Auto Zeitung 2022: Summer Tire Test R17

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The new AZ test did not include any new models, and did not bring any surprises.

List of models tested:

Throughout the course of its production cycle, a tire model is not only constantly checked for quality consistency, but is also compared against its rivals during in-company tests, and, if there is a possibility to improve, let’s say, wet traction, or environmental performance, the tire makers often change the composition of the tread compound, which usually passes unnoticed by the end consumers. For this reason, before publishing the results of its tests of summer tires, Auto Zeitung gets in touch with tire makers in order to find out if any of their tires have been modernized lately.

The tires were tested using Ford Puma
The tires were tested using Ford Puma. Source: autozeitung.de

The Vredestein Ultrac model has not been renewed yet — just because this is quite a new model so far — and, as the AZ experts noted, Apollo’s R&D department (located in Netherlands) and production facility (located in Hungary) did a great job this time around. The asymmetric tread pattern 6.8 mm deep not only allowed the Ultrac tire to outperform its rivals in terms of hydroplaning resistance but also earned it the highest score for wet handling. However, there was one serious disappointment: the Vredestein tire came last in the test for handling response on a watered track with a very low land-to-sea ratio (the kind of pavement that you typically see on the road sections just before the stoplights). It must be noted that the results demonstrated by all the tires when braking from 100 km/h stayed within a 3.7-meter range (the results of the top seven tires stayed within one meter), and they are all rated as «A» by the EU labeling system, i.e. the competition was really stiff. Nevertheless, the remaining speed of the car fitted with the Vredestein tires was about 27 km/h, which proved enough to reduce the overall score, and the tire came second in the final standings.

Wet Braking

Maxxis
46.5
Michelin
46.7
Bridgestone
46.8
Goodyear
46.9
BFGoodrich
47.1
Continental
47.5
Nokian
47.6
Falken
49.2
Yokohama
50.1
Vredestein
50.2

Info! Wet braking in meters. (100-0 km/h)


The best to perform on a wet track was the Maxxis Premitra HP5. According to the experts, in the 2019 and 2020 tests (tires with a fitting diameter of 18 and 17 inches respectively), Maxxis tires demonstrated pretty good results but still fell short of the leaders in terms of braking performance. In the end of 2020, the model was upgraded, which helped it to yield a better performance in this part of the test. The second-best wet traction was demonstrated by the Bridgestone Turanza T005, which won silver in the AZ test two years ago. At that time, the Bridgestone had slight issues with wet traction but in the beginning of 2021 its tread compound was modified, and now the new Turanza ensures a high level of wet traction, short wet braking distances, good handling response, and optimum hydroplaning resistance. And, since the modifications did not compromise the tire’s dry performance, the Bridgestone tire became one of the leaders in this part of the test as well, where it behaved in a reliable and controllable way, and demonstrated short braking distances. On the whole, although the Turanza model did not win in any of the disciplines, it always stayed in the top part of the tournament bracket, which ultimately earned it the top line in the final standings. At the same time, the Maxxis tire demonstrated a very good wet grip, but had a few issues with dry handling, and particularly rolling resistance. Due to this, the tire ultimately came only fifth, nevertheless getting away with a «Highly Recommended» verdict.

Dry Braking

Maxxis
36.2
Vredestein
36.2
Nokian
36.5
Bridgestone
36.7
BFGoodrich
37.1
Michelin
37.1
Falken
37.4
Continental
38.0
Goodyear
38.0
Yokohama
38.0

Info! Dry braking in meters. (100-0 km/h)


Two other tires that received a «Recommended» verdict were the Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 2 and Michelin Primacy 4, which were both good on wet and dry pavement alike, i.e. demonstrated a well-balanced performance. On wet tarmac, the Goodyear model performed slightly better thanks to excellent lateral stability and neutral behavior it maintained up until the grip threshold was reached, while the Michelin tire showed almost as short a braking distance, but was slightly worse in terms of handling response in corners. At the same time, the Michelin model was one of the best on dry pavement, and, just as the Goodyear tire, had a very low rolling resistance.

Although the Nokian Wetproof model fell short of the leaders’ handling performance on dry pavement, and scored relatively low points for environmental performance and ride comfort, once the track was watered, it lived up to its name — well, almost. Despite the fact that the Nokian model demonstrated good acceleration and braking performance on wet pavement, its behavior was described as «sometimes unstable», and, if you take your foot off the gas during the maneuvering, the grip of the rear wheels drops, after which the ESP kicks in, and the car becomes prone to understeer. For this reason, the Nokian model was just a few points short of getting a «Highly Recommended» verdict.

