Pickup trucks are the most popular vehicle type in America, while the Ford F150 is the most popular pickup truck. Ford’s best-selling vehicle in the USA has been the go-to choice for truckers for almost half a century now, and it doesn’t seem like it will stop anytime soon. And why would it – the newest generation has a lot of improvements in terms of weight and engines, that make it probably the best full-size pickup truck at the moment, and perhaps in history.
When you think about it, the Ford F150 is capable of everything you throw at it. It is comfortable on the road, it can tow and haul big loads, it can overcome even the harshest off-road terrain, and it’s stable on the highway. That said, while the F150 is certainly one of the most capable automobiles today, it can’t do anything without a good set of tires. Put cheap tires on your F150, and it will lose every ability it has immediately.
The problem is, there are different tires for different types of drivers, surfaces, and climates. Also, there are over 20 big tire brands that you should consider for your truck, which makes choosing the best tires for Ford F150 a daunting task. It often happens that people choose tires that were recommended by the seller as the best for the F150, but ones that won’t suit the driving style of the buyer. Choosing the right set of tires for you is extremely important, even more than choosing a high-quality brand. For example, a budget-oriented all-terrain tire will always be better for off-roading than the most expensive highway tire.
If that sounds confusing to you, you’re in the right place. In this article, you will learn everything there is to know about tires for F150. Don’t worry, every version of the vehicle and every type of driver will be covered in the short buying guide. Oh, and to make things even easier we’ll throw the best 10 tires for F150 and divide them into the most popular categories for good measure.
Highway and Touring tires are the Best Choices for Most F-150 Owners
There’s a reason why highway and touring tires are the best-selling tire type for pickup trucks, and especially F150 owners. They offer everything the casual pickup truck driver would want in a set of tires. As their name implies, though, they’re primarily made for driving on the road, not for off-roading. That said, the best highway tires for F150 are still sufficient for driving on gravel roads and some lighter terrain.
But what makes highway and touring tires so desirable in the first place? Well, first of all, they are supremely quiet and comfortable. Any other tire type for the Ford F150 will have worse ride quality, and it will be much more audible at highway speeds. This quality is what people notice the first time they sit behind the steering wheel, and it is why we mentioned it first.
Luckily, the focus on quietness and comfort doesn’t ruin the on-road dynamics. Highway and touring tires offer reliable performance in dry conditions. The best of them are even very responsive, have high levels of grip and excellent traction. They will also give you extremely short braking distances, both on dry and wet roads. Highway and touring tires also have excellent resistance to hydroplaning, thanks to the circumferential grooves in their design, which additionally makes driving in the rain safer.
These tires are also the most durable tire type for F-150. Highway and touring tires will last almost twice as long as other tire types. The most impressive part is certainly the durability of the tread – the best highway tires have treadwear warranties of 70,000-miles and 80,000-miles, which is almost double than any other tire type. In other words, they are the most reliable and cost-effective choice in the long run. Don’t worry – modern highway and touring tires are also designed to keep their shape for a long time – five to six years at the minimum. If that wasn’t enough, highway and touring tires are often cheaper than other pickup alternatives in the first place.
All of this begs the question – what’s the difference between highway and touring tires? It’s simple, really. Highway tires are specifically designed for SUVs and pickup trucks and can withstand much more weight. This means that they are more useful for hauling big loads or towing big trailers. Touring tires, on the other hand, are designed for SUVs, pickup trucks, and crossovers. They can’t carry as much weight as highway tires, so you’re limited to smaller trailers and lighter loads. However, touring tires are also lighter and offer generally better driving experience than highway tires when the F-150 is not loaded, which is why we’ll also include several of them in the list below.
But What If I Own a Ford F-150 V8 or V6 EcoBoost?
While highway or touring tires will also work on the most powerful versions of the Ford F-150, Street/Sport truck tires will do an even better job. These tires are designed to offer much better handling and braking. In other words, traction and grip will be improved significantly when compared to highway tires, and the braking distances will be shorter. Street/Sport tires are also much more responsive than other tires types, which means that your F-150 will feel much livelier and more precise behind the steering wheel.
It all sounds fine when we talk only about the handling abilities of Street/Sport tires, but there are some glaring disadvantages here. First of all, ride quality will be much worse, while noise goes up a few decibels on the highway. These sporty tires also don’t last as long as highway tires – most of them don’t even come with a treadlife warranty. If that wasn’t enough, these tires are also much more expensive to buy in the first place. To put it simply, you really need to drive your Ford F-150 fast to make the most out of Street/Sport tires.
What About Off-Road Driving?
There are several tire options suited for off-roading, including all-terrain, multi-terrain, and mud-terrain tires. In our opinion, most F-150 owners will be best-suited by all-terrain tires, which are designed to offer a combination of good off-road traction, safe and reliable handling, and low levels of noise. Due to the fact that these tires work best on the road out of any other off-road tire, they will be completely usable everywhere you use them.
