The exceptionally warm winter that preceded the spring of 2020, signaled an early start of the summer season, yanking a lot of tire makers from their winter sleep. The car owners, in turn, hoping to get ahead of the seasonal sales peak when the prices soar sky-high, are preparing for the summer, warily squinting at their old tires and choosing a replacement for them, with consideration for the available budget. The biggest attention is, of course, drawn by the hot new releases 2020, which were presented by the manufacturers long before the beginning of winter.
And we, trying to make it easier for the vehicles owners, in accordance with the time-honored tradition, are making a review of the most interesting new models 2020, which are not really numerous this time around. However, we decided to do a smart thing, and also cover the models that were launched on the retail market earlier — in 2019 or in 2018 — and have already shown themselves to good advantage in comparative tests, on the roads, or on surfaces, which are officially considered to be ones.
While last year most of the new releases were presented by Continental AG, in 2020 it is Goodyear that seems to be the most prolific tire maker — the company totally renewed its range, including that of its subsidiary brands (Sava, Fulda, Debica), widely available in Europe. Obviously, Goodyear was not satisfied enough the fact that its new models completely thwarted the plans of Continental to become the best tire maker in the final ranking 2019.
|Manufacturer||Brand / Model|
|Bridgestone||Potenza Adrenalin RE004, Bridgestone Potenza RE-71 RS|
|Continental AG||Semperit Speed-Life 3|
|Goodyear||Debica Presto HP2, Fulda EcoControl HP2, Fulda EcoControl SUV, Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive, Goodyear Cargo Max, Goodyear EfficientGrip Eco EG02, Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 2, Sava Intensa HP2, Sava Intensa SUV 2|
|Sumitomo Rubber||Falken Sincera SN110 Ecorun|
|Sentury Tire||Delinte DS2, Landsail D1D1, Landsail RapidDragon|
|Hankook Tire||Laufenn G FIT EQ+, Laufenn S Fit EQ+|
|Pirelli||Pirelli Cinturato P7|
|Nokian Tyres||Nokian Powerproof SUV, Nokian Wetproof SUV|
|Michelin Group||BFGoodrich Advantage, BFGoodrich Advantage SUV, Michelin Agilis 3, Michelin Energy Saver 4|
|Toyo||Nitto NT830+, Nitto NT420SD|
|Yokohama Rubber||Yokohama BluEarth-XT AE61|
|Giti Tire||Giti GitiSynergy E2|
In addition, interesting new models have been launched by Michelin, and we are finally witnessing the first renewal of the budget brand Laufenn, manufactured under the umbrella of Hankook. The Chinese tire makers also tried to keep up the pace.
New releases from Goodyear and its subsidiaries
Under its flagship brand, Goodyear has launched to the European market the fuel-efficient tire Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 2, meant to replace the 2013 model, Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance. The main features of the second-generation tires are increased expected mileage, which, according to the manufacturer, will ensure safe use of these tires during two extra seasons, as well as more efficient wet and dry braking.
Surprisingly, this marketing spin is actually confirmed by the results of the comparative test, which was performed in November 2019 by the technical inspection association TÜV SÜD at Goodyear’s request. As indicated by Goodyear, the main rivals of the EfficientGrip Performance 2 in the High Performance class were Michelin Primacy 4, Bridgestone Turanza T005, Continental PremiumContact 6 and Pirelli Cinturato P7 Blue. The results demonstrated by the new model generally surpass those of its rivals. Nevertheless, the very decision to publish the results of the test, in which the rivals at times outperform your product, required a lot of courage from the Goodyear management and marketing department.
As for the motorists who insist on sticking to all-season tires, an option as unquestionable from the economic standpoint as it is questionable in all other respects, Goodyear has announced the launch of the third-generation model of the Vector 4Seasons series to be released in April 2020.
The all-season model, Goodyear Vector 4Seasons Gen-3, which will also be available in its SUV version, was also subjected to pre-sales tests, where it was directly compared to Michelin CrossClimate+ and Continental AllSeasonContact.
Fulda, Sava, Debica
As for the budget subsidiary brands of Goodyear in Europe, the range of each of them was so thoroughly renewed that this vast selection may get one’s head spinning. Just the way it was with the Continental products last year.
