The Swiss Touring Club (TCS) and ADAC continue their long standing partnership with the publication of a new tyre test. After testing summer tyres in the size 235/55 R17 for vans, the automobile associations have chosen the same size for this all season tyre comparison test.

By Published On: 3 June 2021Categories: Tyre reviews761 words4 min read
All season tyre test Volkswagen T6: grip and braking performance on wet roads
© Youtube / Touring Club Suisse

7 all season tyres tested

After comparing 12 summer tyres in the size 235/55 R17, last year, ADAC and TCS have used the same test vehicles – a Volkswagen California T6 and a Ford Kuga – to test 7 all season tyres.

This size is suitable for medium-sized SUVs, vans for private use, and even high performance vehicles: Audi A7Q3Ford KugaS-MaxJaguar XF, Mercedes Classe S, Classe V, Volvo S60,  XC60, Volkswagen TiguanT6

ADAC all season tyre test with the Ford Kuga in dry conditions
© Youtube / Touring Club Suisse

The following tyres were tested:

These all season tyres were put through different tests in dry (15%), wet (30%), snowy (20%) and icy (10%) conditions accounting for 75% of the score. Noise, fuel consumption and wear resistance accounting for the remainder. TCS and ADAC consider that “a real all season tyre should be able to compete with summer and winter tyres in extreme seasonal conditions”. By that they mean hot summers and cold winters. A bias that is not in favour of these tyres, hence the relatively disappointing results. As such, with current technologies, it is impossible for the all season tyres to win since they will always be less efficient than specialised tyres.

The all season tyre, still a matter of compromise

The ADAC and TCS scoring method means that none of the tyres tested are recommended. If legally they are considered to be winter tyres thanks to the 3PMSF marking, all season tyres do not reach the level of “real” winter tyres, particularly when it comes to driving on wet surfaces, when it is cold or in snow and icy conditions.

ADAC all season tyre test in snow
© Youtube / Touring Club Suisse

The Vredestein Quatrac Pro and Bridgestone Weather Control A005 tyres obtain the “not recommended” rating due to their poor results in at least one category. Nevertheless, the latter obtains the best score on dry surfaces, on wet surfaces and on ice. But compared with other tyres in snow, the Bridgestone tyre fails to be reassuring and is even less so when up against a winter tyre. All the same, it seems to be a good solution for drivers who are rarely confronted with snow in winter but rather with cold and wet conditions.

5 tyres recommended with reservation

5 tyres are recommended with reservations, 4 of which due to their dry performance which falls below ADAC and TCS expectations for a summer tyre. The Continental AllSeasonContactGoodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-2Nokian Weatherproof and Uniroyal AllSeasonExpert 2 tyres are satisfactory in wet conditions but did not convince the test drivers in dry conditions. According to them, the fault often requires correcting the trajectory.

ADAC and TCS test of all season tyres in wet conditions
© Youtube / Touring Club Suisse

On the contrary, the Michelin CrossClimate + performs well in dry conditions but lacks performance in wet conditions, particularly when it comes to aquaplaning resistance. It finishes below its competitors on snow, notably for braking and handling despite delivering good traction.

Finally, this test does not give a clear winner, ADAC and TCS prefer specialised winter and summer tyres. Yet, all season tyres offer a significant advantage: that of not having to change tyres at each season, and they also offer a good performance compromise. The latest tyre technologies allow city consumers or those living in temperate regions to deal with snow a few days per year. For drivers in mountain and cold regions, winter tyres remain the most sensible choice. Our advice when you buy tyres: first evaluate your needs and your driving conditions. And, once your tyres are fitted, be aware of their strengths and weaknesses to anticipate their reaction.

The best all season tyres for SUVs                                          +  –
Continental AllSeasonContact Good grip in snow and ice 
Low fuel consumption
Weaknesses on dry surfaces
Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-2 Good on ice, wet surfaces and low wear Weaknesses on dry surfaces and in snow
Michelin CrossClimate + One of the best on dry surfaces and on ice
High resistance to wear
Weaknesses in snow and for aquaplaning
Nokian Weatherproof Good on wet surfaces and in snow Weaknesses on dry surfaces
Uniroyal AllSeasonExpert 2 Good in snow and ice Weaknesses on dry surfaces
Vredestein Quatrac Pro Low noise and fuel consumption Weak on snow and on dry surfaces
Bridgestone WeatherControl A005 The best on wet surfaces, dry surfaces and ice The weakest in snow

More detailed results are published on the Swiss Touring Club website (in French). The individual performances of each tyre are also available on the ADAC test page (in German) by individually clicking on the name of the tyres in the results table.

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