Result summary. 2022 Auto Zeitung Summer Tire Test — 215/55R17 Places 1–10.
Result summary. 2022 Auto Zeitung Summer Tire Test — 215/55R17 Places 1–10. (click to enlarge)

The Continental EcoContact 6, Falken Ziex ZE-310, BFGoodrich Advantage, and Yokohama BluEarth-GT AE-51 also did not make the «Highly Recommended» list, first of all because of their relatively poor wet performance. The Continental model in this case is a slightly different matter because this is not a classic all-purpose tire but a product that was specially developed with a focus on reducing fuel consumption, which is further evidenced by the fact that of all the tested tires only the EcoContact was rated as «A» for environmental performance by EU label system. This was also confirmed by laboratory tests, in which the Continental model demonstrated the lowest rolling resistance. The alternative could have been the Continental PremiumContact 6, but, as the AZ experts noted, only the OE tires were available in the size selected for the test, and, since the purpose was to test tires designed for the aftermarket, it was decided to take the EcoContact 6, in spite of the fact that its wet grip would be obviously weaker. In the wet braking test, the Continental model was not really much worse than the best tires, but it was indeed prone to understeer and had very low hydroplaning resistance, among other things, due to its small tread depth. At the same time, the Michelin tire had grooves of the same depth, but it started floating much later than the Continental model, which ultimately came seventh. BFGoodrich and Yokohama also did not become the leaders in terms of evacuating water from the contact patch, ultimately dropping to the bottom lines of the tournament bracket, while the Falken model, which came eighth, demonstrated better results, the experts commending it for well-balanced performance. On the downside, the Falken tire had a very strong rolling resistance, due to which it lost a number of points and came only eighth.

Verdict

Small changes in the composition of the tread compound often make a big difference, which is proven by the results of the Bridgestone Turanza T005, the winner of the AZ test 2022. Silver goes to the Vredestein Ultrac, which ensures good hydroplaning resistance and a high level of overall safety when driving in rainy weather, followed by the Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 2 and Michelin Primacy 4, equally good on wet and dry pavement. Then comes the renewed Maxxis Premitra 5 that further improved its wet performance; the Nokian Wetproof fell just one step away from the «Highly Recommended» verdict, and the Falken Ziex ZE-310 was failed by a very high rolling resistance. And, finally, the BFGoodrich Advantage tire could not demonstrate a well-balanced performance, while the Yokohama BluEarth-GT AE-51 simply lacked overall traction.

1st place: Bridgestone / Turanza T005

Quick Take
84 65

Bridgestone Turanza T005

Price/Quality Dry Performance Handling Wet Performance Comfort Treadwear
  • This tire has run-flat model:
  • Available Sizes in Line: 236
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Audi A7 4K8 [2018 .. 2023]
    • • Volkswagen Tiguan
    • • Volkswagen Caddy V [2020 .. 2023]
    • • Skoda Superb
    • • Volkswagen Transporter
    • • Jeep Renegade
    • • Renault Captur
    • • Nissan Juke
    • • Ford Kuga
    • • Nissan Micra
    • • Volkswagen T-Roc I (A11/AC7) [2017 .. 2023]
    • • BMW 1 Series
    • • BMW 3 Series
    • • BMW 8 Series
    • • MINI Clubman
    • • Audi A6
    • • Audi A3
    • • Audi SQ2 GA [2019 .. 2020]
    • • Audi A1
    • • Audi A4
    • • Audi A5
    • • Mercedes-Benz S-Class
    • • Mercedes-Benz C-Class
    • • Mercedes-Benz A-Class
    • • Mercedes-Benz B-Class
    • • Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class
    • • MINI Countryman
    • • BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer
    • • Lexus LC Z100 [2017 .. 2023]
    • • Lexus LS
    • • Lexus ES
    • • Mazda Mazda6
    • • Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class
    • • Toyota Camry
    • • Volkswagen Polo
    • • Volkswagen Golf
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2018
  • Regions for sale: North America, Central & South America, Europe, Russia+, China, Southeast Asia, Middle East, Africa, Oceania
Bridgestone Turanza T005

  • A high level of driving safety in any weather conditions
  • Highly recommended

2nd place: Vredestein / Ultrac

Quick Take
66 29
Dry Performance Comfort Handling Wet Performance Treadwear
  • This tire replaced Vredestein / Ultrac Satin
  • Available Sizes in Line: 46
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Audi A1 GB [2018 .. 2023]
  • Year Released: 2021
  • Regions for sale: Europe
Vredestein Ultrac

  • Excellent wet performance (but a long braking distance)
  • Good results on dry pavement
  • Highly recommended

3rd place: Goodyear / EfficientGrip Performance 2

Quick Take
87 65

Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 2

Price/Quality Wet Performance Comfort Dry Performance Handling Treadwear
  • This tire replaced Goodyear / EfficientGrip Performance
  • Available Sizes in Line: 63
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Toyota Yaris Cross XP210 [2020 .. 2023]
    • • BMW iX [2021 .. 2023]
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2020
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+, China, Southeast Asia, Middle East
Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 2

