205/55R16

Autonavigator 2021: Winter Tire Test R16

The Hungarian motoring magazine tested winter and all-season tires, including a few newcomers of the season.

List of models tested:

The Hungarian magazine Autonavigator has already been conducting its own tire tests for 10 years, and this time around the Hungaroring motorsport racetrack hosted a test of 13 tire sets from various price brackets. Earlier, the experts would test tires in size 195/65 R15, which was the most popular size on the market at the time, but since 2018 they began to compare tires in a more popular size of 205/55 R16 — quite possibly, tires with a 17-inch fitting diameter will be tested for the new summer season.

Autonavigator 2021: Winter Tire Test R16

There was a certain shortage of tires on the Hungarian tire market in 2021, so only eight winter tires and three all-season tires were included in the list of competitors; in addition, sets of worn-out summer and winter tires aged nine and five years, respectively, were tested.

Test discipline: wet braking. Source: autonavigator.hu
Test discipline: wet braking. Source: autonavigator.hu

Unlike bigger magazines, Autonavigator does not conduct any tests of winter tires beyond the Arctic Circle, preferring to test them in their home country. This time, the tests were conducted using two Skoda Octavias within one night, and the braking test yielded very interesting results — wet braking distances turned out to be shorter than the dry ones. The fact was that at first the tires were tested on a dry surface, and the temperature of the air and asphalt was 4 and 2–2.5 °C, respectively. When the experts moved on to the wet tests, it became warmer, and the braking distances grew shorter. Both tests were won by the new Michelin CrossClimate 2 model, which is positioned as an all-season one in Europe.

Dry Braking

Michelin A/S
14.5
Michelin
15.5
Kleber
15.7
Barum A/S
15.8
Triangle A/S
15.9
Bridgestone
16.2
Hankook
16.4
Barum
16.5
Pirelli
16.5
Continental
16.9
Triangle
17.8

Info! Dry braking in the range of 60–0 km/h, m.


The tests were also performed on a wet surface of synthetic resin, meant to simulate ice. In such conditions, the grip drops dramatically, and, fitted with summer tires, the test car, braking from mere 40 km/h, would often slide beyond the 80-meter section.

Wet Braking

Michelin A/S
14.1
Triangle A/S
14.2
Michelin
14.4
Continental
15.2
Kleber
15.2
Bridgestone
15.4
Barum A/S
15.5
Hankook
16.1
Pirelli
16.1
Barum
16.4
Triangle
16.7

Info! Wet braking in the range of 60–0 km/h, m.


The best results in this «ice braking» test were shown by the premium Bridgestone Blizzak LM005 and Continental WinterContact TS 870 (a new model of the season 2021/2022), while the third place was unexpectedly scored by the inexpensive Triangle WinterX TW401. The experts also evaluated traction, and here the Triangle tire surprised everyone by coming second, being next only to Bridgestone.

A few other parameters of the tires were tested, and the quietest tires (the cabin noise was measured) turned out to be the Continental and Michelin winter models, while the best environmental performance was demonstrated by the all-season Triangle tire. The experts also measured the treadwear after the tests, and in this performance area all the tires received high scores.

Ice Braking

Bridgestone
18.5
Continental
19.8
Triangle
20.7
Hankook
21.6
Kleber
21.6
Barum
22.0
Michelin
26.1
Barum A/S
27.4
Pirelli
28.7
Triangle A/S
28.8
Michelin A/S
35.4

Info! Ice braking in the range of 40–0 km/h, m.


In the final standings, the victory was scored by the Bridgestone Blizzak LM005 and Continental WinterContact TS 870 models, which turned out to be the best on a slippery surface, and which the experts recommend using in the regions with frequent snowfalls. At the same time, if you chiefly get to drive on tarmac in the wintertime, a good option will be the Michelin CrossClimate 2, which in such conditions surpasses the competitors in terms of braking performance.

The weight of the scores was distributed in the following way: all the disciplines on dry and wet pavement, as well as on «ice» (represented in the table as «slippery surface») weighed 20% each, noise and the environment — 5% each, treadwear — 10%.

205/55 R16 winter tire test summary Autonavigator, 2021. Places 1–11.
205/55 R16 winter tire test summary Autonavigator, 2021. Places 1–11. Click to enlarge.

