Yokohama and Toyo were both founded under the fog of war. Yokohama opened its eyes in October 1917, three years into the start of World War 1. Toyo was founded in Osaka, Japan in August 1945, the same month in which the US dropped atomic bombs less than 200 miles away.
All of this is to point out that both these tire brands grew up in a Japan that was busy waging global wars. Yet, in contrast to their governments at the time, Toyo and Yokohama’s founders had their attentions gripped by a more benign matter: building a tire company from zero.
Had that not been the case, Yokohama and Toyo wouldn’t be where they are today. At the time of writing, Yokohama Rubber Company is the 8th largest tire manufacturer in the world, on the back of a year in which it enjoyed profits of more than $2 billion, a first in the brand’s history.
Toyo might not be sitting as high on the ranking ladder as Yokohama. But it is still ranked as the 12th largest tire brand in the world. All in all, as far as worldwide appeal is concerned, only a few tire brands on the market are as popular among the masses as Yokohama and Toyo Tires.
In this Yokohama Vs Toyo tires comparison, we’ll discuss the primary differences between the two tire manufacturers. Read on to make an informed buying decision.
Yokohama Tires History
Yokohama Rubber Company Limited was founded in Japan on 13 October 1917, a joint venture between Yokohama Cable Manufacturing and BFGoodrich. If the latter company’s name sounds familiar, it is because it is – BFGoodrich is one of the largest tire brands worldwide!
Yokohama’s US connection helped it get off the ground in the early years. As the work was going on at Yokohama’s first production facility, the Hiranuma Plant, the belts, tires, and other tire manufacturing equipment used there were originally shipped from the US.
While the plant was completely destroyed in the 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake, Yokahama’s US connection proved much sturdier. Only a few decades into its founding, in 1969, Yokohama entered the US market. Still, then as now, Yokohama was more popular in Asia.
Much of the success that the company has enjoyed over the years can be traced to two tires: ASPEC A300 and ADVAN tire line. The latter tire line grew so popular, and still is today, that many of Yokohama’s branding campaigns feature the ADVAN tag instead of the company’s name.
Yokohama Tire Families
Six families complete Yokohama’s tire lineup. These include ADVAN, Avid, Geolandar, Ice Guard, PARADA, and BluEarth. However, much of the fame (and money) is diverted to Yokohama’s coffers by the uber-popular ADVAN lineup.
Yokohama’s ADVAN tire family comprises all-season, summer and winter models. All the products in this lineup are known for their excellent fuel efficiency. Their road noise is also pretty low and the handling performance is pretty decent for tires not belonging to the performance category.
The ADVAN Sport A/S is currently the face of this family. Being the only all-season tire in this lineup, the Sport A/S offers outstanding dry and wet traction and handles well at high speeds. However, its 50,000-mile treadlife warranty is at least 10,000 miles fewer than what you get from premium A/S tires.
Four members complete Yokohama’s AVID tire lineup. All four are touring and grand touring tires, designed to offer extreme steering responsiveness and excellent high-speed bluffing. Their reliability in all types of driving condition further distinguishes AVID tires from their rivals.
Need proof? Then you must check out the AVID Ascent GT. This model combines higher levels of grip in dry and wet conditions with sleep-inducing road comfort. However, unlike the best grand touring tires, the Ascent GT struggles for traction in wintry conditions.
It is a widely-held belief that Yokohama’s Geolandar series is all about all-terrain tires. This myth is propagated by the performance of the Geolandar X AT, one of the best all-terrain tires on the market. However, as the CV G058 shows, the Geolandar series also has all-season touring tires.
The CV G058 is an uber-reliable all-season touring tire. Designed to fit SUVs, minivans, and crossovers, this model comes with a 65,000-mile warranty, an excellent number for a non-passenger vehicle tire.
The clue is in the name. Yokohama’s Ice Guard family has been designed to ensure your vehicle’s stability in harsh, wintry conditions. Flexible tread compound, sipes (biting edges) and 2-ply construction – these tires have everything needed for snow plowing.
Bear in mind that these tires can only be fitted on passenger cars, SUVs, crossovers and light trucks. You cannot put them on sports or muscle cars.
There is only one member in the Yokohama PARADA family. The SPEC-X provides an aggressive style and performance to passenger cars, SUVs, and trucks. A wide road profile ensures a refined driving experience, with a multi-pitched tread pattern keeping road noise at bay.
The SPEC-X is available in 27 sizes across the 19” – 24” range.
The BluEarth is Yokohama’s lineup of environmentally-friendly tires. Every member of this family demonstrates that you don’t always have to choose between low rolling resistance and wet grip. That you could get excellent mileage from a set of tires with excellent wet grip.
Toyo Tires History
Toyo Tires were formed under extremely challenging circumstances. As the company’s foundations were being laid in Osaka in August 1945, atomic bombs were being dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, with the latter city less than 300 miles from Osaka.
However, Toyo didn’t go under after the war. Within 8 months of its inauspicious beginnings, the company opened its first large-scale manufacturing facility. This shows that like other great Japanese companies of the time, Toyo didn’t let the war shake its ambition.
