Best Tires for Toyota Prius to Maximize Efficiency and Safety

The Toyota Prius is the most efficient hybrid vehicle on the market and was once a darling of environmentalists. Although EVs are now all the rage, Toyota's hybrid remains a top option for people that care about the environment, want low running costs, and want a convenient way of refueling.

With that said, to get the most out of your Prius when it comes to efficiency, you will need a set of low-rolling resistance tires. The models that Toyota puts as OE are pretty good, but you can get much better overall performance by opting for some aftermarket options without sacrificing fuel efficiency. Getting high MPGs is great, but safety should always be the number one priority when driving a car, and that includes the Prius.

But how can you find a suitable tire model for your Prius? With all those options on offer and mega-positive marketing from the manufacturers, it's hard to choose the perfect model. Fortunately, you arrived at the right place to find the best tires for Toyota Prius

In my top 11 list, I included tires that performed excellently in most categories, but I also paid attention to the fuel economy factor. Although some models are better than others, all of the tires below are designed with low-rolling resistance in mind, meaning your Prius should consume largely the same amount of fuel as the OE tires while also driving better and being more comfortable.

So, without further ado, let's find a set of tires that will maximize the mileage of your Prius while also offering reliable traction regardless of the weather conditions outside.

Contents

Best Grand-Touring All-Season Tires for Toyota Prius

1. Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack

Bridgestone-Turanza-QuietTrack

The Turanza QuietTrack is currently my favorite tire for hybrid vehicles like the Prius. Although it's not class-leading in every category, it still offers a very balanced performance and works in all weather conditions, including dry, wet, and snowy.

But the thing that I like most about this tire is how quiet and comfortable it is. Prius owners are a special bunch that values comfort more than performance, with the hybrid vehicle offering it in spades. However, to truly maximize the comfort potential of the Prius, you'll need to try the Turanza QuietTrack.

Bridgestone really did its homework with the tread pattern on this tire, which features in-groove quiet tracks, non-chamfered shoulder slots, and optimized pitch sequencing to cut road noise. The result is a very serene driving experience that few other tires can match.

The Turanza QuietTrack produces a slight tread growl, which is inevitable, but it's a low-pitched sound that is never obtrusive, even at very high speeds. Actually, the Prius produces more wind noise on the highway, which along with the engine, easily covers the noise of the Turanza QuietTrack. Overall, this tire will give you the quietest ride in your Prius.

But it's not only about the noise – Bridgestone did a great job with the ride quality as well. Interestingly, the ride isn't very soft, but most people will like it more that way. Namely, tires that are very soft suffer from repetitive impacts on bad roads, where they lose their composure and transmit a lot of vibration and harshness inside the cabin.

Not the Turanza QuietTrack, though – this tire remains composed on very bad roads while offering a buttery ride on smoother roads. Bridgestone has found just the right balance comfort-wise, and when paired with the Prius's softly-sprung suspension, this grand-touring tire is a great companion on long journeys.

The fact that the Turanza QuietTrack isn't very soft paid dividends in the driving department. Although steering precision isn't a characteristic that Prius owners think about, it's still good to know that this tire offers excellent straight-line tracking and feels responsive. Besides, who wouldn't want slightly more precise steering when it doesn't destroy the comfort characteristics of the tire, right?

Prius owners will also be happy to learn that this tire offers excellent traction without sacrificing fuel economy. Namely, the Turanza QuietTrack is made from a low-rolling-resistance compound that reduces fuel consumption while keeping you glued to the road.

I was pleasantly surprised at how well the Turanza QuietTrack handled day-to-day tasks. It provides immense traction for braking and acceleration on dry roads and a very good grip in the corners. The tire also feels balanced at the limit, meaning it's easy to control when you need to make evasive maneuvers.

The Turanza QuietTrack continues to excel in the rain, where it remains drivable and grippy. Notably, the longitudinal traction (acceleration and braking) is among the best in the category, and the lateral grip is excellent. Like on dry roads, the handling at the limit is balanced, and you will always feel like you have control over your vehicle.

The Turanza QuietTrack is also a very capable snow tire. It offers solid longitudinal traction, meaning you won't have issues accelerating and stopping on time. Also, it feels stable through the corners, with predictable behavior at the limit. Still, the lateral grip it offers is a step behind its closest rivals, the Michelin CrossClimate 2 and Continental PureContact LS, meaning your progress in the snow will be slower.

With that said, this is the tire with the highest treadwear warranty in its category at 80,000 miles. No other grand-touring tire comes close to that, with the closest competitors offering up to 70,000 miles. Besides, owners of the tire seem to be very satisfied with the real-world treadlife, which should also be higher than any other tire in the category.

Pros:

  • Exceptional control during wet conditions
  • Superior stopping ability on wet surfaces
  • Effective performance on snowy terrain
  • Stops promptly on lightly snowy surfaces
  • Outstanding control and grip during dry conditions
  • Treadwear warranty that outclasses competition and impressive real-world tread life
  • Extremely quiet, even at high speeds
  • Supreme comfort on any kind of road

Cons:

  • Slightly less grip on snowy surfaces compared to other high-end competitors

2. Michelin CrossClimate 2

Michelin-CrossClimate-2

Get $60 off 4 Michelin tires priced at $899 or less for the set OR $80 off a set priced at $900 or more
Valid through February 25, 2024
Available at DiscountTire.com

Michelin's first CrossClimate model was the first all-season tire that offered truly usable performance on snow-covered roads. While it still wasn't comparable to a winter tire, the CrossClimate offered a very safe and grippy ride on packed snow.

The brand-new CrossClimate 2 takes things up a notch in the snow (still has the Three-Peak Mountain Snowflake symbol) but, more importantly, improves in other important areas.

Namely, the predecessor wasn't the most capable rain tire in its category, falling behind its rivals when it came to braking. This model, though, launches right near the top of the grand-touring all-season category with its performance in rainy conditions.

