I thought this subject deserved its own post. Since building my Tacoma just over a year ago, I realized I had no idea what I was doing and certainly didn’t spend the time for research. My first purchase were 17” wheels with Sport Performance “A/T” tires. A/T stands for All Terrain right? Well, these were great in the winter for a little snow and ice on the pavement, but horrible off-road. After a bit of trial and error, I switched back to 16” wheels with a little more rubber and went with Falcon Wildpeak AT 3w. So far, they fit my needs and have taken me on a couple routes I thought I would never take.
Now, I’m guessing much is personal preference, need, what terrain you drive on, whether your vehicle is a daily driver, or just for weekend off-roading. Mine is a daily driver, so I wanted something that would not be too noisy on the pavement, but could handle the dirt, mud and snow/ice. Living in the PNW, we get all that plus some. This leads me to the topic and question.
Tell us what you prefer and why.
1992 US Olympic Team VO #0172 KJ7BOH IG: @dlo8168 Twitter: @dlo81688 2001Toyota Tacoma
I went with the BFG KO2 AT, based on recommendations from a lot of folks on the Xterra forums, including several from here in the PNW. They have excellent handling in the rain, which is important in a place where it rains 9 months out of the year, haha. For my uses, they handle very well off-road as well.
Why? well I don't need the extra traction on wet pavement cause I don't drive like a jackass. Its a Jeep not a race car. I drive like a normally adult should. I've had to avoid sudden obstacles in the road, children running into the street suddenly, animals and I like take back roads at a brisk pace (still not driving like a jackass) in the rain when I pick my son up from his mothers house every other weekend. There is 0% difference in traction on wet pavement under almost all normal driving conditions. In fact mud terrain tires don't hydroplane as easily due to the deep lugs. Older worn out MT's might. So hitting standing water ceases to bothersome.
MT's have a stronger thicker sidewall and perform better in almost every condition except ice (honestly nothing goes well on ice and do we really drive on ice that often for it to be a deciding factor?). I don't care about road noise, its an off-road vehicle but mine are no louder than the K02's which I have on my XJ. When they get down to about 50% tread life they do start to make some noise but its not like you cant actually talk over them. I don't know why road noise is even factored in for some people. I use my vehicle and want it to perform the best.
I ran BFG KM2's on my XJ then switched to K02's when they had worn out as they were on sale at the time. That was a mistake. A fairly popular Jeep youtuber has also switched back to MT's recently after using K02s for a year or so. He was having trouble on wet rocks and mud. I run Nitto Trail Grappler MT's, I'm on my second set. The first set would have ended up getting right around 40k miles if I had not upgraded to 37's. Off-road...where traction matters the most, AT's are inferior.
Now don't get me wrong AT's will get the job done but at a cost of less traction when you may need it the most.
I had MT’s and with a 26 year old truck they made my teeth chatter (literally) on the freeway. Along with the rest of the truck ratteling apart 😂 Changed to AT’s and that went away. The AT’s have achieved every challenge the MT’s did. The MT’s however look 100 times better. Especially at the mall.
If they weren’t noisy I’d prob still have MT’s.
Also, I know they are expensive but I will always save until I can get BFG’s. Tires are my most important “mod”. Your rigs capabilities aren’t possible without tires. Just my opinion.
I'm happily back on BFG All Terrains after a few years with Toyo MT's. The Toyos were good tires, but for my purposes, the all-terrains are better.
I've flip-flopped on this issue for, oh about 25 or 30 years! Normally run AT's then every now and again I get hungry for a Mud Terrain tire. Ah well...
I suppose that I like the AT's better because I've found them to offer better traction in snow and they literally go anywhere I ask. A MT provides those big beefy lugs that grab so well off-pavement, particularly in... Mud!
Pretty sure I'll be sticking with AT's at this point. I just get along with them better.