Top 10 Best Tires for Subaru Impreza: Recommendations & Reviews

Ever since Subaru introduced the first Impreza to the world in the 90s’, the sedan became synonymous with reliability, practicality, and outstanding driving dynamics. See, unlike other compact sedans, the Impreza comes exclusively with a symmetrical all-wheel-drive system. This gives the car much better handling and stability, especially on slippery surfaces.

The decision to go all-wheel-drive captured the imagination of many enthusiast drivers around the world. WRX and STi versions of the Impreza are still hugely popular in the rally community. Luckily, most of the qualities of the sporty versions are transferred to the standard cars. The Impreza is the only compact car in its class that can drive excellently over snow, ice, and slush, but also gravel and dirt.

That being said, if you want to fully explore the characteristics of your Impreza, you will need a good set of tires. Without good Subaru Impreza tires, the car won’t be able to put the power to the ground as it should. More importantly, the grip in the corners will be worse, which might lead to worse stability and longer braking distances.

Furthermore, Subaru Impreza tires should also be comfortable. Standard models of the car are still geared towards family buyers, not an enthusiast. Having a set of tires that will provide the passengers with plush ride quality and quiet rolling is certainly something that buyers would want. Finally, Subaru Impreza owners would certainly appreciate it if the tires last very long. Nobody wants to replace tires too soon simply because it costs a lot of money.

The thing is, there is no single tire in this world that will satisfy all the needs of drivers. There will always be a compromise in something. This means that when purchasing tires, you must decide where you can compromise and where you will not.

Luckily, you are just in the right place to learn about those compromises. In this article, we will cover every type of tire that we deem suitable for the Subaru Impreza. You can read a short review on every product in our list of the 10 best tires for Subaru Impreza and find out all the pros and cons.

Moreover, the list is divided into different categories. Every category covers a different type of driver and climates, so read thoroughly before you make the final decision. If you are still not entirely convinced, you can read our buying guide about Subaru tires. In that guide, we will go into detail and explain the characteristics of each tire type.

Let’s dig in and find the best set of Subaru Impreza tires for you! Also, make sure to check the Subaru Impreza tire size before purchasing a new tire.

1. Michelin Defender T+H

Best All-Season Touring Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The Defender T+H is one of the most dependable Subaru tires you can buy today. Apart from its price, which is higher than almost every competitor, the Defender T+H is almost without a fault.

On the road, Michelin’s best-seller provides excellent performance throughout. The tire is very responsive for a touring model, has very high levels of grip and traction, and very good highway stability. The Defender T+H works outstandingly well on wet surfaces as well and is even usable over light snow.

Furthermore, like most Michelin tires, the ride is very comfortable on uneven surfaces, and there is no noise on the highway. Finally, Michelin provides an 80,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is an outstanding result.

Pros

  • Outstanding responsiveness
  • Excellent handling and braking in dry and wet conditions
  • Supremely quiet and comfortable
  • Long-lasting treadlife
  • 80,000-mile treadwear warranty

Cons

  • Expensive

2. Goodyear Assurance MaxLife

Best All-Season Touring Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The Goodyear Assurance MaxLife is all about durability. Goodyear provides an outstanding 85,000-mile treadwear warranty without skimping on other features.

The tire is very responsive on the street, almost on the level of the Defender T+H. Grip and traction are very good as well, while highway stability is excellent. The Assurance MaxLife even performs well on wet surfaces. However, snow traction isn’t the best – you will need a proper set of winter tires for snow and ice.

On the positive side, Subaru Impreza owners will be pleased by the outstanding quietness of the Assurance MaxLife and the excellent ride quality.

Pros

  • Outstanding treadlife
  • Excellent responsiveness
  • Very good ride quality
  • Quiet on the highway
  • Good wet traction

Cons

  • Snow traction and braking

3. Cooper CS5 Grand Touring

Best All-Season Touring Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The CS5 Grand Touring is a more budget-oriented touring alternative for owners of older Impreza’s. When it comes to performance, Cooper’s tire can’t beat the premium competition, but it comes very close.

On the road, the CS5 Grand Touring isn’t as responsive as the best premium tires, but that’s not something that the average Impreza driver will notice. More importantly, the tire is completely safe for driving over dry and wet surfaces.

