What Are the Best Winter Tires for an SUV?

No matter what car you’re driving, you can’t pick and choose your driving conditions. However, what you can do is try your best to equip your trusty four-wheeler and enhance its safety and performance. Here’s a list of the best winter tires for an SUV that will surely get you that much-needed grip on icy and slippery roads.

You’ll notice a wide range of different products when trying to find a new set of winter tires. While my best recommendation would be the Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V2, closely followed by the Himalaya Inverno K1 and the Farroad FRD78 tires, it all comes down to what you’re specifically looking for. So, let’s get you some new tires fit for even the harshest of conditions!

What Are the Best Winter Tires for an SUV, and How Do They Work?

Many people consider their all-season summer and winter tires, as well as their SUV’s four-wheel drive (4WD) or all-wheel drive (AWD), more than enough for handling the harsh conditions of wintertime. However, there’s only one thing that can properly get you through this season – equipping your car with the right kind of snow tires. 

Winter tire. Detail of car tires in winter on the road covered with snow.
When the wintertime strikes, it’s absolutely essential to have the right kind of tires

Maintaining Safety Is Always a Priority – Especially When There’s Heavy Snowfall and Slippery Roads

A regular, all-season tire is very capable, but in harsh wintertime conditions, replacing your tires with specialized ones is definitely the better option. It’ll ease your driving anxiety on slippery roads and take care of the number one driver’s responsibility – ensuring the safety of everyone in traffic. Here’s a good tip: it’s always good to have ALL-TOP Air Compressor Kit in your four-wheeler.

Winter tires maintain their flexibility even in the lowest temperatures, provide good traction and grip even on the snowiest of roads, and draw off moisture from the ice as you drive across it. That’s thanks to the rubber compound they’re made from – you’ll be able to get a comfortable and safe ride even when the most famous routes in the US are covered in snow. 

There Are Four Main Types of Snow Tires – Here’s What You Need to Know About Each Type

No matter if you’re looking for the best winter tires for trucks or your family SUV, there are numerous great options that are split into these four main categories:

Type of Snow TiresDesignOptimal Conditions
StudlessDeep grooves enable a good grip on slippery terrainPacked and slush snow
StuddableSmall holes on the tire surface and optional studs Ice, snow, slopes
StuddedSmall metal studs in the tread area enhance the gripNot for regular pavement – only with ice and snow
PerformanceDesigned for high performance and speedDry and wet roads – not ideal for extreme winter conditions

Himalaya Inverno K1 Is the Best Studdable Option Offered by the Federal Tires Brand

The popular import cars are not the only thing East Asia is known for. Many top-competing car parts manufacturers come from this part of the world, and Federal Tires, based in Taiwan, is an excellent example. 

With a long history and an even longer list of products, this brand offers great products in every category of tires. The Himalaya Inverno K1 is probably the best pick when it comes to tires designed for SUVs and harsh winter conditions. 

Key Features of the Himalaya Inverno K1

The Himalaya Inverno comes in both studless and studdable versions, the latter of which is dubbed the Himalaya Inverno K1. This rubber compound tire is designed for light trucks and SUVs, and its V-shaped groove design allows efficient traction on slush, snow, and ice. 

The Himalaya Inverno K1 is marked with both the Mud+Snow (M+S) and the 3-Peak Mountain Snow Flake (3PMSF) label, which means it does well in winter conditions, as well as for off-road driving. Here are the most important specifications

Stud TypeStuddable
Rim Diameter22
Load Index110
Load RangeXL

Pros and Cons of the Himalaya Inverno K1 

Here are some pros of the Himalaya Inverno K1 tires:

  • V-shaped tire sipes increase traction on snow-covered roads, 
  • Optional installing of studs for extra grip, 
  • Work well both in snow and mud.

Considering there’s no such thing as the perfect product that works well in all conditions, here are some downsides of these tires:

  • Can feel unreliable without added stubs, 
  • Doesn’t work great in very extreme winter conditions, 
  • The ride can feel unbalanced at times.

Customer Reviews of the Himalaya Inverno K1

The Himalaya Inverno K1 winter tires are a great choice for mild winter conditions, and the numerous positive customer reviews attest to that. Moreover, some say that even in harsher conditions, they had no problems at all. However, most of us know that taking negative customer reviews into consideration is oftentimes more important. 

When it comes to the Himalaya Inverno K1, there are several reviews stating that they’ve experienced an unbalanced ride with not enough traction. While some of these negative experiences are a result of matching the tires meant for SUVs to a sedan and can be easily overlooked, there are a few that still hold up. So, if you’re considering buying the Himalaya Inverno K1 winter tires, the best thing to do is take them out for a test drive and see for yourself.

Pros and Cons of the Himalaya Inverno K1 Winter Tires
A great winter tire offers a good grip on a snow-covered road

The Asymmetrical Tread Design of the Farroad FRD78 Winter Tire Creates Excellent Friction on Icy Roads

One more product that originates from East Asia, specifically from China, is the Farroad FRD78 winter tire. It’s a great touring tire designed to withstand even the harshest weather conditions and is suitable for SUVs and passenger vehicles. So, let’s take a look at why it might be the perfect choice for your four-wheeler. 

Key Features of the Farroad FRD78

The rubber compound body and the asymmetrical tread design work together to create the much-needed gripping capability on roads covered in ice and snow, even without the studs. The very dense siping detail enables improved performance, as it disperses water and slush easily and works well in wet conditions as well. 

Here are the most important specifications of the Farroad FRD78

Stud TypeStudless
Rim Diameter16
Load Index107
Load RangeSL

Pros and Cons of the Farroad FRD78

Here are the pros of the Farroad FRD78 winter tires:

  • Budget-friendly option, 
  • Improved controllability, 
  • Enhanced ability when turning corners. 

