire got a real work out on those European cobblestone roads!
So, to sum it up. The Marathon Supreme is a great tire for light road work. It rolls smooth and corners great. It wears well as long as you don't put a lot of weight on it, but it's not suited for heavy duty long distance riding.
The Marathon Tour Plus, on the other hand is a great tire for the hard stuff. It's strong and wears like the devil even when you load it down and beat the crap out of it. I just ordered two more as spares for when I start out again in February
The Marathon Supreme gets 2 and a half stars. The Marathon Tour Plus gets 4 and a half. I'd probably give it five, but it doesn't roll as nice as one might like. I guess as with all things in life, it's a trade-off.