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2019 Summer tyre test: Auto Zeitung comparison test of 18 inch tyres for passenger cars

Auto Zeitung selected 9 summer tyres and one all season tyre for its 2019 tyre test. If, on the whole, the results are consistent with the magazine’s expectations, certain tyres are surprising.

Auto Zeitung have tested 10 tyres for family and passenger cars in its latest 2019 comparison test

Auto Zeitung have tested 10 tyres for family and passenger cars in its latest 2019 comparison test © Auto Zeitung

10 tyres tested

The tyre testing season is in full swing! After the Auto Bild summer tyre comparison tests for city cars, SUVs and sports cars, it is now the other German magazine’s turn to publish the results of its test. Auto Zeitung selected 10 tyres in the size 235/45 R18, very popular with passenger or compact cars such as the Vauxhall Astra, Insignia, Peugeot 508, Skoda Superb, Volkswagen Passat and the Ford Mondeo or S-Max. If 9 of these tyres are for summer, the German magazine decided to add an all season tyre, the Michelin CrossClimate+, to the test line-up:

The various tests were relatively standard (speed, braking, comfort, etc.) with half of the final score for wet performance and the other half for dry performance.

Auto Zeitung track tyre testing

© Auto Zeitung

Price, a fairly reliable indicator

If the Nankang AS1 is by far the cheapest tyre of this comparison test, it is also the one delivering the lowest level of performance. With this tyre, Auto Zeitung’s Skoda Superb Combi needs 22.7 metres more than the best tyre to come to a standstill in wet conditions. Also, it is almost 10 seconds behind the best tyre in wet track handling tests, and is at the limit of losing control on this surface. If the difference is less in dry track handling tests, the Nankang AS1 is still the least efficient of the 10 tyres tested. 

The Kumho Ecsta HS51, the second cheapest tyre, is not as reliable and is unable to imitate the best tyres. In wet conditions, its braking distance is 18.5 metres longer than the best tyre and is behind in wet track handling tests. However, it has the best aquaplaning resistance of the comparison test. 

The Apollo Aspire XP also has a good resistance to aquaplaning, but braking distances are too long, especially in wet conditions, where it needs 11 metres more to come to a standstill than the best tyre. It performs quite well in dry and wet track handling tests despite its poor lateral grip due to soft sidewalls.

Continental PremiumContact 6 winner of the Auto Zeitung summer tyre test

© Auto Zeitung

The surprise of this comparison test comes from the Michelin CrossClimate + which is the most expensive tyre tested. Despite the fact that it is an all season tyre which is a compromise solution between a summer tyre and a winter tyre, it manages to deliver a good level of performance. Auto Zeitung also obtains the shortest wet braking distance with this tyre. But logically, it is outperformed by most of the other tyres in tests conducted in dry conditions.

Well balanced, the Yokohama BluEarth AE50 does a good job for Auto Zeitung. If the Japanese tyre manufacturer is not the best in aquaplaning tests, it is relatively efficient in wet braking and wet handling tests. It is also quite comfortable and economical thanks to its low rolling resistance.

Despite relatively long wet braking distances, 11 metres more than the best tyre, the Bridgestone Turanza T005 compensates with its very good performances in dry conditions. Very efficient in aquaplaning tests, it also has a very low rolling resistance. 

The Pirelli Cinturato P7 shows no real weakness according to Auto Zeitung. Quite well balanced, it obtains good results in braking tests, particularly in wet conditions. On the handling track, the difference is less than one second with the best tyre. 

Although one of the cheapest tyres, the Maxxis Premitra HP5 also delivers good performance, to the surprise of Auto Zeitung who did not expect it to rank as high. It finishes 2nd in dry braking tests at only 40 cm from the first tyre. On the track, it finishes in the top 3 in each test, whether in wet or dry conditions. Performances which allow it to rank amongst the best tyres of this comparison test.

The most expensive tyre after the CrossClimate +, the Michelin Primacy 4 delivers good results in the wet. But it is most at ease in dry conditions with a 3rd place in braking tests and a 2nd place in dry track handling tests. Without any real weaknesses, it has the lowest rolling resistance of the tyres tested.

But, according to Auto Zeitung, the best 2019 summer tyre for family and passenger cars is the Continental Premium Contact 6. It finishes 1st in dry braking, dry track handling and wet track handling tests. In wet braking tests, it is the first summer tyre and is only beaten by the Michelin CrossClimate + all season tyre. Very comfortable, it has a high price tag in line with the performance it promises.

Tyre

Ranking

Remarks

Continental Premium Contact 6

1

Best tyre in dry and wet conditions

Michelin Primacy 4

2

Good dry handling, high price

Maxxis Premitra HP5

3

Very good price performance ratio

Pirelli Cinturato P7

4

Good overall results, average wet handling

Bridgestone Turanza T005

5

Good handling performance, relatively long wet braking distances

Yokohama BluEarth AE50

6

Well balanced, less efficient against aquaplaning

Michelin CrossClimate+

7

Best wet braking distance, not as good in dry conditions

Apollo Aspire XP

8

Good aquaplaning resistance, relatively long wet braking distances

Kumho Ecsta HS51

9

Good aquaplaning resistance, long braking distances

Nankang AS1

10

Low noise, but not reassuring in the wet

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