Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Goodyear Assurance TripleTred All-Season

Monday, March 17, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Goodyear Assurance TripleTred All-Season Reviewer's Overall Rating: 7.55
 
 

2006 Honda Odyssey
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Miles driven on tires: 20,000
Location: Saint John, IN
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 20,000 Miles on Tires
March 13, 2014

We did have the Goodyear Triple Tread on our 2004 Honda Odyessy and it has performed extremely well. Our primary focus was to find an all season tire that perfomed very well in the rain or snow. The Triple Tread on the 2004 Odyessy exceded our expectations. The 2004 Honda sized tires did not create ANY noise issues, and we are pleased with the ride and safety handling on this van. When our 2006 Honda Odyessy needed new tires the Goodyear Triple Tread was a first choice, even though we considered the Michelin tires. We did get the Goodyear for the 2006 Honda in the 16inch stock size and I drove them home and could not believe the noise level! In this 16 inch size the interior noise level is louder than a truck tire. On the 2006 Honda these tires do handle well and are very good in light to medium snow. They do drive very well in the rain, but the noise level is way too high for a all season tire. If I had to do it over I would not choose this same tire. I do hope that Goodyear does look into the design of this tire (in the 16 by 225 version) and modify it to reduce the sound. I would easily give up some tread life to reduce the sound..Thx

Introducing Continental's New Track Tire, the ContiForceContact

Monday, March 17, 2014 by Ben Rooney

Continental has brought their Streetable Track & Competition tire, the ContiForceContact, over from Europe. Developed at the world famous Nürburgring circuit, the ContiForceContact is built to deliver extremely high levels of dry traction along with precise steering response and predictable cornering behavior. It is designed to allow driving on the street, though caution should be taken when driving in heavy rain. While it is built to resist hydroplaning, the tire is not recommended for high-speed driving on extremely wet roads/tracks with standing water where there is the risk of hydroplaning.

The ContiForceContact competes with other Streetable Track & Competition tires such as the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup and Pirelli P Zero Corsa System. It offers exceptional performance at the track while allowing drivers to drive to and from the track without changing their wheels and tires. With a treadwear rating of 80, the ContiForceContact isn't intended for long service on the road. The tire would work best on a set of wheels used for track days and performance driving events, or on a second car that is driven primarily for fun. 

ContiForceContact tires are molded with approximately 6/32" of tread depth in their grooves and are left unshaved for use on damp tracks. While the tires do not require shaving for dry track use, their durability and lap time performance will improve if shaved to approximately 4/32" deep tread to begin competitive road racing/track use in dry conditions, however this will sacrifice treadlife.

To learn more about tire shaving as an effective means of permitting more of a tire's performance capability, read "Shaving Tires for Autocross / Track Use / Competition."

Choosing Between Performance Winter / Snow Tires and Studless Ice & Snow Tires

Monday, March 17, 2014 by Gary Stanley

As a moderator of several forums, I have received many questions on snow tires this winter. Recently, a customer had a question about choosing between Studless Ice & Snow tires and Performance Winter / Snow tires:

I’m getting ready to order winter tires and wheels. My concern is that here in Denver, we can have big changes in temperatures. It’s not uncommon to be able to wear short sleeves during February and March, while the ski resorts are getting pounded less than 80 miles away. Given the temperature range, are there any brands I should stay away from that get squirmy when it gets warmer? 95% of my driving is in the Denver area. I only have two clients in the foothills just west of town.

Here was my response to his question:

Most of the tires in the Studless Ice & Snow category like the Bridgestone Blizzak WS70, Continental ExtremeWinterContact and Michelin X-Ice Xi3 will have slower steering response in warmer temperatures, and thus, feel a little squirmy. Of these choices, the Michelin X-Ice Xi3 feels the least squirmy, but would still give you outstanding snow and ice traction for the times you have to drive on snow-covered roads. 

If you move to a Performance Winter / Snow tire like the Bridgestone Blizzak LM-32 or Dunlop SP Winter Sport 4D, you'll find that these tires have more responsive handling even in warmer temperatures. Unfortunately, there's a noticeable step down in snow and ice traction when compared to Studless Ice & Snow tires.

Are you trying to make a similar decision? You may want to lean towards one of the more aggressive snow tires like those listed above if one or more of the following are true :

  • Your geographical area gets heavy snowfall and/or lake-effect snow.
  • You are often driving on packed snow and ice.
  • You are willing to give up some dry grip and steering response for maximum winter traction.
  • You are a newer driver or want more confidence when driving in winter conditions. 

