Despite the impending popularity of electric vehicles, the Toyota Prius remains the best hybrid vehicle you can buy. The Prius became popular not because it has agile and sporty reflexes. In fact, the Prius is the exact opposite of what a responsive car should be.
But despite the inherent lack in athleticism or driving feel – even in the newer generation of Prius models including the Prius C and Prime – it didn’t deter buyers from choosing the Prius over an equivalent Corolla or Yaris despite the higher price.
The 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback starts at $20,140 while the Corolla Hybrid retails from $22,950. On the other hand, the 2019 Toyota Prius starts at $23,770. And this is from a car that is less involving than the Yaris and Corolla Hatchback.
The Toyota Prius was never conceived to be an athlete. What made it really good is the fuel savings. No matter what you do (even in endless bumper-to-bumper gridlock), you’ll be hard-pressed not to achieve 50 mpg in the Prius. And considering Toyota’s penchant for bulletproof reliability and safety, the Prius makes a lot of sense for the daily commute.
The Prius is so reliable that only two things need your attention constantly: the condition of the engine oil and the tires. The Toyota Prius is sensitive to tire changes. If you happen to choose the wrong set of tires, you’ll end up with tons of tire roar, a bumpy ride, and mediocre wet performance.
Hybrid vehicles are quieter than a conventional car. Hybrids are at their best when traversing over tight city streets. This means dealing with potholes and road irregularities on a daily basis. The best tires for the Toyota Prius should be comfortable, quiet, and provide the necessary traction in changing weather conditions.
But with tons of choices in the market, it’s easier to be swayed into choosing the lowest bidder. After all, the Toyota Prius is an economical car. So why choose an expensive tire, right?
Wrong! In order to make it simple, we created a list of the best tires for the Toyota Prius. We included OEM brands and cheaper alternatives to make it more interesting.
However, keep in mind that swapping from OEM to cheaper tires is not without consequence. But if you play your cards right, you’ll have a smooth riding and quiet hybrid without paying too much money in the process.
The Best OEM Tires for Toyota Prius
1. Goodyear Assurance Fuel Max
The Goodyear Assurance Fuel Max is our first choice. In the realm of OEM tires, the Assurance Fuel Max is an exact match to the capabilities of the Toyota Prius. In fact, it offers more of everything. It has better looks, stronger traction, and a low rolling resistance tread compound to deliver magnificent fuel economy.
Goodyear claims the Assurance Fuel Max is their best tire for enhanced fuel savings. When it comes to choosing tires for the Prius, fuel economy or low rolling resistance should be your top priority. Goodyear utilized a fuel-saving tread compound that saves up to 2,600-miles worth of gas over the life of four Assurance Fuel Max tires. That’s a bold claim, but the tire lives up to the hype.
The tread design in this tire is very interesting. If you look closely, you’ll see the inboard and outboard sections of the tire have dry tread zones, while the center section is the wet tread zone with dual aquachannel grooves. The former utilizes stiffer shoulder blocks to improve handling, stability, and cornering. The latter works in unison with the circumferential shoulder grooves to maintain consistent traction in wet and snowy roads.
Another unique feature is the continuous notched center rib. It provides accurate steering feel and better high-speed stability while enhancing grip. All of the combined features enable the Goodyear Assurance Fuel Max to maintain traction in all-weather driving.
Best of all, this tire won’t cost an arm and a leg. In fact, a set of 15-inch tires will only cost around $430, which equates to roughly $108 each. That’s not a bad price to pay for a quality set of all-season tires.
2. Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack
The Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack is a grand touring all-season tire for luxury cars, sport-luxury sedans, and hybrid vehicles. Bridgestone went to extreme lengths to provide a tire that offers boundless comfort and a silent ride without compromising all-season traction and tire wear.
It all starts with an innovative all-season tread compound. The Turanza QuietTrack has a sporty asymmetric tread pattern designed using Bridgestone’s QuietTrack technology. See those in-groove quiet tracks and non-chamfered shoulder slots? Those were designed to optimize the pitch sequencing of the tire as it rolls over the pavement. This alone allows the tire to roll silently even on rougher patches of tarmac.
But the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack is not just about quietness or serenity. Bridgestone utilized the ComfortCruise Technology Package to deliver a supremely comfortable ride. The tire comes with a rounded footprint and contact patch. This reduces vibration and shock. The same rounded profile of the tire helps it to maintain consistent contact on the road even in the presence of rain, slush, sand, dirt, an even snow.
Talking about snow, the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack is not an equivalent to a proper set of snow tires. However, the interlocking grooves and full depth tread pattern allows the tire to grip over mild snow.
When it comes to year-round comfort, ride silence, and all-weather grip, it’s hard to beat the Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack. And at $119 each, it’s not as expensive, either.
3. Michelin Premier A/S
The Michelin Premier A/S offers year-round security starting at $118 each. Compared to a comparable set of all-season tires, the Michelin Premier A/S is renowned for providing best-in-class braking on wet roads even if the tire is worn.
