Posts Tagged ‘M+S’

Driving Impressions. Michelin Defender LTX M/S

Michelin-Defender-LTX-MS-32

Michelin invited beyond.ca to the beautiful New England State of Vermont. We were hosted by the awesome team from Michelin Canada and Michelin USA. They brought their tire engineers, product managers, regional managers and public relations folks to introduce us to Michelin’s newest truck tire offering, the Michelin Defender LTX M/S.

In a previous article, I explained the rationale behind the new Michelin Defender LTX M/S. It’s now time to talk about what it is like to drive with these fine tires from Michelin.

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Winter Tires

When I sold tires 30 years ago you had two choices, summer and winter tread tires. On the day of the first snowfall there would be a lineup waiting for me to start work and all I did was change tires that day. The tire shops tell me that this still takes place, but on a more limited scale due to the all season tire.

The more I learn about the all season tire, the more I am convinced it should really be called the compromise tire. Not only does it not work as well as a winter tire in winter, it doesn’t work as well as a summer tire in summer. If you are interested in top tire performance at all times you must still own two sets of tires and change them with the seasons.

Tire markings contribute to winter tire confusion as well. All season tires may be marked M+S or Mud & Snow to indicate that they can be used on ice and snow. A true winter tire is marked with a mountain and snowflake symbol and offers superior traction in winter conditions.

Don’t rest easy just because your vehicle is equipped with traction control. Traction control is all about friction. The more of it between the tire and the pavement the better the system will work. The only way to maximize friction in winter conditions is by installing a true winter tire rather than an all season tire.

For maximum traction in icy conditions, a set of 4 studded winter tires is the standard. If you install studs on the front of a front wheel drive vehicle you must also install studded tires on the rear. Oh, and remember, studded tires may only be used between October 1 and April 30 on BC highways.

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