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2020 summer tyre test: AutoBild’s verdict on the 20 best UHP tyres

After testing the wet and dry braking performance of 50 UHP summer tyres in the size 245/45 R18 100 Y, AutoBild selected the 20 tyres with the shortest braking distance and put them through an additional series of tests. And once again, the leading brands take the top spots.

2020 Autobild summer tyre test

Final round of 2020 Autobild UHP summer tyre test. © Auto Bild

Summer sports tyre comparison test: what tyres were tested?

After the preliminary test in braking performance, Autobild tested 20 car tyres in a final testing to determine which of the 20 finalists is the best 2020 summer tyre, AutoBild has not changed the formula. The finalists were thoroughly tested on different road surfaces with a BMW 5-Series:

Before unveiling the best UHP tyres according to AutoBild, one brand in particular has drawn our attention, not by its presence but rather by its absence: Pirelli. The P Zero was tested during the preliminary braking round, but only finished 25th out of 50. A surprising position when we compare it with the results obtained with its current version - the P Zero PZ4 - which was the clear winner of the 2019 AutoBild UHP tyre test in exactly the same size as for this test, 245/45 R18 100 Y.

An error made by the German magazine who bought the wrong version of the tyre? For the 2020 test, AutoBild found itself with an old model (but still available from retailers) whereas the current version could have finished on the podium. Therefore, when buying a tyre, be sure to check the age of the tyre using the DOT marking or any manufacturer's markings such as "PZ4" on Pirelli tyres.

The best UHP summer tyres according to AutoBild

What are the best sports tyres?

+

-

1 - Continental PremiumContact 6 (exemplary)

Dynamic handling and economical

None

1 - Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 5 (exemplary)

Balanced sporty performance

None

3 - Michelin Pilot Sport 4 (exemplary)

Precise handling and safety

Expensive

4 - Vredestein Ultrac Vorti (exemplary)

Excellent grip on all types of roads

Fuel consumption

5 - Apollo Aspire XP (exemplary)

Good handling and good price / quality ratio

None

6 - Nexen N’Fera Sport (exemplary)

Good performance in dry conditions

Fuel consumption

7 - Falken Azenis FK510 (exemplary)

Good performance / price ratio

None

8 - Nokian PowerProof (good)

Precise steering and good handling

Average mileage

9 - Firestone Roadhawk (good)

Balanced behaviour

Average mileage

9 - Fulda SportControl 2 (good)

Fuel consumption

Average mileage

11 - Bridgestone Potenza S001 (satisfactory)

Very good handling properties

Average mileage and high fuel consumption

12 - Hankook Ventus S1 evo3 (satisfactory)

Short braking distances on all surfaces

Average mileage

13 - Laufenn S Fit EQ+ (satisfactory)

Good dry braking

Average mileage and understeers in wet conditions

14 - Dunlop SportMaxx RT2 (satisfactory)

Good dry braking

Average mileage and long wet braking distances

15 - Kleber Dynaxer UHP (satisfactory)

High mileage and low rolling resistance

Lateral grip in wet and dry conditions

16 - Uniroyal RainSport 3 (satisfactory)

High mileage and low rolling resistance

Slow steering response in wet conditions and understeers

17 - Kumho Ecsta PS71 (conditionally recommended)

Good wet handling

Understeers in dry conditions, low mileage and high rolling resistance

18 - Maxxis Victra Sport 5 (conditionally recommended)

Good road holding

Low mileage and long wet braking distances

19 - Toyo Proxes Sport (conditionally recommended)

High aquaplaning resistance

Low mileage and long wet braking distances

20 - Zeetex HP 2000 vfm (conditionally recommended)

Short braking distances

Understeers in wet conditions and low mileage

No braking problems

The first round organised by AutoBild with 50 tyres eliminated those with braking distances which were too long, which can be considered to be dangerous in certain cases. This is why none of the 20 finalist tyres were relegated due to wet braking performance, for example. However, the Kumho, Maxxis, Toyo and Zeetex tyres are only conditionally recommended. This was due to a few weaknesses when cornering in wet conditions but above all, a low mileage which is not justified by their cheap price.

Low mileage is also the weakness of the Bridgestone Potenza S001 and Hankook Ventus S1 evo 3 tyres, which make up their score with very good performances in dry and wet conditions. This allows them to obtain the “satisfactory” rating, just like four other tyres.

The Nokian Powerproof, Fulda SportControl 2 and Firestone Roadhawk just miss out on the “exemplary” rating and have to settle for a simple “good” from AutoBild. Despite very good performances for wet handling, once again, their low mileage is singled out by the German magazine.

Seven tyres considered “exemplary”

The first seven tyres of the comparison test all obtain the “exemplary” rating from AutoBild.

The Falken Azenis FK510 delivers a very good price/performance ratio and a high mileage. This is also the case for the Apollo Aspire XP or the Vredestein Ultrac Vorti despite a rolling resistance which is slightly high for the latter.

And, on the podium, three premium brands: Michelin, Continental and Goodyear. The Michelin Pilot Sport 4 delivers a very high level of performances just like its two competitors, but is penalised by its price which is much higher than the others.

Finally, it is not one but two tyres that win the 2020 Auto Bild UHP summer tyre test: the Continental Premium Contact 6 and the Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 5.

The Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 5 is considered as being a very sporty tyre offering dynamic handling in wet and dry conditions. The steering response is precise, and it also offers a very good mileage at an affordable price.

The Continental Premium Contact 6 also offers balanced performances and dynamic handling. With its economical abilities (mileage, price, rolling resistance), it is designated as “economy” champion of the test.

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