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Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S Tire Test Update - Secure Wet Performance, Stable Fuel Economy, Lack of Noise

In the first update of our long-term test of the Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S, we detail how the tire handles wet rods and report fuel economy changes and noise differences.

Although it has been less than two months since our Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S test began, we’ve quickly become fans of this tire. During our first 1,200 miles of using the tire, we have had a chance to drive in very wet conditions many times, and we’ve kept close track of our fuel economy. The news we have to report is good in all three categories. Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S Tire image by John GorehamSee Our First Review Post Here

Robust Sidewall Construction One of the most subjective of our observations is comfort and handling. The ZIEX CT60 A/S is ideally suited to our 2007 Highlander crossover SUV. The tires offer very good comfort over broken-up spring roads. In fact, we’ve hit a few potholes so large we checked for damage. We are happy to report that, unlike the three-season Continental tires that came off the vehicle, we have not had any sidewall ripples, bumps, or bulges that indicate belt damage from impacts The Continentals had multiple ripples in each tire within our first few months of use. So far, we’ve either been lucky, or the Falken sidewall is more robustly constructed than other tires we have used on this vehicle.

Related Story: Falken WildPeak A/T Trail Tire Review

Handling The Highlander is a “chill” vehicle. It is very satisfying to drive if operated in an adult fashion. It is not a sporty vehicle, per se, but we have taken it on some great back-road journeys to the New England hill country since the Falken tires were mounted. The ZIEX CT60 A/S tires offer great handling in balance with comfort. The steering is responsive, and the Highlander feels like new again.

Wet Weather Performance New England finished up winter and entered spring with its usual frequent showers and heavy downpours. This provided us with ample opportunity to try the ZIEX CT60 A/S tires in wet conditions on both suburban roads and on the highway. The tires have proven to be extremely grippy around town, and in situations where we would expect a bit of hydroplaning due to standing water on the highway, we’ve not felt any hints of it. Much of our wet weather driving was in temps in the 30 F range, so we can say with confidence that the compound remains pliant at such temps.

Fuel Economy Changes Our Highlander is of the generation when vehicles did not have dash displays of fuel economy. Therefore, we rely on filling to one click and recording our mileage between fill-ups, a more accurate way to gauge fuel use. Doing so has revealed that the fuel economy has gone up by about a half-mile per gallon since we removed the Blizzak winter tires. This is normal and not an indictment of the Blizzaks. Winter tires simply have more rolling resistance than all-season rubber. Our mileage is still just a smidge above the EPA-Estimated Combined fuel economy rating for the vehicle. In summary, the Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S is not a tire that impacts fuel economy in a negative way (as many aftermarket tires often do).

Noise The biggest plus so far of the Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S tires may be how quiet they are. We are concurrently testing a set of four-season tires and a set of trail tires on other crossover SUVs. The ZIEX CT60 A/S tires are notably quieter. So much so that we may have to start mentioning noise in our other reviews! The ZIEX CT60 A/S set a very high bar for quiet operation. Thanks to our go-to on-site tire service company, Boston Mobile Tire, our Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S test tires remain perfectly in balance and have lost no air over the season change. In fact, we’ve bled them down a couple of pounds to keep them at the manufacturer’s recommended setpoint.

Update Conclusion This will not be our last report on the Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S test tires, but we can now say with confidence that the tires offer a sense of security in all of the driving conditions we have so far had a chance to encounter. The ZIEX CT60 A/S tires offer confidence-inspiring handling, a comfortable and quiet ride, and we have not seen any fuel consumption changes. Despite some big impacts, the tires are soldiering on with no sign of sidewall ripples or damage. Most importantly, we can now report that these are tires that work very well in cold and wet driving. Watch Torque News for another update if any changes are noted. We will report our impressions on snow and ice during early winter.

Related StoryFalken Ziex CT60 A/S Tire Test Update - Thinking Outside The Box

Test Note: The tires in this test were provided by Falken, and as always, we have offered to return them following our long-term test. On-site mounting and balancing were paid for by the author ($200).

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 Falken ZIEX CT60 A/S Tire images by John Goreham