Whether you own a car, truck or SUV, finding the best winter tires for your vehicle can be a daunting task. What tread will work best for my vehicle? What’s the proper size? Which ones are top-rated? How does this affect my insurance?
According to cansumer.ca, 76% of Canadians (69% outside of Quebec, where winter tires are mandated) switch over to winter tires to give them better traction and control on snowy and icy roads, with 79% of owners believing that they have saved them a potentially hazardous situation.
Well, if you didn’t already know, you’re entitled to a winter tire auto insurance discount in the province of Ontario if you purchase and install winter tires for your vehicle. Winter tires also give you better traction, making your overall driving experience safer and ensuring less risk of accidents and high premiums as a result. isure has taken the guesswork out of choosing the best winter tire brands to get you through the season safely and confidently.
1. Bridgestone Blizzak WS80
This tire is one of the most effective and popular snow tires that you can buy on the market today. When it comes to balancing price and performance, Bridgestone’s Blizzaks are legendary. The unique NanoPro-Tech Multicell hydrophilic compound wicks water off the road while microscopic bite particles (blended into the rubber) dig into icy surfaces.
Vehicle type: Coupes, minivans, compact cars and sedans
Warranty: Bridgestone’s Winter Tire Limited Warranty provides coverage extension up to five years and will replace the tire(s) with an equivalent new tire for a pro-rated purchase price. The tire must be worn to 2/32 inch (1.6 mm) or less remaining original tread depth. Warranty details and exclusions can be found on their website here.
2. Yokohama IceGuard iG52c
This is an ecologically-friendly winter tire, as it has a lot of unique materials that will allow the tire to handle a variety of weather situations easily. These are not tires that are large enough for SUV buyers.
Vehicle type: Coupes, minivans, compact cars and sedans
Warranty: To process mileage proration adjustment(s) for the customer, the tire dealer must validate the mileage received on the claim tires(s), versus the mileage warranted and certify this information on the claim form to Yokohama and attach proof of rotation documents to the claim form. Limitations and exclusions apply. Read the full warranty at the link below.
3. Goodyear Dunlop Winter Maxx
This the company’s first set of winter tires. They are a great buy for those that are looking for high-performance and affordability. They are one of the best inexpensive winter tires on the market that can handle heavy snow.
Vehicle type: Coupes, minivans, compact cars, and sedans. If you own a larger vehicle, such as an SUV, you may not find the right size tire.
Warranty: This tire is eligible for the Goodyear Replacement Limited Warranty, which covers most passenger tires with free or prorated-price tire replacement. See full warranty for details.
4. Cooper Discoverer True North
This is a great winter-option tire for both SUV and cars. It has the highest silica content of any tire made by this company.
Vehicle type: SUVs and cars
Warranty: Standard Limited warranty. Read more at the link below.
5. Pirelli Winter Sottozero 3
This is a tire that comes from Pirelli, an Italian tire maker. This winter tire is designed for high-end premium vehicles. The design has taken into account all of the modern revolutions of vehicles in order to achieve maximum safety and performance in winter conditions.
Vehicle type: Sports cars and high-performance luxury vehicles.
Warranty: There is no tread-wear warranty.
6. Michelin X-ice Xi3
This is the third generation of Michelin’s winter tires, and this one in particular is one of the more capable winter tires in Michelin’s winter tire lineup. It uses Michelin’s “Flex-Ice 2.0” tread compound, which has micro-roughness on the surface for better snow and ice grip. Its silica-based compound allows the tire the flexibility to still provide traction in low temperatures.
Vehicle type: Family vans, coupes, small crossovers, and sedans.
Warranty: Tread life, one-year uniformity and a 30-day satisfaction warranty, plus three-year flat changing assistance. Details can be found at the link below.
7. Nokian Hakkapeliitta R3
Nokian has been a pioneer in the winter tire market since 1932. The winter tire was invented by the Finnish manufacturer, and this tire is their top-of-the-line winter tire.
Vehicle type: Recommended for hybrid and electric cars.
Warranty: There are three main types of warranties: Nokian Tyres Satisfaction Guarantee, Nokian Tyres Pothole Protection Warranty and Nokian Tyres Limited Warranty. Double check to see if any apply to your tires!
8. Goodyear Ultra Grip Winter Tires
This is a very popular snow tire. With its Winter Reactive Technology, or WRT, drivers are better in reaction time when starting and stopping on icy and snowy roads, and have much better traction when turning. These are studless ice and snow tires.
Vehicle type: Coupes, minivans, crossover vehicles, and sedans.
Warranty: One year uniformity warranty; 6-year material and workmanship warranty. Visit the website below for warranty details.
Most environmentally-friendly winter tires: Yokohama BluEarth Winter V905
Not only does the Yokohama BluEarth Winter V905 fall closer to the performance end of the spectrum, but its high silica rubber and orange oil-infused compound make it environmentally responsible. yokohama.ca
Most versatile winter tires: Continental VikingContact 7
The Continental VikingContact 7 comes in a massive variety of sizes, from ones made for 15-inch rims to rubber fit for 20-inch wheels. That means this tire is good for everything, from compact cars to giant crossovers. continentaltire.ca
The new winter tire option: Goodyear WinterCommand Ultra
Goodyear’s newest winter tire is the WinterCommand Ultra. This tire features a V-tread pattern with hydrodynamic grooves designed to expel water, slush and snow from the tire’s contact patch for better traction. Designed for cars, minivans, crossovers and SUVs. goodyear.ca
Winter tires for trucks
Best all-around winter truck tire: Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V2
Much like the standard Blizzak is a fantastic all-around tire for trucks. The size is designed for pickups, crossovers and SUVs. bridgestonetire.com
Best SUV tire: BfGoodrich All-Terrain TA K02
This model is suited to pickups, light trucks and SUVs. They will ensure off-road performance on these types of vehicles even in rain and snow. bfgoodrich.ca
Best budget truck tire: Firestone Winterforce 2 UV
Firestone’s Winterstone UV is made to help everything from minivans and crossovers to burly body-on-frame SUVs and trucks. firestonetire.ca
Winter performance tires
Best winter performance tire: Michelin Pilot Alpin 5
The tires give high-end sports cars the grip they need even when the temperatures dip and the roads are miserable. michelin.ca
The premium high-performance winter tire option: Pirelli P Zero Winter
The P Zero Winter is their snow tire alternative to their high-performance P Zero summer tires. The P Zero Winter tires use a brickwork pattern that creates more biting edges for better stability. pirelli.com
Best performance SUV tire: Michelin Pilot Alpin 5 SUV
Now that manufacturers are building more and more street performance-oriented SUVs and crossovers, there’s more demand for a specialized winter tire that can keep up with those fast high-riders. The Michelin Pilot Alpin 5 SUV brings together the best aspects of performance winter tires and also meets the demands an SUV or truck asks of its tires. michelin.ca
When looking for the best winter tires, you should think about the worst driving conditions you may encounter and how often that might happen. There’s no need to spend hundreds of dollars on super high-performance tires if all you’re doing is commuting in the family sedan or truck. Likewise, if you have a high horsepower sports car, specially-designed performance rubber may be what you want. Remember to let your isure representative know if you have purchased winter tires so that you can claim you winter tire discount!