A new type of all-season tire promises better traction in ice and snow. These new tires are called all-weather or variable-condition tires. Consumer Reports just tested two brands.
When you're driving in the snow, all-season tires just don't grip the road as well as winter tires do. Putting on winter tires is a safer bet.
But you have to take them off in the spring, because on roads without snow, they don't grip as well or last as long as all-season tires.
Enter two new tires that promise the benefits of an all-season tire and great winter performance - the Nokian WR G3 and the Toyo Celsius.
Consumer Reports put both tires through its standard tests, including handling, braking and hydroplaning resistance.
Winter weather testing is conducted as night, so the sun won't affect the road conditions during snow-traction tests. Consumer Reports also tests on a skating rink to see how well the tires stop on ice.
"These tires did pretty well in our tests, with good stopping distances on dry pavement and ice. They also had very good snow traction," said Gene Petersen, Consumer Reports.
Overall, the two tires even outperformed many of the dedicated winter tires in Consumer Reports tests.
"Some winter tires rated higher in our tests, including some from Nokian and Toyo. But these tires combine traits of all-season and winter tires into one, which make them a good choice for people who live in a snow belt," Petersen said.
They will also save you the time and money of changing your tires.
The Nokian WR GR3 and Toyo Celsius tires cost slightly more than a typical all-season tire. They both come in popular sizes to fit most cars.
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Consumer Reports: All-season tires for snow, ice