If you think about it, there’s actually quite a lot that can go wrong if you don’t have the right tires for your road conditions.
Poor traction, heat build-up, increased risk of punctures and blowouts.
But you don’t have to get into any of these sticky situations if you are well-prepared, and you ensure that you have the best possible tires for your vehicle, and your typical road conditions.
That’s why it pays to read articles like this one. Here we’re going to talk about 7 of the best tire brands out on the market today.
Then we’re going to tackle that all important question, “How do I choose the best tires for my vehicle?”.
We’re also going to provide some handy tips on tire maintenance, before wrapping up with a final conclusion. (Feel free to scroll ahead to what interests you the most.)
How We Compare Tire Brands
There are several different ways to judge tires and tire brands.
- You can look at the range available, is there something for every season, or are there some suitable for all four seasons of the year.
- You can look at the tread-life warranty, which is an effective measure of both durability and lifespan
- And, of course, you can look into the costs, after all, what good is the best tire on the market if you can’t afford it
What Are the Best Tire Brands 2021?
We believe that the best tire brands around at the moment are Goodyear, Michelin, Dunlop, Pirelli, Cooper Tires, Hankook, and Continental. We’re going to talk about each one of them in turn, in no particular order.
Goodyear is possibly THE best tire brand overall. It really does have a lot going for it.
For starters it offers a wider choice of performance tires than any other tire brand. And their tread-life warranty goes above and beyond that of all their counterparts. Which means you get a much longer lifespan on your tires, which makes them better value for money.
I know some people would try to argue that they aren’t good value for money, as they do cost ever so slightly more than tires from their competitors. However we stand by the sentiment that they are good value for money because they are really good quality tires that stand the test of time.
So, whereas competitors only have about 6 types of tires to choose from, Goodyear has nine different options. These include all-season, all-terrain, sports performance, summer, winter, and fuel efficient options.
Technically, Goodyear’s tire tread-life warranty isn’t quite the best one available, but it still beats the market’s average tread-life warranty.
And when you consider that together with Goodyear’s free shipping it does give Goodyear something of an edge against the competition.
But that’s not all. Goodyear also offers a 30-day road test, which basically means that you get to try out the tires on your vehicles for a full 30 days. And if for any reason the tyres don’t live up to the hype, you can simply return them and get a full refund. So you literally have nothing to lose by giving them a try.
Our favorite Goodyear tire has to be the Goodyear Wrangler Radial Tire. It’s well suited to just about any terrain, it’s an all-season tire, with plenty of traction in either snow or mud, plenty of tread life, AND has a really good hauling capacity, together with good fuel mileage to boot. Not bad hey?
This famous brand was founded by brothers Edouard and Andre Michelin, and has now been around for over 125 years. They’re a global brand, and there’s not one but two famous racing companies that use Michelin tires, Le Mans and MotoGP.
Michelin tires are known for their top quality rubber which doesn’t eat up your vehicle’s fuel, and keeps vehicles securely on the road.
They have quite the range of tires available, accommodating not just cars, but also motorcycles, scooters and bicycles. And their motorcycles are particularly renowned. They’re praised for both their performance and their durability.
Our favorite Michelin tyre is the Michelin LTX M/S2 All-Season Radial Tire. The tread wear on this tire is remarkably slow, giving it the kind of lifespan that feels like forever.
The Dunlop tire brand goes way way back, founded as long ago as the 18th century by John Boyd Dunlop. They may have started small, but with all their innovation the company was soon blooming. Now, it’s a first choice of tire for a huge majority of vehicle drivers the world over.
Their experience has put them at the forefront of their industry as they apply new technology in developing their tires. With Dunlop tires in place, you get an enhanced feel of the road, which is exactly what every driver needs.
Dunlop tires are trusted by many car manufacturers because of their very strict standards in both the manufacture and testing of their tires. These car manufacturers include the likes of Toyota, Chrysler, Nissan, Suzuki, Isuzu, Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Alfa Romeo, Kia, TVR, Honda, Lexus, AMG, Mazda, Mitsubishi, and the list goes on.
Our favorite Dunlop tire is the Dunlop Grandtrek AT20 All-Season Tire. This is the tire you should switch to if your current tires start to generate too much vibration or noise.
The Pirelli brand also has a long history, dating as far back as 1872 when it was founded by Giovanni Battista Pirelli in Milan. This makes it one of the oldest tire brands in the whole world. And today it’s also one of the biggest tire brands.
Pirelli tires are often spotted on super cars, and that kinda leads people to suspect that Pirelli tires are expensive. But that’s a mistake, they aren’t too costly, and in fact, they are rather reasonably priced. There’s no reason why a Pirelli tire can’t be put on an SUV or Sedan.
Pirelli tyres feature an excellent tread-life warranty. It’s just a shame that they don’t do any tires for trucks.
Our favorite Pirellii tire has to be the Pirelli Scorpion ATR All-Terrain Tire. It has superior tracking and handling that makes cornering and braking really nice and smooth.
Now, Hankook has got a really good product offering. They have the highest mileage warranty, a price that’s below average for each tire, and an above average mileage on each tire.
Hankook’s tread-life mileage warranties however, do vary from tire to tire, but their best one comes in at a whopping mileage of 100,000 miles! Not bad hey? Especially when you consider other brands average around just 83,500 miles.
