2013 Consumer Reports tire program: Ultra-high-performance tires take to the track
Own a sporty cars or high-end touring car? Thinking about replacing the tires? Well, our next tire program will include UHP all-season and summer tires typically found on these cars. As in the past, we're also including evaluations of performance winter tires, which come in sizes to fit cars that use UHP tires.
As the name implies, all-season tires provide good grip for most weather conditions. Testing shows that summer tires deliver the best grip on dry and wet roads, but unlike all-seasons, they're not suited for winter temperatures nor provide decent traction on snow and icy roads. If your car has summer tires and you live in the snow-belt region of the country, we strongly urge you to consider using winter tires.
Our last UHP program was in 2010, and since then there are several new models. Some old favorites not on the list are either gone or slated to be replaced in the next year. Trend-wise, the performance winter tire offering seems a bit light due to a number of manufacturers retooling their lines. Many performance winter tires are developed in Europe where high sales margins and regional mandatory use makes it a more lucrative market. So as manufacturers race to build-up supply of new winter models, U.S introductions often come after filling orders in Europe and Canada.
There are slightly more offerings in the all-season category, which tends to follow the domestic market's desire for a tire that can do it all. That's not the case in Europe where summer and winter tires are used in place of all-seasons. Still, summer tires have there place here, particularly on casual-use high-end sports cars.
At the time of this writing, a few models still need to purchased, so don't call me out if the model list changes slightly when we go to publish in September. Between now and then, we'll be testing about 50 models, and hundreds of examples. We'll have new ratings on ConsumerReports.org by fall and a follow-up in the November issue of Consumer Reports.
Check back for seasonal updates, the first being snow traction testing to be done in late January. Call us crazy, but we're wishing for lots of snow this winter.
|Performance winter tires|
|Dunlop||Winter Sport 4D|
|Michelin||Pilot Alpin PA4|
|Pirelli||Winter 240 Sottozero Series II|
|UHP all season tires|
|BF Goodrich||g-Force Super Sport A/S|
|Bridgestone||Potenza RE970AS Pole Position|
|Falken||Azenis PT722 A/S|
|Firestone||Firehawk Wide Oval AS|
|Goodyear||Eagle F1 Asymmetric All Season|
|GT Radial||Champiro UHP1|
|Hankook||Ventus S1 noble2|
|Michelin||Pilot Sport A/S 3|
|Pirelli||P Zero Nero All Season|
|Sumitomo||HTR A/S PO1|
|Toyo||Proxes 4 Plus|
|Uniroyal||Tiger Paw GTZ|
|UHP summer tires|
|BF Goodrich||g-Force Sport COMP-2|
|Bridgestone||Potenza RE760 Sport|
|Firestone||Firehawk Wide Oval Indy 500|
|Goodyear||Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2|
|Hankook||Ventus V12 evo|
|Kumho||Ecsta LE Sport|
|Michelin||Pilot Super Sport|
|Nokian||Z Line UHP|
|Toyo||Proxes T1 Sport|
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