Consumer Reports: Cheap Chinese Tires Are No Bargain

Tires are expensive! Most SUV-truck tires Consumer Reports recommends cost more than $150 each. So the $95 Pegasus Advanta SUV from China seemed like a bargain.

But when Consumer Reports put a set of those tires through its standard tests, they came in at the bottom of the ratings. They did not grip well in snow. They didn’t have long tread life compared to other tires and they made for a rough and noisy ride. Even worse, the tires could be fakes. API, the US-based company that owns the Pegasus brand says it stopped using the Chinese factory that made the tires three years ago.

A letter from API’s chief operating officer says: “Many of our molds went missing ...we have no idea
who may have made these tires nor what they put in them.”

Consumer Reports bought the tires from the website Its president says the tires came from an importer. Consumer Reports contacted the importer and several government agencies and found no one would take responsibility.

That leaves the consumer little recourse should something go wrong. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has not gotten any complaints about the Pegasus Advanta SUV tires. If you bought them and are worried about their legitimacy, you can get more information at Consumer

Consumer Reports tested two other inexpensive SUV tires from China the $85 Sunny SN-3606 and the $114 Geostar. They didn’t perform well in the snow and ice tests and scored much lower overall than the top-rated Michelin Latitude Tour that costs $168.

Consumer Reports always recommend that people buy the best performing tire they can afford, because tires are a key safety component of your car.

Here are other all-season SUV-truck tires that Consumer Reports recommends:

• Conti Cross Contact LX20 EcoPlus - $135

• Michelin LTX M/S-2 - $190

• Goodyear Assurance C-S TripleTred All-Season - $160

• Pirelli Scorpion Verde All Season Plus - $160

• Cooper Discoverer SRX - $157.

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