Yes, you read that right. But how is it possible? It all boils down to Michelin’s EverGrip technology. The tire comes with expanding rain grooves that widen as the tread wears off. The tire also comes with emerging grooves that open to consistently maintain traction year-in and year-out. Michelin utilized a proprietary blend of silica and sunflower oil in the tread compound. This helps to maintain the pliability of the rubber when exposed to extreme hot or cold.
The tire has a symmetric tread design with a continuous center rib and notched intermediate ribs. Michelin’s Comfort Control Technology ensures a quiet, comfortable, and smooth ride. The hi-tech rubber compound is also engineered for longer wear. In fact, Michelin is offering the Premier A/S with a solid 6-years/60,000-miles tread life warranty.
The Michelin Premier A/S remains one of the best OEM tires for the Toyota Prius. It may command a slightly higher price tag, but you get unparalleled peace of mind and year-round comfort.
Overall, not bad. We particularly like Michelin tires even if they usually come with higher prices. When it comes to the best quality tires, you get what you pay for.
4. Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Plus
The Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Plus is more than just an eco-tire. And while Bridgestone made sure to deliver more miles per gallon combined with all-season traction, it also manages to deliver a comfortable ride with longer wear.
But the Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Plus is not cheap. It starts at around $110 each or $440 per set. And like we said, you usually get what you pay for in a new set of expensive OEM tires.
For starters, the Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Plus is lighter, has lower rolling resistance, and has reduced CO2 emissions compared to a conventional touring tire. In order to do this while still maintaining all-season traction and grip, Bridgestone utilized an enhanced all-season tread compound with Nano-Pro Tech. This minimizes energy loss and rolling resistance while providing relentless wet, dry, and snow traction. Of course, the Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Plus is only good for mild snowy applications. And while it performs quite well over wet or slushy roads, you need a proper set of snow tires when driving over medium or deep snow.
What’s more, the Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Plus has a sporty-looking symmetric tread design. The tire also comes with intermediate ribs, notched shoulders, and independent center blocks to enhance all-weather traction.
The Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Plus is one of the best OEM tires for the Toyota Prius. It also comes with a 5-year/70,000-mile tread life warranty for added peace of mind.
5. Firestone Weathergrip
The Firestone WeatherGrip is the wildcard in this list of best Prius tires. Why? Because it offers rugged performance and looks while still having the comfort and ride silence of a touring tire. In fact, the Firestone Weathergrip is a grand touring all-season tire designed for comfort, all-weather grip, and longer wear.
It’s hard to believe such claims if the tire has a rugged directional tread design. But the Firestone Weathergrip is more capable than an ordinary set of touring tires. For starters, this tire is rated with the three-peak mountain snowflake symbol (3PMSF). This means better performance in icy conditions or mild snow.
But despite this, the tire has enough features to make it a capable high-miler. The all-season tread compound is molded into a rounded tire footprint for better comfort and a fuss-free ride. The tire has full-depth grooves and open shoulder slots to further enhance traction over wet, icy, slushy, or snowy roads.
The Firestone Weathergrip even comes with chamfered shoulder blocks to provide more biting edges over demanding road conditions. The high-density zigzag sipes with interlocking grooves further enhance performance in wet, muddy, or snowy pavement.
If you live in places with extreme weather changes, you need a rugged set of tires to handle the task. The Firestone Weathergrip offers all these and more starting at $98 each. It also comes with a 5-years/65,000-miles tread life warranty.
6. Uniroyal Tiger Paw Touring
Don’t let the bland symmetric tread design fool you. Uniroyal’s Tiger Paw Touring is an all-season grand touring tire. It blends high levels of luxurious comfort, road silence, and all-weather traction in an H or V –speed rated tire.
The tire is constructed using an all-season tread compound. The tire comes with a continuous center rib to deliver better high-speed stability and accurate steering feel. In the meantime, the conservative tread pattern is designed to provide an eerily quiet ride, even at higher speeds. The tire comes with wider circumferential grooves, lateral notches, and intermediate ribs in the shoulders. This effectively dissipates water to maintain strong traction and grip when traveling over wet, snowy, or icy pavement. Further enhancing performance and braking on wet roads are the plethora of zigzag sipes and independent tread blocks.
There’s more good news. The Uniroyal Tiger Paw Touring starts at under $95 each. This brings it near the budget tire category. If you’re concerned about early wear, Uniroyal will wipe away your fears with a stellar 6-years/70,000-miles tread life warranty.
The Best Cheap Tires for Toyota Prius
If the tires in the above list are too expensive for your liking, here is a short list of the best cheap tires for the Toyota Prius.
We decided to avoid dirt-cheap tires and went for more familiar name brands in the tire industry with longer warranties. Since the Toyota Prius is a hybrid, we also considered ride silence and comfort in choosing the best cheap tires.
