Ok, all, I'm really on the fence about the tires I want to get - still. We had some pretty deep snow and some freezing rain happen over the holiday break. Luckily, I didn't have to drive much, but when I did, it wasn't fun. My current tires do have a sliver of tread left, but I have come to the realization that they just aren't safe at all in winter weather. Most of which tire I choose is going to depend on what my tire shop says about the warranty. I only have 2 years and 35k miles on these tires and the warranty is 6 years or 45k miles. If they are fully or even partly warrantied, and I have to get the same brand/type of tire, I will likely just do that. They performed great for about the first 20k miles. They just didn't last too long. However, if the tire shop allows me to get any other brand of tire and just take a certain percentage off of them, I'll do that.
So here are my thoughts now: I don't want a tire that is going to be noisy or hurt my gas mileage due to higher rolling resistance, however I do want something that is good in the snow. So, I've been considering highway tires and A/T tires. The ones that have caught my attention are the Kumho Road Venture KL61's and KL51's. The 61 is a GREAT looking on/off road tire that has been said to have good highway road manners. The 51 is a highway tire that has great treadwear rating and are inexpensive. In addition, I'm looking at the Yokohama Geolander A/T-S. Price is good and ratings are good as well. Plus, it comes with 13/32" of tread to start - an extra 32nd. Lastly, I think the Cooper Discoverer HTP's look like a good option, too. Great reviews and specs for the price.
In the spring, my wife and I will be moving closer to my office, so my commute will be cut from 25 miles to about 5 miles. I can put up with some noise for that distance, but I don't want a ridiculous, annoying hum on the highway when we take the truck on a trip. I also don't want to lose 2-3mpg just due to rolling resistance increasing. Anyone have any experience with these tires or have any suggestions for other ones? I'm going to the tire shop on Friday to discuss my options.
Ian, I just had a set of Kumho KL61's installed on my truck in Oct. and I am very happy with them. I wanted a tire that had a little more agressive tread on them, than the LTX M/S, and one that was snow rated (the snowflake symbol), but one that was not so noisy as I couldn't hear the radio at "normal" volume.
I did a lot of research and it basically came down to either the Cooper Discoverer AT's or the KL61's. After going back and forth I ended up going with the KL61's, as they were rated a tad quieter on dry pavement than the Coopers on the Consumer Report web page (I think the KL61's were the 2nd highest rated A/T tire after the Coopers.).
I've put about 3500 miles on them, driven through downpours, ice/slush/snow, and dry pavement and, I can honestly say, I am very happy with them. They are just as quiet as the LTX M/S, but heads and shoulders above the LTX's on snow/slush/ice.
We just got 18" of heavy/wet snow, and then it got very cold, so I had the opportunity to test the KL61's in all the forms of snow that was on the roads. They were excellent in slush...I didn't feel as if the slush was going to pull me this way or that. When the roads were just pretty much snow covered, from a dead stop, I stomped on the gas pretty good...not all the way to the floor, but probably 1/2 throttle, and the tires barely spun. On snow packed/icy areas, namely by stop signs, the truck stopped very quickly and, when taking off, the tires barely spun.
Again, overall I am very pleased with the Kumho KL61's I got in Oct., and would highly recommend them. They are great in adverse road conditions and are very quiet on dry pavement. Plus, they were about $60 a tire cheaper than the LTX M/S's when I bought them. Nice to be able to save close to $250 vs. the Michelins.
Anyway, hope that helps, and good luck with your tire purchase.