The first sizes of the new summer models of the German Fulda, and namely the passenger-car tire EcoControl HP2 and the SUV tire EcoControl SUV, started to get shipped to the dealers still in December 2019 — January 2020.
The Slovenian Sava also did quite a lot of work to satisfy the demand for the tires engineered for passenger cars and SUVs with a high gravity center. Its new summer tire model 2020, Sava Intensa HP2, will be available to consumers together with its predecessor, Sava Intensa HP, thanks to which the size range of the latter will be expanded to cover the rims of a larger fitting diameter.
As for the Sava Intensa SUV 2 model, it will fully replace the first-generation tire, Intensa SUV, manufactured since 2009. At the same time, for reasons unknown, the tread pattern of the new summer model is borrowed from the passenger-car tire model Intensa UHP 2, whose mass production started four years earlier.
The list of new budget summer tire models from Goodyear 2020 also includes tires from the subsidiary Polish brand, Debica Presto HP2. Unlike the Debica Presto, the previous-generation model, the new tire features an asymmetric tread pattern that serves to optimize the traction, and, working together with the upgraded tread compound, makes it possible to reduce rolling resistance.
In the Asia-Pacific region, Goodyear presented the Goodyear Cargo Max model, designed to be installed on light commercial vehicles, pickup trucks, and minivans. Yet another new model — Goodyear EfficientGrip Eco EG02 — will be launched on the Japanese market, while the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive, an all-season model with a summer bias, will be struggling for a place under the sun in the North America.
New tire releases 2020 from Michelin Group
This summer season, the Japanese division of Michelin will begin the sales of its new fuel-efficient model Michelin Energy Saver 4, which will hardly make it to Europe the legal way in 2020. If only someone is daft enough to drive all the way down here.
Nevertheless, the European market is going to be supplied with two models of one of Michelin subsidiaries — BFGoodrich. Both belong to the Advantage family, with which the North American motorists have been familiar since 2016. The launch of BFGoodrich Advantage and BFGoodrich Advantage SUV, whose performance was adapted to the specifics of the distribution region, marks the 150th anniversary of the BFGoodrich brand.
The manufacturer notes that the Advantage model with rim diameters from 16 inches and higher belongs to Class A in accordance with the European labeling system. This is not everything that the company is doing to breathe new life into this brand — there are plans to resume the production of agricultural tires, also branded BFGoodrich.
At the Solutrans Show, which took place in France in November, Michelin presented new light-truck summer tires Michelin Agilis 3. While it was developed, the designer laid special emphasis on environmental performance. In comparison to the predecessor model, Agilis 3 weighs about one kilogram less, this difference reaching 1.7 kilograms in some of the sizes. What does it mean? This means that its production requires less natural resources, which in turn leads to a decrease in the amount of waste requiring processing.
This summer season, the world’s largest tire maker, Japanese corporation Bridgestone, is placing its bets on speed-happy drivers. In 2020, the company is launching two new UHP models designed to satisfy the most demanding requests of adrenaline addicts who spend most of their leisure time behind the wheel.
The new tires Bridgestone Potenza Adrenalin RE004 and Bridgestone Potenza RE-71RS, designed to replace the Potenza Adrenalin RE003 and Potenza RE-71R respectively, are essentially a continuation of the sports tire line Bridgestone Potenza, which, having appeared as far back as in 1979, still delivers impressive results in the world of Motorsport.
For the upcoming summer season 2020, Pirelli has renewed the model range of its Cinturato family. Considering the fact that Pirelli has for years been experiencing difficulties with coming up with new names for its products, nobody will probably be surprised to find out that the new model with a new tread pattern will be named exactly as the old one — Pirelli Cinturato P7.
In order to make sure that the consumers can tell the difference between the models of two generations, the company placed on the tire’s sidewall, along with the other technical data, the P7C2 sign.
While web-surfing, one will be most likely to spot three different versions of this model’s spelling: without any additional characters in its name, with a P7C2 sign (Pirelli Cinturato P7 P7C2), or with an addition of the launch year — Pirelli Cinturato P7 2020 Add brackets and/or spaces to taste.
