For this reason, I’ve selected the very common P225/65R17 size as the yardstick for this winter tire exercise.
The ratings could not be simpler: They range from inexpensive to moderate to best, regardless of price. On that subject, I’ve got good news for tire shoppers in Canada: Tire prices have dropped considerably over the last few seasons. In order to discourage cross-boarder shopping, tire manufacturers have lowered their prices to match US retail prices as much as possible.
As such, the fact that price is always the No. 1 consideration when it comes to buying these expensive consumables is very good news.
Here are the top 2013 CUV/minivan/small SUV winter tire choices:
Best inexpensive tire: $150-$200
Dunlop Grandtrek SJ6 or Continental ExtremeWinterContact or Toyo GSi-5
Most tires in this price range are studdable, the exception being the Dunlops. They provide good snow and slush traction and for maximum ice traction, studs help at the expense of increased road noise.
Best moderately priced tire: $200-$250
Yokohama iceGUARD iG51v or Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1 or Gislaved Nord*Frost 100
These tires offer maximum grip in all conditions, providing optimal performance whether the conditions feature ice, snow or other wintery situations. Their compound and tread patterns are engineered to remain flexible and work hard to tackle the worst winter has to offer.