Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive Review: Super-Comfortable, But with Some Compromises

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Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive















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Enthusiasts love to brag about having the fastest car, be it in a straight line or around the track. Naturally, these speed aficionados are also interested in having the best-performing tires, which can extract even more performance from their cars.

But the average driver is not interested in the best lap time. What interests regular people when it comes to tires is primarily comfort. And understandably so – driving takes its toll on our well-being, and the more comfortable and quieter our cars are, the better the experience.

Goodyear knows this and has had tire offerings primarily designed with comfort in mind for quite some time now. Its latest comfort-oriented model is the Assurance ComfortDrive – a grand-touring tire with a unique design that aims to isolate the driver and passengers from the road.

Still, a modern tire, particularly a premium like the Assurance ComfortDrive, must do much more to entice buyers. Notably, a modern grand-touring all-season tire should offer a stable highway ride, good dry/wet traction, serviceable snow traction, and long treadlife.

It’s a tall order, but not unattainable. Namely, the grand-touring all-season sector has recently seen some great advancements, with tires like the Michelin CrossClimate 2 and Bridgestone WeatherPeak offering outstandingly workable snow traction and excellent dry/wet performance.

Not to mention, the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack already showed that you can have comfort, durability, and performance in one tire. At the same time, the Continental PureContact LS is a tire that blends almost everything perfectly together.

Thus, it becomes evident that the Assurance ComfortDrive won’t easily attract buyers despite its comfort credentials. Goodyear’s model does have an ace up its sleeve, though – it costs less than most premium rivals. It is also cheaper than Goodyear’s Assurance WeatherReady, a grand-touring all-season tire with a slightly more aggressive tread pattern for better snow traction.

So, does the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive have enough to stand out in the most competitive tire category? And should you spend your tire budget on this particular tire? Well, buckle up because, in this Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive review, we will tell you everything there is to know about the tire and compare it to its closest rivals. Let’s dig in!

What are the features of the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive?

The main feature of the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive is the ComfortFlex™ Technology, which improves the ride quality by softening the impacts while ensuring that the handling remains stable and agile.

Apart from that, the Assurance ComfortDrive also features a modern all-season compound with soybean oil. Goodyear says the next-gen compound improves traction in various weather conditions while ensuring low rolling resistance for better fuel economy.

The symmetric tread pattern looks similar to most other all-season tires, though looking closely, Goodyear has employed some unique features. For instance, the Assurance ComfortDrive has Goodyear’s TreadLock Technology, which locks the tread blocks to ensure stability at higher speeds and more responsive steering.

Furthermore, the AquaChannel grooves, which are large lateral notches, ensure water evacuation and stability during heavy rain. Meanwhile, the Evolving Traction Grooves ensure the tire remains grippy and safe in rainy conditions, even after the tread wears down.

The Assurance ComfortDrive also has numerous large sipes inside the tread blocks. These provide additional biting edges and can significantly improve light snow traction.

Goodyear also optimized the tread pattern to reduce noise and airborne harmonics, aiming to make the Assurance ComfortDrive one of the quietest tires in the category.

The tire’s internal construction is standard for the category and includes a two-ply casing that supports twin steel belts, along with a reinforcement cap ply.

What are the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive’s maintenance indicators?

Goodyear has employed its proprietary Wear Gauges on the Assurance ComfortDrive, which can show the driver how much tread depth there is left on the tire in a much more granular way.

Most grand-touring all-season tires only feature the industry-standard tread wear bars. These are okay for showing the driver when the tire needs replacing, i.e., when it reaches the lowest legal tread depth of 2/32 inches (1.6 mm). The idea is that the tire will not have a satisfactory hydroplaning resistance with anything shallower than that.

But that is not helpful because a tire gradually loses its wet/snow traction. For instance, for successful snow traction, it is widely considered that you will need at least 5/32 inches (4 mm) of tread depth on all-season tires, and the tread wear bars won’t help you with that.