Finland’s Nokian, which for the last three years has been presenting, with unfailing regularity, two new summer models each year, in 2020 was only able to summon the power to produce SUV versions of the earlier launched passenger-car models, Powerproof and Wetproof, obviously, deeming them to be successful ones. In the 2020 tests, both passenger-car tire models showed slightly controversial results, yet they did score a few prize places in a few tests conducted by European industry publications.
According to the manufacturer, Nokian Powerproof SUV was engineered to ensure comfortable lane switching at highway speeds, as well during emergency braking, while Nokian Wetproof SUV tires are characterized by effective braking performance on wet pavement, as well as by extremely high hydroplaning resistance.
Maxxis (Cheng Shin Rubber)
Taiwan’s Cheng Shin Rubber, chiefly known for its Maxxis brand, took the same path of the least resistance, as Nokian Tires did, putting on the market its new development, Maxxis Victra Sport 5 SUV, which is essentially a reinforced version of the time-tested passenger-car tire model.
In Japan, Yokohama Rubber presented the summer tire model Yokohama BluEarth-XT AE61, mentioning that its appearance is directly connected with the analysis of the market trends, where the sales of midsize and compact SUVs has been steadily growing.
The renewal of Laufenn (Hankook)
Five whopping years after the launch of the product under its subsidiary budget brand Laufenn, Korea’s Hankook announced partial renewal of its assortment. Starting from the first month of spring, the European motorists will be able to buy the tires Laufenn S Fit EQ+ and Laufenn G FIT EQ+, which are coming to replace the current models Laufenn S FIT EQ (LK01) and Laufenn G FIT EQ (LK41).
For the new models, the manufacturer kept the same pattern codes, at the same time changing the formula and the technology of mixing the tread compound, thanks to which the new summer tires Laufenn are characterized by better performance and stability both in the wet and in the dry.
Shortly, Sumitomo is going to start the sales of the new summer model Falken Sincera SN110 Ecorun, which, according to the manufacturer, although democratically priced, offers premium-class handling capabilities. The new summer model 2020 is designed to replace the Falken Sincera SN832 Ecorun.
With its «green» model Giti GitiSynergy E2, Singapore’s Giti Tire widened its range of the summer tires designed for the European market. It is expected that this new budget model will be interesting first of all to the owners of electric cars because it was designed to reduce the rolling resistance (and, hence, increase the fuel efficiency) and increase the drive range of electric vehicles.
New release from Continental
Against the background of seven summer models that Continental presented last year under the flagship and subsidiary brands, the year of 2020 with the sole new model Semperit Speed-Life 3 looks quite modest. Its wide range of sizes makes it possible to install this model on both compact passenger cars, and city SUVs.
The Speed-Life 3 was designed to replace the Speed-Life 2, which, in spite of the absence of any significant success in most comparative tests, in 2019 was able, by a wild stroke of luck, to top the final ranking of the 205/55 R16 budget tire test conducted by the Finnish magazine Moottori.
At the same time, for reasons unknown, some of the last year’s newcomers from Continental, did not show up in the test of the same year, which raised suspicions within our team. And the subsequent test debut of EcoContact 6, which occurred a year and a half after its launch was announced was nothing but a failure.
The Nitto NT830+, which will shortly enter the European market, is nothing but an upgraded version of the NT 830 model, from which the new «plus» version has inherited its tread design. At the same time, NT830+ for powerful passenger cars is positioned as a tire a with a higher treadwear, ensuring a comfortable ride and excellent maneuverability.
Yet another new release from Toyo’s subsidiary brand is the Nitto NT420 SD (NT420SD), designed for SUVs. Its availability is currently limited to the Thailand market.
Designing, testing, debugging and launching a series of new tire models requires significant investments from manufacturers and a lot of time — from 3 to 5 years The possibility for launching new releases each year is achieved through the simultaneous development of several models at once. However, due to various circumstances, a few tire makers did not show up with new models in 2020, and there are even brands that we have not mentioned in our new models reviews for 2 or 3 years.
For example, only this year, Nexen and Triangle did not present the renewals of their summer ranges. For the second consecutive year, Cooper, Apollo, Kumho, and Belshina remain silent in spring. No updates from Rotalla. And it has been three years since we last heard about new summer models from Evergreen, Rosava, Lassa, and Zeetex.
Meanwhile, the first results of the summer tire tests 2020 are already announced.