2021 Auto Bild Winter Tire Test

The 2021 Auto Bild winter tire test started its life as a fifty tire wet and snow braking test, with the best performing twenty tires proceeding to this test. This means the twenty tires in this test are some of the best winter tires for 2021 on the market!

Additionally Auto Bild have included the usual reference summer tire, but also a budget winter tire. It wasn't clear from the article how this tire was chosen, but I imagine it was one of the worst tires from the fifty tire braking test intended to highlight just how bad cheap tires can be. The results confirm the theory, with the cheap winter tire performing well below average in nearly all tests.

The results, as always, were close at the top, with the new Continental WinterContact TS870 narrowly beating the Michelin Alpin 6. The new German tire had a very consistent test, performing well in nearly all categories, and having the best wear on test!

In joint third are the Kleber Krisalp HP3 and Vredestein Wintrac. Both these tires performed extremely well considering their "mid range" price point, and they beat the premium tires from Bridgestone, Hankook and Goodyear.

Auto Bild are one of the few publications able to do wear tests. Rather than very expensive real world wear, the wear test for this was done on a drum. As always, it highlights certain running theme in tests, Continental are up there with Michelin in wear, and Bridgestone make excellent tires with outstanding grip in the wet, especially wet braking, but it comes at the expense of treadlife.

Dry

A summer tire will nearly always beat a winter tire in the dry, whatever the temperature, however in this test the summer tire had an impressively big advantage in the dry, stopping the car over seven meters before the best winter tire from just 100km/h (62mph.) 

The Vredestein Wintrac was the best winter tire in the dry braking test, and placed fifth in dry handling maing it an impressive performance for the new Dutch tire.

The budget winter tire actually performed ok in the dry tests, finishing midpack, where as the Fulda, BFGoodrich and Firestone tires struggled.

Wet

In the wet, the winter tires performed better against the reference summer tire, with six winter patterns beating the summer tire in wet braking.

The Bridgestone Blizzak LM005 continued its run of impressive wet braking results, stopping the test vehicle two meters ahead of the second placed Hankook, with the new Firestone WinterHawk 4 also performing well.

The budget winter tire really highlighted how poor value cheap winter tires can be, taking 14 meters longer to stop the car than the Bridgestone!

The summer tire reclaimed its lead in wet handling, narrowly beating the Hankook, Bridgestone and Vredestein winter tires. 

Snow

On average across the three snow tests, the BF Goodrich, Bridgestone, Continental and Hankook all has consistent results.

Snow braking had the Dunlop narrowly beating the Goodyear and Continental tires. The cheap budget tire continued to perform poorly.

Snow traction moved Bridgestone and Michelin to the top two places, with Continental remaining third.

Hankook led BFGoodrich is the important snow handling test, with the Laufenn I Fit+ (a Hankook sub brand) also performing well. 

Environment

Nexen, Hankook, Bridgestone and Vredestein were the only tires to beat the summer tire in the external noise test.

Barum and Nokian had a small lead over the rest of the tires on test when it came to fuel use, and five of the winter tires had a lower rolling resistance than the reference summer tire.

Wear

The wear test once again highlighted just how far Continental have come in tread life compared to their tires five years ago by dominating the test and having a predicted 5,300km advantage over the second placed Michelin Alpin 6.

The two best wearing tires on test were also the most expensive to buy.

When comparing mileage against purchase price, the Barum Polaris 5 offered the lowest price per 1000/km, but even with the high purchase price, the Continental WinterContact TS870 was still the fifth best valuet yre overall.

Results

1st: Continental WinterContact TS 870

Continental WinterContact TS 870
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/70
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking9th+2.3 M95.15%
Dry Handling2nd-0.2 Km/H99.86%
Wet Braking6th+3.2 M94.01%
Wet Handling5th-1 Km/H98.63%
Wet Circle7th+0.18 s98.59%
Straight Aqua2nd-2.2 Km/H97.4%
Curved Aquaplaning1st100%
Snow Braking3rd+0.4 M98.56%
Snow Traction3rd-60 N97.93%
Snow Handling5th-0.6 Km/H98.96%
Noise6th+0.9 dB98.73%
Wear1st100%
Value5th+1.48 Price/100082.32%
Price19th+125 67.11%
Rolling Resistance3rd+0.73 kg / t90.81%
New winter tire with convincing characteristics in any weather. short braking distances, precise steering, good aquaplaning resistance, lowest wear on test.
None mentioned.

