FIRST LOOK: GEN­ERAL TIRE GRABBER A/T X

Your next mul­ti­pur­pose all-ter­rain tire?

Four Wheeler - - Contents - By Jay Kopy­cin­ski ed­i­tor@fourwheeler.com Pho­tos: Jay Kopy­cin­ski

THE NEW GRABBER A/T X IS THE LAT­EST TIRE IN

the Gen­eral Tire light-truck line, and is de­signed to be an ag­gres­sive all-ter­rain tire. It car­ries on with many of the traits of the pre­vi­ous Grabber AT2, but with up-to­date im­prove­ments in tire de­sign. It has some of the proven tread el­e­ments from the AT2 com­bined with the im­proved side­wall tech­nol­ogy used on the Grabber X3 mud-ter­rain tire.

Like most mod­ern tire de­sign­ers, Gen­eral has worked to pro­vide a solid over­all performance com­pro­mise for those cus­tomers who use their ve­hi­cles on- and off-road. Most cus­tomers ex­pect com­fort­able and quiet road man­ners from

a light-truck, all-ter­rain tire. Gen­eral uses a tread cush­ion­ing sys­tem com­bined with an en­gi­neered tread pat­tern to re­duce har­mon­ics and road noise. The tread blocks are also de­signed to re­main sta­ble un­der load for an op­ti­mized stiff­ness to pro­mote even wear and long tread life.

Pleas­ant road man­ners are al­ways wel­come from a tire such as this that we’re likely to put a lot of high­way miles on. How­ever, as four­wheel­ers, we also de­mand qual­ity off-road performance. In the all-ter­rain cat­e­gory, we’re will­ing to give up some mud and high-trac­tion crawl­ing performance for bet­ter high­way be­hav­ior and of­ten-im­proved over­all tread life. Gen­eral knows that, and in­cor­po­rated qual­i­ties in the Grabber A/T X to pro­vide as much of­froad performance as they could with­out eat­ing too much into those road man­ners.

The com­pany chose a rub­ber for­mu­la­tion aimed at pro­vid­ing good wear char­ac­ter­is­tics while also try­ing to min­i­mize the ef­fects of cut­ting or tread chunk­ing in the rocks. The tread de­sign of­fers small trac­tion notches in the pat­tern to pro­vide ad­di­tional points for the tire to grab the ter­rain. Plus, tread sip­ing in the blocks ex­poses greater rub­ber to the sur­face un­der more ex­treme con­di­tions. Those of you that drive a lot in cold-win­ter cli­mates will like

that the new tire also car­ries a full Three-peak Moun­tain Snowflake rat­ing and can be stud­ded for ad­di­tional trac­tion in ice.

The new Grabber A/T X is avail­able in 40 dif­fer­ent sizes rang­ing from 27 to 35 inches in height, with wheel di­am­e­ter fit­ment rang­ing from 14 to 20 inches. Gen­eral of­fers a 45-day trial with the Grabber A/T X, and a 50-60,000mile limited tread­wear warranty de­pend­ing on size.

We had the op­por­tu­nity to try the tire of­froad near New Or­leans, Louisiana. We drove Grabber A/T X–shod Jeep JK Wran­glers on dirt, mud, logs, and rocks; and we came away with a high opin­ion of the tire. The com­pany’s tar­get goal of pro­duc­ing an ag­gres­sive all­ter­rain seems well met. Our ini­tial im­pres­sion is that this tire is a good can­di­date for those driv­ers look­ing for a qual­ity light-truck tire to tackle medium off-road du­ties, but not want­ing to step up to the larger-tread void­ing of a mudter­rain.

\>The Grabber A/T X is aes­thet­i­cally pleas­ing with beefy tread blocks and side biters rolling onto the side­wall. They come with raised, white let­ters or in black side­wall, de­pend­ing on size of tire. |> Be­tween the out­side tread blocks are lit­tle rub­ber...

<|The side­wall con­struc­tion of the Grabber A/T X uses key el­e­ments from the Grabber X3 mud tire. It’s a two-ply side­wall ver­sus a three-ply side­wall on the X3, but they both use Gen­eral’s Dura­gen ma­te­rial makeup.

|> We dipped the new Gen­er­als into some gooey Gulf Coast mud and found they con­tin­ued to pro­vide good for­ward trac­tion us­ing suf­fi­cient wheel speed and mo­men­tum. With rea­son­ably large void­ing for an all-ter­rain, it ap­pears the Grabber A/T X could carry...

<-Af­ter slop­ping around in the mud we ran the Jeeps across a short rock trail. At 15 psi, the side­walls of the 35-inch tires flexed well and con­formed to the boul­ders with­out feel­ing overly mushy.

|> While the all-ter­rain tread would start to pack up in heavy mud, we no­ticed the wider void­ing be­tween tread blocks at the edge of the tires con­tin­ued to grab. We crossed downed trees at an an­gle with lit­tle sen­sa­tion of tire slip across the slick...

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