Now, the CrossClimate 2 has some of the shortest stopping distances in the category, accompanied by excellent lateral grip. The handling also feels very balanced, with predictable behavior at the limit, which was another weakness of the predecessor. With a set of these tires on your Prius, you can have peace of mind when it rains, as you will always have control of your vehicle.

I was also very impressed with how the CrossClimate 2 handled dry conditions. Its predecessor was already great in this area, but this model feels even more responsive to drive. The steering is linear, and the handling at the limit is very balanced. Meanwhile, the unique tread pattern and advanced rubber compound provide exceptional lateral grip and the shortest stopping distances in its category.

Michelin being the most innovative manufacturer in the industry, further improved the snow performance of the CrossClimate 2. Although the competition has caught up with the model, Michelin's all-season tire still offers the best snow handling in its category, with a high lateral grip and very predictable behavior. The longitudinal traction is also excellent, meaning very short stopping distances and good acceleration off the line.

With that said, the French manufacturer still has some things to iron out for the next generation. For instance, while the CrossClimate 2 is one of the quietest grand-touring all-season tires at the moment, the ride isn't as smooth as on the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack. On smoother roads, it is fine, but it becomes objectionable on bad roads, where the CrossClimate 2 doesn't deal that well with repetitive impacts.

Still, if you often drive on the highway, you will be completely satisfied – the ride settles down, and it is very hard to hear the tires rolling. In other words, the ride quality issue is only a problem when you hit broken roads – 95% of the time, it's pretty smooth.

Michelin is known for producing the longest-lasting tires in the business, and I have no reason to believe the CrossClimate 2 won't last long. Besides, this tire will retain its performance better over time than other grand-touring tires.

However, there is no getting around the fact that the 60,000-mile treadwear warranty isn't competitive. It will be sufficient for most people, but it's still way shorter than the class-leading 80,000-mile warranty of the Turanza QuietTrack. Not to mention, the CrossClimate 2 is also one of the most expensive tires on the market.

But the CrossClimate 2 has an ace up its sleeve when it comes to running costs. Namely, despite its excellent traction and grip in all weather conditions, it has a low-rolling resistance compound that will keep your Prius MPGs low.

Pros:

  • Excellent grip on dry roads
  • Outstanding control during dry conditions
  • Quick and linear steering response
  • Excellent grip on wet roads
  • Superior wet surface braking capabilities
  • Reliable control on snow with impressive lateral grip
  • Top-of-the-line acceleration and braking performance on snow
  • Noise-free even at high speeds

Cons:

  • Pricier than most competitors
  • Hard ride on rough pavements
  • Shorter treadwear warranty (60,000 miles) compared to high-end competitors

3. Vredestein Quatrac Pro

Vredestein-Quatrac-Pro

The Quatrac Pro is another grand-touring all-season tire with a special focus on wintertime performance. This tire competes directly with the CrossClimate 2, with which it shares some qualities.

For instance, it comes with an even shorter 50,000-mile treadwear warranty, probably due to the softer rubber compound designed to work at lower temperatures. Vredestein is a premium Dutch brand, and I have no doubts the Quatrac Pro will easily last at least 50,000 miles, but the warranty is simply not comparable to tires like the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack and Continental PureContact LS.

You will get exceptional snow performance, though, which is the main reason for having this tire. The Quatrac Pro provides much shorter stopping distances on snow than the average grand-touring all-season tire and accelerates more quickly as well. It can even tackle deeper snow than you would expect from an all-season tire, thanks to the aggressive siping on the tread pattern.

Furthermore, the Quatrac Pro handles very predictably on snow-covered roads. The front tires are responsive and obedient, meaning your vehicle will turn into the corner quickly and without hesitation.

Meanwhile, the rear tires will keep you planted, needing only small corrections when you go over the traction limit. Overall, the Quatrac Pro is a great snow performer for its category and closely matches the Michelin CrossClimate 2.

Fortunately, Vredestein's engineers didn't sacrifice other aspects of the tire to make it usable in the winter. The Quatrac Pro performs very well on dry roads, where it feels very responsive and playful. That surprised me because tires with numerous sipes usually suffer from twitchy handling. Moreover, the lateral grip is pretty high for a snow-focused all-season tire (also known as an all-weather tire), and the braking distances are sufficiently short.

You can also trust that the Quatrac Pro will keep you safe when it rains. Thanks to the deep and wide grooves, the tire has excellent hydroplaning resistance and can cut through deep puddles of water. In addition, the longitudinal traction on wet tarmac is excellent, which means some of the shortest stopping distances in the category.

I was also very happy with how this tire performed in the corners – it was playful in the rain yet planted when I reached the limit. Sure, you won't be reaching the limit in the rain often, but the fact that you have control of your vehicle is crucial for those situations when you need to make an evasive maneuver.

Unlike some of its snow-focused all-season rivals, the Quatrac Pro is also a very comfortable tire. The ride is soft and remains composed on broken roads without the harshness associated with some low-quality tires. Moreover, there is almost no tread noise at urban speeds and only a slight tread growl on the highway. Overall, this tire is a great companion on longer trips.

The Quatrac Pro is an expensive tire, which could surprise some North American buyers. However, Vredestein is a premium brand that competes with Michelin, Bridgestone, Continental, and Pirelli, and its tires are almost always worth the price, and that is especially true with the Quatrac Pro.

Pros:

  • Admirable dry grip for an all-season tire
  • Efficient dry surface braking capabilities
  • Balanced control during rainy conditions
  • Superior traction on wet roads, both laterally and longitudinally
  • Reliable control on snowy terrain with remarkable traction
  • Smooth and noise-free driving experience on highways

Cons:

  • Shorter treadwear warranty compared to competitors in its category

4. Continental PureContact LS

Continental-PureContact-LS

The PureContact LS isn't rated with the Three-Peak Mountain Snowflake symbol, nor was it designed by Continental to compete directly with the Michelin CrossClimate 2 and Vredestein Quatrac Pro. But regardless of that, this tire impresses during wintry conditions while also being excellent during the spring, summer, and fall.