Read Reviews    Buy from £88.39

2nd: Michelin Alpin 6

Michelin Alpin 6
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/69
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking2nd+0.8 M98.26%
Dry Handling11th-2 Km/H98.56%
Wet Braking7th+4.4 M91.94%
Wet Handling8th-1.4 Km/H98.08%
Wet Circle14th+0.36 s97.22%
Straight Aqua10th-6.5 Km/H92.31%
Curved Aquaplaning8th-0.29 m/sec291.42%
Snow Braking15th+1.8 M93.81%
Snow Traction2nd-37 N98.72%
Snow Handling10th-1.3 Km/H97.75%
Noise7th+1.2 dB98.31%
Wear2nd-5300 Km88.33%
Value15th+2.71 Price/100071.77%
Price20th+130 66.23%
Rolling Resistance14th+1.54 kg / t82.4%
Premium winter tires with balanced potential, good winter characteristics, convincing handling, low wear.
Slight understeer in the wet.

Read Reviews    Buy from £84.73

3rd: Kleber Krisalp HP3

Kleber Krisalp HP3
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: E/B/69
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking8th+2 M95.75%
Dry Handling8th-1.6 Km/H98.85%
Wet Braking11th+5.4 M90.29%
Wet Handling12th-3 Km/H95.89%
Wet Circle12th+0.35 s97.3%
Straight Aqua7th-4.7 Km/H94.44%
Curved Aquaplaning12th-0.36 m/sec289.35%
Snow Braking8th+1.1 M96.13%
Snow Traction10th-114 N96.07%
Snow Handling8th-1.1 Km/H98.1%
Noise13th+1.9 dB97.35%
Wear12th-11300 Km75.11%
Value9th+1.76 Price/100079.65%
Price7th+40 86.44%
Rolling Resistance16th+2.08 kg / t77.61%
Well priced tires with good winter performance, dynamic snow handling, good aquaplaning properties, low noise and good comfort.
Slight understeer in the wet.

Read Reviews    Buy from £57.57

3rd: Vredestein Wintrac

Vredestein Wintrac
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/70
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking1st100%
Dry Handling4th-1 Km/H99.28%
Wet Braking3rd+2.2 M95.8%
Wet Handling2nd-0.1 Km/H99.86%
Wet Circle5th+0.1 s99.21%
Straight Aqua9th-6 Km/H92.9%
Curved Aquaplaning14th-0.45 m/sec286.69%
Snow Braking20th+3 M90.1%
Snow Traction18th-229 N92.1%
Snow Handling11th-1.4 Km/H97.58%
Noise4th+0.6 dB99.15%
Wear15th-14100 Km68.94%
Value18th+3.01 Price/100069.6%
Price12th+55 82.26%
Rolling Resistance4th+0.76 kg / t90.46%
Convincing all rounder with dynamic driving on dry and wet roads, good steering, low rolling resistance.
Average mileage.

Read Reviews    Buy from £64.71

5th: Bridgestone Blizzak LM005

Bridgestone Blizzak LM005
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/A/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking15th+3.2 M93.37%
Dry Handling6th-1.1 Km/H99.21%
Wet Braking1st100%
Wet Handling2nd-0.1 Km/H99.86%
Wet Circle1st100%
Straight Aqua3rd-2.8 Km/H96.69%
Curved Aquaplaning3rd-0.18 m/sec294.67%
Snow Braking6th+0.8 M97.15%
Snow Traction1st100%
Snow Handling4th-0.5 Km/H99.14%
Noise3rd+0.4 dB99.43%
Wear15th-14100 Km68.94%
Value19th+4.13 Price/100062.52%
Price16th+90 73.91%
Rolling Resistance7th+0.97 kg / t88.14%
The winter king with the best driving performance on snow, good aquaplaning resistance, short wet braking, low noise.
High wear.

Read Reviews    Buy from £70.03

6th: Hankook Winter i cept RS2

Hankook Winter i cept RS2
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: D/B/72
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking3rd+0.9 M98.04%
Dry Handling16th-2.5 Km/H98.2%
Wet Braking2nd+2 M96.17%
Wet Handling1st100%
Wet Circle2nd+0.05 s99.6%
Straight Aqua1st100%
Curved Aquaplaning4th-0.2 m/sec294.08%
Snow Braking7th+0.9 M96.81%
Snow Traction8th-80 N97.24%
Snow Handling1st100%
Noise2nd+0.1 dB99.86%
Wear14th-12500 Km72.47%
Value13th+2.38 Price/100074.33%
Price10th+50 83.61%
Rolling Resistance18th+2.18 kg / t76.78%
Top performance in snow and wet conditions, very good aquaplaning resistance, short wet braking distances, well priced.
Understeer in the dry.

