Auto Motor und Sport: Winter Tire Test R17 2019

The SUV trend seems to be unstoppable; however, it is not the heavyweights that steal the show, but the compact models, such as Opel Mokka, Seat Ateca, or VW T-Roc. The best winter tires of the 2019/2020 season for such cars were named by the experts of Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport publication. For the test, they chose to go with size 215/55 R17, which offers the widest selection of tires out there.

The test involved the most interesting models 2019; first of all, we are talking about the brand new models of the season: Bridgestone Blizzak LM005, Goodyear UltraGrip Performance Plus, Michelin Alpin 6, and Nokian WR Snowproof.

The tires were thoroughly tested by the AMS experts on wet and dry pavements, as well as on snow. The main question of the test was — which of these tires can really help out compact SUVs with a front-wheel drive on winter roads.

  1. Goodyear UltraGrip Performance+ - Winner Recommended

    Premium-class winter tires with the best grip on snow, combined with excellent handling response on wet pavement. Pros: Extremely reliable tires with a quick response to load change; rather good handling performance on snow and wet pavement Short braking distance on dry pavement Well-balanced response to the commands of the ESP system. Cons: Insufficient grip on dry pavement during the emergency maneuvers.

    Dry Braking   Snow Traction / Lateral Stability   Snow Braking / Handling   Wet Handling   Lateral Aquaplaning  
    Test Score:
    N/A 33
  2. Bridgestone Blizzak LM005 Recommended

    An extremely safe new model 2019/2020 with the shortest braking distance in the wet and on snow. Pros: High-precision steering response on wet and snowy roads. Predictable behavior during the load change. Short braking distance. Cons: Insufficient grip during high-speed cornering and dry braking.

    Wet Braking / Handling   Snow Braking   Rolling Resistance   Dry Braking   Snow Lateral Stability  
    Test Score:
    81 49
  3. Vredestein Wintrac Pro Recommended

    The wet and dry grip is better than the grip on snow. Pros: Rapid sporty steering response with plenty of headroom grip-wise, especially during the cornering in the dry and in the wet. Safe braking on wet and dry pavements. Cons: A slightly increased braking distance. Increased rolling resistance.

    Dry Braking   Wet Lateral Stability   Wet Handling  
    Test Score:
    88 38
  4. Continental WinterContact TS 850 P Recommended

    In spite of its respectable age, this winter tire demonstrates a great well-balanced performance. Pros: Generally stable, and, most importantly, well-balanced handling response, including on snow. Crisp steering response on wet pavement. A slight, although safe, understeer on dry pavement. Cons: The tire’s snow and dry braking performance falls short of that of new models.

    Rolling Resistance   Snow / Wet / Dry Handling  
    Test Score:
    85 39
  5. Michelin Alpin 6

    A premium-class tire with great «dry» and limited «wet» performance. Pros: Well-balanced performance on snow and in the dry. Completely safe cornering in the wet. Well-balanced response to the commands of the vehicle’s ESP system. Cons: Minor drawbacks in the braking performance on snow and in extremely damp conditions.

    Dry Braking / Handling   Snow Handling   Snow Lateral Stability  
    Test Score:
    84 51
  6. Hankook Winter i*cept evo2 W320

    A professional winter tire with great snow performance, yet with a slightly insufficient grip in wet conditions. Pros: Very good traction combined with a great ride and a wide safety margin on snowy roads. Sporty handling in the dry. Low noise emission. Cons: Long braking distance on dry pavement High rolling resistance.

    Snow Traction   Comfort / Noise   Snow Handling   Dry Handling   Rolling Resistance   Lateral Aquaplaning  
    Test Score:
    78 21
  7. Falken Eurowinter HS01

    Medium-class winter tire with great snow performance, yet with limitations on wet pavement. Pros: Crisp steering response. No slipping during acceleration combined with effective snow braking performance. Adequate hydroplaning resistance. Cons: Weak grip on dry pavement. Insufficient traction on snow. The lowest score on test for the grip on dry pavement.

    Comfort / Noise   Snow Handling   Snow Braking   Lateral Aquaplaning   Straight Aquaplaning   Snow Lateral Stability   Rolling Resistance   Wet Handling  
    Test Score:
    75 33
  8. Toyo Snowprox S954

    Average on snow and wet pavement but sporty winter tires on dry pavement. Pros: Sporty tires with a great handling response on dry pavement. Cons: An increased braking distance on all surfaces. Poor steering feedback on snow and on wet pavement.

    Dry Handling   Snow Braking   Snow Lateral Stability  
    Test Score:
    N/A 30
  9. Pirelli Winter Sottozero 3

    A well-balanced sporty tire that best performs in dry winter. Pros: Very well balanced performance and sporty handling on dry pavement. Mostly average performance on snow and wet pavement. Cons: Relatively long braking distance on snow and wet pavement. The traction could have been better. Poor hydroplaning resistance.

    Dry Braking   Snow Braking   Snow Traction   Lateral Aquaplaning   Snow Lateral Stability  
    Test Score:
    80 46
  10. Giti GitiWinter W1

    The least expensive tire on test with moderate performance, yet without any serious drawbacks. Pros: Very short braking distance and steady grip on dry pavement. Cons: Traction and handling response on snow leave much to be desired. Unbalanced performance in the wet. Increased rolling resistance.

    Dry Braking   Rolling Resistance   Snow Braking   Snow Traction  
    Test Score:
    N/A 26
  11. Nokian WR Snowproof

    Best to use on dry pavement. Average grip on snow. Don’t even try to drive on them on wet pavement. Pros: Safe and easy to control on snow. Short braking distances except in the wet. Best to use in dry conditions. Cons: Extremely weak grip on wet pavement — poor handling response, lateral stability, and hydroplaning resistance. Low sensitivity to load changes.

    Dry Braking   Wet Handling   Wet Lateral Stability   Wet Braking   Snow Handling   Straight Aquaplaning  
    Test Score:
    67 39
Tire Test Original Link
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Max Score, points
Auto Type
Light Truck / SUV / 4*4
List Type
Professional Tire Test
Date added
Oct 20, 2019
Date updated
Feb 27, 2020