Mano a Mano: Michelin and Continental Battle It Out in the Latest Consumer Reports Tire Testing
By Bob Ulrich
Posted on October 23, 2017
Every year, Consumer Reports (CR) tests tires for its November issue. All-season tires and winter tires have been favored in the past, but this year, the tire testers went all out, testing tires in seven all-season segments and three winter tire segments. Gene Petersen, Jennifer Stockburger and Ryan Pszczolkowski outdid themselves this year!
And that's not all: CR also re-ran survey results ranking the most and least satisfying tire retailers! It's a milestone issue, if you ask me.
So, which brand is the big winner in this year's series of non-winter tire tests, seven in all? There were really two. Michelin, as always, fared well, with five top finishes, including ties. But Continental tire came out on top in four of seven categories – and was a podium finisher in two of the other three.
All-season light truck tires:
1. Continental CrossContact LX20 EcoPlus.
2. Michelin Premier LTX.
3. (Tie) Firestone Destination LE 2, Pirelli Scorpion Verde All Season Plus, Michelin Defender LTX M/S.
All-terrain light truck tires:
1. (Tie) Continental TerrainContact A/T, Michelin LTX A/T 2.
3. (Tie) Goodyear Wrangler Trailrunner AT, Yokohama Geolandar A/T G015, Nexen Roadian AT Pro RA8, Falken WildPeak A/T AT3W.
Performance all-season (H-rated):
1. (Tie) Continental PureContact, Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus, Michelin Premier A/S.
Performance all-season (V-rated):
1. (Tie) Continental PureContact, Michelin Premier A/S, Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus.
Michelin had two first-place finishes by itself. The Michelin Defender was the top all-season car tire, followed by the Continental TrueContact. Tied for third was the General Altimax RT43 and Pirelli P4 Four Seasons Plus. And the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+ was the number one ultra-high performance all-season tire, with two tires, the Pirelli PZero All Season Plus and the Continental ExtremeContact DWS06, tied for second.
Goodyear made a strong showing in the All-season CUV/SUV category. The Assurance CS Fuel Max was number one, followed by a three-way tie for second: Kumho Crugen Premium, Bridgestone Dueler H/L 422 Ecopia and Sumitomo HTR Enhance C/X.
CR officially recommended all the aforementioned tires to its readers.
The rankings were as objective as possible. CR ranked each tire based on nine performance attributes. The ratings ranged from Excellent to Poor.
Out of the 92 tires tested, only three received three excellents: the Nokian WR G3 SUV (hydroplaning traction, snow traction and low rolling resistance) in the all-season light truck category; and the Pirelli PZero All Season Plus (handling, hydroplaning traction and noise comfort) and Dunlop Signature HP (dry braking, handling and hydroplaning traction) in the UHP all-season category. That just goes to show you how many good tires are out there.