Choosing between these two performance categories may be difficult and is mostly a personal preference choice for the trade-off between snow traction and dry road handling. When making your decision, keep in mind what are the worst conditions you'll experience. This is the time when you will need traction the most!  You can read about my experience with winter tires by reading, "My Story on Winter Tires."

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Hankook Ventus S1 noble2

Tuesday, March 11, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Hankook Ventus S1 noble2 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.91
 
 

2006 BMW 325i Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 10,000
Location: Grandville, MI
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 10,000 Miles on Tires
February 28, 2014

I bought these tires a couple months ago, based on the test ratings on this website. As usual, the Tire Rack ratings were dead on! I drive (on average) about 2,000 miles per week, and live in west Michigan. Due to the unpredictable nature of Michigan weather, I needed a tire that performed well in all weather conditions. These tires do everything they say they do, and at a good price.

I was concerned, having a rear-wheel drive car, that an all-season tire would not perform well enough for winter driving. Acceleration at times can be a struggle, but I've never had an issue with traction, when every other vehicle on the road didn't have the same problems. Stopping on icy, slushy, and snow covered roads is NEVER a problem. I've never had a set of tires that allows me to stop like these tires do.

In dry conditions, I don't think there is an UHP-tire available that out-perfoms these. I'm sure there are others that perform as well, but it would be a stretch to say they are better. The tires that are as good, are generally more than twice the price. The only tires that I would consider relatively equal both in performance and price, would be the Continental Extreme Contact DWS'. I think the tread wear is a little better on the Hankook tires though.

Road noise (on good roads) is all but non-existant. My car runs 40 series up front, with 35 series in the rear. I expected these tires to have a very harsh ride, but they are surprisingly comfortable. As anticipated, corner roll doesn't happen, but it shouldn't with such a low-profile tire. Heat disipation is good. I've only had them in weather up to 65 F at this point, but they have never felt surprisingly warm, even after several miles of spirited curved road driving.

The only complaint I have, is these tires "track" pretty bad on grooved roads. It may be due to the 225 front, and 255 rear widths, but I didn't notice this issue with the Goodyear tires my car came with.

Overall, Exceptional Tires

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Blizzak WS70

Monday, March 3, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Bridgestone Blizzak WS70 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.45
 
 

2011 Volkswagen Tiguan
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Miles driven on tires: 3,000
Location:  
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 3,000 Miles on Tires
February 12, 2014

I made 3000 miles with this tire. My wife drives this car, but I use it when we go to ski together. I went from 235/50 R18 which is OEM for SEL model to 215/65 R16 for winter. It was good decision. I went with this tire, because I wanted hardcore winter tire for this car. My VW CC is equipped with Bridgestone LM-60 (and they perform extremely well).
Anyway, on Tiguan, due to the AWD, these tires are just going forward with gusto. So far no issues, driving on snow packed roads, went through 3ft of snow: no issue!
If you need tire to go to ski, for lot of snow, ice, slush: this is tire for you.
Be aware: This tire is extremely soft, which is good for ice, snow. However, if you live in states where there is no much snow, but have black ice, maybe Michelin X Ice 3 would be better, since it has better dry capabilities. WS 70 is good tire, but on dry you can feel all that softness.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport

Monday, March 3, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Michelin Pilot Super Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.62
 
 

2010 Mercedes-Benz E550 Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 17,000
Location:  
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 17,000 Miles on Tires
February 14, 2014

I got these Michelin Super Sports when I put on my aftermarket 19" Brabus wheels. They are solid performers and have a nice quiet ride, which compliments the car. Road noise is minimal, even when the tires are worn down. Driving style is moderately spirited, the car is a daily driver to and from the office, with a mix of street and hwy in Orange County, CA.
My issue is the tread life. I used to get 20,000 miles+ from the Michelin PS2 tire and the Goodyear Eagle F1. On these Super Sports, I only got 17,000 miles, and the tread is showing on both of the rears (E550 is a rear-wheel drive car). I'm going with another brand this time, most likely the Continental Extreme Contact DW.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Alpin PA4

Friday, February 28, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Michelin Pilot Alpin PA4 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.45
 
 