Multi-terrain and mud-terrain tires have even better off-road traction and more durable casing. However, they are much noisier on the road, less comfortable, and offer much worse handling and braking. Sure, they will work excellently for people that want the ultimate off-road experience, but the on-road disadvantages will be too much to grasp for most F-150 owners.
And What About the Climate?
If choosing a set of tires according to your needs and the surfaces you drive your F-150 on, you also need to think about the climate in your area. In this case, truck tires are divided into three categories – all-season, summer, and winter tires. Their names are pretty much self-explanatory, but some people still make the wrong choices.
All-season tires are available as highway, touring, all-terrain, and Street/Sport tires. As a matter of fact, most tires on the market today are all-season tires. The reasoning behind that is simple – they’re designed to work in a wide temperature range. This means that with all-season tires you won’t need to worry about the temperature dropping at the freezing point, nor need to worry about very hot and humid climates. All-season tires also work very well in dry and wet conditions, and some of them even work in light snow.
That said, if you want the best performance in hot weather, then summer tires are the best choice. These tires have much better traction, grip, and braking performance than all-season tires in hot or warm conditions. Today, summer tires are mostly available as Street/Sport tires – they play well with powerful trucks. However, summer tires are completely unusable in wintry conditions and may even get damaged in the process.
Winter tires are the complete opposite of summer tires – they work only in cold weather and may get damaged in warm conditions. They are also much better than all-season tires in the winter, especially on snow and ice. That’s why F-150 owners that live in areas with very harsh winter conditions should always replace their all-season tires with winter tires when the temperature is near-freezing. A good set of winter tires is very important for ultimate safety in the winter because that’s when most of the crashes happen.
Here is a list of top 10 best tires for Ford F150:
Best Highway Tires for Ford F150
1. Michelin Defender LTX M/S
The Defender LTX M/S, a successor to the extremely popular LTX M/S2 from Michelin, is the most popular highway tire on the market right now, which goes well with the most popular full-size pickup truck. The reason why the Defender is so popular is simply that it offers outstanding performances in almost every category.
Equipped with the chip-resistant EverTread Compound, the Defender is durable enough for even the most powerful versions of the F-150. That also means that it can be used on gravel roads and even for some light off-roading. The Defender LTX is excellent on the road as well – dry handling is one of the best in the category.
Thanks to the symmetric tread design of independent tread blocks featuring high-density 3-D Active Sipes and four wide circumferential channels, wet traction and hydroplaning resistance is probably best-in-class at this moment. The Defender LTX also works in light snow, but you’ll still need a proper set of winter tires for harsh wintry conditions.
If that wasn’t enough, the Defender LTX is also one of the quietest highway tires, and also the one with the best ride quality. For people that tow or haul a lot with their F-150’s, the Defender is also available in load range E configuration. On top of everything else, this tire comes with an excellent 70,000-miles treadwear warranty for T- H- & V-Speed Rated, and 50,000-mile treadwear warranty for W-Speed rated models.
2. Cooper Discoverer HTP
Cooper Tires is a manufacturer that is very popular within the truck community simply because they offer a lot for the money. The Discoverer HTP is a great example of that – it beats almost every competitor at the same price point, and it’s better than even some premium highway tires. Like the Michelin Defender, the Discoverer HTP is a balanced tire that scores highly in every category.
On the road, the Discoverer HTP is excellent on dry roads, providing a lot of traction, grip, and stopping power. Thanks to the serpentine sipes and biting edges, the Cooper is also very good in the rain. That said, while it offers some traction in light snow, that’s not its forte.
On the other hand, the Discoverer HTP comes with an excellent 65,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is better than most competitors in the same price bracket.
3. Kumho Road Venture APT KL51
The Korean manufacturer Kumho is a regular participant in our lists of the best tires as a budget option to premium tires. The Road Venture APT KL51 is their highway all-season tire for pickup trucks and SUVs. It compares closely to the likes of Cooper Tire and General Tire when it comes to price and performance.
The Road Venture offers a very safe and reliable driving experience in dry and wet conditions with high levels of grip and traction. Stability at higher speeds is also very good, almost on the level of premium tires. The Kumho is also excellent in light snow – better than most similarly-priced highway tires.
The treadwear warranty Kumho offers is 60,000-miles, which is still pretty good considering the price. Nevertheless, the Road Venture APT KL51 is not available in load range E form, which makes it a slightly worse choice for towing.
4. General Grabber HTS60
As an American manufacturer, General Tire knows a thing or two about designing pickup truck tires. Their highway offering, the Grabber HTS 60, is one of the best tires in its category and certainly one of the best tires for Ford F150. It is also much cheaper than premium-priced alternatives, which make it a great choice for older F-150’s.
