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- Best-in-class wet handling and braking
- Exceptional hydroplaning resistance, even in very heavy rain
- Very responsive for an all-season grand-touring tire
- Excellent handling and braking on dry pavement
- Outstanding high-speed stability
- The EverGrip Technology ensures that the tire performs well on wet surfaces, even when worn down
- Extra smooth and quiet on the highway
- Durable and long-lasting tread compound
- Good light-snow traction for an all-season tire
- Very expensive
- The 60,000-mile treadwear warranty is shorter than other premium grand-touring tires
Even when I started learning about cars and tires as a kid, everyone was talking about Michelin. The French company’s products were always at the forefront in terms of performance, lasted the longest, and provide the most serene driving experience.
Not that you should expect less from the company that literally invented the radial tire, which improved performance, comfort, and treadlife by a significant margin when compared to bias-ply tires. Michelin continues to impress to this day. One of the products that really shows the company’s commitment to producing high-quality premium tires is the Premier A/S.
A successor to the widely-popular Primacy MXV4, the Premier A/S aims to provide drivers of passenger cars around the world with outstanding drivability, the highest level of safety, exceptional comfort, and extended treadlife. The main focus of the engineers this time around was to improve wet traction. The reason? Most of the car-related accidents happen in rainy conditions – 73%, in fact.
The thing is, the Michelin Premier A/S competes in the all-season grand-touring sector, where other premium companies already have excellent tires, such as the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack, and Continental PureContact LS. Winning against these rivals will never be easy, but at least on paper, the Premier A/S possesses some class-leading qualities.
Naturally, the advanced technologies that Michelin utilizes in its products always bring the price up. Like most products from the company, the Premier A/S is far from cheap. Actually, it’s one of the most expensive all-season grand-touring tires right now. For 20-30% less money, you can have a very accomplished tire from manufacturers like Cooper Tire, General Tire, Hankook, etc.
The question is – should you save cash and opt for more budget-friendly options? I mean, there must be a reason why the Premier A/S costs so much, right? Well, of course, there is. In order to get the answer to the question, though, you’ll need to scroll down and read the Michelin Premier A/S review. There are many things that we’ll need to discuss to find out if the Premier A/S deserves the place in your car.
And, sure, the Michelin Premier A/S isn’t designed for every car on the road. Nevertheless, Michelin made it available in many sizes, ranging from 15-inch wheel diameter to 19-inch wheel diameter. With that lineup, the company covers many popular passenger cars that roll on public roads today.
So, if you own a compact car, mid-size sedan, crossover, minivan, or coupe, chances are the Premier A/S will be available in the OEM size. Moreover, Michelin offers the tire in many speed ratings, which widens availability even further.
With that out of the water, let’s see what features Michelin employed in the tire and then jump to the real-world conclusions.
What are the features of the Michelin Premier A/S?
“Safe When New. Safe When Worn. Even when half-worn, it’s still safe, thanks to EverGrip wet-braking technology. The MICHELIN® Premier® A/S tire still stops shorter on wet roads than leading competitors’ brand-new tires” – Michelin states on its website.
Furthermore, the French manufacturer brags about the ultimate all-season safety the tire offers, the luxury and comfort, and long mileage warranty (more on that later). And, all of these things are achieved with the use of Michelin’s Total Performance technology, which includes many advanced materials and features.
Let’s start with the tread compound, which is a combination of extreme silica and sunflower oil. According to Michelin’s engineers, this compound enhances traction on wet pavement, and in cold temperatures.
The tread compound is molded into a symmetric tread design with continuous center rib flanked by notched intermediate ribs and linked shoulder blocks. This pattern should enhance straight-line tracking and steering responsiveness for better handling on dry surfaces.
The most interesting part of the tire is probably the Michelin EverGrip Technology. This tech features Expanding Rain Grooves around the tire circumference and Emerging Grooves across the shoulders.
These grooves literally open up as the tread wears down, which, according to Michelin, helps the tire retain its wet traction for longer. EverGrip Technology is the only one I know of that does that, and by itself, it warrants a price increase when compared to budget-friendly options.
