Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Firestone Winterforce

Note: 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.
Vehicle: 2012 Ford Focus 5-Door
Miles Driven on Tires: 1,000
Driving Condition: Combined Highway/City
Driving Style: Average
Firestone Winterforce
Initial Review: 1,000 miles on tires
January 02, 2014

Decent snow performance. I'm not sure what to make of the people who seem to claim that they have little to no slippage in snow with the tire. Don't expect miracles. I did and I'm a little disappointed.

In deep snow, the tires are good enough to clear the snow out of the way. I don't fear getting stuck in 4 inches of snow like I did on all-seasons. I don't hesitate to park in the curb lane in 4+ inches of slushy snow. In lighter snow, it's very good. Good acceleration, braking, and cornering. Still some slippage but it's minimal. On packed snow or ice, the wheels slip a decent amount but it's predictable. Braking, especially, seems much better than all-seasons.

With these tires, the behavior--especially on packed snow--is very much more sensitive to driver inputs. Any braking or acceleration during any kind of cornering can cause the car to lose traction. I even experience lift-off oversteer on occasion (not used to that in a FWD car). It takes some getting used to trusting the tire to grip and braking when you might want to.

Tires are much quieter than I expected (not studded). They have a lot of flex when new--there's a noticeable delay between turning the wheel and turning.

Break-in period is FOR REAL! It snowed the day I had them installed and then multiple times in the first couple of weeks. The performance was worse than my bad all-seasons were for the first couple of snow storms. They slowly improved over the first 500-750 miles. At (a little over) 1000 miles on them, they don't seem to be improving any more.

Overall, they're better than all season tires, no doubt. This is my first set of winter tires. I'm glad I got them and they're a good price. I'll probably try out a different winter tire next time to see if other tires perform better.

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