Read Reviews    Buy from £58.33

7th: Goodyear UltraGrip 9+

Goodyear UltraGrip 9 Plus
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking12th+2.6 M94.55%
Dry Handling19th-3.2 Km/H97.7%
Wet Braking9th+4.8 M91.27%
Wet Handling7th-1.3 Km/H98.22%
Wet Circle4th+0.07 s99.45%
Straight Aqua4th-3.7 Km/H95.62%
Curved Aquaplaning2nd-0.11 m/sec296.75%
Snow Braking2nd+0.2 M99.27%
Snow Traction5th-63 N97.83%
Snow Handling12th-1.5 Km/H97.41%
Noise9th+1.6 dB97.76%
Wear7th-8800 Km80.62%
Value10th+1.85 Price/100078.83%
Price15th+65 79.69%
Rolling Resistance9th+1.04 kg / t87.39%
Convincing driving in the snow and on wet roads with stable handling, good comfort, good price to performance ratio.
Understeer in the dry.

Read Reviews    Buy from £76.69

8th: Dunlop Winter Sport 5

Dunlop Winter Sport 5
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking13th+2.7 M94.35%
Dry Handling17th-2.6 Km/H98.13%
Wet Braking5th+2.3 M95.62%
Wet Handling4th-0.5 Km/H99.32%
Wet Circle2nd+0.05 s99.6%
Straight Aqua14th-8.1 Km/H90.41%
Curved Aquaplaning13th-0.43 m/sec287.28%
Snow Braking1st100%
Snow Traction6th-69 N97.62%
Snow Handling9th-1.2 Km/H97.93%
Noise17th+2.6 dB96.4%
Wear18th-14700 Km67.62%
Value20th+4.67 Price/100059.6%
Price17th+100 71.83%
Rolling Resistance13th+1.32 kg / t84.53%
Convincing driving in the snow and on wet roads with short braking, good comfort.
Slow steering, average wear.

Read Reviews    Buy from £74.04

9th: Semperit Speed Grip 3

Semperit Speed Grip 3
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/72
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking17th+3.6 M92.61%
Dry Handling10th-1.7 Km/H98.78%
Wet Braking8th+4.7 M91.44%
Wet Handling14th-3.2 Km/H95.62%
Wet Circle15th+0.4 s96.92%
Straight Aqua13th-8 Km/H90.53%
Curved Aquaplaning7th-0.27 m/sec292.01%
Snow Braking9th+1.2 M95.79%
Snow Traction17th-198 N93.17%
Snow Handling18th-3 Km/H94.82%
Noise9th+1.6 dB97.76%
Wear8th-9200 Km79.74%
Value17th+2.92 Price/100070.23%
Price17th+100 71.83%
Rolling Resistance10th+1.15 kg / t86.24%
Short snow braking, dynamic dry handling, low noise, low wear.
Average snow performance, long dry braking.

Read Reviews    Buy from £65.01

10th: Firestone Winterhawk 4

Firestone Winterhawk 4
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking20th+4.2 M91.48%
Dry Handling18th-2.9 Km/H97.91%
Wet Braking3rd+2.2 M95.8%
Wet Handling6th-1.2 Km/H98.36%
Wet Circle11th+0.34 s97.37%
Straight Aqua6th-4.6 Km/H94.56%
Curved Aquaplaning17th-0.47 m/sec286.09%
Snow Braking10th+1.3 M95.45%
Snow Traction3rd-60 N97.93%
Snow Handling6th-0.7 Km/H98.79%
Noise5th+0.8 dB98.87%
Wear10th-9300 Km79.52%
Value4th+1.28 Price/100084.33%
Price7th+40 86.44%
Rolling Resistance5th+0.87 kg / t89.23%
Very good winter characteristics, short snow and wet braking, low wear, well priced.
Understeer in the dry with long dry braking.

Read Reviews    Buy from £64.44

11th: BFGoodrich gForce Winter 2

BFGoodrich gForce Winter 2
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: D/B/69
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking16th+3.3 M93.18%
Dry Handling21st-3.6 Km/H97.41%
Wet Braking11th+5.4 M90.29%
Wet Handling9th-1.6 Km/H97.81%
Wet Circle8th+0.26 s97.98%
Straight Aqua5th-4.3 Km/H94.91%
Curved Aquaplaning10th-0.31 m/sec290.83%
Snow Braking4th+0.6 M97.85%
Snow Traction12th-125 N95.69%
Snow Handling2nd-0.4 Km/H99.31%
Noise14th+2.1 dB97.08%
Wear13th-11500 Km74.67%
Value14th+2.4 Price/100074.17%
Price13th+60 80.95%
Rolling Resistance17th+2.13 kg / t77.19%
Good grip on ice and snow, stable wet handling, good aquaplaning resistance.
Slow steering.

