The Continental PureContact and Michelin Premier A/S show why all-season tires are so popular. These models perform well in various conditions, including dry roads, rain, and light snow. They also offer a smoother and more relaxed ride than summer or winter tires.
A longer tread life further explains their appeal. In contrast to performance or winter tires, these models have a more balanced tread compound that lets them evenly distribute pressure forces across the tread area. This enables them to wear evenly and last a long time.
However, while both are aimed at the driver who doesn’t want to switch tires for each season, there are various differences between them. The most obvious of which is price, with the Michelin Premier A/S costing markedly more than its counterpart from Continental.
That is not where the differences end. As this comprehensive guide will show you, more things distinguish these tires from each other than the ones uniting them. Read on to decide whether the Continental PureContact LS or Michelin Premier AS should go on your car.
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Michelin Premier A/S
Michelin Premier A/S is an all-season tire designed mainly for sedans, coupes, and minivans. It replaced the Primacy MXV4 and is available in many sizes, ranging from 15 to 19 inches. Some of the vehicles it fits include Nissan Sentra, VW GTI, and Subaru BRZ.
Although this tire can be used year-round (unless you’re driving on thick snow), its features show a preference for wet driving. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as its predecessor was famous for reducing car-related accidents caused by rainy conditions.
That isn’t to say that the Premier A/S won’t excel on dry roads. Anyone who has ever driven this model on the tarmac will let you know about its excellent stopping power. Or how its already above-average fuel economy gets even better when the sun is shining.
And how does it perform on snow? While it isn’t a dedicated winter tire, the Premier A/S has what it takes to safely carry you from point A to point B in light wintry conditions. A close inspection of the tread blocks (which is where the sipes are) will help you verify this.
Continental PureContact LS
The Continental PureContact LS is a grand touring tire designed for passenger cars and crossovers. It is available in multiple sizes, ranging from 16 to 20 inches. If you drive Audi A6, Toyota Camry, or Hyundai Tucson, make sure to check out this tire.
Continental markets the PureContact LS as a ‘luxury touring tire.’ This means that this model features a softer rubber compound than the one ‘ordinary’ touring tires come with, providing a much better grip on the road and an overall smoother driving experience.
Another thing you can count on this model to do is to improve your car’s fuel economy. You can also trust it to improve your vehicle’s handling and performance, regardless of weather conditions. It’s also safe to assume that it will reduce braking distances in the rain.
Given the fact that it possesses the above qualities, it shouldn’t be surprising that the PureContact LS is pricier than most tires in the same category. Which is understandable, given that you’re getting a tire that will improve every aspect of your vehicle’s performance.
What Are The Features of The Michelin Premier A/S?
- Offers a quiet and comfortable ride
- Provides excellent traction on wet surfaces
- Can handle mild wintry conditions with ease
- Relatively small treadwear warranty
The Michelin Premier A/S combines supreme road manners with great performance. Comfort Control Technology is mainly responsible for the former. Together with the internal steel belts, it absorbs road vibrations and deflects noise before either could hurt ride quality.
A sunflower and silica oil tread compound helps this model strike the right balance between firmness and flexibility. Cue excellent grip on dry roads and enhanced traction in wet conditions. So, this balance is what enables the Premier A/S to justify its ‘premium all-season tire’ tag.
As useful as the above features are, they cannot explain how this tire could shorten braking distances in wet and light wintry conditions. Enter the innumerable biting edges on its tread area, which help your car come to a halt within seconds of the application of brakes.
To further sweeten the deal, Michelin has equipped this model with four circumferential as well as multiple rain grooves. Both these water channels ensure quick water evacuation for a reduced risk of hydroplaning, letting you enjoy worry-free drives in the rain.
What Are The Features of The Continental PureContact?
- Offers an unbelievably quiet ride
- Comes with a 70,000-mile treadwear warranty
- Exceptional steering response and handling
- May wear quickly if regularly pushed to the limits
The Continental PureContact LS has data to prove how good it is. According to internal tests, this model offers 10 percent improved traction on wet roads than its predecessor. That’s not all. It also boasts a 23% improved wear (think long road life) than the model it replaced.
The improvements extend all the way to road noise. Thanks to the EcoPlus Technology, it makes 50 percent less noise at highway speeds than its precursor. Small wonder, then, that experts at Tire Hungry regularly mention this tire as one of the quietest on the market.
