Auto Bild summer tyre test: 6 from 20 finalists given ‘exemplary’ rating
The unworthy have already been weeded out, and now Auto Bild has given the remaining 20 tyres from the original 52 candidates in its 2017 summer test a thorough going over. The size 225/50 R17 tyres were fitted to a BMW 320d for evaluation in a range of disciplines not covered in the preliminary round, including aquaplaning, rolling resistance, mileage and noise. Victory went to the top-ranked rubber from the initial test, the Continental PremiumContact 6.
The Continental tyre was one of six products to gain a rating of ‘exemplary’, and the German publication’s tyre testers said it provided the “best driving qualities on wet and dry surfaces, dynamic handling characteristics with precise cornering behaviour, short wet and dry stopping distances and superior mileage.” Thanks to this last point, the tyre was also titled the test’s ‘Eco Champion’. The only criticism levelled at the PremiumContact 6 was its high purchase price.
A trio of tyres – the Dunlop Sport Maxx RT2, Falken Azenis FK510 and Pirelli Cinturato P7 Blue – shared second place. All three demonstrated a similar balance of performance to the Continental tyre, however the Dunlop and Falken tyres showed a light weakness in the area of rolling resistance and the Pirelli rubber didn’t match the others for aquaplaning performance. This last point also applied to the Hankook Ventus Prime³, which finished behind the Cinturato P7 Blue in – depending on how you’re counting – third or fifth place. Nonetheless, the Hankook tyre was deemed to offer balanced handling characteristics and good braking in the wet and dry, low pass-by noise levels as well as good efficiency and a fair purchase price. All the above tyres were given an ‘exemplary’ rating, as was the Fulda SportControl 2, whose overall performance sufficed to overcome its efficiency result, which Auto Bild’s testers considered merely average.
The next two from the 20 tyres were rated ‘good’. The Bridgestone Turanza T001 Evo lost points for its low mileage, while the Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 3 was pulled up for only representing satisfactory value for money. Both tyres displayed strengths in the handling department – the Bridgestone tyre was judged to have “dynamic handling characteristics on wet surfaces” and balanced driving behaviour with precise cornering on dry roads, as well as a good safety margin in respect to aquaplaning. The Goodyear rubber was also considered a balanced tyre, with “safe driving characteristics on wet and dry road surfaces, good safety margins when aquaplaning and a short stopping distance on dry surfaces.”
This pair was followed by no less than ten tyres that obtained a ‘satisfactory’ rating, starting with the Michelin Primacy 3 and Uniroyal RainSport 3, continuing on to the Vredestein Ultrac Satin, Sava Intensa UHP 2, Toyo Proxes Sport, Maxxis Premitra HP5 and Avon ZV7, through to the Nokian zLine and Cooper Zeon CS8, as well as the Nova Force from Leao. “The tyre from Chinese manufacturer Leao surprised with its short stopping distance and low price,” wrote Auto Bild. The publication also noted that this product was “hard to find” in the market following Auto Bild’s testing last autumn, and apparently “sold out.”
The Auto Bild testers found this scarcity a “shame” considering the Leao tyre’s braking performance, price and low noise, however they also listed a number of weaknesses: “Delayed steering response and limited levels of grip on wet and dry surfaces, low mileage” were listed on the negative side of the tyre’s balance sheet. Nevertheless, it fared better in the comparative test than the Yokohama Advan Fleva V701, which finished in 19th place from 20 and was only ‘conditionally recommended’. On the one hand, the Auto Bild testers found the Yokohama tyre to “stop well on dry surfaces,” however they also found its aquaplaning characteristics to be limited, steering response delayed and wet grip levels low.
The spoon of wood in the final of this year’s test was reserved for the Kumho Ecsta HS51, which Auto Bild rated as ‘not recommended’. The testers gave the tyre this rating due to its delayed steering response and handling understeer on wet and dry surfaces as well as the “lowest mileage” of the 20 candidates. A positive point was the Kumho tyre’s good performance in the aquaplaning test.
Category: Product News