Besides, the PureContact LS is known for having a very low-rolling resistance index, so your Prius will continue delivering excellent MPGs, similar (if not better) to the OEM tires. This is good to hear because this is not a cheap tire. In fact, it's one of the most expensive in the category, though that's not surprising for a German-engineered product.

The German engineering pays its dividends regarding the tire's performance on the road. The PureContact LS is a very grippy tire on dry roads, providing some of the highest lateral Gs in its category. It also doesn't slip during hard acceleration and offers very short braking distances.

The PureContact LS aces the numbers but also feels good subjectively. It feels surefooted, even when you are at the limit, and gives you enough time to respond to a slide. Still, while the steering is fast, it is not very linear. Not that Prius owners will mind that, but still important to mention for those that want a more engaging drive.

Continental is famous for the rain performance of its tires, and the PureContact LS is one of the best examples. If you want the safest and most capable grand-touring tire in the rain, look no further – this is the one to get.

Notably, the PureContact LS will need the fewest feet to stop compared to any other tire in its category and will accelerate with the least wheel slip. Moreover, it offers the highest lateral grip, so you can attack corners faster than on any other comparable tire. As expected, the hydroplaning resistance is exceptional – no complaints there at all.

But the best thing about the PureContact LS is that it feels very predictable in the rain – you will always feel like you are in control, even at the limit. Close your eyes, and this tire will make you think that the surface is dry, not wet.

Although the PureContact LS doesn't come with the 3PMSF symbol, it behaves very well in wintry conditions. It provides comparable longitudinal traction to its 3PMSF rivals, like the CrossClimate 2 and Quatrac Pro, meaning the shortest distances will be as short, and you will have no issues accelerating. The handling also feels stable and calculated, with predictable behavior at the limit.

Continental also did a great job at minimizing road noise. Although you can hear the tires at highway speeds, the low-frequency noise blends in the background and isn't objectionable, so long-distance trips are generally smooth.

However, while the ride on the highway is generally smooth, the PureContact LS produces more harshness than its closest rivals when it goes over potholes and repetitive impacts.

Continental offers a 70,000-mile treadwear warranty on the PureContact LS, which is among the highest in the category. The German manufacturer is also known for producing tires that last very long in the real world, and owners of the PureContact LS are very satisfied with the longevity.

Pros:

  • A top-tier lateral grip on wet roads
  • Shortest wet surface stopping distance in its category
  • Reliable grip and control during dry conditions
  • Predictable control and traction on lightly snowy surfaces
  • Comparatively quiet
  • Extended treadwear warranty

Cons:

  • Hard ride on sharp bumps
  • The steering response isn't very linear

Best Touring Tires for Toyota Prius

5. Continental TrueContact Tour

Continental-TrueContact-Tour

The TrueContact Tour is Continental's entry-level touring all-season tire. Now, you probably picture a tire with a host of compromises, but that's far from the truth here, as the TrueContact Tour is a very capable Prius tire with low-rolling resistance and safe traction regardless of the weather conditions outside.

This is a tire that offers a balanced set of qualities, with almost no real disadvantage I can think of, apart from probably the price. Sure, it's not class-leading in every category; for instance, it's not the best tire for dry conditions among its rivals.

Still, it is more than safe enough in dry weather. The steering is nicely-weighted and precise, and the handling is balanced and natural. Moreover, while the lateral grip isn't class-leading, it's still more than sufficient enough for Prius drivers. In fact, I found that the TrueContact Tour has more grip than you would ever need on public roads. The stopping distances are also sufficiently short, and the highway stability is commendable.

Everything changes when it starts raining, though, as the TrueContact Tour is by far the best wet tire in its category. For me, this is more important since most accidents happen when it rains. And Continental's entry-level tire will definitely keep you away from accidents, thanks to the shortest stopping distances in the category.

Moreover, this tire is very good in the corners. It feels surefooted in the rain and provides a higher grip than any other standard touring all-season tire. In fact, it comes close to some grand-touring tires, which is a testament to its excellent rain performance. As expected, the TrueContact Tour also has outstanding hydroplaning resistance, meaning you won't have to worry about losing control of your vehicle during heavy rain.

The TrueContact Tour is as impressive when it starts to snow. Sure, it won't replace a winter tire – far from that, but it's definitely more capable than its rivals. I was truly impressed with how this model handled on snow-covered roads – it felt stable and very controllable at the limit.

In addition, it provides the highest longitudinal traction on snow, which translates into the shortest braking distances in the category and the quickest acceleration. And if that wasn't enough, the TrueContact Tour also trumps its competition in the corners with the highest lateral grip.

As for comfort, Continental did a great job minimizing road noise. The TrueContact Tour is truly a quiet tire, even at highway speeds and on rough asphalt. Besides, the ride quality is very smooth – the tire is soft enough to deal with smaller imperfections and stiff enough to drive over repetitive impacts without harshness.

To top it all off, Continental offers an 80,000-mile treadwear warranty on T-speed and H-speed rated models and a 70,000-mile warranty on V-speed models. Both are excellent for the category, but crucially, owners are also very satisfied with how long the TrueContact Tour lasts in the real world.

Pros:

  • Best-in-class traction on wet roads
  • Reliable control in rainy conditions
  • Smooth driving experience on most road types
  • Noise-free at highway speeds
  • Extended tread life and long treadwear warranty

Cons:

  • Performance on dry roads falls short of competitors

6. Michelin Defender2

Michelin-Defender2

Get $60 off 4 Michelin tires priced at $899 or less for the set OR $80 off a set priced at $900 or more
Valid through February 25, 2024
Available at DiscountTire.com

Michelin recently refreshed its standard touring offering with the Defender2. The new model inherits the super popular Defender T+H, which was a very competitive tire that offered exceptional longevity, solid year-round traction, and good comfort.

