In the past, all-season tires have been described as no-season tires due to their relative ineffectiveness compared to true winter tires, and their reduced grip compared to summer tires. But for those who see a wide variety of weather, Cooper has an all-season tire that would be perfect for sports car owners.
Called the Zeon RS3-G1, these new ultra high-performance all-season tires are part of the brand’s high-performance lineup that includes the Zeon RS3-S high performance summer tires, and the RS3-A all-season tires.
For sports cars, using all-season tires seems like a crazy idea. Usually a sports car will come with high-performance tires, which are great for providing an engaging feel and lots of grip, traits that most all-season tires aren’t known for.
Cooper says otherwise about these RS3-G1 tires, which will not only provide that important traction in the dry but also provide some confidence in rain and mild snow. It doesn’t hurt that it comes with an impressive warranty so that you won’t be left in the dust in terms of support if anything goes wrong.
I slapped these RS3-G1s on my own sports car, a 2013 Scion FR-S, to see exactly how they would fare on a sporty vehicle. Cooper imagines the tires being popular on year-long sports cars like the Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang, or even sport sedans.
There are several reasons these tires work well for performance driving and all season capability. There’s an asymmetrical tread pattern and design that provides grip and stability during cornering, so sports car owners can still push their vehicles when the road gets curvy. The tire also features more rubber on that outside shoulder and intermediate rib, which not only helps with grip and stability but has a much more appreciated side effect of reduced tire noise.
The reduced noise was immediately noticeable, and so was the fact that these tires felt much softer on the road. All-season tires aren’t usually as stiff as summer tires and tend to suffer in terms of responsiveness, but these Zeon RS3-G1 tires feature a high-performance silica compound that means these tires surprised me with how quickly they translated my actions with the steering wheel all the way to the road.
That sporty feeling is clearly still present with these all-season tires, something I wasn’t expecting. The limits don’t seem quite as high as ultra-high performance tires, but it provides plenty of grip and responsiveness for every day driving. I don’t think they’ll be a hit at your next lapping day at the track, but they will be more than enough for your regular commute and back road driving.
These Cooper Zeon RS3-G1 tires pack a few extra tricks to maintain grip and stability in wet weather. Like other all-season and winter tires, these tires feature sipes, which are small grooves in the tire that can help displace water, or provide an additional biting edge for the tire in snow. The sipes are also deep, meaning that as the tire wears out, they won’t lose that ever important grip in the wet weather.
Helping to point out when the tires are ready to be replaced is a wear indicator. It’s a little square on the tire that will start off as a perfect square, but transforms into an exclamation mark when it’s time to replace them.
Another great advantage to the tire is its warranty coverage. Cooper allows buyers to test out the tires for 45 days and features a 50,000-mile treadwear warranty when the same size is on both axles.
The tires are available in 37 sizes, fitting between 16 inches and 20 inches, but in our shopping research, we’ve found that the RS3-G1s are a bit more expensive than the same-sized summer tires. To help justify the cost difference consider that these all-season tires also include the M+S symbol, ensuring they’ll provide more grip in snow and mud than any summer tire can, with a competitive warranty that adds to your peace of mind and confidence in their durability.
Thanks to the Cooper Zeon RS3-G1, the myth that all-season tires aren’t suitable for sports cars is being debunked. While summer tires can’t be beat in terms of grip and handling, these all-season tires are a great choice for those who live in climates that see a diverse range of weather.