2017 Sport Auto Winter Tyre Test

Test Summary
Best tyre for dry roadsNokian WR A4
Best tyre for wet roadsGoodyear UltraGrip Performance Gen 1
Best tyre for snowContinental WinterContact TS 850 P
Hankook Winter i cept evo2
The best tyre overallContinental WinterContact TS 850 P
Goodyear UltraGrip Performance Gen 1
The lowest fuel useContinental WinterContact TS 850 P
The most comfortableCooper Weather Master SA2 Plus
Nokian WR A4
The best dry handlingToyo Snowprox S954
Hankook Winter i cept evo2
The quietest tyreContinental WinterContact TS 850 P
We're a little bit late with this one, as it's likely the UK has had most of its bad weather for winter 2017/18, however we can't resist covering a winter ultra high performance tyre test, especially when they use a RWD Toyota GT86 as the test car!

For this test, Sport Auto magazine fitted the GT86 with ten different patterns of 225/40 R18 sports winter tyres, and put the tyres through the normal dry, wet and snow testing.

Snow

Looking at the snow braking and snow handling tests, no tyre dominated. The Hankook Winter I*Cept Evo 2 won the snow braking test but could only manage fifth in snow handling, while the Michelin Pilot Alpin 4 won the snow handling tests but could only manage sixth during snow braking testing! The Continental WinterContact TS850 P, which has now been replaced buy the WinterContact TS860 S, had the best overall result finishing in the top three in both tests. The Nankang SV2 proved to be the weakest in both snow tests.

Wet

During wet testing, the Continental once again proved to be amongst the best along with the Goodyear UltraGrip Performance Gen-1 and Michelin Pilot Alpin 4 dominating the top three. The Toyo Snowprox S954 had an extremely poor result, finishing in last place by quite a margin.

Dry

As with the snow testing, the best dry braking tyre didn't do well during the dry handling test, and the best dry handling tyre was the worst dry braking tyre! While this is unusual for dry testing and might highlight the difference between FWD and RWD for winter tyres, there were two brands which managed to score consistently - the Nokian WR A4 and Toyo Snowprox S954 finished top three for both tests.

Results

The limited coverage of the full results are below, please see the Sport Auto article for the full test data.

Continental WinterContact TS 850 P1st: Continental WinterContact TS 850 P
Total: 71.8 / Dry: 8 / Wet: 9.4 / Snow: 9.4 / Subjective: 8 / Comfort: 8 / Rolling Resistance: 10 / Noise: 10 / Overall: 9
Positive: Excellent grip and stable behavior on snow and dry surfaces. low rolling resistance, very low noise level
Negative: Relatively weak resistance to aquaplaning, relatively long braking distances on dry surfaces
Overall: Highly recommended

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Goodyear UltraGrip Performance Gen 11st: Goodyear UltraGrip Performance Gen 1
Total: 69.2 / Dry: 8.2 / Wet: 9.9 / Snow: 9.1 / Subjective: 8 / Comfort: 8 / Rolling Resistance: 8 / Noise: 9 / Overall: 9
Positive: Excellent grip and very good handling on wet surfaces, balanced and reliable behavior in the snow, balanced handling on dry roads
Negative: Slow steering response in the dry
Cost: Highly recommended

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Michelin Pilot Alpin 43rd: Michelin Pilot Alpin 4
Total: 66.4 / Dry: 7.8 / Wet: 9.6 / Snow: 8.5 / Subjective: 8 / Comfort: 7 / Rolling Resistance: 8 / Noise: 9 / Overall: 8.5
Positive: Good results in the wet, good handling in the dry
Negative: Relatively weak resistance to aquaplaning, long dry braking distances
Overall: Recommended

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Hankook Winter i cept evo24th: Hankook Winter i cept evo2
Total: 63 / Dry: 8 / Wet: 6.7 / Snow: 9.4 / Subjective: 10 / Comfort: 7 / Rolling Resistance: 6 / Noise: 8 / Overall: 7.9
Positive: Strong in the snow, good dry handling
Negative: Average wet performance, long braking distances in the dry and wet
Overall: Conditionally recommended

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Yokohama W drive V9055th: Yokohama W drive V905
Total: 57.8 / Dry: 7.6 / Wet: 7.9 / Snow: 8.5 / Subjective: 6 / Comfort: 6 / Rolling Resistance: 6 / Noise: 8 / Overall: 7.8
Positive: Good snow braking, good wet handling
Negative: Slow steering reactions in the dry, relatively noisy
Overall: Conditionally recommended

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Pirelli Winter Sottozero 36th: Pirelli Winter Sottozero 3
Total: 59.9 / Dry: 7.3 / Wet: 8.4 / Snow: 7.5 / Subjective: 7 / Comfort: 7 / Rolling Resistance: 7 / Noise: 8 / Overall: 7.7
Positive: Good handling and grip in the wet
Negative: Slow steering reactions in the dry, relatively noisy
Overall: Conditionally recommended

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Nokian WR A47th: Nokian WR A4
Total: 66 / Dry: 9 / Wet: 6.6 / Snow: 6.8 / Subjective: 9 / Comfort: 9 / Rolling Resistance: 9 / Noise: 9 / Overall: 7.6
Positive: Very good in the dry with good grip and precise steering, short braking distances in the snow, low noise level
Negative: Unstable in the wet with high levels of oversteer
Overall: Conditionally recommended

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Cooper Weather Master SA2 Plus8th: Cooper Weather Master SA2 Plus
Total: 61 / Dry: 7.4 / Wet: 8.6 / Snow: 6.6 / Subjective: 7 / Comfort: 9 / Rolling Resistance: 6 / Noise: 9 / Overall: 7.4
Positive: Good on wet surfaces, high levels of comfort
Negative: Poor steering and grip in the dry, low grip on snow
Overall: Conditionally recommended

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Nankang SV29th: Nankang SV2
Total: 57.5 / Dry: 8.6 / Wet: 6.8 / Snow: 5.2 / Subjective: 8 / Comfort: 7 / Rolling Resistance: 6 / Noise: 9 / Overall: 6.9
Positive: Very short braking distances and quick reactions to steering on dry surfaces, good resistance to aquaplaning
Negative: Very poor in the snow, noisy
Overall: Conditionally recommended

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Toyo Snowprox S9549th: Toyo Snowprox S954
Total: 60.2 / Dry: 8.7 / Wet: 5.9 / Snow: 5.7 / Subjective: 10 / Comfort: 7 / Rolling Resistance: 8 / Noise: 8 / Overall: 6.9
Positive: Quick and accurate reactions to steering on dry roads
Negative: Poor on snow and in the wet
Overall: Recommended with caution

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