However, the competition didn't stand still, and Michelin needed the answer. The Defender2 inherits some of the characteristics of the previous model, like the 80,000-mile treadwear warranty on all sizes. I also have no doubts this tire will last for a very long time – Michelin's tires always provide the longest real-world treadlife.

Still, to truly compete in the category, the Defender2 also needs to deliver with its driving performance. And on dry roads, at least, Michelin's touring all-season tire trumps its rivals. It is pretty responsive and precise for a touring tire while also being very surefooted in the corners.

The longitudinal traction on dry tarmac is also among the highest in the category, meaning short braking distances and good acceleration off the line. The grip is excellent as well – no issues there whatsoever.

The Defender2 is also a very capable rain tire, though it ultimately falls behind the Continental TrueContact Tour. Namely, it has excellent hydroplaning resistance, so driving in heavy rain is very safe. It also provides solid longitudinal traction and high lateral grip while also being balanced in the corners.

Still, Continental's tire is much better when it comes to braking and turning in rainy conditions. The difference was only apparent when I tried both tires side by side, but it is there. So, you will definitely be satisfied with how the Defender2 performs in the rain, but if you want the best possible wet traction, you should go for the TrueContact Tour.

Continental's tire is also better on snow-covered roads, though the difference is smaller there. Crucially, Michelin's tire is easy to drive on snow, with predictable behavior at the limit and a grippy front end. It also brakes pretty well and accelerates off the line without too much wheel spin.

As for comfort, Michelin shows its prowess with the Defender2. This is a very quiet tire, even at higher speeds, and one that also doesn't produce a lot of noise when you drive over rough asphalt. I also liked the ride – it's soft enough to iron out smaller imperfections and taut enough to deal with sharper imperfections. Thus, wherever you drive, the Defender2 will keep you and the passengers comfortable.

Overall, the Defender2 is a great tire with many qualities, so it's no surprise that it is also the most expensive model in its category.

Pros:

  • Unparalleled tread life and long treadwear warranty
  • Superior grip and control on dry roads
  • Reliable traction on wet surfaces
  • Efficient traction and maneuverability on snowy terrain
  • Smooth and quiet riding experience

Cons:

  • A more expensive choice
  • Not as good in rainy conditions as the TrueContact Tour

7. Vredestein HiTrac All Season

Vredestein-HiTrac-All-Season

Ever since Vredestein entered the North American market, the Dutch company seriously unsettled its rivals in almost every category. Although not well-known among US and Canadian drivers, Vredestein is a premium brand that produces high-quality tires, and the HiTrac All Season is one of the best examples of that.

This is a tire that does most things well, with only the slower steering that really stands out. Since this won't be an issue for most Prius drivers, it's really not a big disadvantage at all, especially considering all the other qualities the HiTrac All Season offers.

For instance, Vredestein's touring tire competes directly with the class-leading TrueContact Tour when it rains. It falls only slightly behind its rival in traction and feels similar in the corners, which is high praise considering the German tire's ground-breaking performance.

The HiTrac All Season is truly a great wet tire, with stopping distances that are way shorter than similarly-priced touring tires and a much higher lateral grip. I also liked the tire subjectively – the handling felt natural and balanced, with predictable behavior at the limit. Moreover, the HiTrac All Season lost traction progressively, enabling me to catch the slide easily.

The dry performance of this tire is also excellent, though not as impressive as the wet performance. But you shouldn't worry about that. What is important is that the HiTrac All Season provides excellent lateral grip for the category, stops on time, and accelerates with ease. It also feels stable and surefooted – just like a Prius driver would want.

The HiTrac All Season continues to impress when the snow falls, again providing excellent traction for the category. Thus, the stopping distances are among the shortest in the category, and you will have enough acceleration traction to get out of trouble.

I was particularly impressed with how it handled the corners – the front end was responsive, and the rear tires were obedient and always followed suit. Although the tires lost the slide a bit quickly, there was still enough time to catch the slide. In fact, I found the experience to be fun and engaging!

As for comfort, the HiTrac All Season again passes with high marks. Notably, the ride felt very smooth on every type of road that I tried the tire, with very good composure over repetitive impacts. Also, the noise wasn't an issue at highway speeds, with only a distant drone entering the cabin.

Vredestein provides a 70,000-mile warranty on this tire, which is pretty good considering the price. Since the tire is new, I don't have a lot of information on real-world durability, but knowing Vredestein, the HiTrac All Season should be a long-lasting tire.

Pros:

  • Natural and predictable handling in dry conditions
  • Good longitudinal traction and lateral grip on dry roads
  • Very short stopping distances and excellent lateral grip in the rain
  • Very good traction and balanced handling on snow-covered roads
  • Buttery-smooth ride and very quiet operation at a speed
  • Excellent treadwear warranty for the price

Cons:

  • Noisy at higher speeds
  • The steering could use more urgency

8. Yokohama AVID Ascend LX

Yokohama-AVID-Ascend-LX

Yokohama's touring all-season tire is a real champ when it comes to low running costs. Not only it has very low-rolling resistance that improves the fuel economy on your Prius, but it also costs less than comparable touring all-season tires and has the highest treadwear warranty in the category.

Namely, Yokohama provides an 85,000-mile warranty on all sizes, which is the highest of any touring all-season tire. Testing has shown that the AVID Ascend LX also delivers during real-world driving scenarios and provides excellent treadlife. If you want to save money on gas and tires, this is the one to get.

But the AVID Ascend LX has much more to offer than just longevity and low running costs. For instance, it drives very well on dry roads, with stopping distances that are comparable to its more expensive peers and excellent acceleration traction.