On the road, the Grabber HTS 60 provides the driver with sufficient grip and traction on dry and wet surfaces. Braking is also very good, as is high-speed stability. However, the heavy-duty versions have less circumferential grooves, which makes them less reliable in heavy rain, but are better when you tow very big trailers.
The Grabber HTS 60 comes with a 65,000-mile treadwear warranty for S- & T-Speed Rated models, and a 50,000-mile treadwear warranty for LT Sizes & H-Speed Rated models.
Best Touring Tires for Ford F150
5. Cooper Discoverer SRX
Unlike the HTP, the Discoverer SRX is geared towards F-150 owners that don’t tow frequently with their trucks. Compared to its “brother,” it offers better driving dynamics on dry and wet roads. It is more responsive, has better grip and traction, and stops better. That said, things are the opposite if you tow or haul with these tires.
The SRX is also very comfortable over bumps, and very quiet as well. It comes with a 75,000-mile treadwear warranty for T-Rated models and 70,000-mile for H-Rated models, which is one of the best in the business. The only downside of the Discoverer SRX is the below-average snow and ice performance.
6. Bridgestone Dueler H/L Alenza Plus
The Dueler Alenza Plus is one of the most popular touring tires for Ford F150. It is specifically designed for F150 owners who won’t tow very big trailers or haul very heavy loads with their truck, which may be limiting to some people. However, it is also better than highway tires on the road when the truck is not loaded. Responsiveness is excellent, while grip and traction are best-in-class both on dry and wet surfaces.
The Dueler is also one of the quietest and most comfortable tires for Ford F150 right now, especially when compared to highway tires. The 80,000-mile treadwear warranty is also the best you can get on tires that will suit the Ford F-150, which is an excellent result. That said, we would’ve liked better snow traction in the winter.
Best Street/Sport Tires for Ford F150
7. Kumho Ecsta STX KL12
If you own a V8 or V6 EcoBoost version of the F-150, then the Ecsta STX KL12 is a great buy. Designed to offer an elevated driving experience, the Korean Street/Sport tire offers extremely high levels of grip and traction. It is also one of the most responsive tires in the category, making for a much more involving driving experience. Thanks to the directional tread design, wet traction and grip are also outstanding, as well as snow traction.
The Kumho Ecsta STX KL12 is very comfortable over bumps, which is good, but some drivers may not like the excessive noise on the highway. Also, this tire doesn’t come with a treadwear warranty, something that is not uncommon in this category but still demanded by tire buyers.
8. Yokohama Parada Spec X
The Parada Spec X is another excellent Street/Sport tire for F-150 owners that want to drive faster through the bends. The Japanese competitor is one of the most responsive truck tires right now, great news for those that enjoy carving the bends. Grip and traction are also very high, both on dry and wet surfaces, while braking is second to none.
Even though the Parada Spec X is a Street/Sport tire, it is very comfortable and quiet on the road. That said, light snow traction is worse than the best tires in this category. Also, Yokohama doesn’t offer any treadwear warranty.
Best All-Terrain Tires for Ford F150
9. BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2
The most popular all-terrain tire on the market right now, the BF Goodrich KO2, offers everything you want in such a tire. It is probably the best for off-roading, offering high levels of traction on dirt, gravel, rocks, sand, and mud. The KO2 is also very strong and durable thanks to the Sidewall Armor, and it’s covered by 50,000-mile treadwear warranty.
The BF Goodrich KO2 is very good on the road as well. Handling is very good, as is high-speed stability, both on dry and wet surfaces. Thanks to the 3PMSF rating, the KO2 works in light of snow as well. However, while ride quality is good, there’s a lot of road noise on the highway.
Best Winter Tires for Ford F150
10. Michelin Latitude X-Ice Xi2
Even though on several occasions we’ve said that some all-season tires offer good traction in light snow, for a completely safe and reliable driving experience, there is no better choice than winter tires. The best winter tire for Ford F-150 right now is the Michelin Latitude X-Ice Xi2. It offers the best snow traction of any other winter truck tire, and it handles ice with ease as well. Handling is excellent in dry and wet conditions as well, and there’s not much road noise, unlike most winter tires. The Latitude X-Ice Xi2 even comes with a 40,000-mile treadwear warranty, better than any other winter tire. That said, it is also the most expensive one.
As you can see from our list of the best tires, we only included tires from reputable manufacturers. The reasoning here is simple – cheap tires might even be unsafe to drive, especially in wet conditions. Also, tires from reputable manufacturers last a lot longer, which means that they might be cheaper in the long run. In other words, even if you didn’t find the tire, you need on our list, at least choose a set from manufacturer you trust.