An inspection of its rib will reveal ‘Quick View’ Indicators. These D, W, and S letters let you inspect before driving how well this model will behave on dry, wet, and snowy roads. Remember, the higher a letter’s fading rate, the less reliable this tire will be in that condition.
Right beneath the D, W, and S letters is what Continental calls the ‘Alignment Verification System’ (or AWS for short). Represented by three rectangles etched into the outer tread, the AWS will let you determine whether your wheels are aligned, or a visit to the mechanic is due.
Continental PureContact Vs Michelin Premier: Main Differences?
Now that you are aware of the qualities of both these tires, it’s time to put them in a classic head-to-head matchup. We’ll see how these tires compare in terms of off-road and on-road performance, snow driving, tread lives, warranty, and price.
Continental PureContact Vs Michelin Premier: Off-Road Performance
Given that both these tires come with an all-season tread compound, it should be obvious that neither is meant to be tested off the highway.
That is especially the case with Continental PureContact LS, a grand touring tire that prioritizes performance over comfort. While it could easily withstand a few miles of light off-roading, anything rougher and you may end up with a tire needing replacement.
Winner: It’s a tie (neither is developed for off-roading)
Continental PureContact Vs Michelin Premier: On-Road Performance
The Michelin Premier A/S is one of those tires that prioritize road comfort over performance. This model’s raison d’etre is to keep things quiet and comfortable inside the cabin. All its features that we discussed above join their efforts in helping it achieve this goal.
The PureContact LS, on the other hand, is designed to offer a balance of comfort, handling, and grip on dry and wet roads. This means that this model won’t roll slower just to come in handy in a variety of conditions. Instead, it’s optimized for high-speed highway driving.
All in all, if you are looking for a tire for everyday use, the Michelin Premier A/S is a winner. However, if you undertake long highway trips and prioritize performance as well as comfort, the PureContact LS deserves a place on the vehicle you’re driving.
Winner: Michelin Premier A/S (for everyday driving); Continental PureContact LS (for performance)
Continental PureContact Vs Michelin Premier: Snow Performance
Although one of these tires features a dedicated indicator (the D in DWS) to let you know how well it will perform on snow, both perform relatively on snow.
Both these models have what it takes to stay useful in mild wintry conditions. However, as far as thick snow is concerned, both will struggle. As such, if your area receives a lot of snow or your work requires you to drive through snowstorms, there are better models out there.
Winner: It’s a tie (both are good for light wintry conditions and nothing more)
Continental PureContact Vs Michelin Premier: Treadwear and Durability
While both these tires offer excellent tread life and durability, their respective treadwear ratings tell us that one of them may last longer than the other.
The PureContact LS has a treadwear rating of 550, which is nothing short of excellent for tires in this class. In contrast, the Premier A/S comes with a treadwear rating of 500, which is about average when you compare it with that of other tires in the same category.
Sure, treadwear ratings don’t have the final say on how long a tire may or may not last. Other factors, such as the way you drive and road conditions, also play a part. But, on paper, the PureContact LS will last longer than the Premier A/S.
Winner: Continental PureContact LS
Continental PureContact Vs Michelin Premier: Comfort
As noted above, the Michelin Premier A/S is a better choice for drivers who want a more comfortable and quiet driving experience.
Thanks to Comfort Control Technology, this model can dissipate road vibrations and noise before they can make their way into the cabin. This means that while this tire may not last as long as the Pure Contact LS, it will surely provide a better ride quality.
Winner: Michelin Premier A/S
Continental PureContact Vs Michelin Premier: Price and Warranty
The PureContact LS and Premier A/S carry price tags that make them seem astronomically expensive compared to standard all-season tires. Their warranties are also bigger than those of inexpensive A/S models.
Still, in a one-vs-one comparison, the Premier A/S falters. Not only does this tire come with a smaller treadwear warranty (60,000 vs 70,000 miles for the Pure Contact LS). It also costs more. So, if you prefer this tire over the PureContact LS, you’d be effectively paying more for a shorter road life.
Winner: Continental PureContact LS
Continental PureContact vs Michelin Premier: Which Tire to Choose?
The Continental PureContact LS deserves your attention if you want an all-season tire that offers exceptional performance, decent comfort, and extended road life. However, if you want superb road manners and enhanced wet performance, the Michelin Premier A/S is worth a shot.