For its latest all season tyre test, the German magazine has taken things a step further by comparing the performance of new tyres and worn tyres.

By Published On: 8 June 2021Categories: Tyre reviews422 words2.2 min read
Autobild all season wear test
Different tyres have been tested at three different stages of wear – Copyright © Autobild

When is it time to change tyres?

This is the question AutoBild has asked with its latest tyre test. While Michelin spoke out against planned obsolescence during its big “Movin’On” conference on sustainable mobility, the German magazine wanted to know the real impact of tyre wear on performance. Several tyre manufacturers recommend changing tyres in winter when the tread depth reaches 4 mm, considerably above the minimum legal tread depth of 1.6 mm. “Why pay for a product if it needs to be changed at ¾ of its service life?” asked the AutoBild testers, who decided to check the differences between new and worn tyres to determine which ones perform better and longer.

Tyres tested when new, at 4 mm and 2 mm

6 different tyres were tested at three different stages of wear (new, tread depth of 4 mm and 2mm):

There was no Continental in the line-up with the AllSeasonContact arriving too late this year for AutoBild, (although this tyre did feature in the magazine’s all season tyre test published at the end of September). The 6 tyres selected were put through a series of tests reflecting the different seasons and driving conditions that can be found in Europe.

For AutoBild, the conclusion of the test was clear. Only 2 tyres were able to deliver optimum safety when worn: the Michelin CrossClimate + and the Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-2.

All season tyre wear
Copyright © Autobild

With a service life of 50,100 kilometres (31,130 miles) to reach the legal wear limit, the CrossClimate + offered the best mileage and best performance despite the wear. The clear winner of this test, only its aquaplaning performance deteriorated significantly with wear. Just as convincing, the Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-2 also had one of the best mileage performances on the market.

The other four tyres delivered at least 10,000 kilometres (6,214 miles) less than the two leaders. But what was even more striking in this AutoBild test was that the performance of these tyres dropped significantly as soon as the tread depth reached 4mm, particularly in wet and snowy conditions.

The Nokian Weatherproof is a prime example. Although very good in all driving conditions when new, its performance dropped drastically when the tread depth reached 4 mm and even more so when it reached 2 mm. For this reason, the tyre struggled to convince AutoBild which placed it last in the ranking.

Find the test and full results (in German) on the AutoBild website.

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