Kumho Solus TA71 Review

by | Tires

  • Dry 95% 95%
  • Wet 90% 90%
  • Snow 75% 75%
  • Comfort 90% 90%
  • Noise 90% 90%
  • Treadwear 85% 85%
  • Overall 88% 88%

I had a tough time writing this Kumho Solus TA71 review. It has a bit hard to find a test car fitted with this high-performance tire. I went to the tire store many times, and after many failed attempts, I was able to find a great test car for this Kumho tire review.

After acquiring the test car, another problem popped out. I did some research on the Kumho Solus TA71 and I found out that this tire is classified under the grand touring all-season category. I was aware that the Solus TA71 is a high-performance tire designed for sporty or luxury sedans. I browsed the official USA site of Kumho to confirm my suspicions, and I was right!

Allow me to clarify this minor issue before proceeding with our tire review: the Kumho Solus TA71 is a high-performance all-season tire with a speed rating of V and a UTQG rating of 600 AA.

But unlike other high-performance tires that are designed for maximum grip, the Kumho Solus TA71 is primarily designed for comfort and noise isolation.

If you find it hard to believe that a tire can remain quiet and comfortable while still classified as a high-performance derivative, kindly wait until you get to the middle part of this review. My test car is a 2012 Mercedes C350 Coupe 4MATIC AWD, which happens to be for sale at the time of this writing. My German test car was fitted with 1-week old Kumho Solus TA71 tires on OEM stock rims.

I am a huge fan of German cars, but I’m not particularly fond of the C-Class. This review gave me ample time to spend some driving moments with the C-Class equipped with Kumho Solus TA71 tires.

Kumho Solus TA71 review: Features

The Kumho Solus TA71 is engineered with an asymmetric tread design. There are four wide grooves that enable the tire to perform admirably on wet and slushy pavement. The gripping edges are complemented by angled snow sipes to increase traction on icy and snowy pavement.

This tire is also equipped with a larger contact area. Tires with this feature will look wider when fitted to the wheel, which is a good thing if you’ll ask me. Not only it will improve the stance of your ride particularly when you viewed from behind but also having a wider contact patch means more grip and traction along with better steering response.

It is too bad that there was no chance for me to test the C-Class in the snow because I was anxious to find out if this all-season tire can really handle winter driving. The tires fitted were relatively new so I assume the owner didn’t get the chance to test the tires in snow either.

Kumho Solus TA71 review: Test Drive

The owner of the Merc was kind enough to let me drive the car on my own. He gave me 3 hours to return the car. I got in, familiarized myself with the controls (I’m more of a BMW kind of guy) and drove away.

Dry Traction

The sun was up and the road surface was dry as a bone. The Kumho Solus TA71 gave me superb grip and traction. In my opinion, the AWD nature of my test car is a perfect fit for the Solus TA71.

The steering was also meaty and the cornering grip was commendable. However, it’s a different story when you approach a tight corner at speed. The tires were screaming for grip as I was clinging on the apex of the curve. This is not a major issue, but it is important to mention it nevertheless.

Wet Traction

There was a bit of rain on the highway as I drove home. I didn’t get the chance to test the wet traction on a high-speed run, but everything was calm and comforting as I drove the Merc over a light drizzle. The steering was still fairly responsive and there were no issues of hydroplaning even as I sped up to overtake a slow car in front.

Snow Traction

I consulted other reviews about the snow performance of the Kumho Solus TA71 since there was no way for me to test the tires in the snow.

So far, the Solus TA71 received high scores when it comes to grip and traction on icy road conditions. Of course, you can’t expect a high-performance all-season tire to cope with 4-inches of snow, but it’s good to know that it remains composed when faced with light to moderate snow.

Comfort

I have nothing bad to say in terms of comfort. The Kumho Solus TA71 was comfortable on the highway, and it enabled the car to ride gracefully over pockmarked city roads. Credit also goes to the Merc for the suspension tuning, but like I said, this tire seemed a perfect fit for the all-wheel drivetrain of the C-Class Coupe.

Noise

The same can be said for the road noise, which was pretty much muffled even on the highway. The tires remained quiet even as I pressed hard on the pedal to gain more speed. This is where the Kumho Solus TA71 truly shines, which is perhaps the reason why other sites classify this tire as a touring variant.

Treadwear

The tires fitted were fresh as the morning dew. Even the owner of the C-Class was curious about the wear capabilities of the Kumho Solus TA71 given the affordable price tag. I consulted other reviews and they all said the same thing: wear characteristics were top notch given the low price of the TA71. Mind you, there are other tires which are cheaper, but the Kumho Solus TA71 is somewhat in the middle of the price range.

Conclusion

I am impressed with the capabilities of the Kumho Solus TA71. I ended my test drive and review with a newfound respect for the Mercedes C-Class Coupe as well. Although the Solus TA71 is primarily geared for comfort, it managed to perform well dry and wet pavements with no grave issues to report.