  • Excellent grip in any conditions
  • Low rolling resistance
  • Highly recommended

3rd place: Michelin / Primacy 4

Quick Take
85 63
Comfort Dry Performance Wet Performance Price/Quality Handling Treadwear
  • Year Released: 2017
  • Regions for sale: Mexico, Central & South America, Europe, Russia+, East Asia, Southeast Asia, Middle East, Africa, Oceania
Michelin Primacy 4

  • Excellent grip in any conditions
  • Minor issues with lateral grip on wet pavement
  • Highly recommended

5th place: Maxxis / Premitra 5 HP5

Quick Take
76 47
Dry Performance Wet Performance Handling Comfort Treadwear
  • Year Released: 2015
  • Regions for sale: Mexico, Central & South America, Europe, Russia+, Japan, China, Middle East, South Africa, Oceania
Maxxis Premitra 5 HP5

  • Very good grip on wet pavement
  • Very good price/quality ratio
  • High rolling resistance
  • Highly recommended

6th place: Nokian / Wetproof

Quick Take
82 47
Price/Quality Wet Performance Dry Performance Comfort Handling Treadwear
  • Available Sizes in Line: 75
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2019
  • Regions for sale: Europe
Nokian Wetproof

  • A short braking distance and generally good wet grip (but a slightly temperamental behavior on the verge of losing grip may create difficulties for an inexperienced driver)
  • Good results on dry pavement

7th place: Continental / EcoContact 6

Quick Take
66 56

Continental EcoContact 6

Dry Performance Comfort Price/Quality Handling Wet Performance Treadwear Snow/Ice Performance
  • This tire has been replaced by Continental / EcoContact 6Q
  • This tire replaced Continental / ContiEcoContact 5
  • Available Sizes in Line: 175
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Volvo XC40 I [2017 .. 2023]
    • • Volkswagen Passat Variant B8 Facelift [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Jaguar XE X760 Facelift [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Volvo V60 II [2018 .. 2023]
    • • Ford Fiesta VII [2017 .. 2023]
    • • Ford Focus IV (C519) [2018 .. 2023]
    • • Ford Focus Active IV [2018 .. 2023]
    • • Ford Puma II (J2K) [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Ford Kuga III (CX482) [2019 .. 2023]
    • • BMW 4 Series G22/G23/G26 [2020 .. 2023]
    • • Peugeot 2008 II (P24) [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Opel Mokka II [2020 .. 2023]
    • • DS DS 3 Crossback EMP1 [2018 .. 2023]
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2018
  • Regions for sale: USA+, Canada, Europe, Russia+, East Asia, Middle East, South Africa, Oceania
Continental EcoContact 6

  • Very low rolling resistance
  • Acceptable wet grip (but very low hydroplaning resistance)

8th place: Falken / Ziex ZE310 Ecorun

Quick Take
75 44

Falken Ziex ZE310 Ecorun

Dry Performance Handling Comfort Treadwear Wet Performance Price/Quality
  • Available Sizes in Line: 131
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Audi A1 citycarver GB [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Audi Q3 F3 [2018 .. 2023]
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2017
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+
Falken Ziex ZE310 Ecorun

  • Acceptable level of driving safety on wet and dry pavement (despite the slightly lowered overall traction)
  • Very high rolling resistance
  • Average riding comfort

9th place: BFGoodrich / Advantage

Quick Take
70 49
Comfort Handling Price/Quality Dry Performance Wet Performance
  • Year Released: 2020
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Middle East
BFGoodrich Advantage

  • Short braking distance on wet pavement
  • Insufficient lateral grip on wet pavement
  • Average hydroplaning resistance

10th place: Yokohama / BluEarth-GT AE-51

Quick Take
N/A 37

Yokohama BluEarth-GT AE-51

  • Available Sizes in Line: 72
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Mazda Mazda2 DJ Facelift [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Mazda Mazda3 BP [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Mitsubishi Mirage A0 Facelift [2016 .. 2020]
    • • Toyota Yaris Cross XP210 [2020 .. 2023]
    • • Subaru Levorg VN [2020 .. 2023]
    • • Toyota Aqua Facelift II [2017 .. 2023]
    • • Toyota Corolla X (E210) [2018 .. 2023]
    • • Toyota Voxy III (R80) Facelift [2017 .. 2023]
    • • Toyota Noah III Facelift [2017 .. 2023]
  • Year Released: 2019
  • Regions for sale: USA+, Canada, Central & South America, Europe, Russia+, East Asia, Middle East, Oceania
Yokohama BluEarth-GT AE-51
  • Acceptable results on dry pavement
  • Poor wet performance (the tire lacks traction just when you need it most)
  • Increased rolling resistance

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