SOUTH BEND, Ind. (July 17, 2015) — Four major brand ultra-high performance, all-season tires provided mixed results when Tire Rack put them to the test.
The online tire retailer kicked off its 20th year of tire testing by testing the new Continental ExtremeContact DWS 06, Goodyear's Eagle F1 Asymmetric All-Season, Michelin's Pilot Sport A/S 3 and Pirelli's P Zero All Season Plus.
The Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 earned a top rating for its “very high level of dry and wet traction combined with nimble handling,” Tire Rack said. The Continental offered “good overall road manners plus impressive wet and good dry handling;” the Pirelli P Zero “strikes a well-rounded balance that would satisfy most drivers;” and the Goodyear Eagle “offers quick steering response and solid dry weather performance, but falls short of the other tires in wet conditions,” Tire Rack concluded.
In Tire Rack's most recent round of testing at the company's test track and on roads in and around South Bend, test drivers used identically prepared 2014 BMW 328i sedans for the warm weather evaluation. Winter condition testing by Tire Rack takes place in northern Sweden, the company said.
At the track, the one-third-mile course includes 90-degree street corners, a five-cone slalom and simulated expressway ramps. Tests are conducted in both wet and dry conditions, and allow the team to experience the traction, responsiveness, handling and drivability typically encountered only during emergency maneuvers or in competition, the company said.
On the road tests the Michelin tire's responsiveness and tight, direct steering feel provided a slight edge over Continental, with Pirelli finishing a close third and Goodyear in fourth, Tire Rack said.
Since most vehicle owners subject their high-performance cars to a wide range of road surfaces, temperatures and conditions, Tire Rack said it took its test vehicles on public roads to evaluate noise comfort, ride quality and everyday handling.
On less-than-perfect pavement, the Pirelli held the advantage, doing what the testers called “a good job muting the sharpness of expansion joints and crudely patched potholes.” The Conti tire placed second, followed by Michelin and Goodyear.
When combined, tread and impact noise levels for all four were tolerable, with Pirelli, Continental and Michelin tightly grouped in the team ratings, Tire Rack said. The noise score for the Goodyear tire was lower, due to its combination of tread noise and “booming” when encountering larger impacts.
Fuel economy was also measured, with worst-to-best within eight-tenths of a mile per gallon. None of these four models was designed to optimize fuel efficiency, but Goodyear scored highest in the category, the company said.
For complete results and more information, visit www.TireRack.com.