Although it's an eco-focused tire, the AVID Ascend LX is no slouch in the corners as well. The steering is nicely-weighted and precise, and the overall handling balance is neutral, making for an enjoyable ride. The solid lateral grip is just the cherry on top of what is a pretty good dry tire.

However, although it's good in isolation, the AVID Ascend LX can't compete with the Continental TrueContact Tour and Vredestein HiTrac All Season in rainy conditions. Put simply, it doesn't stop as swiftly, nor it accelerates as well off the line.

It also feels more nervous in the corners, especially at the limit, and the lateral grip falls behind its rivals. It's not unsafe to drive in the rain – you really shouldn't worry about that, but it definitely won't offer the peace of mind of the TrueContact Tour, for example.

The AVID Ascend LX returns to form when the snow falls. Although not class-leading in terms of traction, Yokohama's touring tire remains easy to drive in the corners, with natural handling and manageable behavior at the limit. Besides, the stopping distances are sufficiently short for driving safely, and there is enough traction off the line so you don't get stuck in the snow.

Another thing that impressed me was the ride. The AVID Ascend LX is buttery smooth very any type of road. It feels soft yet composed, even over repetitive impacts. Sadly, though, it is a noisy tire, particularly at higher speeds. To make things worse, the noise is high-pitched, which can be tiring on longer journeys.

Still, I think that most Prius owners will be ready to accept these small compromises, especially considering the combination of low price, excellent warranty, and low running costs.

Pros:

  • Excellent dry surface braking and lateral grip
  • Balanced handling and predictable behavior at limits
  • Unusually smooth ride on all road surfaces
  • Effective traction and control on lightly snowy roads
  • Impressive tread life and best-in-class treadwear warranty (85,000 miles)
  • Reasonably priced, considering its performance

Cons:

  • Less effective in wet conditions compared to competitors
  • High-pitched noise when driven at high speeds

Best Winter Tires for Toyota Prius

9. Michelin X-Ice Snow

Michelin-X-Ice-SNOW

Get $60 off 4 Michelin tires priced at $899 or less for the set OR $80 off a set priced at $900 or more
Valid through February 25, 2024
Available at DiscountTire.com

Michelin's latest winter tire for passenger cars and crossovers wins it for Prius owners because of one big reason – it comes with a treadwear warranty at 40,000 miles. This means that Michelin is sure the tire will last longer than its competitors, but also – 40,000 miles is quite a lot for a winter tire.

And it's not like the tire won't deliver in the real world – Michelin has pushed the boundaries regarding mileage in the past, and I'm sure they did it again with the X-Ice Snow. But the best thing about this tire is that it combines exceptional longevity with outstanding wintertime traction. It's an amazing tire, no doubt about it.

For starters, the X-Ice Snow is a beast on snow-covered roads, offering traction levels that only a few other tires can match. Thus, the braking distances are crazy short, you will have ample acceleration off the line and high lateral grip in the corners.

But it's not just the objective measures that make the X-Ice Snow stand out – it is also great subjectively. This tire instills confidence when you drive over packed snow with its natural and balanced handling. Turn the wheel, the front tires will immediately grip, and the rear follow obediently. Feels like a dance between the driver and the car, meaning it's fun but never dangerous.

Thanks to the aggressive tread pattern, the X-Ice Snow also offers significant traction in unpacked snow, which is a big advantage over a regular all-season tire. Also, Michelin's winter tire performs excellently on slush, where its exceptional hydroplaning resistance plays a big role. The X-Ice Snow is also capable of icy surfaces, providing enough traction to keep you going at a lower speed.

The rain traction is excellent as well. The X-Ice Snow provides sufficiently good braking and acceleration on wet roads and a high lateral grip. Some of its rivals, like the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90, are slightly better, but I'm really splitting hairs here.

More importantly, the handling is safe and never nervous, even at the limit. You can also rely on the X-Ice Snow in dry conditions, as it offers a solid grip, responsive steering, and good braking.

I was also impressed by the ride quality of the X-Ice Snow. The tire felt smooth over any type of surface, even repetitive impacts on bad roads. The noise was also not an issue on smooth roads, though rough pavement made things worse. Still, that's not surprising considering the aggressive tread pattern.

Pros:

  • Exceptional control and traction on snowy terrain
  • Outstanding handling and traction on icy surfaces
  • Solid dry surface handling and lateral grip
  • Prompt stopping on wet surfaces
  • Comfortable and quiet for an aggressive snow tire

Cons:

  • More noise on rough surfaces than competitors
  • Slightly less grip during wet conditions than other high-end rivals

10. Bridgestone Blizzak WS90

Bridgestone-Blizzak-WS90

The Blizzak WS90 is one of my favorite winter tires for passenger vehicles, primarily because it provides near-class-leading traction in all weather conditions, including snow, wet, and dry. It doesn't come with a treadwear warranty, though, which might irk some Prius owners. Still, owners are very satisfied with the longevity, and the predecessor (WS80) has already proven itself to be durable.

But that shouldn't detract from the fact that this is one of the safest winter tires on the market. On snow-covered roads, it provides the shortest stopping distances and best acceleration, with especially good performance on packed snow. The lateral grip is also among the highest in the category, and the handling balance is very neutral. Driving with a set of Blizzak WS90 tires on snow is like driving on rails – that's how easy it is.

Thanks to the advanced tread compound, the Blizzak WS90 is also very grippy on ice. Sure, it won't match a studded winter tire, but it's perhaps the best in its category, with strong braking and good acceleration. I was also impressed with its performance in slush – no real issues there.

The Blizzak WS90 is also an excellent performer in rainy conditions. You can expect very short stopping distances on wet tarmac, accompanied by a high lateral grip and predictable behavior at the limit. In fact, this is currently the best winter tire on wet roads, which tells much about how good Bridgestone is at making winter tires.

To top it all off, the Blizzak WS90 also feels very stable and grippy on dry roads. The stopping distances are among the shortest in the category, and there is ample grip in the corners. Moreover, the handling balance is very neutral, and the steering is surprisingly responsive and direct.

