Are you overwhelmed by the limitless choices available when it comes time to select a new set of tires for your larger crossover or SUV? With dozens of brands and hundreds of tires calling out for your attention and hard-earned dollars, the process of selecting a new set of rubber for your utility vehicle can be a daunting one.
Your crossover or SUV is a do-it-all machine designed for use in a multitude of conditions and situations, and it needs a tire built to perform well in all of them. In most cases, this involves special measures in the construction and design of the tire that allows it to offer a pleasing highway ride and acceptable noise levels, while also providing enhanced traction via unique tread patterning for use on slippery, loose or muddy surfaces.
Further, modern technology is allowing manufacturers of SUV tires to offer better on and off-road performance and fuel efficiency, while maintaining the traction and grip levels expected by shoppers.
Of course, individual buyers vary vastly — as do their needs and wants from a new set of tires. No tire is the perfect solution every time, though below, we’ll highlight some of the most popular options in replacement crossover and SUV tires, and look at some of the key benefits of each.
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Editor's Pick: Cooper Starfire
From Cooper tires comes the Cooper Starfire line of SUV tires. Backed by Cooper’s reputation for high-performance and affordable pricing, these highly accessible tires are popular and fully featured — not to mention built for a comfortable highway ride in modern SUVs, light trucks and crossovers, while providing solid all-surface traction.
A specially designed center-rib enhances ride smoothness and overall comfort, while circumferential grooves effectively evacuate water, mud and slush from the treads for all-condition confidence. With value pricing and premium performance, many shoppers choose the Cooper Starfire line of tires to experience solid all-around performance that won’t break the bank. A wide range of sizes are available and focus on today’s most popular vehicles. Though pricing is compelling, some owners wish for better wet-surface traction and report higher-than-expected road noise levels.
Michelin Latitude Tour
Michelin’s Latitude Tour All-Season Radial tires are backed by one of the most trusted names in tires. Designed with numerous premium features, they aim to give drivers of SUVs and crossovers added peace of mind in all driving conditions. For this second-generation of the Latitude Tour tire, engineers focused on reducing stopping distances and boosting fuel efficiency by incorporating several elements from Michelin’s energy-efficient tire range. Comfort Control technology employs special design and manufacturing provisions to reduce vibrations and noise, too.
All said, these well-reviewed tires leave no stone unturned in their mission to use superior technology to turn in a superior driving experience. Most owner reviews are very positive, but be prepared to spend a premium on these pricier tires.
Pirelli Scorpion Verde
With a focus on premium performance and maximum fuel efficiency, these Green Performance tires from Pirelli capitalize on the latest resources, structures, and design elements to give drivers top-notch traction on all surfaces, strong braking grip, low noise levels, and reduced fuel usage.
Highly rated for overall comfort and a long service life, and backed by strong ratings for braking and all-condition handling, these premium tires help maintain the comfort and performance expected from the modern crossover or SUV, while saving money and reducing the driver’s carbon footprint.
With proven performance and clever innovations, Falken Wildpeak tires are popular with SUV, crossover and 4×4 drivers from all walks of life. Designed to deliver high-performance traction in any weather or setting, their aggressive tread design combines with a rugged inner construction to deliver long life and worry-free operation. Optimized carefully for on and off-road driving, these trail-ready tires feature a unique heat-diffuser system in the sidewall which helps to keep critical parts of the tire cool, even in severe use, or while towing heavy loads.
Uniquely shaped tread blocks are engineered to prevent picking up stones while providing superior contact patch rigidity to enhance on-road handling and steering response. Protective implements built into the tire sidewalls, and the ability to tackle winter conditions, help round out the package.
Bridgestone Dueler H/T
This popular all-season light truck tire is intended for use on light-duty pickups and numerous sport utility vehicles that are operated primarily in an on-road setting. Chosen by numerous automakers as the factory-equipment tires on a variety of models, they provide aggressive looks, strong all-surface performance, and maximized performance and wear properties.
Specially designed independent tread blocks work with an all-season rubber compound that excels at delivering strong traction on wet, dry, or lightly snow-covered roads. Further, Bridgestone’s signature UNI-T suite of technologies are built in, helping to minimize noise levels while maximizing comfort. These tires are worth consideration by shoppers who occasionally venture into trails and off-road settings, but who primarily want maximum performance, refinement and comfort on the road ‘more’ travelled.