2002 BMW 525i Sport Wagon
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Miles driven on tires: 1,500
Location: La Crescent, MN
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 1,500 Miles on Tires
February 27, 2014

Like how PA4 communicates to driver in ice or snow conditions. First winter on the PA4 but has proved grippy and secure. Can tell when tire will break away on fresh or packed snow and what it takes to bring it back. More sophisticated than an average snow tire. In times past used Nokian, Blizzack, Dunlop, and many standard or high performance snow tires on various vehicles. Thus high expectations, even though there are few reviews of PA4. Interesting that Porsche had been involved with development too. We usually have traction control devices engaged in cars --on mode– when entering harsh weather. Recently, however, have been turning off DSC in Bimmer sport-wagon, as control and performance of vehicle seems even better with PA4's. Car handled better without using DSC. Added control with such throttle response has been fun and added new dynamic. Generally enhanced winter driving experience in the 5 Series wagon with sports suspension. Rear wheel drive BMW has been easier to drive fast in snow and ice latley, yet with more control. Car more predicable now. Cornering to date has been superb in dry/wet conditions and the sidewall feels firm while offering quiet, comfortable ride. Have not pushed tires too hard yet, as want to give belts and rubber break in period. Yet already feels like an Ultra High Performance tire with intriguing winter capability. Have not yet finished testing and haven’t been in really deep, heavy snow, but if these are first indications of what to expect then we're excited. For higher performance, lower clearance vehicles this should be a serious candidate for winter consideration. Looking forward to also trying the Michelin Xi-3 on other cars, as we are also big fans of the Conti Extreme Winter Contact which was very impressive on a Saab we own. That and the PA4 seem like the real leaders currently. Shall report back as we find out more about PA4 on BMW. Thus far does seem like a game changer in winter segment. Thanks Tirerack.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Thursday, February 20, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ExtremeContact DWS Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.09
 
 

2008 BMW X3 3.0si
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Miles driven on tires: 40,000
Location:  
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 40,000 Miles on Tires
February 19, 2014

Great tire, they're about used up so I'm buying a new set. Performs well in this snowy winter we've had, does well in dry and wet as well. Highly recommend this tire. On the X3 with sport package, there is an offset, I just run 245/45/19s front and rear, no problem at all.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Thursday, February 20, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ExtremeContact DWS Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8
 
 

2008 Dodge Charger SRT-8
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Miles driven on tires: 66,500
Location: Glenn Dale, MD
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 66,500 Miles on Tires
February 17, 2014

This is my second review on this tire. The reason why I'm doing another review is to give an update and to hopefully help someone who may be in the market for getting new tires. I've currently put over 65,000 miles on these tires and they're still holding up. I have been very impressed with these tires given the fact that I've put a lot of miles on them and that I drive a Charger SRT8 which has a lot of horsepower and torque. I live in Maryland so I have driven through all four seasons (rain, snow, sleet, dry, ice, etc). They have performed extremely well through all four seasons. I've had these set of tires since December of 2010 and I'm just now about to replace them (bought two new ones yesterday). Don't get me wrong the tires I'm replacing are still drivable it's just that I feel its time to have them replaced. Also, they ride smooth (you have to break them in though). At times I cruise and at times I drive hard, but on average I drive on the highway, through the suburbs, and through the city. These tires have been through it all and I can't emphasize it enough just how well they've held up. These tires are worth every penny and I'll continue to keep buying them. These tires are the best I've ever had. If your in the market to buy tires do yourself a favor and buy these tires (at least one time) and see for yourself just how good these tires are. They won't disappoint.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Thursday, February 20, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ExtremeContact DWS Reviewer's Overall Rating: 7.55
 
 

2009 BMW M3 Coupe
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Miles driven on tires: 10,000
Location: Atlanta, GA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 10,000 Miles on Tires
February 09, 2014

