The OHTSU ST5000 is yet another budget-friendly alternative for your pickup truck or SUV. The OHTSU ST5000 looks erringly similar to the Falken Ziex S/TZ05. Both tires are equipped with an all-season non-directional and symmetrical tread design so you can rotate the tires in various configurations to enhance even wear. Both tires have an M+S rating, and both tires are equipped with a grooved center rib design. But the similarities end there. I’m not surprised that the OHTSU and the Falken are somewhat similar since they are basically made by the same parent brand, but the OHTSU starts at a lower price compared to the Falken.
In this review of the OHTSU ST5000, I got behind the wheel of a 2013 GMC Acadia fitted with stock 20-inch wheels and OHTSU ST5000 tires. My test vehicle was equipped with the 3.6-liter V6 motor paired to a slick shifting six-speed automatic transmission. I’m not the biggest fan of the GMC Acadia even though it has one of the best rides in midsize SUV category. I simply found the vehicle too big and cumbersome for the daily drive, but it does fit up to 8 passengers while still retaining a massive cargo area.
OHTSU ST5000 Features
The OHTSU ST5000 is built and engineered for all season highway performance. This is an affordable tire that will enhance the on-road refinement of your pickup truck or sport-utility vehicle. What makes this tire stand out is the extremely low price tag. My test vehicle was fitted with larger 20-inch tires and the owner paid less than $500 for a complete set.
The OHTSU ST5000 is constructed using an all-season tread compound to deliver better traction and grip on wet and dry roads. The symmetrical tread pattern is also enhanced with a continuous center rib to improve the handling and stability of your SUV.
The tire is also equipped with high-angled lateral grooves with offset tread blocks to increase the level of traction on all types of road surfaces. This feature is also designed for a smoother and quieter ride.
The OHTSU ST5000 has four circumferential grooves to improve resistance to hydroplaning. There are multiple sipes on the face of the tread which serve as biting edges on slippery or snowy roads. The tire is constructed using a joint-less nylon cap to improve the strength and durability of the carcass.
I hopped aboard the Acadia with high expectations. Cheap tires are supposed to be good in wet and dry road conditions, but you can expect a bit more road noise with faster wear. That’s how it is with cheap tires! But is the OHTSU ST5000 any different, or should you settle for the Falken tires instead? Those were the questions I was willing to answer in this ST5000 review.
In all honesty, I have nothing bad to say about the OHTSU ST5000 when it comes to performance on dry roads. Traction and grip were plentiful and lateral grip was top notch given the bulk and weight of my test vehicle. I was able to travel at faster speeds without losing steering responsiveness and road grip. Handling and cornering is on the average side of things, while braking was also admirable given the low price point of the tires. However, I have to reiterate that the OHTSU ST5000 tires are not designed for sporty driving and equally sporting SUVs. Like a proper set of performance touring rubber, the tires felt more at home when you’re driving at average to high speeds on a smooth highway.
Traction on wet roads was also admirable. I was able to drive a bit more aggressively in the wet without forcing the tires to break traction. Don’t get me wrong, though. The tires felt good in the wet, but you will feel the tires hunting for some much needed grip if you apply abrupt changes to the steering and throttle pedal. Like I said, if sporty wet handling is your cup of tea, the OHTSU ST5000 tires might not be the most suitable for your palette.
The OHTSU ST5000 tires were average in the snow and they are basically useless if you are traversing over sleet, ice, or deep snow. I think this is acceptable given the low price. You would think the tires can handle a bit more snow given the aggressive sipes on the treads, but you will need a proper set of winter tires when the snow begins to pile up in the winter.
There is no question the GMC Acadia is a comfortable highway cruiser. I was able to drive at higher speeds without feeling tired or consumed after a long and tiresome journey. The OHTSU ST5000 felt like a more expensive set of touring tires on a smooth highway. The tires delivered large dollops of comfort on tight city roads as well.
The noise levels and tire roar are not as bad as you think. Cheap tires have a tendency to be raucous at higher speeds, but the OHTSU ST5000 is a bit more scaled down in terms of road noise. Mind you, the tire roar is still there at higher than average speeds, but it’s not enough to upset the overall refinement of my test vehicle.
The OHTSU ST5000 on my test vehicle were purchased six months ago but the treads were still relatively fresh despite the age of the tires. Yes, there were noticeable signs of fading and wear on the sipes but this is above average for the price.
If you are in the market for a capable and affordable set of all-season touring tires for your pickup truck or SUV, you should definitely consider the OHTSU ST5000 if your primary concern is to save money.
Alvin Reyes has expertise in automotive evaluation. He collaborated with famous newspapers and is still making efforts in tire review for DrivingPress.com