Continental CrossContact LX20
With the promise of exceptional on-road manners and performance, ride comfort, and fuel-savings built right in, Continental’s CrossContact LX20 tires target the crossover and SUV driver who primarily operates their vehicle on the road, but who still occasionally visits cottage trails, dirt roads, and other light off-road settings. A long wear life and superior wet-traction braking performance are noted, and engineers specified the use of special rubber compound additives that help improve treadwear and fuel efficiency without compromise.
Distinctive traction grooves and notched outboard shoulders are deployed to improve noise levels, steering feel and straight-line stability. These popular and well-reviewed tires are a solid pick for exceptional and long-wearing on-road performance, fuel savings, and adequate grip and confidence in light off-road settings. Owner reviews are strongly positive, though these tires are relatively pricey.
Michelin LTX M/S2
Michelin’s best-selling light-truck tire boasts fantastic stopping performance, long tread-life with solid all-season capability, and exclusive MaxTouch technology, which optimizes contact with the road in all driving maneuvers, to ensure even wear, easy rotatability, and a long life from the tire. Use in light off-road and even mild winter conditions is no problem, thanks to a tread design with a high number of biting edges. Note that this is not a dedicated winter tire, however.
As the second-generation of Michelin’s popular LTX M/S tire, improvements abound — making this tire a worthy upgrade and replacement over the original. Owner reviews are generally positive, with top marks for wet performance, dry performance, and comfort. With a solid feature set and good all-around performance and traction, it’s little wonder why this is one of the most popular light truck, crossover and SUV tires on the road.
Firestone Destination LE 2
Strong, efficient and long-lasting, the Firestone Destination LE2 tires are among the most highly rated on the scene, and blend affordable pricing and respectable performance to make them a go-to for the value-minded shopper. Designed for use on light trucks, vans, SUV’s and crossovers, this all-season truck tire incorporates numerous provisions to turn in a long life, a comfortable ride, and strong all-season traction.
A silica-enhanced rubber compound improves fuel efficiency and tire life without sacrificing grip. Excellent water and mud evacuation properties are enabled by a specially designed tread pattern, and occasional use in light snow is no problem thanks to zigzag tread sipes that provide additional biting edges. Twin steel belts provide reinforcement, for uniform strength and top-notch durability, even on rough roads. The owner reviews say it all: these look to be a great tire at a great price with pleasing performance and longevity.
Yokohama Geolandar A/T-S
With special provisions designed to enhance off-road traction, on-road handling, and a long life of durable performance, the Geolandar A/T-S from Yokohama is an on and off-road tire designed for use by owners of Jeeps, pickups, SUVs and other 4×4 vehicles that will regularly see off-road driving. A bold style and off-road attitude are built in and these popular tires are designed to deliver years of performance, thanks in part to special design elements that help promote even wear. A silica-enhanced rubber compound and off-road optimized tread pattern helps dial up confidence on all surfaces, delivering appreciable off-road traction with excellent on-road control.
Dual-purpose sipes and grooves help increase tread life while simultaneously enhancing traction in an off-road setting via increased biting edges. Additionally, beefy sidewall protectors are integrated, helping to increase loose-surface traction while protecting the tire from cuts and abrasion. Dual steel belts provide appreciable strength, too. Most owner reviews report satisfactory performance for the money and indicate a tire that lasts as long as promised.
Strong, durable, affordable and well-reviewed, Hankook DynaPro tires are a great pick in an off-road focused tire for SUVs, trucks and 4x4s that will regularly see use in challenging terrain. A tough tread pattern and beefy block structure encapsulate a rugged internal construction that focuses on delivering a long-wearing tire. With among the best treadwear ratings in the industry, DynaPro tires are built, in no uncertain terms, to last.
Clever design touches include wrap-around edges that give the tire added bite in mud and snow while protecting the sidewall from cuts and scrapes. Numerous structural reinforcements and a jointless bead wire add extra confidence, even allowing the tire to be operated safely in an off-road setting at low pressure.
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