Unfortunately, the Blizzak WS90 feels like the winter tires of yore when it comes to comfort. The ride feels soft on most roads, but it completely loses its composure on broken roads with repetitive impacts and potholes. Also, there is no getting around the fact that you will hear this tire on the highway.

Still, I think most Prius drivers won't have a problem hearing these tires for three months of the year, given how good they are in all other categories.

Pros:

  • Brief stopping time on wet surfaces
  • Balanced handling in rainy weather
  • Effective braking on dry surfaces
  • Potent acceleration and braking abilities on snow
  • Superb lateral grip on snowy terrain
  • Competent traction on icy surfaces

Cons:

  • Ride quality is harsh on broken pavement
  • Lower speed produces noticeable tread noise

Best Tires for Prius (Europe and UK)

11. Bridgestone Turanza 6

Bridgestone-Turanza-6

Summer touring tires are still very popular across continental Europe, the UK, and Ireland because they offer the best possible handling and comfort without sacrificing fuel economy. And right now, the best summer touring tire for the Toyota Prius in Europe is the Bridgestone Turanza 6.

Bridgestone's latest model maximizes everything the Turanza brand stands for while also offering very low-rolling resistance. But the Japanese tiremaker didn't stop there – it also designed the rim guard with aerodynamics in mind and made the whole tire lighter, both of which further reduced fuel economy. As a result, the Turanza 6 is currently one of the most fuel-efficient tires in its category, yet one that is also very safe and engaging to drive.

For instance, the Turanza 6 is a step above its rivals in wet conditions, where it performs almost like a performance tire. Notably, the handling is very balanced, and the tire is very predictable at the limit of traction, meaning your Prius will remain stable during emergency maneuvers.

Furthermore, Bridgestone's summer touring tire provides some of the shortest stopping distances in the category, along with excellent lateral grip. This is a tire that you can truly rely on in rainy conditions and one that instills confidence in the driver.

But the Turanza 6 is also very engaging to drive on dry roads. It provides a much higher grip than any comparable all-season tire – the difference is really night and day. But more importantly, it is among the best in its category in overall lateral grip, reaching the levels of some high-performance summer tires.

The stopping distances are also very short for a touring tire, and the overall handling is very balanced. Although not high on the checklist of Prius owners, the steering is also nicely-weighted and precise.

As for comfort, the Turanza 6 is pretty quiet, but you can have a quieter experience if you opt for some of its competitors. Still, the ride is buttery-smooth, even on bad roads, which, let's be honest, aren't very hard to find across Europe.

Finally, the Turanza 6 is also among the longest-lasting summer touring tires, with owners reporting excellent treadlife. Bridgestone doesn't offer a treadwear warranty, though that is not unusual in Europe.

An important thing to note is that the Turanza 6 isn't meant to be used in freezing conditions, especially over light snow or slush.

Pros:

  • The most fuel-efficient tire in its category
  • Exceptional control and balanced handling during rainy conditions
  • Highest wet lateral grip in its category and strong wet braking
  • Surefooted handling and good grip on dry roads
  • Strong braking in dry conditions
  • Buttery-smooth ride, even over bad roads
  • Owners report excellent treadlife

Cons:

  • Slightly noisier than its closest rivals

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What factors should I consider when buying tires for my Prius?

Prius owners have different needs than most drivers in North America. These people value efficiency and low running costs more than high-performance driving, and the tires should reflect those properties.

With that said, safety should be the number one priority, even on the Prius. Thus, you should always start by looking for tires that are designed for the weather in your area. Using summer or all-season tires in harsh wintry conditions can be dangerous, and it's the same with using winter tires in very hot conditions.

Furthermore, consider buying tires that were proven and tested by publications around the world. Our top 11 reviews are a great place to find the best tires for Prius, as we only include safe tires in our lists.

With that said, since the Prius is known for its excellent fuel economy, the right tires can help maintain this. Look for low-rolling-resistance tires, which are designed to minimize wasted energy and can help keep your Prius's fuel consumption low.

Since the Prius is a fairly comfortable and quiet vehicle, you should also be looking for tires that offer a smooth and peaceful ride. Finally, look at the tire's treadwear warranty and customer reviews to get an idea of how long the tires may last before needing replacement.

2. Are there specific tire brands recommended for a Prius?

There is no specific tire brand that I would recommend for Prius owners. However, I would recommend sticking to well-known and reputable manufacturers who have experience in the field.

The market today is flooded with low-cost tires from China (and other countries), which are unsafe to drive on the road. These companies don't have R&D departments and usually use the same internal construction for multiple models, including summer, winter, and all-season tires.

Then, they just put different tread patterns and sidewall designs to have some differentiation. The parts of the tire also usually come from different suppliers and, more often than not, don't work well together. The result is much worse overall performance, particularly in wet and snowy conditions.

I tried many super-cheap tires in the rain, and the car was just sliding around, even at lower speeds, but not in a fun way because the tires weren't predictable. Not to mention, the stopping distances in the rain can be more than 20 feet higher on some cheap tires. On top of that, these tires aren't made from low-rolling resistance compounds, meaning higher fuel consumption, and won't last nearly as long.

3. What is the right tire size for a Prius?

The tire size for a Toyota Prius can vary depending on the year and model. Common tire size is 195/65R15 for the entry-level model that's designed for fuel efficiency, while higher-end models get 215/45R17 tires for better handling. However, the brand-new 2023 Prius gets different sizes, including 195/65R15, 195/60R17, and 195/50R19.

4. Should I use all-season tires for my Prius?

All-season tires can be a great option for a Prius, especially if you live in a climate that experiences moderate weather conditions throughout the year. These tires are designed to provide a good balance of performance and safety in a variety of conditions, including dry roads, rain, and light snow. They also typically offer a smooth, quiet ride and long tread life.

