Subaru Outback Forums banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part of this month's Ride of the Month Challenge!

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
2011 Subie 3.6R Limited 2013 Cmax e=nergi PHEV
Joined
·
821 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Can anyone with the Michi Defenders on their Gen 4 attest to their snow and ice performance this winter or last? I tried to get some information on a couple of tire discussion threads over a week ago, but got no hits there.

Trying to decide on the Michi Defenders and the Hankook H727.

Gotta be an all season due to the fact that most of the OBs duties are on hot dry asphalt. That said, the tires I want must best possible snow performance available in an all season compromise because I manage to find my way into a lot of big nasty slippery dumps and until I get the **** out of SoCal I can't justify a dedicated set of snow tires.
 

·
Registered
'14 3.6R Outback
Joined
·
2,345 Posts
I have not had the defenders yet, but i had the earlier version on a Jeep Cherokee and they did very well.

I have Xi2 on the OB and they are a winter rated all season. Definitely worth a look if you spend a decent amount of time in the snow. They are a little slippery on dry pavement though if you are pushing the OB to the limits.
 

·
Registered
2013 3.6R SAP BBP Outback
Joined
·
717 Posts
I have the Defenders on my '13 3.6R. They are fine in the winter. I have no particular complaints. They are stable and predictable and allow me to take good advantage of the AWD. The tread compound does not seem to harden up in the cold because I'm not getting any flat-spotting when they sit outside overnight after being driven the day before. Dedicated winter tires like the Xice are better in loose snow and on ice, but that's to be expected. I had those on a Honda Civic and the Xice are really great in winter. Conversely of course, the Defenders are better on dry roads than the Xice. In the 5000 miles I've had them on my OB (Sept-Jan), I'm very happy with them in all conditions and decided to not get dedicated winter tires. I think the Defenders just came out last spring, so this winter will be first cold season reports on how they do. The tirerack.com will be testing them in winter conditions soon too. I run the stock size at 32 psi all around. You should get hits on a search for "defender". Others have posted on them, as have I.
 

·
Registered
2004 Outback Wagon, 2.5, 4EAT, All weather package.
Joined
·
1,036 Posts
You're not finding a lot of information on the Defenders winter performance because this is the first winter they have existed. The Defender premiered in the spring of this year, in fact I remember Michelin was hyping up the new tire that was about to premier at the Detroit auto show quite a bit last year.
 

·
Registered
2013 Limited w/EyeSight
Joined
·
352 Posts
We have them on a different vehicle but do have experience with them in pretty much every condition I can think of. They replaced Michelin Hydro-Edge.

In general they are among the best for quiet, comfy but predictable driving. They do not seem as good as the Hydroedge they replaced but that style tire that can't be rotated the same doesn't last as long and is not as quiet or soft on bumps.

One winter advantage is they're quieter than some tires on all the freeze cracks.

I'll be honest. I've also had dedicated winter tires. Those are what you do for ultimate winter performance. I've decided that you should otherwise choose a tire best for most of what you encounter. I can't fault the Defenders for the latter.

FYI: My Outback only has 3000 miles on it and I don't find the OEM Contis horrible as many say, and they seem to cut (dig, hold) in loose stuff and snow better than the Defenders.

Bottom line: Comfy and predictable come to mind more than anything else with the Defenders we have. They have 4.5 months of use and about 3000 miles on them now.
 

·
Registered
2011 Subie 3.6R Limited 2013 Cmax e=nergi PHEV
Joined
·
821 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the responses. I have read tirerack.com, michelin.com, and discounttire.com sites for reviews too, but figured I would get the best beta from the OB members here. From what I am reading, it sounds like they are a good all season that do ok on ice and now, but like all AS tires they don't hold a candle to a dedicated soft compound super siped snow tire. Sandroad, who has used dedicated snows, is using them in a MI winter so they are probably decent and up to most tasks.

Any more user input is welcomed. Thanks in advance.
 

·
Registered
2013 OB 2.5i Premium/DDD Graphite Gray Metallic OP#2 Weathertec Window Deflectors
Joined
·
405 Posts
I think tires are like anything else, some of us are aggressive drivers, some of us are looking for just a point A to B ride, it's what the individual is looking for, like wine some like red some white some like both some don't like it at all. We all like different things, you have it, I want it to. My 2c. on tires. Aggressive drivers are looking for tires that stick better than others, some are looking for a smoother, quiet ride. That's why there's so many choices out there,just like picking a spouse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
303 Posts
I have Toyo Tourevo LSII /siped also on my 08 OB they are great overall, quiet and for the snow they grip. Not alot of ice but hit a few spots and some wheel slip but then catch. I didnt want to do the whole tire change over as I travel from state to state but here WA til april but if choosing after watching this video on Tirerack I would go with the Continentals.
Testing the Newest Studless Ice & Snow Winter Tires
 

·
Registered
2016 Carbide Gray Limited with Moonroof, Nav, and Eyesight
Joined
·
906 Posts
Not sure if anyone else went with the Hankook H727, but they are very quiet and carry a 100,000 mile warranty. (as useful as anyone else's I guess) We have had freezing rain and are expected to go to -25F, and have had a fair amount of snow. These are quieter than I remember the Conti's ever being. On polished glare ice they will slide a bit, but a very good winter performer in my opinion and a quiet and comfortable ride otherwise. I'm sure the Defender is a great tire as well, I made my choice based on the somewhat better winter performance reported. Anyone else have these?
 

·
Registered
2011 Subie 3.6R Limited 2013 Cmax e=nergi PHEV
Joined
·
821 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Not sure if anyone else went with the Hankook H727, but they are very quiet and carry a 100,000 mile warranty. (as useful as anyone else's I guess) We have had freezing rain and are expected to go to -25F, and have had a fair amount of snow. These are quieter than I remember the Conti's ever being. On polished glare ice they will slide a bit, but a very good winter performer in my opinion and a quiet and comfortable ride otherwise. I'm sure the Defender is a great tire as well, I made my choice based on the somewhat better winter performance reported. Anyone else have these?

They sound great. Love to here if anyone else with the OB has these? The Hankook H727 gets mainly good reviews on the vendor sights with a few winter naysayers - likewise for the Michelin Defenders.

Sheets of ice and you better have studded winters IMHO. At least that is where I would be most comfortable.
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top