4WDrive - - Contents - Words and pho­tos by Ja­son Tansem

IN MANY PARTS OF CANADA, WE NEED TO VEN­TURE THROUGH TREACH­ER­OUS, snow cov­ered mountain passes on a reg­u­lar ba­sis. The Co­qui­halla High­way in Bri­tish Columbia brings you to heights of 1400 Me­tres (4600’) and can give you a blast of snow at just about any­time through­out the year. Your tires need to have the “Snowflake” on the side­wall or be des­ig­nated M+S (mud and snow). Over 10,000 ve­hi­cles travel this high­way on a daily ba­sis – the win­ter tire mar­ket is se­ri­ous busi­ness.

Our friends at OK Tire mounted and bal­anced the new P255/70R18 Toyo Open Coun­try A/T II AW on our stock Jeep Wran­gler JKU. A lot of the time when we drop off our rub­bers, there is a bit of a groan from the staff as most of them are heavy, rugged, hard to han­dle and need some spe­cial at­ten­tion to get mounted and bal­anced. Af­ter a quick break­fast we re­turned and were in­formed that they bal­anced like pas­sen­ger tires. With that in mind I was hop­ing the same re­sult would tran­spire on the road. Nor­mally when we leave the shop and ac­cel­er­ate like we had just stolen the Jeep, there is a lull or lag with the heav­ier tires. I had just re­moved some heav­ier A/T’s from a com­pet­ing brand and these new Toyo’s felt lighter right off the get go. You know that “drone” sound as you ride the pave­ment to your favourite trail? These Toyo’s were smooth and silent – per­fect for help­ing any an­noy­ing pas­sen­gers fall asleep.

As we climbed to higher el­e­va­tions, I was con­cerned that these highly pop­u­lar All Weather ap­proved Open Coun­try’s would suf­fer from some type of de­fi­ciency. A part of the trail was of­f­cam­ber and greasy with light mud, but the tires didn’t slip. The Jeep grabbed and main­tained mo­men­tum as we trav­eled across a very slick em­bank­ment. Even though the sticky mud packed the treads when we stopped, a lit­tle hit to the skinny pedal cleared them and we never lost trac­tion. Our path was straight and on tar­get un­til we got to the sharp rocks.

This rock quarry has care­lessly

punc­tured side­walls in other tires. We stopped and started, and stopped and started, crawl­ing through the rocks. We searched and found small, loose rocks as well as sand, and the tires grabbed with ease and we made it up any in­cline we had clear­ance for.

Off-road ap­proved we headed for the snow – Toyo’s claim to fame for this A/T II AW. It didn’t take long to reach the snow-cov­ered high­way and the test was on. There was min­i­mal hy­droplan­ing on wet pave­ment as we climbed up the mountain and min­i­mal slip­page as we reached the snow. Af­ter test­ing the tires lim­its, I was soon up to cruis­ing speed, pass­ing and brak­ing with com­plete con­fi­dence.

The snow was just an el­e­ment, not a rea­son to stay home. We all know the puck­ered up feel­ing of hav­ing in­suf­fi­cient tire trac­tion on bru­tal roads and in ugly weather con­di­tions. These new Toyo’s far ex­ceeded my ex­pec­ta­tions. For a coun­try like Canada, where snow can be a fac­tor most of the year, these tires are a great op­tion.

KEY FEA­TURES: Tie Bars Be­tween Blocks

Sta­bi­lize the tread blocks to re­duce ir­reg­u­lar wear and road noise, and im­prove brak­ing.

Deep Tread Grooves

These large, deep grooves im­prove trac­tion on wet roads and also al­low the tire to dig into mud, slush or snow.

Ta­pered Claw Edges

Edges within the tread grooves en­hance trac­tion in deep mud, snow or slush.

Large Block De­sign

Large blocks pro­vide ag­gres­sive trac­tion dur­ing off-road ap­pli­ca­tions while adding sta­bil­ity on paved roads.

Stag­gered Block Edges and Cen­tre Hook Edge De­sign

This com­bi­na­tion in the cen­tre blocks helps to grab onto mud, slush and snow to im­prove trac­tion dur­ing brak­ing and ac­cel­er­at­ing. In­creased 3D Sipe Den­sity In­creased sipe den­sity through­out the tread blocks add edge grip on ice and slip­pery sur­faces. Toyo’s Mul­ti­wave 3D sipes re­duce the chance of block move­ment for bet­ter wet and dry per­for­mance with less chance of ir­reg­u­lar wear.

Wide Evac­u­a­tion Grooves

Help to quickly pro­pel dirt, mud and snow from the cen­tre of the tire for added trac­tion.

Op­ti­mized Pat­tern Ar­range­ment

Dis­trib­uted at vari­able pitches the tread pat­tern is de­signed to op­ti­mize trac­tion and re­duce road noise.

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