ADAC size 225/45 R 17 tyre test: Private brand finishes in “victors’ quartet”

In addition to publishing a test of 15-inch tyres for small and compact cars, German motoring organisation the ADAC has tested the popular 225/45 R 17 Y fitment, a size often found on mid-sized saloons and estates such as the Audi A4, VW Golf, BMW 3 Series, Ford Mondeo, Mazda 6, Seat Leon, Skoda Octavia and Toyota Avensis. The ADAC used a VW Golf 7 to evaluate the 16 participating tyres and evaluated them on how they performed in a range of dry and wet surface criteria, as well as their rolling resistance, noise/comfort and wear characteristics.

Top honours went to the Continental SportContact 5, which achieved the best results on both wet and dry road surfaces. The Vredestein Ultrac Vorti delivered strong dry performance, while the Pirelli P Zero and the ESA Tecar Spirit 5 “complete the victors’ quartet” with strong wet surface performance for the Pirelli tyre and low fuel consumption for the ESA rubber. All four tyres were rated ‘good’. The affordably-priced ESA Tecar tyre is a private brand product from Swiss-based automotive buying group Tecar International. The range is said to be produced by “one of the world’s leading tyre manufacturers.”

Wet testing for the ADAC at Continental's Contidrom facility in Germany

Wet testing for the ADAC at Continental’s Contidrom facility in Germany

A ‘satisfactory’ rating was given to a further 11 tyres. These include the Hankook VentusS1 evo2 K117 and Sava Intensa UHP, which both displayed minor weaknesses on wet road surfaces, and the Nokian zLine, which also showed weaknesses on wet road surfaces. The Yokohama Advan Sport V105 was very good on dry road surfaces, however showed weaknesses in the wet and in regards to wear. And despite its name, the testers deemed the Uniroyal RainSport 3 to have demonstrated weaknesses on wet road surfaces.

The Michelin Pilot Sport 3 delivered good performance in the dry, however was marked down for wear, while the Toyo Proxes T1 Sport demonstrated weaknesses on wet surfaces and regarding wear. The testers thought the Firestone Firehawk SZ90 and Semperit Speed-Life 2 showed marked weaknesses on wet road surfaces, and the Fulda SportControl marked weaknesses on both wet and dry road surfaces. And although it displayed relatively good driving characteristics on dry road surfaces, the GT Radial Champiro HPY lost points due to significant weaknesses in the wet and for its wear characteristics.

Last place was reserved for the Maxxis Victra VS01, which ended the test with an ‘adequate’ rating as a result of its substantial weakness in the wet disciplines.

The ADAC notes that it only utilises tyres that are available for retail purchase in its testing, and therefore Bridgestone, Dunlop, Goodyear and Kumho tyres did not take part in the size 225/45 R 17 Y summer tyre test. The reason for this is that ranges from these brands have either undergone changes, as in the case of Bridgestone, or were replaced by a new-generation tyre. All participating tyres were in series production when testing began. Since that time, however, the Michelin Pilot Sport 3 has been succeeded by the Pilot Sport 4, the Toyo Proxes T1 Sport by the Proxes T1 Sport Plus, and the GT Radial Champiro HPY has been replaced by the SportActive.

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