Test Results

1st place: Bridgestone / Blizzak LM005

Quick Take
90 57

Bridgestone Blizzak LM005

Price/Quality Wet Performance Dry Performance Comfort Handling Snow/Ice Performance Treadwear
  • This tire replaced Bridgestone / Blizzak LM001 Evo
  • Available Sizes in Line: 220
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Audi e-tron [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Volkswagen T-Cross I (C11) [2018 .. 2023]
    • • Audi A3 8Y [2020 .. 2023]
    • • Mercedes-Benz C-Class Br205 [2015 .. 2021]
    • • Volkswagen Caddy V [2020 .. 2023]
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2019
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+
Bridgestone Blizzak LM005

  • Short braking distance and excellent traction on a slippery surface
  • Increased noise emission
  • Very good

2nd place: Continental / WinterContact TS 870

Quick Take
90 60

Continental WinterContact TS 870

Comfort Price/Quality Dry Performance Wet Performance
  • Year Released: 2020
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+
Continental WinterContact TS 870

  • Short braking distance on a slippery surface
  • Low noise emission
  • Very good

3rd place: Kleber / Krisalp HP3

Quick Take
83 54
Treadwear Dry Performance Wet Performance Price/Quality Snow/Ice Performance Comfort Handling
  • Year Released: 2016
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+
Kleber Krisalp HP3

  • Short braking distance on dry pavement and on a slippery surface
  • Good

4th place: Hankook / Winter i*cept RS2 W452

Quick Take
82 38

Hankook Winter i*cept RS2 W452

Treadwear Dry Performance Wet Performance Price/Quality Snow/Ice Performance Handling Comfort
  • Available Sizes in Line: 66
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Hyundai i10 III (AC3) [2019 .. 2023]
    • • Hyundai i20 II (GB) Facelift [2018 .. 2020]
    • • Hyundai ix20 JC Facelift [2015 .. 2020]
    • • Hyundai i30 III (PD) [2017 .. 2020]
    • • Hyundai Ioniq AE [2016 .. 2021]
    • • Ford Ka+ I [2016 .. 2018]
    • • Ford Ka+ Active [2018 .. 2020]
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2015
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+
Hankook Winter i*cept RS2 W452

  • Short braking distance on a slippery surface
  • Good

5th place: Triangle / WinterX TW401

Quick Take
N/A 29

Triangle WinterX TW401

  • Available Sizes in Line: 14
  • Year Released: 2020
  • Regions for sale: Europe
Triangle WinterX TW401

  • Excellent traction on a slippery surface
  • Long braking distance on dry pavement and on a slippery surface
  • Good

6th place: Barum / Polaris 5

Quick Take
65 36
Comfort Wet Performance Dry Performance Snow/Ice Performance Handling Treadwear
  • Year Released: 2018
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+
Barum Polaris 5

  • Well-balanced performance in most of the disciplines
  • Relatively long braking distance on wet pavement
  • Good

7th place: Michelin / Alpin 6

Quick Take
86 57
Price/Quality Wet Performance Comfort Dry Performance Snow/Ice Performance Handling Treadwear
  • This tire replaced Michelin / Alpin 5
  • Available Sizes in Line: 70
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Ford Puma II (J2K) [2019 .. 2023]
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2018
  • Regions for sale: USA+, Canada, Europe, Russia+, Japan
Michelin Alpin 6

  • Short braking distance on wet and dry pavement
  • Low noise emission
  • High rolling resistance
  • Good

8th place: Triangle / SeasonX TA01

Quick Take
N/A 20
  • Year Released: 2018
  • Regions for sale: Europe
Triangle SeasonX TA01

  • Short braking distance on wet and dry pavement
  • Low rolling resistance
  • Satisfactory

9th place: Barum / Quartaris 5

Quick Take
N/A 28
  • Available Sizes in Line: 43
  • Year Released: 2018
  • Regions for sale: Europe, Russia+
Barum Quartaris 5

  • Short braking distance on dry pavement
  • Low rolling resistance
  • Relatively high wear
  • Satisfactory

11th place: Pirelli / Winter Snowcontrol Serie 3

Quick Take
74 22

Pirelli Winter Snowcontrol Serie 3

Price/Quality Wet Performance Dry Performance Handling Comfort Treadwear Snow/Ice Performance
  • Many sizes of this line have been discontinued.
  • This tire has run-flat model:
  • Available Sizes in Line: 29
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • BMW
    • • MINI Cooper F55/F56 [2014 .. 2021]
    • • Volvo V40 II [2012 .. 2016]
  • Year Released: 2011
  • Regions for sale: USA+, Canada, Europe, Russia+
Pirelli Winter Snowcontrol Serie 3

  • Increased noise emission
  • High rolling resistance
  • Relatively high wear
  • Satisfactory

12th place: Michelin / CrossClimate 2

Quick Take
85 53

Michelin CrossClimate 2

Price/Quality Wet Performance Handling Dry Performance Snow/Ice Performance Comfort Treadwear
  • This tire replaced Michelin / CrossClimate
  • Available Sizes in Line: 55
  • Original Equipment (OE) tires for:
    • • Volvo C40 I [2021 .. 2023]
  • Recommended Tire by Tests
  • Year Released: 2020
  • Regions for sale: USA+, Canada, Europe, Russia+, Japan
Michelin CrossClimate 2

  • Very short braking distance on wet and dry pavement
  • Weak traction on a slippery surface
  • Satisfactory

Price