I bought the Conti DWS after much deliberation and comparison research. I am glad to say these tires still exceed my expectations for most performances even after 10,000 miles – especially considering their price. They do tend to flat spot a little after being parked with hot brakes, but their blend of comfort and street type handling is very good. The steering has a small amount of on center delay, but the rate of steering response off center is actually quite quick, linear and appropriate for a Z rated tire. I am also impressed with the relatively long tread wear life available. DWS traction levels in wet or dry conditions are quite high, but slightly down from the highest priced summer tire levels available, but that’s to be expected from an all-season tire. In other words, the traction levels and long tread wear life available are really pretty darn good. If you want sticky summer tires for the track then look elsewhere. If you want well over twice the wear life of the best Z rated UHP summer tires with better comfort, decent steering, and fairly high traction levels (which should please most folks unless your are heading to the track) then this tire is for you. I have had no problems with irregular tread wear nor hydroplaning, but I did notice some low volume, mild tread pattern noise (hum) when the tires were new. Snow traction is good though be careful not to think your driving on winter tires. I found I still had to feather the throttle at red lights. Keep in mind the DWS is not a winter tire, but is a true all-season tire - rather than a three-season tire (like the other guys sell and yet still call them all-season tires). Based on the tire rack survey ratings, it appears other reviewers have noticed the good level of snow traction available from the DWS. Be advised the DWS uses a single ply body casing to help it achieve ride compliance. After 5000 miles the tires needed to be rebalanced. Best balanced, Z rated, all-season, UHP tire on the market today.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D

Thursday, February 20, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.82
 
 

2004 Infiniti FX35
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Miles driven on tires: 7,000
Location: Palos Heights, IL
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 7,000 Miles on Tires
February 15, 2014

I bought these tires last year, and naturally, here in the Chicago area, it didn't snow at all!

But this year Chicago and north central rural Illinois has been a real testing ground for this tire. Having an all wheel drive vehicle certainly helps quite a bit, but these tires add a level of confidence that I've never experienced in any vehicle before. Extremely good traction on wet surfaces, in bitter sub-zero temperatures, both light and medium snow, as well as the large mounds that leave many vehicles plowed in the parking space on Chicago's side streets. I was amazed at just how well this tread compound handles icy conditions too.

Very good performance at highway speeds... smooth and quiet ride. I don't know how long the tread will last, but I use these tires only during the ice and snow seasons, so I expect to get a few more years out of them. Very highly recommended!

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Tuesday, February 18, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ExtremeContact DWS Reviewer's Overall Rating: 6.45
 
 

1999 BMW 528i Wagon Sport Pkg
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Miles driven on tires: 99,999
Location: Portland, OR
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 99,999 Miles on Tires
February 09, 2014

I've had these on my 99 BMW Wagon for three years now and have done more than 100,000 miles on three sets of them. Or maybe it's been four sets, I can't remember. Anyway, they're good solid performers, great in wet, pretty quiet and good in snow. I will say though that they definitely don't last up to their 50,000 mile rating, not even close. I usually get about 25,000 out of them before they are toast. The wagons are generally regarded as being hard on tires so with other vehicles these may do better but I haven't been super happy with the mileage I'm getting out of them.

 

Dunlop Direzza ZII Coming Into Stock for the 2014 Season

Wednesday, February 12, 2014 by Marshall Wisler

It seems hard to believe, but sooner or later the cold that has gripped most of the country this winter will soon lift and the snow will clear. When this occurs, competition events will be in full swing.

One of last year's hottest and best-selling performers, the Dunlop Direzza ZII, is filtering back into stock, and in many sizes is ready for shipment. This Extreme Performance Summer tire was one of our favorites in an internal test and has achieved much popularity within the ranks of our consumer surveys.

Take a look at what some of our customers are saying about their experience with the Dunlop Direzza ZII.

"The tires have well exceeded what I expected. I am more confident with these tires than I was with the Original Equipment. The wet traction is something Dunlop should be proud of. I will purchase them again!" -- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2011 Subaru Impreza WRX 4-Door STI Limited

"I am a hardcore amateur racer and I've used the ZIIs on my Cayman and they are incredible. In my opinion, this is the best street tire there is." -- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2008 Porsche Cayman

The Direzza ZII features a treadwear rating of 200, making it legal for most classes of SCCA and NASA competition. With 26 sizes offered, the ZII offers good market coverage of many popular sizes.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position

Friday, February 7, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.62
 
 

2011 Audi A4 2.0T quattro
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Miles driven on tires: 15,000
Location: Woodbridge, VA
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 15,000 Miles on Tires
February 06, 2014

