When it comes time to buy new tires what better way to go than two of the most reputable brands on the market, Goodyear and Bridgestone. But which one is better? You have die-hards on both sides saying that their one is better than the other, making the decision every more difficult. Have no fear, here we will give you all the information about both brands!
Goodyear and Bridgestone both make excellent tires, but they both have strong suits over the other. Goodyear makes a killer all-terrain tire, and all their tires are durable and long-lasting. Bridgestone on the other hand provides tires that are superior in the high-performance and luxury vehicle categories.
What Is Goodyear?
On August 29th, 1898 Frank Seiberling founded The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company in Akron, Ohio. The company quickly gained popularity due to their easily removable tire which needed less maintenance than most other tires.
Thanks to Goodyear’s dedication to their craft, they have built up an excellent reputation for themselves, excelling them into the panicle of motorsports, Formula One. Although Goodyear pulled out of Formula One in 1998, they still hold the title of most successful tire supplier to this day, within Formula One.
Not only has their tire been used in most race starts, but their tires have carried their buyers to the most race wins and the most constructors’ championships. Goodyear is also the sole and much-loved supplier for NASCAR tires.
In 1970, Goodyear’s newest CEO, Charles J. Pilliod Jr. faced a major decision that would either make or break the company. This was all thanks to Michelin’s radical new radial tire design which was first introduced in 1946.
The design featured a steel bias belt runner under the tread, which dramatically increased the strength and longevity of the tire. With an estimated cost of $600,000,000 to $900,000,000 to invest into the necessary tools and equipment, the decision was a controversial one indeed.
Many criticized Pilliod for making the investment, saying that it would be the death of the company. However, years later he is credited for saving the company and paving the way for the future.
What Is Bridgestone Tire?
Founded in 1931, Bridgestone is a little more than 30 years younger than Goodyear, however, they have an equally if not more interesting and complicated history. The company was named after the founder; Shojiro Ishibashi (Ishi = Stone, Bashi = Bridge), in the city of Kurume, Fukuoka, Japan.
During World War Two the company headquarters was destroyed by allied bombers, however, the factories were untouched, allowing the company to quickly restart production once the war was over. The company’s success can be accredited to three main aspects.
First, the company focused on technological innovations to get ahead of competitors. In 1967 the company was selling their own radial tires which they developed in their Tokyo plant’s new Technical Centre.
Another great stride forward was an adoption of a different company culture which vastly improved quality control. You may know of this as the Deming plan, named after W. Edwards Deming. A plan which is taught in many business classes today.
Finally, starting in 1965, Bridgestone undertook a massive overseas expansion campaign. Their first expansion was a new factory in Singapore. Eventually, the company even bought the north American Firestone tire brand.
Bridgestone also had its stint in Formula One. Some even credit Bridgestone as the usurper to the Goodyear crown in Formula One. Though they were not in the sport long enough to take all the titles from Goodyear, Bridgestone still proved formidable, being the main tire supplier for Scuderia Ferrari and Michael Schumacher.
Today Bridgestone has taken all they have learned through their many years of experience to give you the best high-performance tire you can get. Through their achievements, Bridgestone is the biggest tire supplier in the world with around 143,616 employees as of 2017.
What Are the Pros of Goodyear?
- Strong reputation in the tire industry
- Intensive testing
- Goodyear is highly focused on long-lasting tires
- Great variety
- Good off-road line of tires
What Are the Pros of Bridgestone Tire?
- Strong reputation in the tire industry
- Intensive testing is heavily influenced by a strong company culture.
- Just the right amount of sidewall rigidity
- Excellent performance, especially for sports and luxury tires
- Great variety
- Some of the best warranty coverage in the industry
What Are the Main Differences Between Goodyear and Bridgestone Tire?
With two tire brands so closely matched, it is hard to say which is better. When it comes down to picking one or the other you need to look at the key differences, so what are they?
While looking for tires for my 2011 Volkswagen, Touareg, TDI, I found that Bridgestone was cheaper. This will not be true for all tire sizes but for the most part, Goodyear tires, along with Michelin are more expensive than other brands.
Warranties are a good tool you can use to determine how confident a company is in its tires. Let’s take two comparable tires; Goodyear’s Eagle LS-2 and Bridgestone’s Alenza AS Ultra. Please note that not all warranties are the same and will differ from tire to tire.
First, let us look at Goodyear. They offer a 30 try and buy period, if you are unhappy with the tires, they will replace them for you. Goodyear also offers a limited tread warranty of 50,000 miles on this tire. Not too bad, but now let’s take a look at Bridgestone and see how Goodyear holds up.
Bridgestone offers a 90-satisfaction guaranteed period. If you are not satisfied, they will replace your tire or give you your money back. The Alenza AS Ultra also comes with an 80,000 limited warranty. Pretty impressive, but that’s not all! Bridgestone also offers premium warranties such as the Gold Pledge Limited Warranty.
With the Gold Pledge, you get a free tire replacement period of 3 years from the date of purchase. After your 3 years are up you get a prorated charge which is determined by the percentage of wear. A good choice if you are an occasional or steady driver.
