Perception vs. Performance

Saturday, September 25, 2010 by Tucker Glenn
Continental ExtremeContactDWMichelin Pilot Sport PS2This week, we are testing some Max Performance Summer tires on our Real World Road Ride. Now, summer tires aren't meant to be the most comfortably riding tire. Their main purpose is the best dry grip, followed by wet traction, followed by ride comfort. The tires we tested were the Continental ExtremeContactDW (shown at left), the Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 (shown at right), the Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric (shown below left) and the Kumho Ecsta LE Sport (shown below right).

It's a loaded question to begin with and if you ask 10 people you'll likely get 10 answers: "Which summer tire is the most comfortable?"

An associate of mine always likes to say it's akin to asking "Which movie star is the hottest?" It's like that with tires. It's evident from our consumer survey results that our customers prefer the Continental ExtremeContactDW for its road manners. I asked the gentleman who sits next to me here and he likes the Michelin Pilot Sport PS2. Yet, I prefer the Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric.

Goodyear Eagle F1 AsymmetricKumho Ecsta LE SportAll the tires were relatively comfortable to drive on. And our survey results agree. I guess what I'm getting at is this: When it comes to suggesting tires based on ride comfort, reading individual reviews can make you go a little crazy, because everyone has their own opinion. But the averages, that's where you get the best idea of what a tire can do. The survey results balance out the "I love it" and the "I hate it" and let you know where the true results are. Of course, on average if most people loved it then you've got yourself a winner!

As always, stay tuned to find out where our averages are in our test results.

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