Leading Tire Brand Comparisons

Selecting the best tire for your vehicle

Choosing the right tire can be a difficult decision, particularly when you consider the variety in types and manufacturers. To help you in your decision, we've compiled a list of many of the major brands and outlined their strengths and weaknesses.

Goodyear


Pros: Goodyear tires get good reviews for handling and tread wear, as well as brand recognition.

Cons: Price on Goodyear products is cited as a negative, as is their sub-par performance in wet and winter conditions.

Availability: At all major retailers including Just Tires, Belle Tire, Discount Tire, Big O, Tire Rack, Tire Kingdom, Merchant's Tire, Sears Automotive and Wal-Mart.

Michelin


Pros: Light truck and SUV tires get good grades on quiet ride and handling in inclement conditions.

Cons: Performance tires roundly thumped for high noise levels and low NHTSA rating for tread wear. Price on all lines was also a con.

Availability: All major retailers, except Sears.

Bridgestone


Pros: Bridgestone lines on the whole are praised for their handling capabilities in all conditions. Lines get high traction grades with NHTSA.

Cons: Fair to poor tread wear grades across the board, with some lines reviewed as noisy. The Firestone line brings down the Bridgestone name, with consumers deeming many of the tires unsafe. Temperature ratings on several Firestone lines get a severely below average "C."

Availability: All major retailers, except Merchant's Tire, Big O, Wal-Mart.

Cooper


Pros: Light truck and SUV lines get good reviews for handling in all conditions. Performance tires also polled well on handling, with "AA" rating for traction on the NHTSA board.

Cons: Price of performance tires has been noted as prohibitive, and tread wear was also mentioned as a negative.

Availability: Just Tires, Discount Tire.

Hankook


Pros: Traction and tread wear grades are high in government rating and with consumers.

Cons: Some lines don't get high grades for temperature rating or tread wear.

Availability: Discount Tire.

Yokohama


Pros: Handling and price are two positives on Yokohama tire lines.

Cons: NHTSA and consumers give all lines tepid marks in tread wear.

Availability: Merchant's Tire, Tire Rack, Tire Kingdom, Discount Tire, Big O.

Continental


Pros: Performance tires get top marks for handling all weather conditions and highest grade for traction from NHTSA. Reasonably priced lines were also cited as a plus.

Cons: Light truck and SUV lines did not do so well, as excessive tread wear and poor handling on wet roads were mentioned in reviews.

Availability: At all major retailers, except Big O.

Kumho


Pros: Affordability, handling and reliability for performance lines.

Cons: Tread wear not rated well, and consumers gave performance lines failing grades in winter conditions.

Availability: Just Tires, Merchant's Tire, Tire Rack, Discount Tire, Tire Kingdom.

Toyo


Pros: High praise for handling and price on performance tires.

Cons: Poor tread wear ratings on performance lines, extremely negative feedback on handling in adverse weather.

Availability: Only at Belle Tire.

Pirelli


Pros: Performance Tires do extremely well in wet conditions. Up to "AA" government rating on traction for performance lines.

Cons: Consumers thought tread wear left much to be desired on performance models, as did NHTSA.

Availability: At all major retailers except Sears, Big O, Wal-Mart and Belle.

Nitto


Pros: Price and handling are positives for all performance lines.

Cons: Consumers uniformly say that performance tires do not do well in wet and winter conditions. Government testers give all Nitto tires lukewarm marks on tread wear, traction and temperature.

Availability: Discount Tire only.

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Thank you! I needed to buy new tire for my Honda Pilot and I was looking for a side by side comparison, this was very helpful.
Posted on 7/3/2009 7:16:00 PM