Testing note: This story is not a paid promotion. The tires tested were provided at no cost by the manufacturer, but mounting was paid for by the author.
Two years ago, we kicked off a long-term test and review of the then-new Michelin CrossClimate2 all-weather tire. The claim to fame of the CrossClimate2 is that it offers much better winter performance than an all-season touring tire, but with no downsides. Based on our years of testing on a 2018 Mazda CX-5, we can confirm that this tire is all it’s cracked up to be and more. Here is a quick list of all our prior test updates:
Long-term Test of Michelin CrossClimate2 All-Weather Tires – Initial Impressions
Michelin CrossClimate2 Tire Owner Reports – Outstanding Winter Traction
Watch the Michelin CrossClimate2 Tire Tackle Ice-Slick Roads
Michelin CrossClimate2 – Our Opinion After Two Years of Testing
Our testing in real-world New England driving confirms all of the promises Michelin makes about this tire, and also all of the praise heaped on this tire by owners on social media. The Michelin CrossClimate2 Tire walks the walk.
Winter Testing Results
The main reason many tire shoppers will consider a 4-Season tire in place of an all-season is the added winter grip. Here the CrossClimates2s live up to the hype. In our own testing, the tires seemed nearly as good as dedicated winter tires in normal snowy commuting. If you are planning adventure-type winter driving, choose an all-terrain trail tire or if you drive in the worst possible winter conditions on-road quite often, opt for a winter tire model, possibly studded.
Wet Weather Testing Results
The deep grooves of the CrossClimate2 tires solved one concern we had with the touring tires the CX-5 came with – highway puddles. The new tires not only have better wet-weather grip in the rain, but they also seem to eliminate hydroplaning concerns.
MPG Changes Noted
The vehicle gained approximately 0.5 MPG after we switched to the CrossClimate2 tires. We were careful to record our mileage before the test began, and during the 22,000 miles we drove, the average went from 26.8 MPG up to 27.3 MPG. The EPA Combined estimate for this vehicle is 26 MPG. Therefore, there is no fuel economy penalty in comparison to the OEM all-season touring tires Mazda mounts when new. In fact, a bit of mileage is gained by switching to the CrossClimate2 tires.
The biggest downside to winter tires is that they are louder than all-season tires. In the case of the Bridgestone Blizzaks we use on another crossover in our fleet, they are so loud we cannot wait to remove them in spring. The CrossClimate2 tires have no added tire noise after two years. They are like a normal all-season tire with regard to sound levels.
Be Careful When You Rotate The Michelin CrossClimate2 Tires
One thing to know about the CrossClimate2 tire is it has a directional tread pattern. It is intended to be mounted one certain way on the rim and on the vehicle. This is not unusual. However, during one of our routine tire rotation services by a Mazda dealer, the technician put them on the wrong sides of the car, so they were facing the wrong way and had to be returned to the proper side. You can still “rotate” the tires. You just move them from front to back on the same side. Our tires are wearing normally, so this should not a problem. Just be aware of the issue and let your mechanic know. The tires are clearly marked with the rotation direction in the sidewall.
One Word Of Caution: Avoid the Direction Wheel Trap If You Own A VW ID.4 Or Any Vehicle With Mis-Matched Tire Sizes
Some Test Facts and Figures
We have taken careful note of all the facts and figures during our testing. Below is the data dump:
Tire Size 225/55-19
UTQG: 640 B A
Miles When Mounted: 34,605
Miles After 2 Years of Testing: 56,351
Total Miles Covered In 24 Months Of Testing: 21,746
Approximate Remaining Tread 7.1mm
Tire Rack Price When Mounted $221.99
Tire Rack Price Today $258.99
Treadwear Warranty Duration 60,000 Miles
Vehicle MPG Recorded for 2,500 Miles Prior to Mounting 26.8 MPG
MPG After 22,000 Miles of Testing 27.3 MPG
EPA Combined MPG Estimate For Vehicle 26 MPG
Final Verdict – Michelin CrossClimate2 Tires
After two years of use, we can report that the Michelin CrossClimate2 tire changes the landscape for many vehicle owners. No longer are winter tires needed for snowy commuting and normal winter driving. You can ditch your winter rubber for good and just use these tires. There is no downside. Noise levels are not increased, they handle great, they seem to last as long as any other all-season tire we have owned, and our mileage went up when using them. If you live where winters are harsh and want to quit using winter rubber for normal winter driving, the Michelin CrossClimate2 tire is the solution you have been waiting for.
Images of Michelin CrossClimate2 tire by John Goreham.
John Goreham is an experienced New England Motor Press Association member and expert vehicle tester. John completed an engineering program with a focus on electric vehicles, followed by two decades of work in high-tech, biopharma, and the automotive supply chain before becoming a news contributor. In addition to his ten years of work at Torque News, John has published thousands of articles and reviews at American news outlets. He is known for offering unfiltered opinions on vehicle topics. You can follow John on Twitter, and TikTok @ToknCars, and view his credentials at Linkedin