- Stable while cornering at high speeds
- Extremely quiet on most road surfaces
- Hardy sidewalls resist pot hole damage
- Poor performance on wet / snowy roads
- Sipes and transverse patterns wear down fast
A challenge that aftermarket tire manufacturers often face is creating a product that is held in high esteem by automakers. It is quite difficult to produce a non-OE tire that is approved by prestigious car manufacturers. This has a knock – on effect of confusing unwitting consumers who may find it hard to choose a non stock tire that will deliver performance that comes close to the original set. An attempt to solve this problem is investigated in this Hankook Optimo H426 review. The South Korean tire manufacturer set out to bring to market, a tire that would be acceptable to the stringent standards of high end automakers.
Integrated Approach to Steering and Handling
In their quest to enter the high end tire market, Hankook have enjoyed some level of success, becoming acknowledged by several automakers. Of note is a base tread on the tire, that has underlying stratified layers for added comfort and dampening of shocks as they occur during driving. This encrusted structure enables the tire to deliver a quiet and gentle driving experience.
No compromises have been made when it comes to handling as well. The Optimo H426 features dual steel buckles that keep the tire stable and heighten steering sensitivity. For added cornering and handling control, a high rigidity bead filler comes as standard. The end result is a highly streamlined driving experience that inspires confidence even round the most daunting hairpins.
Good While It Lasts
It would seem all the emphasis on ride quality and steering, opened up the Optimo H426 to a problem of a different nature. While all the considerations made in creating the tire come together to give unrivalled drive comfort on dry surfaces, the tires lose step on wet and icy roads. Cruising speeds in such conditions can result in the vehicle losing steering control altogether.
Tread wear is another sore point for the Hankooks. They are not particularly built for durability, with sets having to be changed around the 15,000 mile mark. While the smooth sensation caused by a low rolling resistance may make for a quieter ride, the tires will need replacing in a much shorter period than average.
After going through a thorough Hankook Optimo H426 review process, the areas that let this tire down are as follows:
Drawbacks Of The Hankook Optimo H426 Tire
- Experience rapid wear, sometimes ‘balding’ around the 30,000 mile mark
- Have very low traction and perform poorly in wet and icy driving conditions
- Soft tire compound results in sidewall cracking and chunking in bumpy and rocky roads
- Sudden acceleration, such as when overtaking, can cause the tires to lose traction even in dry conditions.
The concept behind the Hankook tires was somewhat justifiable, creating a tire that fits the specifications of various carmakers. However in doing so, it seems a lot of practical aspects were ignored, resulting in a tire that looks good on paper, but fails to deliver when required.
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