Winter Driving Guide
Q: I just purchased a pre-owned Acura MDX (2008) which came off lease from Quebec. The previous owner had recently put on Pirelli Scorpion Ice & Snows – P255/55R18. The dealer is saying we’re better off with these tires as they’ll perform fine during the summer months, but of course they’ll be great next winter.
My wife is pushing to have them replaced with an all-season set instead (the dealer is willing to do this, but I suspect the tires he’s going to give us in exchange will be cheaper than the Pirellis). So — bottom line — should we keep the tires or push for a swap? Can we use these tires year round here in Toronto? Will we suffer this summer, or will they work just fine? So far, we’re really happy with the ride quality, noise level, etc.
A: If you are only using one set of tires all year round, I would keep the Pirelli Scorpion Ice and Snow. There are no all-season tires on the market that will give you ice and snow grip like the Pirelli. If you are planning on using two sets of tires for the year, then keep the Pirellis and get something like a Michelin Latitude Touring for the non-winter season.
Looking at the big picture, going with one set of tires for the whole year always has some compromises. Tire wear is a factor to consider, as all-season tires wear faster in winter than winter tires. Winter tires wear faster in summer than all-season tires. So, there is no winner in wear. Grip should be the biggest consideration for your safety. In the summer, the good quality all-season tire will grip better than a winter tire. In the winter, the all-season tire is a disaster. That’s why the two-tire tango is best.
Should you opt to just go with the Pirellis all year round; the good news is that its design for winter grip does not rely on chunky tread blocks. The chunky blocks wear quickly. The Pirelli has nicely integrated sipes (little cuts in the tread blocks) on the tread blocks. This type of design can take the abuse of running on bare pavement. Therefore, at least if you go the one-tire route, you have the right tire for the job.
Columns Everything you need to know about purchasing, maintaining and driving your car.
Become a member
Register now to access all features including:
- Save and ask friends to review vehicles
- Exclusive rebates & offers from local dealers
- Premium content, reviews and tools
- You can unsubscribe at any time. Please Contact Us for details.
All for free!
Already a member?
Registration 2 of 2
Welcome to Wheels!
As a final step we've sent a confirmation to your email address as a security measure. Please click the link in the email to complete your registration.
Terms of services
DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTIES AND LIMITATION OF LIABILITY
TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, TORONTO STAR IS PROVIDING THE TORONTO STAR WEBSITES ON AN "AS IS" AND "AS AVAILABLE" BASIS AND MAKES NO WARRANTIES OR REPRESENTATIONS, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, IN ANY CONNECTION WITH THE TORONTO STAR WEBSITES, THEIR CONTENTS, OR ANY WEB SITE OR CONTENTS WITH WHICH IT IS LINKED. TORONTO STAR DOES NOT WARRANT THAT THE FUNCTION OF THE TORONTO STAR WEBSITES OR THEIR CONTENTS WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED OR ERROR FREE, THAT DEFECTS WILL BE CORRECTED, OR THAT THE TORONTO STAR WEBSITES OR THE SERVERS THAT MAKE IT AVAILABLE ARE FREE OF VIRUSES OR OTHER HARMFUL COMPONENTS.
TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, NEGLIGENCE, SHALL TORONTO STAR BE LIABLE FOR ANY LOSS OF USE, LOSS OF DATA, LOSS OF INCOME OR PROFIT, LOSS OF OR DAMAGE TO PROPERTY, OR FOR ANY DAMAGES OF ANY KIND OR CHARACTER (INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION ANY COMPENSATORY, INCIDENTAL, DIRECT, INDIRECT, SPECIAL, PUNITIVE, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES), EVEN IF TORONTO STAR HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES OR LOSSES, ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE USE OF THE TORONTO STAR WEBSITES, THEIR CONTENTS, OR ANY WEBSITE OR CONTENTS WITH WHICH IT IS LINKED. IN NO EVENT SHALL TORONTO STAR'S TOTAL LIABILITY FOR ALL DAMAGES, LOSSES, AND CAUSES OF ACTION, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, TORT (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, NEGLIGENCE), OR OTHERWISE, EXCEED THE AMOUNT PAID BY YOU FOR ACCESSING THIS SITE.X