Vredestein Ultrac Cento
Sole directional tread on test put in a strong performance
Only Vredestein has stuck with the once popular directional tread pattern as rivals have moved to asymmetric designs. But the Cento still features solid, wide central ribs – this allows for big tread blocks on the outside, for steering stability and response, with water-shifting channels on the inner section.
Wet road grip was always the strong point of a directional pattern, and the tyre thrived in the aquaplaning tests and on the handling track. This was supported by the cornering result, but it struggled in wet braking, needing close to four metres more to stop than the winner. So overall in the wet, it was a close second to the Pirelli.
In the dry, it suffered more than the P Zero, finishing ninth on the handling circuit, where it lacked grip and balance. It also disappointed in dry braking, finishing eighth – more than a metre off the winning Continental – and trailed in the noise test. Still, Vredestein has made big steps in reducing rolling resistance in recent years.
Proof that an asymmetric tread is not essential for good performance.
In this review
- 1IntroductionThe Auto Express annual tyre test is back! We put 10 leading brands to the test to find Britain’s top tyre
- 2Apollo Aspire 4New cut-price brand promises to shake up the tyre market
- 3Michelin Pilot Sport 3Firm has widened focus on fuel economy to produce a top buy
- 4Hankook Ventus S1 evoKoreans’ focus on low rolling resistance affects performance
- 5Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2Podium finishes across board swept newcomer to victory
- 6Dunlop Sport Maxx TTPoor efficiency is a thorn in the side of this midfield performer
- 7Continental ContiSportContact 3Our former champ is left half way down the field this time
- 8Bridgestone Potenza S001Disappointing showing on home turf for top maker
- 9Nokian Z G2Whisper-quiet rubber gave top names a run for their money
- 10Pirelli P ZeroMotorsport-inspired pattern is still the best wet weather tyre
- 11Vredestein Ultrac Cento - currently readingSole directional tread on test put in a strong performance