Source: Goodyear

But Goodyear’s Wear Gauges are much smarter. They look like small stairs built into the circumferential grooves as part of the center tread blocks. On every “stair,” Goodyear has employed a number: 8, 6, 4, and 2.

These numbers are directly related to the tread depth left in inches, i.e., 8/32 inches, 6/32 inches, 4/32 inches, and 2/32 inches. So, when one Wear Gauge is flush with the rest of the tread, it is directly related to the tread depth left. People more familiar with the metric system will have a harder time understanding these measures, but it is better than having only the tread wear bars.

Honestly, we would love to see similar technology on other tires. A clear and easy way of tracking tread depth is crucial for safety, especially since too many cars run on worn-out tires that can’t provide useful traction in rainy and snowy conditions.

What is the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive warranty?

The Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive comes with a 60,000-mile warranty on all sizes. That is below average for a premium grand-touring all-season tire, especially considering that the Assurance ComfortDrive usually comes with lower load and speed ratings than most of its rivals.

Sure, this tire does cost less than other premium alternatives, but you can find a plethora of similarly-priced rivals that come with longer warranties. For instance, the Pirelli P7 AS Plus 3 has a 70,000-mile warranty, yet on some sizes, it costs less than the Assurance ComfortDrive and comes with higher load ratings.

Furthermore, the excellent Cooper Endeavor is almost 20% cheaper than the Assurance ComfortDrive, yet it has a longer 65,000-mile warranty. Pay 20% more, and you can have the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack, which comes with a class-leading 80,000-mile warranty.

Some more expensive all-season tires, like the Michelin CrossClimate 2 and Goodyear’s Assurance WeatherReady, also have a 60,000-mile warranty. Still, those tires are 3PMSF-rated (Three-Peak Mountain Snowflake) with softer and more pliable rubber compounds for higher snow traction. There is even an all-season 3PMSF tire that comes with a longer warranty – the Bridgestone WeatherPeak (70,000 miles).

Now, 60,000 miles is still a respectable figure and enough for most drivers, especially if the tire performs well in all other categories. Still, as you will find out later, the Assurance ComfortDrive isn’t at its best on snow-covered roads; in fact, it is a huge step behind the current 3PMSF-rated tires. But let’s first see how it does on dry roads.

How does the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive behave on dry roads?

The Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive can’t compete with the best grand-touring all-season tires on dry roads. Still, it offers respectable grip – higher than the average driver would ever need, solid steering and good braking.

In other words, this tire is designed to be safe but not exhilarating. Enthusiast drivers definitely won’t have much fun with this tire, as it doesn’t communicate well with the driver or return any information from the road.

Still, we think that an average driver will find the steering perfectly acceptable. Namely, the Assurance ComfortDrive is responsive and direct enough, with sufficient precision, to allow you to position your vehicle where you want in the corner. Moreover, we found that the straight-line tracking is excellent, so prolonged sessions on the highway aren’t taxing the driver.

The Assurance ComfortDrive also provides a solid lateral grip. It is not class-leading, but that was clearly not the idea with this tire. Crucially, the tire sticks to the road more than well enough for driving within the speed limit. In addition, the stopping distances are fairly short, and the acceleration traction is exemplary.

Furthermore, the handling is balanced, even when you exceed the traction limit. The Assurance ComfortDrive also performs admirably at the limit, with stability and predictability that you would expect from a premium all-season tire.

How is the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive on wet and slippery roads?

The Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive is among the best wet grand-touring all-season tires at its price point. It provides a solid grip, good hydroplaning resistance, and balanced handling, translating into a safe driving experience.

Considering the focus on comfort, the Assurance ComfortDrive punches above its weight with its wet traction. Its performance is not class-leading, as some more expensive options will give you even higher traction. Still, it is important to note that Goodyear’s model is not very expensive.

