ADAC 2024 summer tire test: Top picks for small SUVs with a new focus on sustainability

The ADAC summer tire test for 2024 has rigorously evaluated 16 contemporary models of the 215/55 R17 size, targeting small SUVs and lower-middle-class vehicles. This detailed examination has led to a generally positive overall verdict, although some tires exhibited minor weaknesses, warranting a closer inspection of individual scores. Also, the new methodology focuses more on ecology and sustainability.

Front Runners: Conti, Michelin, and Kumho

This year’s test highlighted tires from Continental, Michelin, and quite surprisingly Kumho as top performers. All these three tyres offer great of driving safety and enviromental impact, which are the new main criteria for the ADAC tests. While the Continental PremiumContact 7 is the overall best at driving safety, the Michelin Primacy 4+ is great at combining of the best enviromental impacts (beaten only by Goodyear EG Performance 2) and favorable driving safety. And that is also the case for the cheaper Kumho Ecsta HS52, which should have the longest projected mileage of the tested tyres. The top three tyres all received the rating ‘good’ – the next twelve were rated as ‘satisfactory’. The Vredestein Ultrac received a adequate rating for it’s short mileage, which is now considered a important criteria with being 40% of the enviromental part of the total rating. This aspect underlines the importance of considering individual driving habits and preferences in tire selection.

Winner of the test, the Continental PremiumContact 7

Other Notable Mentions and Their Performance

Tires from Debica, Dunlop, Bridgestone, Hankook and Fulda, which narrowly missed the ‘good’ rating, demonstrated commendable performances with minor shortcomings in wet conditions or environmental impact, highlighting the nuanced outcomes of this comprehensive test. The biggest surprise is that Bridgestone Turanza 6, Hankook Ventus Prime 4 and the Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance missed quite a lot of points in the driving performance section of the test, which is usually not the case in other tests, where these tyres perform quite well. The problem is in this case that even the driving performance section gives a lot of weight to ride comfort, where all 3 of these tyres had problems, which significantly affects the final marks. For example the Turanza 6 had the best aquaplaning resistance and the EG Performance one of the best dry brakings. That being said, the winning Continental mixes all the tested criteria much better.

The tyre with the best environmental impact rating – the Michelin Primacy 4+

Insight into ADAC’s Test Criteria

ADAC’s refined testing methodology since 2023 incorporates sustainability alongside traditional factors such as driving and safety performance, comfort, and economy. The evaluation now significantly weighs on dry and wet road safety (70%) and environmental impact (30%), including wear, fuel consumption, noise, tire weight, wear mass, and pollutant content.

ADAC’s testing criteria have evolved to emphasize not only safety and economy but also environmental sustainability, reflecting a comprehensive approach to evaluating tire performance in modern mobility contexts. This shift underscores the growing importance of considering various factors in tire selection to meet diverse user needs and environmental considerations. That being said, the results of the tests have to be considered for you individual needs as the final ratings are heavily impacted by the enviromental impact of the tyre, which some could consider not that important.

Full results of the test are here ->