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In Our Opinion:
Firestone offers several reputable options for performance, all-season, and highway tires. While it doesn’t boast quite the same reputation as Michelin or Goodyear, Firestone is well-regarded by tire industry experts. Firestone tires have treadwear warranties up to 70,000 miles and limited warranties for three to four years.
Strong industry backing
Decent treadwear warranties
Affordable options for SUV tires
Fewer highly rated models across all tire categories
When it comes to tires, Firestone is a household name. But how do Firestone tires stack up against competitors? In this article, we’ll discuss Firestone in-depth, including industry reputation, popular tire models, costs, customer reviews, and our overall thoughts.
We recommend comparing a few different tire models from multiple brands before settling on a purchase. To start comparing the best tires on the market, including those from Firestone, visit TireRack.com.
Founded in 1900 in Akron, Ohio, Firestone is a well-recognized brand among drivers in the U.S. and beyond. In 1988, Firestone was bought by Bridgestone, which now acts as its parent company. Bridgestone made up 19.5 percent of North American tire sales in 2019, making it one of the largest tire manufacturers on the continent.
Competing with large-scale tire manufacturers like Michelin and Goodyear, Firestone has carved a passenger vehicle niche for itself within Bridgestone’s larger market share. Today, Firestone is headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee.
Firestone produces replacement tires for cars, trucks, and SUVs and previously manufactured original equipment (OE) tires for Ford Motor Company. Firestone tires are a strong choice for the day-to-day commuter looking for a budget-friendly option.
Firestone Tires Industry Ratings
Firestone tires, like many prominent tire companies, follow an evaluation system created by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). This system, called Uniform Tire Quality Grading (UTQG), grades standard tires based on treadwear, traction, and temperature resistance.
Here’s an explanation of the UTQG grading system:
Treadwear: This grade estimates the longevity of your tires. To calculate treadwear, tires are measured against a control tire given a rating of 100. If a tire has a 500 treadwear rating, that means it lasted five times longer than the control. Most passenger tires have between a 300 and 500 treadwear rating, according to data from SaferCar.gov.
Traction: This grade measures how well your tires “grip” a wet road. Traction grades are given on a scale of AA, A, B, or C. Good day-to-day passenger tires typically receive an A rating.
Temperature: This grade evaluates a tire’s heat resistance on a scale of A, B, or C. Tires need to withstand different temperatures based on their specialization. Performance tires usually move at much higher speeds than an all-season tire, and in turn, have higher temperature ratings.
Here are a few of Tire Rack’s highest-rated Firestone models and their UTQG grades:
Be aware that the NHTSA does not carry out UTQG tests. Manufacturers hire independent companies to test their tires and report UTQG grades. Since testing isn’t conducted by one company or group, tire manufacturers’ grading can vary compared to actual performance on the road.
Firestone’s Most Popular Tire Models
The most popular Firestone tires are everyday all-season models and heavy-duty truck tires. Some Firestone performance tires are highly rated by customers, but many fall flat when compared to Michelin or Pirelli. The tire manufacturer also produces a reliable, studdable winter tire for cars, light trucks, and SUVs.
Using industry ratings and customer reviews from Tire Rack, we compiled a list of the most popular Firestone tire models below.
Firestone All-Season: A day-to-day commuter tire available in most tire sizes and made to last 65,000 miles
Firestone Destination LE2: A load-bearing tire “designed to combine long wear, a comfortable ride, and all-season traction, even in light snow,” according to Tire Rack
Firestone Winterforce 2: A studdable winter and snow tire backed by the industry’s three-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) symbol, indicating improved performance in harsh conditions
Each of these Firestone tires received at least a 4.0 out of 5.0 rating from customers on Tire Rack, and many were given a 90-percent rating or above when compared to the tire voted “best” in that category.
Firestone offers a Gold Pledge Limited Warranty with all passenger models, except winter and other specialty tires. The warranty covers any defective workmanship for three years from the date of purchase or four years from the date of manufacture if you don’t have proof of purchase date, according to Firestone’s warranty manual.
Firestone also offers a 90-day trial for most models. Firestone’s longest treadwear warranty extends 70,000 miles, which is less than the 80,000- and 90,000-mile warranties offered by Michelin and Goodyear, respectively.
Cost of Firestone Tires
Firestone tires are in a more affordable price range than other big-name tire brands. For example, Firestone All Season tires for a popular passenger car like the 2019 Toyota Camry cost as little as $105.47 per tire. According to Consumer Reports, all-season tires run between $80 and $120 each.
However, tire costs can vary significantly between different models, sizes, and specialties, even within the same brand. Drivers should also consider a tire’s treadwear warranty versus the cost. More expensive tires often offer a longer tread life, meaning fewer replacements in the long run.
Firestone Customer Reviews
Before purchasing a new set of Firestone tires, it can be helpful to review customer feedback on different models. Customer reviews often clarify how the tires actually perform and how long they last on the road.
Below, we’ve compiled a few customer reviews of Firestone tires from Tire Rack.
Positive Experiences with Firestone Tires
“[The Firestone Firehawk Indy 500 is a] great tire. I drive aggressively, and this tire never makes a sound while cornering. Very stable and [has] great dry traction. Wet traction is better than expected considering the lack of wide grooves on the outer edge of the tire.”
– via Tire Rack
“I was always amazed every time I serviced the car on how well the [Firestone Destination LE 2] tires were wearing. They felt smooth on the road and performed exceptionally in the rain. My wife hit two nails throughout our time with these tires, and both times, the tire didn’t lose air and didn’t puncture completely.”
– via Tire Rack
Negative Experiences with Firestone Tires
“The [Firestone Transforce tires] were all-around great at first. The problem came at about 20,000 miles when they felt like they turned into glass. The traction seemed to diminish overnight, especially the wet traction. It got so bad, I stopped driving my truck when it rains at the 35,000 mark.”
– via Tire Rack
“[The Firestone Champion Fuel Fighter] became noisy around 20,000 and were hard to keep balanced. Tire is rated for 70,000 miles… would never make it past 50,000. Tires were wearing very unevenly. I really wanted to like these tires, as they are not cheap.”
– via Tire Rack
Our Final Thoughts on Firestone Tires
Firestone tires are relatively affordable for day-to-day use, especially for light truck and SUV drivers. The tire manufacturer offers many types of tires, but its models only stand out in a few categories. Firestone’s customer reviews are more mixed than other brands we’ve reviewed, but are overall positive. At the end of the day, Firestone is a reputable choice for basic commuter models and some all-terrain tires.
Before committing to one OE or replacement tire model, check out what other options are available to your vehicle. You may be able to find a better tire at a lower cost. We recommend Michelin and Cooper tires.
Michelin: Best Tires Overall
In our 2021 review of the tire industry, we named Michelin the Best Tires Overall, giving the brand a 4.5 out of 5.0 rating. While Michelin models are more expensive than Firestone tires, they offer longer treadwear warranties and additional tire variety. Backed by industry experts and with high customer satisfaction ratings, Michelin tires are a smart choice for most drivers.
We named Cooper tires the Most Affordable in our industry review. Some Cooper models cost as little as $84 per tire, depending on the size and vehicle. The tire manufacturer specializes in replacement tires and is an independent manufacturer. Many customers speak highly of Cooper’s quality and tread life.