Read Reviews    Buy from £76.19

12th: Falken Eurowinter HS01

Falken Eurowinter HS01
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: D/B/70
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking6th+1.3 M97.2%
Dry Handling8th-1.6 Km/H98.85%
Wet Braking17th+6.4 M88.69%
Wet Handling10th-1.8 Km/H97.53%
Wet Circle6th+0.14 s98.9%
Straight Aqua8th-5.3 Km/H93.73%
Curved Aquaplaning8th-0.29 m/sec291.42%
Snow Braking19th+2.2 M92.54%
Snow Traction20th-301 N89.62%
Snow Handling16th-2.6 Km/H95.51%
Noise18th+3 dB95.87%
Wear11th-10600 Km76.65%
Value8th+1.73 Price/100079.93%
Price9th+45 85%
Rolling Resistance20th+2.27 kg / t76.05%
Balanced grip in the wet and dry, good mileage, safe aquaplaning.
Limited winter ability, slow steering and long braking distances in the wet.

Read Reviews    Buy from £70.99

12th: Uniroyal MS+ 77

Uniroyal MS Plus 77
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: D/C/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking14th+2.8 M94.15%
Dry Handling7th-1.5 Km/H98.92%
Wet Braking15th+6.2 M89.01%
Wet Handling11th-2.8 Km/H96.16%
Wet Circle12th+0.35 s97.3%
Straight Aqua11th-6.9 Km/H91.83%
Curved Aquaplaning6th-0.26 m/sec292.31%
Snow Braking10th+1.3 M95.45%
Snow Traction16th-195 N93.27%
Snow Handling19th-3.3 Km/H94.3%
Noise21st+4 dB94.57%
Wear6th-8600 Km81.06%
Value7th+1.67 Price/100080.49%
Price13th+60 80.95%
Rolling Resistance11th+1.25 kg / t85.22%
Stable wet and dry handling, good aquaplaning resistance, low wear.
Moderate winter abilities with high levels of understeer, long wet braking.

Read Reviews    Buy from £65.00

14th: Yokohama BluEarth Winter V906

Yokohama BluEarth Winter V906
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: D/B/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking10th+2.5 M94.75%
Dry Handling4th-1 Km/H99.28%
Wet Braking14th+5.9 M89.48%
Wet Handling14th-3.2 Km/H95.62%
Wet Circle9th+0.28 s97.82%
Straight Aqua15th-9.2 Km/H89.11%
Curved Aquaplaning11th-0.33 m/sec290.24%
Snow Braking16th+1.9 M93.49%
Snow Traction15th-172 N94.07%
Snow Handling14th-2.3 Km/H96.03%
Noise9th+1.6 dB97.76%
Wear19th-15700 Km65.42%
Value16th+2.87 Price/100070.59%
Price5th+35 87.93%
Rolling Resistance21st+2.3 kg / t75.81%
Short braking and good handling in the dry, good comfort, well priced.
Understeer in the snow, long wet braking, average wear.

Read Reviews    Buy from £58.36

15th: Barum Polaris 5

Barum Polaris 5
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/C/72
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking18th+4 M91.85%
Dry Handling12th-2.2 Km/H98.42%
Wet Braking15th+6.2 M89.01%
Wet Handling13th-3.1 Km/H95.75%
Wet Circle10th+0.31 s97.6%
Straight Aqua17th-10.6 Km/H87.46%
Curved Aquaplaning19th-0.68 m/sec279.88%
Snow Braking14th+1.5 M94.79%
Snow Traction13th-139 N95.21%
Snow Handling7th-1 Km/H98.27%
Noise16th+2.5 dB96.54%
Wear5th-8400 Km81.5%
Value1st100%
Price1st100%
Rolling Resistance1st100%
Good winter grip, low wear, low rolling resistance.
Low aquaplaning resistance, long wet and dry braking.