1. Yokohama Avid Ascend GT
The Yokohama Avid Ascend is a grand touring all-season tire. With that being said, it’s safe to assume this tire is engineered for comfort and longer wear. In truth, it delivers on the promise of all-weather traction and lasting comfort. This tire is basically a steal at $88 each. This means you can have a brand new set of four tires for around $355.
Yokohama utilized a unique TriBLEND Compound Technology for the Avid Ascend GT. The compound is infused with high levels of silica and low-Tg polymers. This enables the tire to deliver tenacious grip over extreme hot or cold weather conditions.
All-season tires are supposed to perform well over light snow or ice. The Yokohama Avid Ascend GT is one fine example. The tire is infused with triple 3D sipes and notched tread blocks that act as claws when driving over slippery or loose roads. The asymmetric tread profile is computer-optimized for a stable contact patch. This allows the tire to deliver perfect traction and more even wear despite changing weather conditions.
Best of all, the Yokohama Avid Ascend is an eco-tire with the BluEarth symbol. This means a lighter construction, lower rolling resistance, and less CO2 emissions over the life of the rubber.
2. Goodyear Eagle LS2
First, the good news. The Goodyear Eagle LS2 starts at around $89 each. This is Goodyear’s budget alternative for the Toyota Prius. The Eagle LS2 is a grand touring all-season tire. It is engineered for longer wear, relentless comfort, and all-weather traction.
The Goodyear Eagle LS2 is equipped with a symmetric tread design. The computer-optimized independent tread blocks are designed to lower the tread noise for a quieter ride. It also comes with wider circumferential channels to relieve the contact patch of water, snow, or slush. The various sipes on the treads of the tire ensure relentless traction over light snow, mud, or loose surfaces.
If all you need is a decent set of all-season tires in your Toyota Prius, it’s hard to go wrong with the Goodyear Eagle LS2.
3. BF Goodrich Advantage T/A Sport
If the OEM list has a wildcard, the budget list should have one as well. With that being said, the BF Goodrich Advantage T/A Sport is our wildcard choice in the budget category. It has a rugged symmetrical tread design, but it’s actually a grand touring tire for all-season driving.
And you know how grand touring tires are supposed to be. They are better than ordinary touring tires and deliver more comfort with longer wear. The BF Goodrich Advantage T/A Sport is all that and more. In fact, it’s a sportier tire that manages to deliver better handling and agility.
The tire comes with a continuous center rib to deliver better steering feel and high-speed stability. The optimized tire footprint ensures confident handling, lesser tire noise, and a smooth ride. The tire also has two circumferential grooves and 3D active sipe technology that evacuates water more efficiently to maintain a solid grip over wet, snowy, or icy roads.
And the best part is the price. The BF Goodrich Advantage T/A Sport starts at around $90 each. It’s a bit more expensive than the Yokohama and Goodyear, but it offers sportier handling and more rugged capabilities. This tire is the perfect budget choice if you live in places with demanding weather conditions. What’s more, this tire is accompanied by a solid 6-years/60,000-mile tread life warranty.
4. Kumho Ecsta LX Platinum
The Kumho Ecsta LX Platinum is one of the best grand touring tires in both the OEM and budget category. It starts at around $83 each but has the capabilities of a more expensive tire brand. It also comes with a sterling 6-years/50,000-miles tread life warranty if you’re concerned about wear issues.
The great thing about this tire is the sporty asymmetric tread design. If you look closely, the tire actually has three sipe designs. The intermediate tread blocks and outer shoulders have deep sipes with stress relief dimples. This improves straight-line stability and traction over the wet and snowy pavement. The middle clocks have straight sipes to improve traction in dry roads. The inner shoulder blocks have waffle sipes to improve stability and traction in all-season driving.
And since the Kumho Ecsta LX Platinum is a grand touring tire, you can also expect longer wear, lasting comfort, and a silent ride.
5. Kumho Solus TA31
The Kumho Solus TA31 is the king of affordable tires for the Toyota Prius. Similar to the Ecsta LX Platinum, the Solus TA31 is a grand touring all-season tire. However, it has a more conservative five-rib symmetric tread design, but this doesn’t mean it’s less capable than the Ecsta LX Platinum.
Think of it this way: the Ecsta LX Platinum is for sportier drivers. If you don’t know what sporty means, the Kumho Solus TA31 is the best choice for you. If the low $75 base price is not enough to sway you, then nothing will.
But the Kumho Solus TA31 is not only cheap. It’s a comfortable tire that blends all-season traction, longer wear, and a comfortable ride. In fact, this is the OEM tire choice for the Kia Soul and Chrysler 200 among many others.
The tire has a continuous center rib with notched intermediate ribs. This design provides sharper handling, lower wear, and year-round stability. The tire also comes with a bevy of engineered sipes for better traction over wet, snowy, or loose pavement.
Keep in mind that modern hybrids like the Toyota Prius are sensitive to tire changes. The best tires for the Toyota Prius are all-season touring eco-tires. We’re hoping our list of the best OEM and cheap tires will help you choose the right tires for any type of budget.