The 1950s was even better for Toyo. As it was in this decade that the company made three significant achievements. These include a listing on the Tokyo Stock Exchange; setting up of Toyo’s first Research & Development Lab; and entry of the brand’s tires in the US market.
At the time of writing, Toyo is familiar in many different ways. To the drivers who have used this brand’s tires, Toyo’s name is indicative of budget-friendly yet reliable tires. To the persons watching the markets, Toyo is the 8th largest tire manufacturer in the world.
Toyo Tire Families
Eight families complete Toyo’s tire lineup. These include Proxes, Celsius, Open Country, Observe, Nano Energy, Snowprox, and Transpath.
Toyo’s Proxes family is populated by performance and extreme performance tires. Enhanced steering response, excellent high-speed stability and above-average high-speed stability – no matter which Proxes tire you pick, you’d come across these features.
There are twenty three tires in the Proxes lineup, allowing it to fulfil the requirements of passenger cars, sport cars, SUVs, crossovers and even some light trucks. The Proxes R1R is this family’s flagship tire for passenger cars, with the ST III its face for SUVs and light trucks.
Every member of the Open Country lineup has been designed for off-roading. Nothing illustrates this statement better than our AT2 Vs AT3 comparison. Both these tires have the tread design, sidewall and sturdy interior construction needed to thrive in difficult terrains.
Provided the AT 2 and AT 3 are the last two remaining tires on your list, the AT3 should get your nod of approval if money is no issue. This model features much deeper 3D sipes than its predecessor. Plus, the S-shaped blocks are more aggressive and more tightly packed on this tire.
Then name leaves no doubt what the Celsius tires are all about. Toyo Celsius, this lineup’s founding member, has the sipe density and slow claws needed to plough through snow and ice. It also features slush grooves to resist hydroplaning.
Next comes the Celsius AS2, a performance winter tire that unites safety with mobility. This tire is available in 31 sizes across the 15- to 20-inch range, letting you install it on passenger cars, SUVs and crossovers. For commercial vans and light trucks, the Celsius Cargo is more than capable.
According to an extremely concerning report, tire wear causes 2,000 times more particle pollution that the exhausts of modern cars. This report alone, if not the dozens of similar ones that preceded it, should convince tire manufacturers to do their bit about global warming.
Nano Energy lineup shows that Toyo is doing its bit for the environment. Every member of this lineup is fuel efficient to reduce vehicular emissions. At the same time, they offer excellent handling performance, meaning you won’t be compromising on anything with these tires.
Toyo’s Observe series is populated by winter tires. However, how much snow each tire can handle differs. For instance, the Observe S4 is capable of safely carrying you from point A to point B in mild to moderate wintry conditions.
The Observe GSI5 aims higher. This extreme-performance winter tire has what it takes to safely carry you to your destination through a snowstorm.
Like the Observe series, Toyo’s Snowprox family also comprises winter tires. The Snowprox S954 SUV is a dependable winter companion for SUV, with the S954 and S943 capable of fitting medium and high-class cars and small and mid-sized passenger vehicles, respectively.
Toyo’s Transpath family offers high-performance, OEM tires. That means you might not be able to find them on the market.
The A11 comes installed on multiple trims of Lexus and other Toyota vehicles. The A14 meets the fitment requirements of Nissan and Toyota cars, whereas the R23 helps the Mazda Premacy roll off the factory floor.
Yokohama Vs Toyo Tires: Differences
Here are the major differences between Yokohama and Toyo tires:
Toyo tires are a better choice for performance-oriented drivers.
A clue for that was given in the first three installments of the ‘Fast and Furious’ series, where Toyo tires was the face of vehicles used by the protagonists. In real life, too, these tires performance on the street (and on the track) makes them a better option than Yokohama tires.
Availability of Options
Yokohama and Toyo stand shoulder to shoulder when it comes to availability.
Both these brands’ tires can be installed on passenger vehicles, SUVs, crossovers, minivans and even light trucks. The same variety is on offer when it comes to weather and driving conditions – similar to Toyo tires, Yokohama tires also come in handy for summer, winter, off-roading, etc.
Price and Warranty
Yokohama and Toyo are both mid-range brands.
That means that while they are not as cheap as the likes of Mastercraft, Nitto, or other inexpensive tire brands. Yokohama and Toyo tires don’t cost as much as Michelin, Continental or Bridgestone tires. You can afford an entire set without blowing your budget.
Advantages of Yokohama
- Offers better performance tires
- Provides a wide range of models
- Has some excellent all-terrain tires
Advantages of Toyo
- Offers dedicated tires for harsh wintry conditions
- Has an entire lineup of eco-friendly tires
- Boasts some of the best all-terrain tires on the market
Yokohama Vs Toyo Tires: Which Brand to Choose?
Yokohama tires are a better option for performance-driving. The Japanese tire brand also provides you with a few decent options for off-roading. Toyo’s name is also extremely popular among the off-road crowd, thanks mainly to the exploits of the Open Country AT2 and AT3 tires.
Provided you’re in the market for fuel-efficient tires, Toyo tires are a better bet. The tire manufacturer has dedicated an entire lineup for eco-friendly tires, something which Yokohama has failed to do.