Read Reviews    Buy from £59.19

16th: Fulda Kristall Control HP2

Fulda Kristall Control HP2
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking21st+4.5 M90.93%
Dry Handling20th-3.3 Km/H97.63%
Wet Braking20th+7.3 M87.3%
Wet Handling18th-3.6 Km/H95.07%
Wet Circle20th+0.61 s95.38%
Straight Aqua12th-7.6 Km/H91.01%
Curved Aquaplaning5th-0.23 m/sec293.2%
Snow Braking10th+1.3 M95.45%
Snow Traction9th-81 N97.21%
Snow Handling20th-3.4 Km/H94.13%
Noise19th+3.1 dB95.74%
Wear3rd-5700 Km87.44%
Value2nd+0.41 Price/100094.38%
Price5th+35 87.93%
Rolling Resistance12th+1.27 kg / t85.02%
Good traction and short braking in the snow, very low wear, low price.
Understeer and long wet and dry braking.

Read Reviews    Buy from £63.70

17th: Sava Eskimo HP2

Sava Eskimo HP2
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/C/71
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking18th+4 M91.85%
Dry Handling12th-2.2 Km/H98.42%
Wet Braking18th+6.9 M87.92%
Wet Handling19th-3.9 Km/H94.66%
Wet Circle19th+0.58 s95.6%
Straight Aqua18th-10.8 Km/H87.22%
Curved Aquaplaning14th-0.45 m/sec286.69%
Snow Braking5th+0.7 M97.5%
Snow Traction11th-115 N96.03%
Snow Handling14th-2.3 Km/H96.03%
Noise15th+2.2 dB96.94%
Wear4th-8200 Km81.94%
Value3rd+0.5 Price/100093.23%
Price3rd+20 92.73%
Rolling Resistance6th+0.95 kg / t88.36%
Good traction and short braking distances in the snow, low wear, low price.
Moderate wet grip, understeer wet handling, long wet and dry braking.

Read Reviews    Buy from £72.59

18th: Nokian WR Snowproof

Nokian WR Snowproof
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/B/69
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking5th+1.1 M97.62%
Dry Handling1st100%
Wet Braking18th+6.9 M87.92%
Wet Handling20th-5 Km/H93.15%
Wet Circle17th+0.45 s96.55%
Straight Aqua18th-10.8 Km/H87.22%
Curved Aquaplaning16th-0.46 m/sec286.39%
Snow Braking16th+1.9 M93.49%
Snow Traction14th-161 N94.45%
Snow Handling17th-2.8 Km/H95.16%
Noise8th+1.4 dB98.03%
Wear8th-9200 Km79.74%
Value6th+1.54 Price/100081.73%
Price10th+50 83.61%
Rolling Resistance2nd+0.17 kg / t97.7%
Balance grip in the dry, low wear, low rolling resistance.
Limited grip in the wet and on snow, average aquaplaning resistance.

Read Reviews    Buy from £65.77

19th: Nexen Winguard Snow G3

Nexen Winguard Snow G3
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: D/B/72
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking6th+1.3 M97.2%
Dry Handling15th-2.4 Km/H98.27%
Wet Braking11th+5.4 M90.29%
Wet Handling16th-3.5 Km/H95.21%
Wet Circle18th+0.47 s96.4%
Straight Aqua16th-10 Km/H88.17%
Curved Aquaplaning20th-0.81 m/sec276.04%
Snow Braking18th+2.1 M92.86%
Snow Traction19th-251 N91.34%
Snow Handling13th-1.9 Km/H96.72%
Noise1st100%
Wear20th-16900 Km62.78%
Value12th+2.06 Price/100076.98%
Price1st100%
Rolling Resistance15th+1.88 kg / t79.32%
Short snow braking, good comfort, low price.
Understeer in all conditions, high wear, low aquaplaning resistance, high rolling resistance.

Read Reviews

20th: Laufenn I Fit+

Laufenn I Fit Plus
  • 205/55 R16
  • EU Label: C/C/72
Test#Difference%
Dry Braking3rd+0.9 M98.04%
Dry Handling3rd-0.3 Km/H99.78%
Wet Braking9th+4.8 M91.27%
Wet Handling16th-3.5 Km/H95.21%
Wet Circle16th+0.44 s96.62%
Straight Aqua20th-12.1 Km/H85.68%
Curved Aquaplaning21st-1.06 m/sec268.64%
Snow Braking10th+1.3 M95.45%
Snow Traction7th-76 N97.38%
Snow Handling2nd-0.4 Km/H99.31%
Noise12th+1.7 dB97.62%
Wear17th-14200 Km68.72%
Value11th+1.92 Price/100078.21%
Price3rd+20 92.73%
Rolling Resistance8th+1.02 kg / t87.61%
Good winter grip, god dry handling, low price.
Very low aquaplaning resistance, poor wet grip, high wear.

Read Reviews

Similar Tire Tests




Discussion:

comments powered by Disqus