Retail

Consumer Reports rates touring and snow tires. And the winners are...

Order Reprints

In its latest issue, Consumer Reports (CR) tests nine touring and 17 snow tires in their respective categories.

CR measured all the tires for braking on wet and dry surfaces, handling ability and cornering ability at its test facility in East Haddam, Conn. How well they gripped in snow and stopped on ice and their ability to resist hydroplaning were key factors in the final scores.

The Dunlop SP Sport A2 and the Michelin Energy MXV4 Plus were first and second, respectively, in the touring category, defined as high performance all-season tires. The nine H-rated, size P195/65R15 entries were tested on a 2001 Honda Accord EX.

The magazine rated the Dunlop SP Sport A2 as "an excellent all-around choice with the best overall braking" and "good rolling resistance." It had a 50,000-mile limited tread wear warranty and cost $70.

The Michelin Energy MXV4 also was rated "an excellent all-around choice, though pricey ($120)." The tire's cornering and rolling resistance also received excellent marks.

The other touring tires, in ranking order with their pricing in parentheses, are:

* Continental ContiTouringContact CH95 ($70).

* Kelly Charger HR ($70).

* Cooper Lifeliner Touring SLE ($60).

* Toyo Proxes TPT ($85).

* Yokohama Avid H4 ($70).

* Goodyear Eagle LS ($80).

* Uniroyal Tiger Paw Touring HR ($70).

The winter tires were divided into two groups: Q-rated and H-rated.

Six P225/55R16 tires, tested on a BMW 530i, were compared in the H-rated category, with the Goodyear Eagle Ultra Grip GW-2 coming out on top.

The Dunlop SP Winter Sport M2, which scored the highest in ice breaking, was a close second, followed by the Pirelli Winter 210 SnowSport, Bridgestone Blizzak LM-22, Nokian Hakkapeliitta NRW (best snow traction) and Michelin Pilot Alpin.

In the Q-rated category, the 11 195/70R14 winter tires (which included S- and T-rated equivalents) were tested on a 2000 Chevrolet Cavalier. The new T-rated Kumho I'zen Stud KW-11 ended up with the highest ranking.

According to CR, the Kumho tire was "an excellent choice where snow is less severe," and had the "best dry and wet braking among this group."

The final Q-rated winter tires, in ranking order with their pricing in parentheses, are as follows:

1. Kumho I'zen Stud KW-11 ($50).

2. Michelin Arctic Alpin ($85).

3. Dunlop Graspic DS-1 ($55).

4. Gislaved NordFrost II ($75).

5. Nokian Hakkapeliitta Q ($85).

6. BFGoodrich Winter Slalom ($60).

7. Goodyear Ultra Grip Ice ($77).

8. Bridgestone Blizzak WS-50 ($72).

8. Yokohama Guardex F720 ($75).

10. Firestone Winterfire, S-rated ($53).

11. Cooper Weather-Master XGR ($52).

Six tires were compared in the H-rated category, with the Goodyear Eagle Ultra Grip GW-2 coming out on top.

The Dunlop SP Winter Sport M2, which scored the highest in ice breaking, was a close second, followed by the Pirelli Winter 210 SnowSport, Bridgestone Blizzak LM-22, Nokian Hakkapeliitta NRW (best snow traction) and Michelin Pilot Alpin.

Related Articles

The Power of Perseverance: Past Tire Dealer of the Year Award Winners Keep Moving Forward

A Young, 'On the Rise' Tire Dealer Shatters Stereotypes

VIP Tires Shows Why You Should Still Tell Your Story in 2020

You must login or register in order to post a comment.