With Hankook, the mileage covered in the tread-life warranty gives a really good indication of just how long their tires will last.
And, better yet, they’re quite affordable too, you’re not paying a premium. They don’t cost much more than a Cooper Tire (more on those later), but with a considerably better tread-life.
But, please bear in mind that tread-life warranties have explicit conditions that need to be met to cash in on the warranty. And you will need to take notes on maintenance and to track the mileage.
As the name might suggest, Continental is a tire brand that comes from continental Europe, specifically Germany. But they also have a headquarters here in the US for their tire operations, specifically in Lancaster County, S.C.
They rank very well in the charts, just behind the likes of Goodyear and Michelin. They have a full line of both OE and replacement tires.
What we like about Continental tires is all of the considerations that go into making a Continental tire. Specifically fuel economy, safety, and environmental considerations to boot.
But their remit is by no means limited to just tires. They’re also known for being a leading supplier of all sorts of vehicle components, from interior electronics, all the way through to brake systems.
Our favorite tire from Continental has to be the Continental Extreme Contact DWS06 All-Season Radial Tire. It’s perfect for those cold winter months, thanks to its excellent handling and grip.
People go for the Cooper Tires brand when they’re looking for a good price. They have a much more affordable price tag than their competitors, but with decent performance options and really good tread-life warranties.
Besides their bargain price point, Cooper Tires is also known for its wide range of performance tires. There are loads to choose from.
And when you consider that against lengthy tread-life warranties, then that’s excellent value for money, and some stiff competition there.
Long story short, they are very good as far as budget buys go, but the above average tread-life warranty, only just makes them noteworthy enough for our shortlist of top tire brands. They aren’t as big a brand and aren’t quite as good quality as some of the others that made our shortlist.
Choosing the Best Tire
Despite all the advances in tire tire technology, the tire tread life will come to an end before the lifetime of the car, and if you intend to keep the car for it’s entire lifespan, you will certainly need to replace the tires at least once or twice.
If you like the wheels that are currently on your car, you might like to go for something similar for your replacement tires. Ones that are the same size perhaps, or have the same speed rating. You could then use the previous tire specs as a baseline for your minimum requirements in the specs of your replacement tires.
But by taking on board what you learn in this article, you should have a greater understanding of the options available to you. Different tires excel in different areas. There’s traction of course, but then there’s also ride comfort, noise, handling and braking.
Next, we’re going to walk you through the specs and general performance of a range of different types of tire.
All-Season Car Tires
All-season tires are the type most often purchased. They provide pretty good traction all year round, making for a comfortable ride. And they have a long tread wear on them too.
They come in various sizes, so you put them on trucks, SUVs or small cars.
But of course, they don’t offer quite as good grip or handling that you get in performance tires.
- Treadwear warranty: None or 40,000 to 100,000 miles
- Speed ratings: None, S (112 mph), T (118 mph)
- Typical wheel size: 14 to 18 inches
Performance All-Season Car Tires
As the name suggests, these tires are known for their excellent performance on the road. They provide great grip and traction all year round, and provide far better braking and handling than their more regular counterparts. They also have a higher speed rating.
- Treadwear warranty: None or 40,000 to 80,000 miles
- Speed ratings: H (130 mph), V (149 mph)
- Typical wheel size: 15 to 20 inches
Some brands also offer ultra-high-performance tires.
All-Season Truck Tires
For trucks, you will need wheels that can take a heavier load. All-season truck tires perform well in most conditions.
- Treadwear warranty: None or 40,000 to 80,000 miles
- Speed ratings: S (112 mph), T (118 mph), H (130 mph)
- Typical wheel size: 15 to 22 inches
All-Season SUV Tires
All-season SUV tires are well-tuned for light-duty towing, and the off-road capabilities of SUVs and trucks.
- Treadwear warranty: 60,000 to 90,000 miles
- Speed ratings: T (118 mph), H (130 mph)
- Typical wheel size: 16 to 20 inches
All-Terrain Truck Tires
All-Terrain truck tires are built for more heavy-duty applications and a little light off-road use, since their tread is more rugged for additional traction on unpaved and snowy roads.
- Treadwear warranty: None or 50,000 to 60,000 miles
- Speed ratings: S (112 mph) for many
- Typical wheel size: 15 to 20 inches
You can also get winter/snow tires, performance winter/snow tires, and truck winter/snow tires. That’s something else you might want to consider if your area has bad winters.
While tire replacement is virtually inevitable, you don’t want to have to be buying new tires on a frequent basis. So, to that end you should take care of your tires to get them to last as long as possible. Here are some tips.
- Check the air pressure regularly
- Look for uneven tread wear on your tires
- Look for cracks in the sidewall or tread
- Stay below the maximum weight capacity
So, there’s a very wide range of options open to you when you’re ready to replace your vehicle’s tires. First determine what type of tires you need, and then you can take a look at some of the links we put in the article for some of our favorite tires, for some inspiration.
Buy your tires according to the vehicle you drive, the length of journeys you normally take, the weather conditions you normally face, what mileage you need from them, what speeds you tend to drive at, and you won’t go far wrong.
And, to get the maximum mileage from your new tires, please be sure to carry out maintenance checks on a regular basis.