A part of the Total Performance package is also the low-rolling-resistance of the compound, which improves the fuel economy on any vehicle.
Internally, the Premier A/S has a pretty standard design with twin steel belts reinforced with spirally wrapped polyamide cord on top of a polyester casing ply. This construction gives the tire toughness and stability, which ensures good handling, durability, and comfortable ride.
What are the maintenance indicators?
Michelin utilizes the regular tread wear indicators in all of its tires, including the Premier A/S. The TWI’s are narrow rubber inserts built into the circumferential grooves of the tire. With these indicators, the driver can easily monitor the tread depth of the tire, which helps with easy maintenance.
The indicators are specifically important for safety. Even with EverGrip Technology, the Premier A/S won’t provide the same performance on wet surfaces when the tread is worn down. For that reason, keeping an eye on the tread depth is crucial to keep your vehicle safe in rainy conditions.
On the Premier A/S, the minimum tread depth is 2/32-inch. That’s when the company states that the tire isn’t safe for driving on wet pavement. Moreover, shallow tread depth significantly hurts snow traction.
When the tread depth comes to 2/32-inch, the treadwear indicators will be completely flush with the tread of the tire. Naturally, you’ll need to replace the tires at this moment to keep wet performance in check. I recommend replacing the tires even sooner, though.
Michelin provides a 6-year, 60,000-mile treadwear warranty on the tire. In isolation, this warranty seems completely fine, but some premium competitors started offering much more. For example, Bridgestone provides an 80,000-mile treadwear warranty on its Turanza QuietTrack.
Not that you should care for treadlife – owners of the Premier A/S are completely satisfied with how long the tread lasts.
How does it behave on a dry tarmac?
I never believed a grand-touring all-season tire could handle so well before I tried the Premier A/S. With a set of these tires, your vehicle will feel much more responsive, and the steering feel will be great.
Moreover, Michelin managed to extract very high levels of grip and traction from the all-season compound. For everyday driving, the tire provides more cornering grip than you would ever need, and it has enough traction for brisk acceleration. On top of that, the braking distances are very short.
Overall, the Premier A/S is one of the most enjoyable grand-touring tires for driving around. Exceptional, to say the least.
How is it over wet and slippery roads?
The Premier A/S might have competition when it comes to dry handling, but on wet surfaces, it beats its competitors by a significant margin. That’s especially true in braking – the stopping distances are the shortest in the category.
Handling is also very precise and controllable, without any hint of slippage. The hydroplaning resistance is outstanding as well, even in very heavy rain. Damp and oily surfaces also don’t pose an issue for the tire – it’s that good.
So, yeah, if you want the best grand-touring all-season tire for wet conditions, the Premier A/S is the way to go.
With that being said, how is it on snowy roads?
Thanks to the multiple sipes on the tread blocks, the Premier A/S delivers good snow traction, at least for an all-season tire. Sure, driving on snow and ice is much, much safer with a winter tire.
However, compared to most grand-touring all-season tires, the Premier A/S is favorable, specifically to budget-friendly ones. People that live in areas with warmer winters will certainly not be disappointed.
Is it suitable for off-road driving?
The Premier A/S isn’t designed for off-road driving, despite the fact that it’s available in some crossover sizes. Sure, you can use it over hardpacked surfaces in a pinch, but prolonged usage might result in tread damage.
Is it comfortable and refined?
Not that I expected anything less from Michelin, but the Premier A/S is supremely comfortable. The ride quality is one of the best in the category, both on smooth and uneven roads. Moreover, the tire is one of the quietest grand-touring models right now.
You can see more Michelin Premier A/S Review here: Video created by Michelin USA
Should I buy the Michelin Premier A/S?
Like with most Michelin products, if you have enough budget, you should definitely put the Premier A/S on the shortlist. This is the safest tire for driving on wet surfaces, even when worn down.
Moreover, the tire handles like a sporty tire, caresses the passengers with a smooth and quiet ride, and has an exceptional treadlife. The treadwear warranty might not reflect that, but the Premier A/S will last you for a very long time.