Notably, the stopping distances you will get from the Assurance ComfortDrive are shorter than most tires at the same price point, which is the most important measurement when it comes to safety. The lateral grip is also outstanding for the price – higher, in fact than the Pirelli P7 AS Plus 3 offers.

Not only that, but the Assurance ComfortDrive manages to beat its Italian rival in braking, acceleration, hydroplaning resistance, and how it behaves when pushed to its limits. Namely, Goodyear’s tire feels balanced and secure in rainy conditions, with predictable behavior at the limit. Basically, it is everything you need to feel safe when driving during heavy rain.

Still, if you want even better rain traction, we recommend going for something more expensive, like the Michelin CrossClimate 2, Continental PureContact LS, Vredestein Quatrac Pro, and Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack.

With that being said, how is the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive on snowy roads?

The Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive is not at its best on snow-covered roads. It lacks the traction of its rivals, which translates into longer stopping distances, more skidding in the corners, and worse acceleration off the line.

Interestingly, the Assurance ComfortDrive communicates well with the driver on snow and generally feels inviting to drive. Still, once you turn the wheel, you will quickly discover that the front tires don’t bite very well.

In fact, you will need to either slow down to put weight on the front wheels so the car can turn in or turn the steering wheel well in advance. This sounds easy, but the average driver should not change his/her driving style and worry about any of those things. Not only that, but the lower lateral grip means that the vehicle could skid more easily when making adjustments, like taking the foot off the gas pedal or turning the steering wheel more aggressively.

The stopping distances are also longer than the class-leading all-season tires on snow. The Assurance ComfortDrive will still stop your vehicle, but it will take a much longer distance to do that. You can even feel the lack of traction when accelerating on light snow – Goodyear’s tire will spin much more than comparable grand-touring all-season tires.

It is the same story on ice – the Assurance ComfortDrive simply can’t compare to its rivals regarding traction, which is evident when you want to accelerate or stop. Truth be told, most all-season tires aren’t serviceable on ice; for that, you will need a proper winter tire.

Goodyear’s comfort-oriented grand-touring tire works slightly better in slush, where the generous grooves on the tire keep it in contact with the road. Again, it is not class-leading but is still more than functional.

The lack of snow/ice traction is perhaps the biggest downfall of the Assurance ComfortDrive and an area where Goodyear must improve the next-generation tire to remain competitive. Sure, all-season tires are still not on the level of winter tires on snow, but some are genuinely usable.

For instance, 3PMSF-rated models, like the Michelin CrossClimate 2, Bridgestone WeatherPeak, and Vredestein Quatrac Pro, are excellent over light snow, to the point of being completely serviceable for people who live in areas with mild winters.

Is the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive suitable for off-road driving?

No, the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive is not suitable for off-road driving. For starters, it lacks the proper tread compound to give you meaningful traction, but its construction is also not as tough, making it more susceptible to cuts and punctures.

Of course, you can drive over gravel like any other road-going tire. Still, you should be careful not to hit larger, sharper rocks because they could easily pierce through this tire and/or damage the tread. Mud and large rocks are out of the water, though – you will need at least an all-terrain tire for those surfaces.

This is not unusual for a grand-touring all-season tire, as neither model in the category is designed with off-roading in mind. Sure, most grand-touring tires fit modern crossovers and even some SUVs, but this proves that those vehicles are not designed for off-road use.

Is the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive a run-flat tire?

No, the Assurance ComfortDrive is not a run-flat tire, and Goodyear will probably never offer a run-flat option. That is because this tire is primarily designed for comfort, and run-flat tires are notorious for having a much harsher ride (except the excellent Bridgestone DriveGuard).

Goodyear has numerous run-flat models in its range, called “run-on-flat.” However, most are summer touring or performance tires; even the all-season models are more geared toward performance driving. That is not too surprising, given that, at the moment, only luxury and performance cars come with run-flat tires from the factory.

How are the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive’s road noise and comfort performance?