I've had these tires for a bit over 15K miles and am nothing but pleased with them. They do everything I expected them to do, and do it very well. The biggest surprise/bonus has been the wet weather performance. I drove them through so VERY heavy rain storms over the summer, and I never once hydroplaned or felt unstable. And the grip in the wet was great. In the dry they also perform very well. I save the aggressive driving for the track (dedicated track car), but "having fun" on some on/off ramps and some back roads really shows how well these tires grip in the dry. The only downside I've had was that they were pretty loud when new. Louder than I expected, but quieted down after about 1K miles. They're still slightly on the loud side, but nothing extreme or bothersome. Overall, a great tire for the price and would definitely recommend and buy again.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Friday, February 7, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ExtremeContact DWS Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.78
 
 

2012 Volkswagen GTI
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Miles driven on tires: 20,000
Location: Bolton, MA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 20,000 Miles on Tires
February 06, 2014

This is my third set of DWSs. I had them on my Subaru, and recently changed the tires on my GTI from Pirelli PZero Nero to these because The Pirellis were awful in the snow. We got a foot of snow yesterday and the Contis handled it admirably! For a high performance tire the snow traction is outstanding. This is the only all-season tire I've used that could truly handle all seasons. The dry handling isn't as razor-sharp as a high performance summer tire, but it's a minor trade off. I'd rather drive safely all winter and be able to corner at 8/10ths in the summer than skate around all winter just to be able to run at 9/10ths in the summer. I believe this is the best possible tire choice for year round high performance. The only thing better would be having a dedicated set of summer and winter wheels, but I am completely satisfied with the DWS under all conditions. Ride comfort improved, too.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Thursday, February 6, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ExtremeContact DWS Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.4
 
 

2012 Ford Flex Titanium
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Miles driven on tires: 500
Location: Clarkston, MI
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 500 Miles on Tires
January 30, 2014

First reaction to these tires was, why is my car so much quieter? Apparently the OE Goodyear tires contributed more noise than I realized. Ride conform was also noticeably improved. If this were the only reason I purchased these tires, then this would be enough. But I was even more impressed with winter driving experience as I drove immediately to northern Michigan for the Sno*Drift rally which lead me down many snow and ice covered two track roads, which it handled with ease. Temps were in the low single digits and below zero and traction in snow or on pavement was excellent. The return trip south on expressway, I was able to use the snow covered left lane with confidence. At this early stage of ownership, very happy. Looking forward to judge performance on dry roads in warmer weather.

 

Which Type of Winter / Snow Tire Is Right for Me?

Thursday, February 6, 2014 by Doc Horvath

Like anything else that relates to your car, tires are available in a variety of models that can be fine tuned to best match what you need. Selecting the best tire starts with narrowing your search to one of our Performance Categories, which Tire Rack has developed by using our own test results, customer survey results and manufacturer recommendations. These Performance Categories help focus your search by comparing tires with similar characteristics, allowing you to choose the best tire for how and where you drive. For dedicated winter / snow tires, there are three categories to choose from.

Studless Ice and Snow

In this category, tires use aggressive tread patterns and the latest high-tech rubber compounds to provide ice and snow traction similar to traditional studded snow tires. Customers that focus on this category are looking to get the best snow and ice traction possible, with the understanding that when the roads are clear, your high speed handling will be a little less responsive than a traditional all-season tire. A few options to consider in the category, include the Bridgestone Blizzak WS70, Michelin X-Ice Xi3, Dunlop Winter Maxx and Continental ExtremeWinterContact.

Performance Winter / Snow

Options from the Performance Winter / Snow category feature tires with tread patterns and rubber compounds that are tuned to improve dry and wet traction, along with high speed handling. Drivers that aren't expecting to see heavy or persistent accumulations of snow and want a tire that will handle and perform more like the performance tires the vehicle most likely came with when new will benefit from a Performance Winter / Snow tire. If this sounds like your style of driving, then take a look at the Bridgestone Blizzak LM-32, Michelin Pilot Alpin PA4 and Dunlop SP Winter Sport 4D.

Studdable Winter / Snow

Studdable Winter / Snow tires are designed to allow the installation of optional metal studs to enhance ice and snow traction. Customers that focus on this category are looking for a low cost winter tire option and are willing to allow for more road noise and less comfort than Original Equipment tires. Studded tires are often subject to state laws that dictate when (or if) they can be used, so always check local laws before selecting a tire from this category. Tires in this category include the Firestone WinterForce UV, General AltiMAX Arctic and Goodyear Ultra Grip Winter.