Summer tires are also a great option, as they offer even better traction in dry and wet conditions and have better-low-rolling resistance properties. Not to mention, they are even quieter and have a smoother ride. Sadly, though, summer touring tires are almost extinct in USA and Canada because most buyers aren't into changing the summer tires before each winter.

With that said, if you live in an area with very harsh wintry conditions, you will still need to replace the all-season tires on your Prius with winter tires. Although all-season tires are designed to work on light snow, they can't handle winter blizzards with a lot of snow and ice on the roads.

5. How often should I replace the tires on my Prius?

The frequency of tire replacement can vary greatly depending on your driving habits, the type of tires, and the type of surfaces you typically drive on.

However, since you will be putting all-season tires on your Prius, they should last for at least 50,000 miles before they reach the minimum legal tread depth of 2/32 inches (1.6 mm). Once the tires reach that point, though, you should replace them immediately.

It is important to note that any issues with the suspension on your Prius can accelerate the tire wear. For instance, bad suspension components or misaligned wheels can cause uneven wear. In that case, you might need to change your tires sooner.

Age also plays a big role. Even if you don't drive your Prius much and the tires still have a substantial tread left after 6-8 years, you should replace them with a new set. That's because the tire's rubber compound ages over time (dry rot) and become brittle, which significantly hampers its road-holding properties, particularly on wet and snowy roads. 

Moreover, old tires are more prone to cracks, bulges, and tread separation, all of which can cause a dangerous blowout.

6. Can I use performance tires on my Prius?

Absolutely! If there are high-performance all-season or summer tires that fit your Prius, you can install them on your feels. Your Prius will immediately feel livelier thanks to the more responsive steering, and you will enjoy much higher grip and traction in dry and wet conditions (though they perform slightly worse on snow-covered roads).

With that said, there are compromises associated with high-performance tires. For starters, due to the stiffer sidewalls, high-performance tires offer a harsher ride, and they tend to be noisier as well. Also, these tires come with lower treadwear warranties and don't last nearly as long.

7. What is the expected lifespan of tires on a Prius?

The lifespan of the tires on your Prius depends greatly on the type of tire, make model, your driving style, and the tire maintenance frequency. Since Prius owners generally drive more slowly, and the vehicle itself isn't very powerful, the tires will usually last longer than on other cars.

So, a touring all-season tire will last anywhere between 40,000 and 80,000 miles, depending on the model. Ultra-high-performance all-season tires last between 30,000 and 50,000 miles, while max-performance summer tires last between 15,000 and 30,000 miles before they reach 2/32-inch tread depth. Finally, winter tires last between 20,000 and 30,000 miles before being unusable in wintry conditions (5/32 inches or 4 mm of tread depth).

Regular rotation, alignment checks, and maintaining proper tire pressure can all help prolong their lifespan.

8. How do I maintain my Prius tires for longevity?

Tire maintenance goes a long way in ensuring that your Prius is safe on the road, but it also ensures that the tires last longer. Here are some tips you can follow to maximize the life of your Prius tires:

  • Keep the tires properly inflated: this is really a no-brainer, yet an issue that plagues most tires rolling on the road. In order to maximize your Prius tires' lifespan, you will need to ensure that they are always properly inflated (according to Toyota's specifications).

I recommend checking the tire pressure at least once every month, before every long road trip, or whenever the temperature drops/surges significantly. Underinflated tires and overinflated tires wear faster but also unevenly across the tread, requiring more frequent replacements.

  • Regular rotation and balancing: rotate your tires every 6,000 to 8,000 miles to promote even tire wear. This coincides with the oil change intervals for a Prius (synthetic oil), so it is convenient to rotate the tires when you bring your car to Toyota's dealer (or any other shop). Meanwhile, if you change between summer/all-season and winter tires, make sure the technician balances them after each replacement.
  • Frequent tire inspections: check your tires regularly for any signs of damage, such as punctures, cracks, or bulges. Also, inspect the tread for uneven wear, which could indicate a need for a tire rotation or alignment.
  • Wheel alignment: misaligned wheels can accelerate tire wear and cause uneven wear across the tread. Thus, it is crucial to keep your wheels aligned properly and repair any suspension issues that cause misalignment.

9. What is the recommended tire pressure for a Prius?

The recommended tire pressure for the Toyota Prius depends on the model year and tire size. Usually, it ranges between 35-36 psi for the 15-inch wheels and 32-33 psi for the 17-inch wheels. However, to be sure, you should check the tire pressure sticker on the driver's door jamb or inside the owner's manual.

10. Can I use run-flat tires on my Prius?

Yes, you can use run-flat tires on a Prius. The Prius doesn't come with run-flat tires as standard, but it's a good candidate for them because it doesn't have a spare tire due to its focus on weight savings for better fuel efficiency.

Having run-flat tires on your Prius would mean that you can also get rid of the puncture sealant, which could open a bit more space in the trunk. Not to mention, these tires are also much more convenient, as you won't need to stop in case of a puncture (up to 50 miles at speeds no greater than 50 mph).

Nonetheless, run-flat tires have their disadvantages. For starters, they are heavier, which will result in worse fuel economy, and due to their stiffer sidewalls, run-flat tires have a harsher ride. Moreover, they are more expensive than regular tires, while also having lower treadlife.

11. What are the differences between low-rolling resistance tires and standard tires for a Prius?

Low-rolling resistance tires are designed to reduce the energy loss as the tire rolls, thus improving fuel efficiency, which is a key focus for a hybrid car like the Prius. However, it's important to note that some tires provide better fuel economy at the expense of grip, particularly cheaper models.

A high-quality tire with low-rolling resistance uses a combination of design elements, such as optimized tire tread patterns and specially formulated rubber compounds, to minimize friction without sacrificing traction. However, tires focused on the highest possible grip, like UHP tires, will have a higher rolling resistance than touring tires, for example.