Goodyear has made the Assurance ComfortDrive one of today’s pliable and quietest tires. It provides a serene and calm driving experience, particularly when paired with a premium vehicle with a comfortable suspension and good sound insulation.

That said, the Assurance ComfortDrive will improve the comfort characteristics of any vehicle. The ride is particularly impressive; the soft tire gives the passengers a “floating” sensation, similar to a luxury vehicle.

However, unlike other soft tires, the Assurance ComfortDrive also deals with sharp undulations, like those found on broken roads, with compliance that few other tires can match. Repetitive impacts also don’t unsettle the ride, and the tire goes over larger potholes smoothly as well.

Overall, the tire provides a lavish ride that brings it to the top of the grand-touring all-season category. Other models, like the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack and Pirelli P7 AS Plus 3, are smooth over bumps, but the Assurance ComfortDrive might be our new favorite tire.

As for noise, the Assurance ComfortDrive is also a very quiet tire. The sound is low-pitched and generally inaudible at lower speeds. It blends with a higher-pitched noise at higher speeds but remains low in volume. In most vehicles, wind noise will be a bigger issue than the tread noise this tire produces.

In general, we must say that Goodyear succeeded in making a refined and luxurious tire. With a set of Assurance ComfortDrive tires on your vehicle, long-distance journeys will be more pleasing and sophisticated, both for the driver and the passengers.

Should I buy the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive?

The Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive is a study of how you can improve ride quality and negate noise with tire technology. It is not without disadvantages; in fact, we can count many tires that are more balanced in their approach and have a higher overall score. Still, if your main concern is having a luxurious, serene and safe dry/wet ride, the Assurance ComfortDrive is a solid option.

With that said, Goodyear’s latest comfort-oriented tire doesn’t work well on snow and lags significantly behind the class-leading tires. Its 60,000-mile warranty is also good in isolation but not nearly as long as some other options in the category – even tires with higher dry/wet/snow grip come with longer warranties.

The Assurance ComfortDrive is solid on dry and wet roads, providing stable handling and good traction. We also found that the steering was precise, despite the tire’s softer sidewalls that bring that buttery-smooth ride.

But before splurging the cash, we think you should consider other tires in the category. The more expensive Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack offers a similarly comfortable ride while providing better snow traction and a much longer 80,000-mile warranty.

Furthermore, Bridgestone’s WeatherPeak doubles down on the snow part by offering much higher snow traction while also having a longer 70,000-mile warranty. Meanwhile, the pricy Michelin’s CrossClimate 2 offers near-class-leading traction across dry, wet, and snowy conditions and comes with the same 60,000-mile warranty as the Assurance ComfortDrive.

Those are more expensive alternatives, though you can save some cash by opting for the Cooper Endeavor. Cooper’s tire has a longer 65,000-mile warranty, offers comparable dry and snow grip, and costs 20% less.

The recently launched General AltiMAX 365 AW is another great budget contender. It comes with a 60,000-mile warranty, but it is also 3PMSF-rated and offers much better snow traction than the Assurance ComfortDrive.

Finally, the Assurance WeatherReady, Goodyear’s take on the 3PMSF all-season craze, brings improved snow traction at a similar price point, with the same dry grip and 60,000-mile warranty. Still, the WeatherReady isn’t as comfortable or quiet on the road and has a lower wet grip.

What sizes does the Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive come in?

The Goodyear Assurance ComfortDrive comes in 44 sizes, ranging from 16-inch to 20-inch wheel diameter. With the dimensions on offer, Goodyear covers many vehicles, including compact cars, mid-size sedans, minivans, crossovers, coupes, and even some SUVs.

According to the company, popular vehicles the Assurance ComfortDrive will fit include Audi Q5, Buick Encore, Chevrolet Traverse, Ford Explorer, GMC Acadia, Honda Accord, CR-V and Pilot, Kia Sorento, Lexus IS and RX, Nissan Maxima, Subaru Forester and Toyota RAV4 and Sienna. Still, the tire can fit many rivals of these vehicles as well.

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