Warranty-wise, Bridgestone takes the cake. They clearly have a lot of confidence in their tires, which surely inspires confidence in their customers. Not to say that Goodyear tires are bad, they simply have a different company culture.
These two companies are some of the best and biggest in the industry. Comparing them is difficult and to really get to the bottom of which one is better, we need to look at their unique technologies.
Starting with Goodyear, we can see that they are durable. One of the common complaints I have seen online about Bridgestone tires is that they can be a “nail magnet.” Moreover, when you do get a puncher with a Bridgestone tire, depending on which tire model you have, you cannot repair them. Every time you get a bad puncture you have to replace the tires.
Goodyear’s durable tire will lower your chances of even getting a puncture. Their all-terrain tire is the flagship tire when it comes to durability. With a name like Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure with Kevlar, it is no surprise.
The tire literally has Kevlar in it. Yes, the same thing that bulletproof vests are made from! Goodyear prides itself on having strong durable tires, and that is largely due to their sidewall construction. The only downside to that is that your ride can feel a bit bumpy because there is less give in the sidewall.
Bridgestone holds its cards very close to its chest. One thing is for sure, they are not afraid to try new things. Two such areas are the Bridgestone lunar rover tires and the non-pneumatic, airless tires. But let’s face it, airless tiers and lunar rover tires aren’t going to impact your tire buying choices.
Bridgestone’s run-flat technology might influence your decision though. Have you ever gotten a flat tire and had to stop and change your tire on the side of the road, in the rain or snow? With Bridgestone run-flats you will never need to do this again.
Their run-flat tires are the best run-flat tires on the market, allowing you to safely get to a tire repair shop to either get a different tire fitted or get your tire repaired. Additionally, Bridgestone has some interesting up-and-coming technologies such as “SUSYM” and Double-Network Rubber technology.
“SUSYM” is the most interesting of the two and works by combining rubbers and resins on the molecular level. This increases flexibility, working temperature ranges, and resistance to punctures.
Popular Goodyear Tire Lines?
- Assurance – This tire line is built to provide a smooth, quiet ride and improved handling. These are your everyday kind of tires which are well-rounded for most occasions.
- Eagle – The Goodyear Eagle line of tires has an emphasis leaning towards precision steering and confident handling.
- Wrangler – The Wrangler tires are Goodyear’s strong suit. They are built tough, ready for any adventure, whether on or off-road. Providing today’s trucks with superior traction and durability.
- Ultra Grip – These tires are made to give enhanced traction in snow and on ice. These tires are winter-only tires, but they have their limits.
- Winter Command – If the Ultra Grip doesn’t meet your winter wonderland needs, then the Winter Command tire line is the way to go. They are built to a standard that can withstand tough conditions, no matter how cold it gets.
Popular Bridgestone tire lines?
- Ecopia – The Ecopia helps you save money by reducing your fuel consumption with minimal rolling resistance.
- Potenza – This tire will provide you with some of the best road-gripping performance a tire of any brand can offer you.
- Turanza – If it’s luxury you want, then this is the tire for you.
- Dueler – The Dueler is the Bridgestone all-terrain tire with comfort kept in mind.
- Blizzak – The Blizzak is a fantastic stud-less winter tire, Bridgestone claims that the Blizzak caused a mass extinction event when it comes to studded tires in Japan.
Different Fields That Goodyear Is Involved In
- Passenger Vehicle Tires
- Commercial Truck Tires
- Off-Road Tires
- RV Tires
- Racing Tires
- Aviation Tires
Different Fields That Bridgestone Is Involved In
- Passenger Tires
- Motorcycle Tires
- Commercial Tires
- Aircraft Tires
- Off The Road Tires
- Diversified Products
- Conveyor belts
- Hydraulic Hoses
- Rubber Track and Pads
- Seismic Isolators for Buildings
- Automotive Components
- Gold Equipment
Customer service is about the same for both companies. They both have dedicated stores and online avenues of communication. Once again, warranties are the tiebreaker for me, Bridgestone simply has the better coverage for longer.
When comparing two companies with such strong reputations in the industry it is hard to determine value. Price wise they a closely matched, however, Goodyear is a little more expensive. Performance-wise both companies win on different fronts, Goodyear with their off-road tires, and Bridgestone with high-performance and luxury tires.
To get the best value for your money, it is important to shop smart. Pick the tire you would buy from each brand and compare them. Remember that more expensive doesn’t necessarily mean better.
Use Goodyear If:
If you want to go off the beaten path with a durable tire, then a set of Goodyear Wranglers is the way to go.
Use Bridgestone If:
If you want comfort, handling, speed, and an excellent warranty, then Bridgestone has got you covered.
All in all, I would go with a Bridgestone unless I am planning to go off-road a lot. Personally, I like Bridgestone’s company culture and their up-and-coming technologies are very interesting. Goodyear is reliable though and I would be happy to buy from them if Bridgestone wasn’t available, although they are the world’s largest tire manufacturer so I don’t think that will happen any time soon.