With that said, it's worth noting that the effect of low rolling resistance tires on fuel efficiency, while noticeable, is still relatively small in comparison to other factors like driving style and vehicle maintenance. In other words, you will save up to $100 annually but probably won't see an outright difference.

12. How does tire choice affect fuel efficiency in a Prius?

Tire choice can have an impact on the efficiency of your Prius. When it comes to fuel consumption and tires, two factors are in play: rolling resistance and weight.

Tires with lower rolling resistance are more efficient as they lose less energy to heat, thereby increasing the vehicle's fuel efficiency. On average, these tires will improve the fuel economy by up to 2%, which is not very significant, but can add up over time.

With that said lighter tires can also positively impact the fuel economy of the Prius. Lighter tires need less power to turn and make the overall vehicle lighter, which lowers fuel consumption.

However, proper tire inflation will probably yield the biggest savings. Underinflated tires increase rolling resistance dramatically, which increases fuel consumption. Thus, if you want to maximize the MPGs of your Prius, it is highly recommended to inflate the tires to the manufacturer's recommended pressure at least once every month or every two weeks.

13. How does the tire choice impact the ride quality in a Prius?

The choice of a tire can greatly influence the ride quality in a Prius. For instance, larger, wider tires with lower sidewalls might offer more grip and stability, but they can also lead to a harsher ride as they may not absorb road imperfections as well. Meanwhile, tires with larger sidewalls will absorb the imperfections even before they reach the suspension.

However, the ride quality varies greatly between models. Even some high-quality premium tires might sacrifice ride quality to improve the steering feel or make the drive more engaging, which is why reviews like this one are important. Some tire shops will let you test drive the tires, but not on your car, so you won't have anything to compare them to when it comes to the ride.

With that said, touring and grand-touring tires are designed with road comfort in mind and thus will offer the smoothest and quietest ride. Meanwhile, high-performance tires will make the ride busier but make your Prius much more engaging to drive.

14. How does tire choice influence the noise levels in a Prius?

Tread noise is one of the most important factors when the average Prius driver considers a new tire. Toyota's famous hybrid is a family car, after all, and produces almost no noise when driven gently, so quiet tires will accompany it very well.

On average, tires with more aggressive tread patterns will produce higher noise, but that's not always the case. Premium tiremakers today use advanced computer-aided engineering to minimize airborne noise coming from the tires, making them supremely quiet, even on the highway.

Still, the rubber compound also plays a big role – stickier UHP all-season or summer tires tend to produce more noise. For that reason, if you are looking to minimize noise, the best choice will be either a touring or a grand-touring tire (summer or all-season).

15. What are the benefits of using low-rolling-resistance tires on a Prius?

Low-rolling resistance tires are specifically designed to reduce the fuel consumption of your car by reducing the friction and, thus, the amount of energy lost when driving. This might be crucial for Prius owners, who always seek to maximize fuel economy.

However, these tires often bring other advantages, like a smooth and quiet ride, further enhancing the comfort and tranquility inherent in driving a hybrid vehicle. However, it's worth noting that some low-rolling-resistance tires may not offer as much grip or handling capability as standard or high-performance tires.

16. Can I use performance tires on my Prius, and what are the benefits/drawbacks?

Yes, you can use high-performance tires on your Prius. These tires can significantly improve the driving experience by sharpening up the steering, maximizing longitudinal traction and lateral grip, and increasing control. UHP all-season and summer tires will make your Prius faster in the corners and will shorten the stopping distance, both on dry and wet roads.

However, there are a few downsides to consider. Performance tires often have a shorter tread life and may not provide as smooth or quiet a ride as other types of tires. They can also negatively impact fuel economy, as they typically have a higher rolling resistance than the OE tires, often on the Prius.

17. How often should I rotate the tires on my Prius?

On average, you should rotate the tires every 6,000 to 8,000 miles to ensure they wear evenly. Since this loosely coincides with the oil change intervals of the Prius, you can ask the mechanic to rotate the tires at each service.

For the Prius, I recommend using the forward cross pattern, where the front tires move back to the rear and the rear tires move to the opposite sides of the front. So, the left rear tire will go to the right front position, and the right rear tire will go to the left front position.

However, you can also do a similar X-pattern, where the left front goes to the right rear position, and the right front goes to the left rear position. The rear tires still move to the front but to the opposite sides.

18. Are summer tires a good choice for a Prius in warmer climates?

Summer tires will provide you with the highest possible grip in warm climates. Although modern all-season tires are becoming increasingly good in those conditions, they still perform much worse than summer tires, both in dry and wet conditions.

With summer tires on your Prius, you can expect much shorter stopping distances, superior handling, and higher lateral grip. Furthermore, summer touring tires tend to offer the quietest and smoothest ride, which is another advantage people are not aware of.

Not to mention, they might also improve the fuel economy of your Prius slightly. Still, summer tires tend to have shorter treadlife, and their performance quickly deteriorates during freezing weather.

Unfortunately, you can't really find summer touring tires in the USA and Canada, as drivers there aren't interested in changing to winter tires before each winter and then to summer tires again. European drivers, on the other hand, almost exclusively drive on summer tires during the summer, particularly those in the southern regions.

Conclusion

Finding tires today seems like a daunting task with all those options available on the market. Besides models from reputable manufacturers, in the past ten years, we also saw the rise of ultra-cheap tires that claim to offer similar performance to their premium counterparts at a fraction of the cost, which further complicates things.

But honestly, you shouldn't ever consider those tires. There is a reason why models from reputable companies cost more – they simply perform better. That is mainly due to the use of much more advanced materials, but also thorough R&D and testing processes and more sophisticated manufacturing. Ultra-cheap tires are not nearly as safe nor as durable, meaning you will have to replace them more often, meaning running costs will add up in the long run.

For a truly engaging, comfortable, and efficient ride, I always recommend opting for high-quality tires from manufacturers that have proven themselves time and time again!

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