Vredestein Ultrac review
An excellent wet-weather performer, particularly in severe conditions, and effective in the dry. Fuel economy needs improvement, however
We first tested the Ultrac in 17-inch form shortly after its 2021 launch, when it finished third. It couldn’t repeat that podium success this time around, but it was close to the front of the group chasing the stellar PremiumContact 7.
There’s still lots to like about the Ultrac, which marked a return to form in our tests from this previous winning maker. A big increase in silica and resins in the compound over its predecessor could be seen in the wet, where it was next best across all five tests behind the Continental.
And it delivered in both shallow and deep water, with a complete lockout in the latter. It was third round the wet circle and runner-up for handling. It carried more speed into turns than most rivals without sliding and gave good traction on the way out. Despite the strong front, the rear was stable, indicating good balance. The only blot was an eighth for braking, where it needed just under two metres more than the winner. It was within a metre of the best of the rest, though.
It was fifth overall in the dry, but the noisiest on test. The elephant in the room is fuel economy, where it was the thirstiest, using around six per cent more than the Bridgestone and about three per cent more than the best of the rest.
"Customers rate the tyre well, with a score of 4.5/5. Feedback focuses on the good grip and handling in all weather conditions and the value for money."
In this review
- 1IntroductionWe reveal the best tyres you can buy
- 2Continental PremiumContact 7 Following our mini test earlier this year, we knew the Continental was good, and it backed that up with a win against wider opposition
- 3Bridgestone Turanza T005The best tyre, by some margin, for high-mileage drivers, but we can see why better wet grip is a performance target for its successor
- 4Toyo Proxes ComfortToyo has produced an impressively complete, well balanced package across the tests. The Proxes Comfort was pretty good to drive, too
- 5Pirelli Cinturato P7After a troubled beginning, it seems Pirelli is finally getting a handle on the Cinturato P7, and is making the tyre a match for premium rivals
- 6Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 2There’s no repeat win this time around, but the EfficientGrip still delivers a balanced performance and impressive fuel economy
- 7Vredestein Ultrac - currently readingAn excellent wet-weather performer, particularly in severe conditions, and effective in the dry. Fuel economy needs improvement, however
- 8Kumho Ecsta HS52A welcome return for Kumho with its latest Ecsta. It delivered on its performance target of good braking, but there are areas that need improving
- 9Michelin Primacy 4+For a tyre that is focused on performance when it is worn, the Primacy 4+ performed pretty well from new, with a good all-round balance
- 10Hankook Ventus Prime 4Hankook has become known for developing a tyre throughout its life, and it has a good base here, but it’s clear work still needs to be done
- 11Maxxis Premitra 5 HP5By no means a bad tyre, but rivals have moved the game on with their new designs and development since the Premitra’s debut
- 12Falken Ziex ZE310 EcorunA replacement for the Ecorun, on sale since 2017, can’t come soon enough. This is not the performance level we expect from Falken
- 13Tyre test 2023: results by categoryAn in-depth look at the scoring charts for our 2023 tyre test