Michelin Latitude Tour Review & Rating
- Dry 85% 85%
- Wet 80% 80%
- Snow 70% 70%
- Comfort 85% 85%
- Noise 80% 80%
- Treadwear 80% 80%
- Overall 80% 80%
There’s a reason why Michelin, which has been making tires all the way since 1889, is the second-largest tire manufacturer in the world. It has been making quality, durable tires for all sorts of vehicles and shows no signs of slowing down after almost one-and-a-half century of its inception.
Having said that, like other tire makers, Michelin also has its fair share of dodgy models over the years. These were tires that didn’t do what they claim to do, and so their manufacturer had no choice but to recall them to save its reputation.
So what can we say about the Michelin Latitude Tour? Is it one of those models which make the user immediately regret their purchase? Or is it what it claims to be: an all-season tire which you can keep on using for years underneath your vehicle?
To find out the answer to these questions, we reviewed this tire. Read on to know what we found.
Michelin Latitude Tour Review: Features
As our regular readers might tell you, each of our tire reviews starts with a glance at the features of the model under consideration. This exercise informs our reader about what to expect from the model. More importantly, it gives them a set-point against which they can measure the actual performance of the tire.
Michelin knew that its 100year-plus history won’t come to its rescue when trying to convince buyers to give this model a try. What it needed to do, instead, is to load the Latitude Tour with features with tires of other manufacturers don’t have. Luckily, it did just that.
- Comfort Control Technology: Relying on the tire’s computer-optimized design and its precision manufacturing, the Comfort Control Technology has increased the on-road grip of the Latitude Tour. Apart from reducing road noise and vibrations, this feature offers the passengers a smooth, comfy and ultra-quiet riding experience.
- Green X Technology: It is Michelin’s guarantee that all of its models that come with this technology provide energy efficiency which is the highest in the market, and that too without forcing you to compromise on other key features such as tread wear and traction.
When purchasing a new pair of tires, you should pay particular attention to its tread. It gives the tire necessary traction on the road and has voids that help the tire grip wet surfaces. Conversely, if the tread is lacking in construction, materials, and design, your tire might become susceptible to hydroplaning.
- Max Touch Construction: Yet another of Michelin’s proprietary technologies, tires which feature Max Touch Construction have a unique-shaped contact patch which helps evenly distribute the forces of braking, cornering, and acceleration. This arrangement provides a better grip on the road and enhances tread life.
- Silica-based compound: While the tread features Max Touch Construction technology, it itself is made of a silica-based compound. Silica is known for adding strength to the tire to provide it with a shorter braking distance on dry roads.
Ever looked at your tires’ speed rating before asking yourself what the symbol right next to it (A, B, C, etc.) meant? In contrast to what most users choose to believe, a tire’s speed rating doesn’t tell you the maximum speed it can achieve. Instead, what the symbol is hiding is the maximum speed that the tire can ‘sustain’ safely over an extended period of time.
- S Speed Rating: Most tires that come with this speed rating are designed to be installed in family sedans and vans. That’s because the maximum ‘sustainable’ speed limit which this rating sets at 112mph might be too high for off-road conditions and too-low for sports sedans and coupes.
- T Speed Rating: There isn’t much difference between tires that have a T speed rating and those whose specs include an S speed rating. You get only six extra miles per hour (or 10 extra kilometers per hour) from models that are T rated. Hence the reason why like S-rated tires, those which are T rated do serve the same audience of family sedans.
Michelin Latitude Tour Review: Test Drive
What do all the above-mentioned features mean in real terms? Do they make their presence felt in real-life conditions? To have a foolproof answer to these questions, we took the Michelin Latitude Tour on a test drive.
Treadwear and Durability
Of all the Michelin tires we have taken out for a test drive, only a few of them come close to rivaling the 105,000 km treadwear warranty of the Latitude Tour. This gives us a glimpse of how much trust Michelin reposes in the durability of this tire.
Unfortunately, the confidence is misplaced. Like other users who have used it before, we are adamant that this tire’s treadwear could be better. And we aren’t saying it after ignoring other factors which might affect tread life, like your driving style, the roads you drive on, and how well you maintain the tire.
Instead, for the one month that we carried this tire through county roads, we made sure that nothing from our side could give it an excuse to justify its treadwear. Still, as our experts concluded at the end of the testing period, the tread life of the Latitude Tour could be definitely better.
Although we were disappointed at this model’s less-than-stellar treadlife, its dry performance lifted our spirits. Our main focus was on checking this tire’s fuel efficiency as Michelin claims that the presence of Green X technology helps this tire decrease your vehicle’s fuel consumption.
Michelin is right on this count. Compared to our previous rides with other tires, this tire consumed 3% less fuel on a 1000mile trip. You might not think too high considering that it’s ‘only’ three percent but extrapolate it to this model’s shelf life, and the fuel savings start to sound way more significant.
As well as offering fuel economy, this tire offered extreme traction on dry roads and performed brilliantly when we were cornering or applying abrupt brakes to test its mettle. That means that if you drive on highways most of the time, you cannot go wrong with the Latitude Tour.
There are two factors that help us differentiate tires who are made for wet roads from those who aren’t. First, average tires don’t have much gripping power, and so they skid on wet roads. Second, their capacity to channel water and prevent hydroplaning is, well, average.
Luckily, the Latitude Tour performed decently on both these counts. Thanks to its very wide tread widths, it encountered no problems when rolling on roads which had received heavy showers only a few minutes earlier and provided excellent grip.
Equally impressive was its performance under the rain. We deliberately maintained a higher-than-average speed to check whether it showed any signs of slippage – there were none. If anything, these tires’ performance on wet roads isn’t any different from how they roll on dry surfaces.
Noise and Comfort
Michelin is one of the few tire manufacturers who provide its models with dedicated technologies to fend off road vibrations and noise. It has equipped the Latitude Tour with Comfort Control Technology which, thanks to its computer-optimized tread design, fights road vibrations.
Hence the reason why none of the four passengers in our vehicle complained about vibrations during the journey. Similar was the case with road noise. Our journey mostly consisted of country roads, and apart from the loud honking of horns, there was nothing to wake one of our sleepy co-passengers up.
As we were traveling on light snow, the Latitude Tour didn’t leave much to be desired. The moment ice became hard, however, the performance of this tire immediately made us aware that while good on light snow, it isn’t a dedicated winter tire.
Wondering why that’s the case? Remember its wide tread widths which increase this model’s traction on dry and wet roads? They are the culprits here. Their extremely wide size restricts the level of grip the Latitude Tour can provide on deeper snow.
To summarize, the Latitude Tour tires would perform well in areas with moderate winter conditions. However, the moment the snow becomes thick, you’d need to take out some real-winter tires (with flexible rubber compounds) to run an errand.
The Michelin Latitude Tour is an all-season tire that aims to provide the best of both worlds to its users. Its Max Touch Construction, Green X Technology, and Comfort Control Technology help this tire boast a superior performance on both dry and wet roads, as well as in mild winter conditions. That said, this tire could have done better as far as its treadwear is concerned.
- Lowers down your vehicle’s fuel consumption
- Comes with a 65,000 miles warranty
- Provides a brilliant grip on both dry and wet roads
- Keeps the vehicle’s cabin free from vibrations and outside noises
- Treadwear could have been slightly better