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2019 summer tyres test for compact cars: the best tyres compared by ACE Lenkrad

The German automobile association magazine ACE Lenkrad has published its latest summer tyres test for 2019. This year, 9 tyres were compared in the size 205/55 R16.

Best summer tyre for compact cars, the 2019 ACE Lenkrad test

The German magazine ACE Lenkrad went to Bridgestone’s test centre to compare 9 summer tyres on a Skoda Octavia © ACE Lenkrad

9 tyres for compact cars tested

In Germany, ACE Lenkrad is the official magazine of Auto Club Europe, the second largest automobile club in the country with more than 620,000 members. As summer approaches, the magazine proposes a comparison test of tyres for compact cars in the popular size 205/55 R16 which is suitable for models such as the Audi A3, Citroën C4, Ford Focus, Mercedes-Benz A-Class, B-Class and C-Class, Opel Astra, Peugeot 2008, Renault Megane, Seat Leon, Volvo V40, Volkswagen Golf or Passat...

The magazine decided to test the 9 summer tyres on a Skoda Octavia for its comparison test:

ACE Lenkrad headed to Bridgestone’s test centre in Italy to conduct the different tests. Results in wet conditions accounted for a little more than 40% of the score. Dry performances represented just over 30% of the final score whereas the price, noise and rolling resistance completed the picture.

Test ACE Lenkrad wet cornering

© ACE Lenkrad

No significant weaknesses

For this 2019 edition of its tyre comparison test, ACE Lenkrad underlines, above all, the high level of products tested.

The Pirelli Cinturato P7 is the only tyre to be recommended with reservations. The Italian tyre manufacturer is slightly below the performances of its competitors being the least efficient in tests in dry conditions. It also finishes second last in wet conditions despite delivering short braking distances on this surface.

The Michelin Primacy 4 does slightly better thanks to a high level of handling performance on wet surfaces. But it does not confirm this performance in dry conditions, especially with longer braking distances than the best tyres. The French manufacturer’s tyre is also the most expensive tyre of the comparison test, which is to its disadvantage.

Test ACE Lenkrad noise

© ACE Lenkrad

The Hankook Ventus Prime 3 is the cheapest tyre of the ACE Lenkrad comparison test. A specificity that makes up for its shortcomings in wet handling tests, particularly in terms of aquaplaning resistance. On wet surfaces, it alternates between over and understeer, which sometimes makes it unpredictable. All the same, it performs well in dry conditions where it delivers short braking distances and the tyre is quite responsive and accurate.

The Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance obtains the same final score but not the same remarks. Although its braking distances are longer in wet conditions, it is reassuring and predictable in handling tests on this surface. ACE Lenkrad notes the same characteristics in dry conditions. On the price side, although more expensive than the Hankook tyre, it compensates with the lowest rolling resistance of the comparison test.

Despite delivering the longest braking distances in wet conditions, the Falken ZIEX ZE310 Ecorun proves to be a safe tyre on this surface. It has the best resistance to aquaplaning whether in a straight line or in bends. Although dry braking distances are slightly long, it offers a good handling response. The cheapest tyre, it also has the highest fuel consumption due to a high rolling resistance.

The Bridgestone Turanza T005 is close to the best. A well balanced tyre, it shows no real weaknesses apart from its high rolling noise. It is the best tyre, at equality, in dry conditions with short braking distances and safe handling. It is just missing a little something in wet conditions to win this comparison test and obtain the “very recommended” rating.

The Continental PremiumContact 6 manages to achieve the “very recommended” rating from ACE Lenkrad. The German manufacturer’s tyre has the shortest wet braking distance and is the most efficient and the fastest when driving on this surface despite having lower safety reserves than the other tyres against aquaplaning. Best tyre in dry conditions, on an equal footing with the Bridgestone tyre, it is easy to control even for less experienced drivers, according to the German magazine.

The Dunlop Sport BluResponse is almost faultless. Apart from reasonable lateral grip in wet conditions, the British manufacturer’s tyre lives up to the test expectations. This tyre has the best safety reserve offering a high resistance to aquaplaning and it is one of the best tyres in dry conditions. Its low rolling resistance and very good price gives this tyre an excellent price / performance ratio.

But the 2019 best summer tyre for compact cars according to ACE Lenkrad is the new Nokian WetProof. We tested it at the beginning of the year and this result confirms its potential. If the Finnish manufacturer wanted to build a “rain tyre”, it seems to have succeeded. In this comparison test, it is the tyre with the shortest wet braking distance, and the one offering the safest handling on this surface. ACE Lenkrad drivers underlined its “almost perfect” lateral guidance. It also performs well in dry conditions, but its price is on the high side.

Test ACE Lenkrad braking

© ACE Lenkrad




Nokian Wetproof


Excellent rain tyre, good in dry conditions

Dunlop Sport BluResponse


Good all rounder

Continental PremiumContact 6


Very good dry performance, average aquaplaning resistance

Bridgestone Turanza T005


Very good dry performance, high noise

Falken Ziex ZE310 Ecorun


Relatively cheap, long wet braking distances

Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance


Economical tyre, average wet performance

Hankook Ventus Prime3


Unpredictable wet handling, cheapest tyre

Michelin Primacy 4


Most expensive tyre, good wet performance

Pirelli Cinturato P7


Short wet braking distance, low handling performance


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