This review is long overdue, and I apologize in advance to Goodyear Malaysia. You see, some months back, I received a set of Goodyear Eagle EfficientGrip tyres which were put to test on my regular daily driver, a Civic FD1. My daily commute is a lengthy one, averaging 100-120km on a regular weekday. Given Goodyear’s claim of EfficientGrip being their quietest tyre, it was interesting to see just how they would perform.
Goodyear says that the EfficientGrip is their quietest, most comfortable tyres ever. It makes use of Goodyear’s ‘Quiet Tred’ technology to minimize road noise, without compromising on safety. The tyre’s close shoulder design works with preventing radial noise sound waves, at the same time reducing exterior and interior perceived noise levels. It also features a balanced block distribution which lowers impact and radiated noise, and perpendicular edge blading which reduces block stiffness, movement, and propagated noises. There’s even an extra layer of rubber to absorb tyre vibrations.
Naturally, the first thing I try to determine was if these really were quieter. My initial impressions over the first few weeks of driving was that there wasn’t any discernible decibel difference at all. The problem really was myself; having been accustomed to driving with music on all the time, I really couldn’t tell if there was any improvement at all.
To re-tune my senses, I found several other FD Civics which were shod with different tyres, and drove them sans radio. Of course, being an automotive journalist, I also have the opportunity to test a wide variety of cars, and it was then when I started to notice just how quiet my own car was in comparison. Even my dad noticed the difference; he occasionally drives my car out for light grocery runs and despite the short travel distances, remarked how my car was significantly calmer.
Below are more extensive results from our tyre test which spanned 6 months and some 7000km. You have to bear in mind that these are comfort, not performance tyres, and were driven normally through most scenarios (with the occasional higher speed run thrown in for good measure, of course).
My set of EfficientGrip tyres performed faultlessly over dry weather conditions. Traction off the line is good, and handles well with good grip although I would have wished for a bit more feedback. Braking hard in the dry, I found myself being able to come to a stop much sooner than my previous set of rubbers. They corner pretty well too, with less tyre screech through my favourite turns.
I’m always very wary when driving in wet conditions, having had some nasty surprises before in the past. However, I’m happy to report that these tyres performed well in wet weather. You know how our roads can be; even on highways, there can be the occasional water pooling, but having driven a number of them (at moderate highways speeds), there was little aquaplaning, the car keeping easily to intended line. I also noticed that my ABS kicked in less frequently under hard braking in slippery conditions.
Have I mentioned yet just how quiet these tyres are? Yes? That’s because I’m really still quite impressed. While I didn’t have a dosimeter to scientifically measure noise, I drove for some weeks without any music, and all my passengers noticed the zen-like state in my cabin. The rubber compound has a good balance between soft and hard, and rode well over Malaysian-spec potholes.
Goodyear claims their EfficientGrip tyres have a higher blend of silica for a reduction on rolling resistance, which should contribute to improved fuel economy. We can’t fault this claim, as I have gained an extra 30-40km per full tank. I’ve filled up about 30 times over my test duration and this roughly adds up to an extension of about 1000km, and many Ringgit saved. The wear rate is pretty good too: 7000km and still no signs of discernible wear.
Are these the tyres for me?
If you’re a regular driver, who’s looking for comfortable, long-lasting tyres, then I would heartily recommend these. Goodyear says that the EfficientGrip was designed to suit the needs for luxury, or middle luxury segment vehicles (and is even fitted as standard to some), but I’d go as far to say that any small-mid size sedan would benefit from feeling more premium, thanks to a quieter cabin. Goodyear’s EfficientGrip will do well too, for the occasional Ulu Yam run, although performance-oriented drivers would do better with more serious tyres.
The Goodyear EfficientGrip is manufactured in either Germany or China (I believe this is dependent on sizing), is available in a variety of sizes from 205/65 R15 up to 255/45 R18 and is priced from RM400 a piece. They’re a little pricey, but I do think they’re worth the money. Initially meant for sedans only, Goodyear now also makes EfficientGrip tyres to cater for SUV owners.