When you read about tires on the internet, most journalists talk about the driving experience and things like steering feel and cornering grip. However, the truth is that the general audience values other things in tires.
I’m talking particularly about the cost, treadlife, and safety throughout the year. And to satisfy those, all you need is a set of all-season touring tires. These tires promise year-round traction and grip, supremely long treadlife, and reasonably low prices.
For most people, they are the only tire they would ever need. One such tire is the Extensa A/S II, Toyo’s latest competitor in the most crowded segment on the market.
The Japanese tiremaker is a premium brand, no question about it, but it doesn’t compete with the “creme crème de la crème” touring tires from Michelin, Bridgestone, and Continental. Well, at least not in terms of price, since it costs slightly less than competitors from those brands.
However, Toyo still promises competitive performance in all conditions, along with outstanding treadlife and high levels of comfort.
Customarily, we will check all those claims in our Toyo Extensa A/S II review, where we’ll cover everything there is to know about the tire. Let’s dig in!
What are the Specifications and Maintenance Indicators?
The Toyo Extensa A/S II is a touring all-season tire designed for drivers that want solid traction and grip throughout the year, along with a long treadlife and treadwear warranty.
Since it’s Toyo’s bread and butter tire, it comes in a plethora of sizes, ranging from 14-inch wheel diameter to 20-inch wheel diameter.
With all those dimensions, Toyo covered a large portion of the market. Particularly, this model will fit subcompact and compact cars, mid-size sedans, minivans, performance sedans, and performance sedans, which is not a surprise.
Still, some sizes will also suit compact crossovers and SUVs, and even some light trucks. Yup, if you own (almost) any kind of vehicle, chances are the Extensa A/S II will be available to you.
Another area where Toyo is very competitive is the treadwear warranty. The Extensa A/S II comes with a 75,000-mile warranty, which is among the best you can get on the market.
Combine that with a fair price, and you have one of the most pocket-friendly premium all-season tires available right now.
And that number is put there for a reason. Owners of the previous model are very satisfied with the tread life, and I have no reason to believe that the new model will be worse.
On the contrary, Toyo made additional improvements in the tread compound to make it even more durable.
Although you won’t need to monitor the tread depth regularly, since the Extensa A/S II is so durable, you should still do it from time to time.
By doing that, you can check if the tire wears unevenly, which might mean you have a problem with the suspension of your vehicle.
Toyo didn’t include any special wear indicators to help you with that, although only a few brands do that. Instead, you have the regular TWIs (tread wear indicators), which are narrow rubber bars that sit recessed into the tread of the tire.
The TWIs are 2/32-inch higher than the bottom of the grooves, meaning when the tread depth comes to that number, the bars will be flush with the surface.
At that point, you should immediately replace the tires since they won’t be able to dissipate enough water to provide you with safe traction and grip in rainy conditions.
Besides, it’s not legal to drive with less than 2/32-inch of tread depth in most places.
If you plan on driving in the winter, though, you might want to replace the Extensa A/S II even sooner since the tire will be struggling for traction.
Hence, even if you have slightly more depth than 2/32-inch and winter is coming, we recommend going for new tires.
Features and Performance of the Toyo Extensa A/S II
Toyo improved most aspects of the previous model when the Extensa A/S II by employing an all-new design.
With the new model, the Japanese tiremaker aimed to improve the handling and braking, improve the fuel economy, and improve comfort.
So how is reality? Let’s comb through each feature and see if it really made a difference in the real world.
1. Dry Grip and Traction
The Toyo Extensa A/S II doesn’t have a very aggressive tread pattern, which means it has a larger contact patch that improves cornering grip and longitudinal traction on dry tarmac.
Moreover, Toyo improved the rib design to further improve the braking and handling.
So, did that reflect on the performance of the tire? Well, the Extensa A/S II is certainly capable on dry roads, but nothing more than that.
Regular drivers will be completely fine with the acceleration traction and cornering grip, especially when driving at moderate speeds.
Besides, the stopping distances aren’t very long, which is most important for safety.
However, more aggressive or enthusiast drivers won’t find the Extensa A/S II grippy enough. Push it hard through a corner, and it will quickly lose grip and exhibit understeer, making you lift your foot from the pedal.
In addition, more powerful vehicles will struggle with traction when exiting a corner or during hard acceleration.
Now, most all-season tires struggle with traction and grip during hard driving, but you can do better than the Extensa A/S II. Or, you can go with a set of summer tires and have the time of your life!
2. Handling and Steering Feel
This is another area where touring all-season tires don’t perform well. The reason is pretty simple – manufacturers are employing softer sidewalls to provide better ride quality, which counters responsiveness.
As a result, the Extensa A/S II isn’t the most responsive tire, even when compared to other models in the category. It’s slow to react to the driver’s inputs, and it also doesn’t provide a lot of information from the road.
The steering is moderately linear, though, and you shouldn’t have a problem keeping a straight line on the highway.
Still, if you own a more powerful vehicle and want a more engaging driving experience, the Extensa A/S II isn’t for you.
3. Wet Grip, Traction, and Braking
Rainy weather is one of the main culprits behind traffic accidents, largely because people don’t tend to slow down.
For that reason, tiremakers are pushing the envelope with each new iteration of their products, aiming to improve wet traction.
Toyo tried to improve wet traction by employing a brand-new special silica compound, along with four wide circumferential grooves and multi-wave sipes.
As a result, the Extensa A/S II is a very capable tire in the rain, with great drivability overall.
For starters, the hydroplaning resistance is excellent, even when it pours rain outside. Hence, your vehicle won’t lose contact with the road, which can make it unstable.
Furthermore, the tires provide stable handling with a very planted feel, giving you a lot of confidence on your journey.
The acceleration traction is also very good, and the stopping distances are competitive with other premium tires.
4. Snow and Ice Traction
How does it perform in winter conditions? Well, the Extensa A/S II has some features that should help in the winter, like the multi-wave sipes I mentioned earlier.
However, Toyo doesn’t exactly boast about its performance on snow, which lowered my expectations.
And, truly, this is not a great tire for wintry conditions. It’s better than any summer tire – I’ll give it that, but worse than the best tires in its category.
Particularly, it doesn’t handle cornering very well, and the stopping distances are longer than I would’ve liked. Oh, and forget about traction on ice, as there is almost none.
If you want an all-season (all-weather) tire that will work on snow and ice, Toyo offers the excellent Celsius. You’ll lose some dry grip and traction with that tire but gain a lot in harsh wintry conditions.
Comfort and Road Noise
Toyo did a great job of minimizing road noise with its proprietary tread pattern. The Toyo Extensa A/S II is very quiet on smooth tarmac and only slightly audible on rough patches, even at highway speeds.
On top of that, the ride quality is very smooth. The Extensa A/S II doesn’t produce unwanted vibrations, and it doesn’t exhibit secondary motion when you hit a larger pothole. Overall, it’s a great companion on long journeys.
You can see more Toyo Extensa A/S II review here: Video created by Toyo Tires Canada
Should I Buy the Toyo Extensa A/S II?
Like almost any tire on the market, the Extensa A/S II isn’t perfect. Its main issue is the mediocre snow and ice traction, so you might want to look for other tires if you live in areas with harsh wintry conditions.
However, if you want a dependable, long-lasting, and safe tire, you should have it on your shortlist.
List of the Toyo Tires Review
I’m Ivo Gievski, the content writer for Tireer. We built our website with over 15 years of experience and extensive research in the automotive and technology sectors. My dedication to delivering high-quality content is unwavering, and I strive to continuously hone my skills to stay ahead of industry trends and provide readers with informative, engaging, and valuable insights.