Take a look at our Winter Tire Decision Guide to help you choose the best tire for handling winter conditions. 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeWinterContact

Friday, January 31, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ExtremeWinterContact Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8
 
 

1998 Toyota Sienna XLE
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Miles driven on tires: 10,000
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 10,000 Miles on Tires
January 27, 2014

I tried getting through the winter on Continental's ExtremeContact DWS, but too often the minivan was sliding around. The ExtremeWinterContacts have a bunch more grip on snow covered roads. I ordered a set of 5 to use the fifth as a full-size spare, and the asymmetric tread pattern allows a full 5 tire rotation. I could probably have gone with the smaller base model Sienna 205/70R15 size, but the 215/65R15s handle quite well. Even the dry road handling is much better than the junky all-seasons that came with the van. This is the third winter season on them and there is still good traction. I ran them last weekend at an ice trial on a frozen lake, and they performed quite decently on the ice. They do seem to be wearing a bit quicker than other winter tires I've had, but some of that may be do to the Sienna being a larger vehicle.

 

Non-Run-Flat All-Season Tire Option for BMW X5 (20" Wheels)

Thursday, January 30, 2014 by Marshall Wisler

One of the most difficult vehicles to outfit with all-season tires is the BMW X5 and X6 with staggered 20" wheels. Unfortunately, with the 275/40R20 front and 315/35R20 rear tire sizes, there aren't any run-flat options up to the task of performing in snowy conditions.

Luckily, for drivers willing to step away from a run-flat tire, Continental offers a fantastic choice. Their ExtremeContact DWS (DWS for Dry, Wet and Snow) has been one of our highest rated Ultra High Performance All-Season tires for quite some time and is available for the X5 and X6. While some tires in the category don't perform well in cold temperatures, the DWS has the highest ratings in the category for light snow and deep snow traction.

The ExtremeContact DWS features Tuned Performance Indicators -- visible letters molded into the second rib from the outboard shoulder to alert drivers of the tire's performance levels. A visible "DWS" indicates the tire has sufficient tread depth for dry conditions as well as wet roads and light snow. After the "S" has worn away, the remaining "DW" indicates the tire is only suitable for dry and most wet road conditions. And after the "W" and "S" have both worn away, the remaining "D" indicates the tire has appropriate tread depth for dry conditions only.

To view all tire options for your BMW, shop by vehicle.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Goodyear Eagle RS-A

Monday, January 27, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Goodyear Eagle RS-A Reviewer's Overall Rating: 5
 
 

2010 Nissan Maxima 3.5
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Miles driven on tires: 59,000
Location:  
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 59,000 Miles on Tires
August 19, 2013

RSA tires are a dichotomy (extreme good/bad). I am writing to warn that GY must have changed design, manufacturing process/location or materials for the RSA for the worst. Our 2010 Nissan Maxima SV-Sport originally came with the GY RSA tire & we loved it for what it was (all-season performance style tire for family 4-door sports car). It was smooth comfortable relatively-quite cruising tire, and yet handled at 8/10ths of a hard core tire on this 4-door sports car (Note I own a 2008 Corvette Z06, so I know what hard-core cornering cars can do). The RSAs had excellent dry/wet traction with a confidence-inspiring heavy rain stability. It lasted 59,000 miles with even wear!! I only changed them then, as my wife began to notice stability issues in torrential downpours. Tire Rack had 4 different RSAs available in the size listed for our car. As an engineer, my wife has accused me of "modifying" her cars in the past. Normally, I found GY performance tires to be inferior over 20 years, but the RSAs were so good, that I paid extra to get the exact same tire. The new RSAs remained smooth and balanced, but suddenly the car would just not track straight down the road. At speed above 50 mph, driving became exhausting (constantly correcting for wandering). At slower speeds in parallel traffic on uneven roads, it wandered/veered so bad, that I was afraid I would sideswipe cars. It did not pull to one side, so was not 1 tire. Tire pressures correct & I paid for an alignment, although prior tire wear was perfect. Tried rotating tires. Still wandered. If these new RSAs had come with the Maxima, I NEVER WOULD HAVE BOUGHT IT. THAT BAD! Then I read the TR reviews. Early reviews (Maxima model came out in 2009) were great on RSAs, but I noted a # of complaints after mid-2010. I felt sick about having to live with the RSAs, that I would go crazy. Tire Rack took them back for a full refund thru GY. TR sent Michelin Pilot Super Sports & problem immediately gone! MPSS=outstanding!