However, with such a low price, you’re bound to have to work with some downsides:

  • High performance only on wet surfaces, 
  • Studs can’t be installed for added grip, 
  • Softer material than most other winter tires on the market. 

Customer Reviews of the Farroad FRD78

The Farroad FRD78 winter tires have pretty good customer reviews, especially when you take into consideration the low price tag. Many satisfied customers are surprised at the quality of handling and ability when cutting corners, as you’d naturally expect a low-quality product for such a price. 

No matter if you own a brand-new car, a used vehicle, or even one with a salvage title, it’s important to try and cut the costs of owning a car. Even beginner drivers know that it can add up pretty quickly, so if the budget is one of your main concerns, having capable but affordable winter tires such as the Farroad FRD78 is the way to go. 

Pros and Cons of the Farroad FRD78 Winter tires
The Farroad FRD78 tires – an excellent grip on snow with an affordable price tag

Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V2 Winter Tires Offer Great Traction Even Without the Studs

If you’re looking for studless winter tires that still perform well in ice and snow conditions, my best recommendation would be the Blizzak DM-V2 tires. When you equip your SUV with these winter tires, you can enjoy excellent traction on basically any terrain, wet or dry. Thanks to their hydroplaning resistance technology, cornering and braking on icy roads will no longer be a problem. 

Key Features of the Blizzak DM-V2

The Blizzak DM-V2 winter tires are not equipped with studs, but that doesn’t mean their performance is lacking when compared to their studded counterparts. Actually, these NanoPro Tech Multicell compound rubber tires work great in all winter conditions, from slush to ice and anywhere in between. The microscopic ice particles work together with the small sipes in order to enhance surface traction. With these winter tires, there’s no more getting stuck in the snow. 

Here are some of the most important specifications of the Blizzak DM-V2 tires:

Stud TypeStudless
Rim Diameter16
Load Index104
Load RangeSL

Pros and Cons of the Blizzak DM-V2

Here are the pros you can enjoy with the Blizzak DM-V2 winter tires:

  • Enhanced traction, even in the most extreme winter conditions, 
  • The hydrophilic coating works amazingly well on wet surfaces, 
  • Improved durability. 

Unfortunately, as mentioned, there’s no such thing as the perfect product. Here are some downsides of these tires:

  • While affordable, they’re definitely not on the cheap side, 
  • Older manufactured tires are not as good as brand-new ones,
  • Studs can’t be installed for better grip. 

Customer Reviews of the Blizzak DM-V2

Most customer reviews of the Blizzak DM-V2 winter tires are overwhelmingly positive, with satisfied drivers raving about their capabilities on all kinds of terrain. Customers are also positively surprised at their reliability and durability. 

However, some are not so satisfied with how they perform when it comes to slush. Also, they can be quite noisy, but that’s standard when it comes to specialized tires designed to withstand even the harshest of weather conditions. So, while they might be the best in that regard, your final choice should always come down to your specific requirements. 

Pros and Cons of the Blizzak DM-V2 Winter Tires
The Blizzak DM-V2 tires handle any terrain pretty well – it’s all about that grip

How to Choose the Best Winter Tires for an SUV?

Sure, compared to car prices these days, winter tires seem like a super small investment, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t carefully consider different options and do your research to come up with the best choice for you. 

Here are the most important aspects you should think about when shopping for a new pair of winter tires: 

Your Summer and Winter Tires Should Be the Same Size

To figure out the size, simply take a look at the sidewall of the tires, and you’ll find a code that consists of several numbers that describe different measurements. The first number indicates the width of the tread, the second the ratio, and the third corresponds to the interior diameter of the tire.

Staying Within Your Budget Is the Best Way to Narrow Down Your Search

Once you have the dimensions, it’s important to come up with the budget. That means having a clear idea of the highest price you can afford and are willing to pay. Thoroughly research various options and compare prices, and keep an eye out for sales and deals.

It’s Important to Know the Types of Surfaces You Mainly Drive On

The last important factor to consider is what roads you usually drive on and how much time you spend driving. Living in cities with the worst drivers won’t have an effect only on the lifetime of your brakes but on your tires as well. So, it’s best to get a high-quality pair. That’s also your best option if you’re planning to drive a lot in harsher conditions. 

On the other hand, if you don’t drive that much and don’t plan on making your way through the snow every day, it’s perfectly okay to save a couple of bucks and get something a bit more affordable.

Tips Before Buying Winter Tires for an SUV

Besides the aforementioned criteria, there are a couple of additional tips I want to share with you. First and foremost, mixing and matching different brands of tires is never a good idea because it can lead to an unbalanced and uncomfortable ride

Also, if there’s a store nearby, it’s best to visit it and visually compare different options. Even if you’re not super knowledgeable about the subject, actually seeing the product can tell you a lot about its quality and flexibility, and you can ask the sales rep anything you’re wondering about. Lastly, if you’re ordering online, packages are usually separated due to their size, so don’t panic if they don’t get delivered on the same day. You can always track your packages for peace of mind. 

Closeup of car tires in winter morning
Now that you know all of the ins and outs, it’s time to pick your next winter tires

Take Time to Do Your Research – It Will Ensure That You End up With the Perfect Option for Your Four-Wheeler

Recommendations and reviews definitely help a lot, but all that research is wasted if you don’t know what exactly you’re looking for. That’s why it’s important to familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of winter tires to fully understand your options. Only then you’ll be able to choose the right product for your four-wheeler. Good luck, and remember – safety should always be the top priority, no matter the season.