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# Tire Basics

SUV Tires

Have an SUV but are unsure of the tires it needs? Learn what’s available here

Fast facts

Which SUV tires are best suited to my vehicle?

  • Is your SUV electric, hybrid or a traditional combustion engine? How powerful is your SUV? And how large and heavy is it? This will determine what tires it needs.
  • Will you drive your SUV on-road or off-road? This will also determine the type of tires you need.
  • Continental will help you fit your SUV vehicle with the correct tires.

If you're looking for new SUV tires, there are a number of things to consider to ensure the safety and quality of your new tires – as well as a smooth and enjoyable drive. As there’s a huge variety of sport utility vehicle models available, it’s important to select the right tires to suit your specific SUV. This article will explore the things you need to consider before buying tires and why your specific category of SUV requires certain specifications.

A family is loading their car, ready for holidays.

How to find the right tires for your SUV

  • Categorizing your car will make things easier when you need to narrow down the type of SUV tires available.
  • Is your SUV electric, hybrid or a traditional combustion engine? How powerful is your SUV? And how large and heavy is it?
  • Will you use it in the city or suburban areas? Are you constantly facing tough conditions like gravel, mud, snow, and steep inclines? Do you often tow heavy loads? These considerations dictate what the tires need to be capable of.
  • Lastly, is your SUV an AWD (all-wheel drive), 4WD (four-wheel drive/4X4/four-by-four) or 2WD (two-wheel drive)? If you’re unsure of the differences, read more about SUVs and four -wheel drive here 
  • You can also learn if it's possible to take your SUV off-road and what tires are required here

How to choose the right SUV tires

At Continental, we’ll help you find the perfect tire to suit your SUV. Some key things you’ll want your tires to be capable of – depending on the road surface – are the following: 

How to choose on-road tires:

  • reliable braking performance in all weather conditions;

  • high level of protection against aquaplaning;

  • excellent grip and braking performance;

  • substantial road noise reduction for a smooth ride when on-road driving

  • high mileage

How to choose off-road tires:

  • good level of robustness, so they can withstand the shock of rocks and other off-road hazards;

  • long-lasting quality, so your tire tread can maintain optimum grip to get you further on your off-road adventures;

  • ability to drive safely on a variety of different surfaces including tarmac roads;

  • enhanced snow and wet traction for better driving safety. Most off-road tires have m+s or 3pms to distinguish this.

The right tires for every type of SUV in every driving situation

Depending on where you live and the type of SUV you have, the conditions will make different demands on your tires. Below are some situations you might relate to and Continental tire suggestions.

The best SUV tires for winter conditions

If you live in an area where the winters are especially demanding, you may need 4WD to tackle snow, ice, mud, and steep inclines. If you can relate to this, you likely need winter tires that have an aggressive tread pattern, for grip on loose terrain – particularly wet snow and mud. These kinds of tires are also more durable as they have tougher sidewalls to absorb the impact of rocks and damage from other off-road hazards.

If your living and driving conditions reflect or are similar to this, here are some Continental winter tires to consider for your SUV:

CrossContact™ Winter: especially designed for SUV and off-road vehicles, it offers excellent traction and braking performance on snow and wet roads and with its robust sidewalls, you will be able to avoid the shock of rocks and other off-road hazards.

Pdocut picture ContiCrossContact-Winter

4x4WinterContact: also especially engineered for SUVs and off-road vehicles, this versatile tire offers excellent resistance to aquaplaning and also provides great traction and braking performance.

4x4 WinterContact

The best SUV tires for city living and weekend adventures

If you drive your crossover on tarmac roads but often switch to irregular terrains for weekends away on country gravel roads, you will benefit from an all-terrain tire with an interlocking tread design. It provides the durability to conquer dirt, gravel, and grass, but also offers a quieter, comfortable ride on paved roads.

Here are some Continental summer and all-season tires to consider for your crossover or SUV:

  • CrossContact™ RX: designed for crossovers and SUVs, this tire offers significant road noise reduction for a smooth and quiet ride every day, best of all, it has enhanced wet traction for better driving safety – especially for those longer trips away.

  • ContiCrossContact™ LX 2: engineered for SUVs and crossovers, this tire provides outstanding traction for light off-road use and it also has great handling properties and excellent wet braking.

Electric or hybrid SUV tires

An electric or hybrid SUV has lower emissions, maintenance costs and engine noise. However, there is almost an additional 30% increase in the weight of electric cars due to the battery they require. This weight places a lot of strain on the tires of electric vehicles. We’ve adapted our products to fit the specific needs of alternatively powered vehicles. 

SUV infographic

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