Introducing its 2020 test, Auto Bild Allrad comments that all-season tyres weren’t always highly regarded. Their reputation was one of compromise, of products best suited to drivers who demanded little from their tyres. In the words of the specialist 4×4 and SUV magazine, an all-season tyre “used to be a bad summer tyre and then, in the second half of the year, a bad winter tyre.” But its latest test shows that the story is a very different one these days.
Auto Bild Allrad examined 11 all-season tyres in size 215/60 R16 99V, using a VW T-Roc as test vehicle. It discovered that some – such as the Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-3 and Continental AllSeasonContact – were the equals of winter tyres, even in the snow. Other tyres, most notably the Hankook Kinergy 4S2 and the new Vredestein Quatrac, gave summer tyres a run for their money in wet conditions.
“The trick for tyre manufacturers is to achieve really good grip on dry and wet roads without losing too much ground during testing on snow,” comments Auto Bild Allrad, adding that the Hankook and Vredestein tests managed this best in the current test.
Two test winners
Hankook Kinergy 4S2
+ Great all-rounder with excellent driving qualities in every weather condition, dynamic handling, harmonious steering, short braking distances on wet and dry surfaces, affordable purchase price.
+ Exemplary all-season tyre with impressive characteristics on snow & ice, high safety reserves for aquaplaning, precise handling in wet & dry conditions, short dry braking distances, low rolling resistance.
5 tyres gained ‘exemplary’ rating
The testers awarded Auto Bild Allrad’s top ‘exemplary’ rating to both winners, a distinction they shared with three other tyres. Third place was shared by Bridgestone and Goodyear.
Bridgestone Weather Control A005 evo
+ Balanced all-rounder with top driving characteristics on wet & dry roads, good winter qualities, dynamic wet & dry handling, short braking distances on wet surfaces, low rolling resistance.
Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-3
+ New all-season tyre with top characteristics on snow, high safety reserves for aquaplaning, stable wet & dry handling, harmonious steering.
– High purchase price.
Michelin CrossClimate +
+ Proven all-season tyre with balanced, high performance potential, good traction on snow, stable handling with precise steering, short braking distances in the wet.
– Slight weakness for aquaplaning when cornering.
Just one ‘good’ tyre
Falken EuroAll Season AS210
+ All-rounder with good driving characteristics in all weather conditions, harmonious steering, short braking distances on snow, affordable purchase price.
– Mediocre comfort, elevated rolling resistance.
Trio of ‘satisfactory’ tyres
+ Winter specialist with dynamic & sporty handling on snow as well as in wet conditions, precise turn-in, low rolling resistance.
– Extended braking distances on dry road surfaces, high purchase price.
+ Top characteristics on snow, good protection against aquaplaning, low rolling resistance, good comfort.
– Extended braking distances in wet & dry conditions, understeer in the wet & dry.
Kumho Solus 4S SUV HA32
+ Good safety reserves for aquaplaning, stable handling in dry conditions.
– Driving qualities on snow is only satisfactory, slight understeer in the wet, elevated rolling resistance.
+ Short braking distances on snowy surfaces, stable handling in the dry, affordable purchase price.
– Aquaplaning properties are only satisfactory, extended braking distances on wet & dry surfaces, understeer in the wet.
Last & least – not recommended
Nankang Cross Seasons AW-6
+ Very good winter characteristics, affordable purchase price.
– Limited grip on wet surfaces, delayed steering response, understeer in the wet & dry, dangerously extended braking distances in the wet.