Summer 15-Inch Tires – A Big Test “Behind the Wheel”

Summer 15-Inch Tires - A Big Test "Behind the Wheel"

Experts tested 16 models of different prices and origins (including one all-season, out of standings).

Tire size 195/65 R15 is one of the most popular on the Russian market. Therefore, for the test, we collected as many as 16 models from different price categories.

The most “expensive” member is Continental Premium Contact 6 (from 3400 rubles). It has been on the market for two years already in larger sizes, and in the “fifteenth” it has appeared only now. He is accompanied by: the new Goodyear Efficient Grip Compact and Hankook Ventus Prime 3 stubbornly striving for the “premium”, as well as the systematically updated Nokian Hakka Green 2 and Pirelli Cinturato P1 Verde.

The middle price category (from 2900 to 3400 rubles) is represented by the new Yokohama BluEarth -Es ES32, as well as the popular Dunlop SP Sport FM800, Toyo Proxes CF2 and Nordman SX2 models on the market. The well-selling Matador Hectorra 3 is being tested by Za Rulem magazine for the first time.

From the economy class, we took several tires that have never been on our tests: the best-selling Kormoran Road Performance and Nexen N’Blue HD Plus, as well as two “dark horses” – Compasal Grand Eco and Rapid P309. The list of “state employees” is supplemented by the well-known model Viatti Strada Asimmetrico  – the owner of the most modest price tag of 2400 rubles. A special participant with an M + S tread (Mud + Snow, translated into Russian (“Mud + Snow”) – tires size, Triangle AdvanteX TC101 will help us to bring a kind of zest. Let’s check how the “all-season” will show itself against the background of tires intended only for asphalt.

Keep the course!

Tire tests were carried out at the AVTOVAZ test site in August-September 2019. By this time, the manufacturers had already completed the renewal of their tires, and the weather was dry and without significant temperature changes. During the tests, the thermometer showed from +15 to +30˚C.

The carrier car was the Skoda Octavia. We did not turn off ABS and ESP, so as not to move away from “life” conditions. The measurement results were recorded by a high-precision measuring complex Vbox  Racelogic based on Glonass-GPS.

We start with a warm-up lap along a 10-kilometer high-speed ring. Along the way, we evaluate the directional stability and behavior of the car during “soft” maneuvering at a speed of 130 km/h (the maximum allowed in Russia).

The highest scores were awarded to Continental, Goodyear and Pirelli. Our experts had no complaints about this trinity. Clear and understandable reactions to the steering, reliable and predictable behavior – everything is as it should be!

Lagging behind are Matador and Viatti. Both cause an unpleasant feeling: as if the Skoda tie rods have become rubber. The comments in the test report are like a blueprint: reaction delays, large steering angles and low information content. Such tires do not allow you to intuitively understand the trajectory, and therefore quickly tire size on long trips, forcing the driver to concentrate unnecessarily on taxiing.

All-season Triangle joined the laggards, sharing with them not only the assessment, but the whole set of claims .

Ninety, sixty.

Tires size and units of the car are warmed up – we immediately start measuring efficiency on a horizontal section of the road. To exclude the influence of the breeze, we perform the races twice – in opposite directions.

Kormoran and Matador proved to be the most economical both at “suburban” 90 km/h and at “urban” 60 km/h.

There are no obvious outsiders at high speed: exactly half of the participants turned out to be “gluttonous” than the leaders by a little more than 3%. But at the city speed limit, Viatti set an anti-record, increasing Octavia’s appetite by almost 10% – such a difference will already be noticeable in operation.

Good riddance

Assessing the appetites of the participants, we move to broken roads that make the wheels make noise, shake and kick. Here we will find out how comfortable the tires “carry” the car.

There were no frankly noisy tires among the subjects. The Continental, Kormoran and Nexen roll the quietest. Skoda demonstrated flawless ride only on Nordman tires. Shocks and vibrations on the body and seats were most actively transmitted by Viatti and, most interestingly, Kormoran.

From the rough tread Triangle, we expected an annoying volume. But everything turned out to be in order with acoustic comfort, only a muffled pulsating roar unobtrusively soloed against the background of a moderate general noise. And in terms of smoothness, these tires are close to the most rigid tires with an asphalt tread pattern.

Moving off the asphalt

We take up the next exercise – overcoming a dirt slope with a slope of 12%. We evaluate how Skoda starts and accelerates on test tires. The traction control system, of course, is turned off. The points given do not count – they are given for information only.

You feel most confident on the unpaved road on Kormoran and Viatti tires. On them, Skoda willingly starts and accelerates efficiently even with moderate slipping. The main thing is to avoid excessive slippage.

The most timid were Continental, Hankook and Nexen. They have to carefully dose the thrust – it is worth slipping, and the car refuses to go. We do not recommend driving off hard roads on such tires.

And on M + S tires size – easily! Their “toothy” all-weather tread works on the dirt road much more efficiently than a smooth road one, providing traction in all modes: both at the start and during acceleration.

Let’s hit the brakes

The time has come for the most significant exercises – measuring the braking distance on wet (from 80 km/h) and dry (from 100 km/h) asphalt. We fix the results before the car stops completely – at a speed of 5 km / h. This avoids measurement errors caused by partial blocking of the wheels, which even modern ABS allows at low speeds.

On wet pavement, Hankook provides the most effective deceleration. Less than 4% lost to him Continental and Nokian. The Rapid P309 looks the palest of all. The braking distance on it at Skoda is 17% longer than on Hankuk.

See the best summer tires at 24gumi.

Dry asphalt obeyed the Continental, which broke away from Hankuk by only a couple of percent. Viatti had the worst result, lagging behind the leader by 18%.

The Triangle’s siped tread, ready to meet not only with the ground, but also with mud and snow, turned out to be too mobile to compete on equal terms with the “highways” in braking on asphalt. Just think about it: to lose to the leader almost a quarter of the way on wet surfaces and one fifth on dry…

Sudden maneuvers

In Russia, there are two troubles. And each can suddenly appear right in front of a moving car, forcing the driver to dodge and maneuver sharply. How will the test tires size affect the behavior of the car in a similar situation? Let’s find out on the “rearrangement” – a single lane change at a distance of 12 meters. And at the same time we will determine for each tire the highest initial speed of a successful maneuver.

On wet pavement, Skoda rebuilds faster on Hankook tires. Rapid turned out to be the slowest, despite the fact that it is translated from English as “fast”. Although lagging behind the leader by 10% does not look like a complete failure.

Dry coverage puts Nokian ahead. In the closing – Viatti. The gap between the first and the last under these conditions is less than 8%.

Now about  behavior . On wet roads, Continental and Pirelli tires size performed flawlessly. Immediate responses, adequate steering angles, good information content and providing Octavia with neutral steering did not give the experts any reason to comment. But on land, only Continental managed to confirm its impeccability.

Worst of all, both on wet and dry pavement, Skoda behaved on Kormoran, Nexen and Rapid tires. The main remarks of this trinity are similar: long delays in turning the steering wheel make the steering wheel turn at large angles; there is a lack of grip. In addition, Nexen sins with low information content, Rapid with excessive drift of the front axle, and Kormoran with unstable behavior, alternating drift at the first jerk of the steering wheel with a skid when trying to keep the car on the lane after rebuilding.

The all-season model from Triangle showed satisfactory handling and near-average wet and dry speeds. I didn’t hit my face in the dirt, but I didn’t roll out a reason for pride either!


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