General Altimax RT43 vs Michelin Defender is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no added cost to you

Are you planning on changing or upgrading your tires soon? Deciding on which brand and type of tires to purchase may you leave scratching your head due to confusion. 

With multiple brands claiming that they are the best, you might not know where and how to start among all the road touring tires in the market. 

General Altimax rt43 vs Michelin Defender

The General Altimax RT43 and Michelin Defender (links to Tire Rack) are two of the most competitive choices for car enthusiasts nowadays. Where do they converge and diverge?

What Is General Altimax RT43?

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General Tire has a new addition to its Grand Touring All-Season Altimax family. The Altimax RT43 is a passenger, all-season, and touring tire that promises comfort, reliable traction, and a quiet ride. With its Twin Cushion Silica Tread Compound, the tire absorbs road vibration quite well, giving you a softer and more relaxed journey. 

It also has a Peak Anti-Slip Design Technology that prevents the car from hydroplaning on wet surfaces. With a higher number of biting edges and grooves, the tires get a better grip on the road, even in snow conditions.

More than that, Altimax RT43 also has a longer life expectancy as its Low Surface Abrasion Technology construction. Plus, its replacement tire monitor system will help you review your tire’s capacity and replace them on time. This feature helps you avoid unforeseen accidents due to overaged and overused wheels. 

With an H- or V-speed rating, General Tire’s product is a good catch for an enjoyable ride if you are into long drives or if you need to tour your family and friends in the city.  

What Is Michelin Defender?

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If you have a minivan, sedan, or a small crossover, Michelin Defender is a good choice for your tire needs. It is an all-season tire that is excellent for touring. This upgraded version of the previous Michelin Defender utilizes the brand’s Intellisipe technology to ensure a safe and quiet ride for your passengers. 

With better stability and durability, this product has improved road contact and traction that keeps you safe wherever you travel. It has an excellent steering response, and it is also eco-friendly. The brand also upgraded the silica content of its tires for your car to avoid leaving road footprints and prevent sliding on wet and icy areas.

Michelin is a brand that is famous for its innovations since 1910. In recent years, its focus is to produce long-lasting tires that can cover longer mileage throughout their lifespan. It is one way for the manufacturer to reduce waste and use raw materials, which is part of its green movement.

The Michelin Defender is an excellent reflection of the brand’s vision and mission.

What Are the Pros of General Altimax RT43?

The General Altimax RT43’s features do not disappoint its users. Among the things you will love about it is its excellent steering and handling response no matter what the on-road quality is. Due to its well-made quality, the humps and bumps do not affect the comfortable ride it promises. 

  • Excellent steering and handling response
  • One of the quietest tires out there
  • Wet Traction Capacity

Moreover, General Tire is true to its words by claiming that it is one of the quietest tires you will ever own. However, you may still witness several tread noises on large bumps.

Another thing that makes Altimax RT43 better than others is its wet traction capacity. It can maintain its speed, handling, and stability even on light to moderate snow. The brakes also work consistently in different conditions.  

With a longer life capacity, you will enjoy the advantages of Altimax RT43 all year. It also includes a 6-year and up to 75,000 miles treadwear warranty.

What Are the Pros of Michelin Defender?

Cost-efficient is one of the best words to describe the Michelin Defender. You have learned earlier that the brand focuses on innovation and environment-friendly products. Fortunately, it was able to prove that care for the environment and top-quality products can work together. 

  • Cost-efficiency
  • Improved Grip

The Michelin Defender’s current version has an Intellisipe design and Green X technology promoting the tire’s lower rolling resistance. Their interlocking action makes the tread block more rigid, resulting in a higher fuel economy and lower fuel cost. 

Moreover, this tire also performs well in dry and wet areas. Its improved grip with a higher number of circumferential and lateral grooves splash water away and reduces sliding risks. It also has an internal MaxTouch Construction that optimizes its strength, durability, and speed. 

By getting a Michelin Defender, you now have a set of tires with the best road contact and works well with accelerating, cornering, and braking.

What Are the Main Differences Between General Altimax RT43 and Michelin Defender?

Treadwear Warranty

Winner: General Altimax RT43

A treadwear warranty or mileage warranty guarantees how long and far a tire can last from when a customer begins using it. Between our two tire models, it is undeniable that the Michelin Defender has a longer treadwear warranty than General Altimax RT43. But the question is, are they true to their mileage promise?

Defender users typically express that the 90,000 mileage is so good to be true, and in terms of experience, some were able to enjoy its capacity for a shorter distance. It is rare to find a customer review expressing that Altimax RT43 wore out before it exceeded the guaranteed warranty. 

That is why we consider the latter as having the better warranty offer.

Dry Traction Performance

Winner: General Altimax RT43

When it comes to dry traction performance, the comparison focuses on its noise, cornering capacity, speed, and dependability. 

While both General Altimax RT43 and Michelin Defender scores well in keeping a quiet, smooth, and comfortable ride, the former produces vibrations and noticeable sounds on large bumps. On the other hand, Michelin Defender also shows its efficiency in dry conditions, and the lateral grooves maintain excellent support and comfort to the passengers. 

However, the latter’s cornering capacity is a bit underwhelming than its counterpart, especially during a high-speed ride. It can be a little concerning over the noises that the other makes. Also, Altimax has proven that it can surpass rough asphalts with excellent steering and braking responses. 

Water and Snow Traction Performance

Winner: General Altimax RT43

Wet and icy tractions are probably difficult for all-season tires, especially if their tread and lugs cannot prevent the car from hydroplaning. 

However, General Altimax RT43 and Michelin Defender both have their version of siping and anti-slid technologies that work well during light to heavy rainfalls. The former has an excellent road contact that helps you glide with ease on corners, even how slippery the road is. The Defender’s ergonomic design and multiple grooves keep the water out from the tire’s surface.

Still, Altimax RT 43 wins in this category because it can surpass light to moderate snow without any problem. The brakes still function consistently, and its tread plows the ice to the side. Michelin Defender can only survive in light snow.  

Life Expectancy

Winner: Michelin Defender

It is easy to claim that a tire can last all year while maintaining its great capacity. However, not all brands can live up to the standards they claim. 

While the General Altimax RT43 asserts that the tire can last all year, several customer reviews claim that it can only live up to 10 months on average. It may be due to its shorter mileage. 

The Michelin Defender is a better player in life expectancy because its low rolling resistance keeps the tread from wearing out fast. Plus, you can save more with a longer-lasting tire.

Use General Altimax RT43 If:

  1. You prefer a long and quiet ride.
  2. You are in an area that experiences low to moderate snow annually
  3. You are looking for a dependable tire with a consistent performance in low to high speed

Use Michelin Defender If:

  1. You want a tire that is proven to last long
  2. You are more confident with an environment-friendly and cost-efficient tire
  3. You prefer a tire with a longer mileage warranty

Wrap Up

Overall, we find the General Ultimax RT43 to have better features than the Michelin Defender. However, the difference between the two is not that far since they promise a smooth, comfortable, and quiet ride.

The best part about using Ultimax RT43 is the assurance that you will enjoy a consistent experience as a driver or passenger, no matter the speed you utilize. On the other hand, the Defender’s greatest asset is its long life span which is a huge advantage in spending less for re-tiring. 

Now that you know what to expect between the two, all you need is to figure out your needs and your purpose in identifying which branded tire suits you.

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