Cooper even managed to build a supremely comfortable and quiet tire and a very durable one at that. The manufacturer provides an 80,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is outstanding for the price.

That said, Impreza drivers that live in northern areas might look elsewhere – the CS5 Grand Touring isn’t at its best over snow or ice.

Pros

  • Supremely quiet and comfortable
  • Durable tread compound
  • 80,000-mile treadwear warranty
  • Fair pricing
  • Safe on dry and wet surfaces

Cons

  • Could be a tad more responsive
  • Light snow traction is only average

4. Bridgestone Turanza QuietTrack

Best Grand-Touring Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

Right now, no other grand-touring tire can compete with the comfort levels of the Turanza QuietTrack. Thanks to the ComfortCruise Technology Package, Bridgestone’s newest grand-touring tire simply glides over small and large imperfections on the road. On top of that, the tire is extremely quiet, even at very high velocities.

Luckily, Bridgestone didn’t skimp on performance. The Turanza is one of the most responsive tires in its category. It also offers very high levels of grip and traction and outstanding highway stability. Bridgestone managed to make the Turanza work outstandingly well on wet and snowy surfaces.

Finally, the company provides an 80,000-mile treadwear warranty, a number that beats any other competitor in the category.

Pros

  • Outstanding handling performance
  • Excellent on wet pavement
  • Works in light snow
  • Supremely quiet and comfortable
  • Long-lasting treadlife covered by 80,000-mile warranty

Cons

  • A tad expensive

5. Continental PureContact LS

Best Grand-Touring Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

Right now, the PureContact LS’s are the best tires for Subaru Impreza owners that live in areas with frequent rains. Thanks to the +Silane additives and sweeping grooves combine with deep, circumferential channels, the PureContact LS is the best grand-touring tire for wet conditions right now.

Dry handling is exceptional as well, on the level of the best in the category. The PureContact LS provides sporty steering feel and responsive handling, as well as high levels of grip and traction. Furthermore, the ComfortRide Technology takes care of comfort – this is a very quiet and smooth tire.

Lastly, the PureContact LS comes with a 70,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is excellent, but not as impressive as the Turanza QuietTrack.

Pros

  • Outstanding wet performance
  • Excellent handling on a dry tarmac
  • Plush ride
  • Quiet on the highway
  • Very good on snow

Cons

  • Slightly lower treadwear warranty than the best in the category

6. Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+

Best All-Season High-Performance Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 is the best tire for drivers that want sporty handling throughout the year. It is a real joy to drive on a set of these tires. They are supremely responsive, offer class-leading grip and traction, and very strong braking.

Unlike many all-season ultra-high-performance tires, the Michelin works excellently on wet surfaces, and even over light snow. Michelin even provides an excellent 45,000-mile treadwear warranty.

That said, the Pilot Sport A/S 3 is expensive, but that’s expected from such a good tire.

Pros

  • Best-in-class responsiveness
  • Class-leading grip, traction, and braking
  • Excellent wet traction and braking
  • 45,000-mile treadwear warranty
  • Works in light snow

Cons

  • Expensive

7. Bridgestone Potenza RE980AS

Best All-Season High-Performance Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The Bridgestone Potenza RE980AS is so closely matched to the Pilot Sport A/S 3 that only precise instruments can show the slight differences.

On the road, the Potenza is supremely responsive and direct. The grip and traction levels are also on a very high level, while braking is top-notch. Wet performance is among the best in the category, and the Potenza is even usable over light snow.

The Potenza RE980AS is surprisingly quiet for an ultra-high-performance tire as well, but sadly the ride quality is a bit choppy on harsh surfaces.

Pros

  • Best-in-class handling
  • Outstanding in wet conditions
  • Quiet for a fast tire
  • Excellent treadlife;

Cons

  • Ride quality could be better

8. Michelin Pilot Sport 4S

Best Summer High-Performance Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The best tires for Subaru Impreza owners that live in areas with hot climates are the Pilot Sport 4S’s. This is the most popular tire within the enthusiast community right now and for a good reason.

The responsiveness of the 4S is simply astonishing, better than any other tire we tested. Grip and traction levels are outstanding as well, both over dry and wet surfaces. High-speed stability is another area where the Pilot Sport 4S sets new standards.

Finally, Michelin even offers a 30,000-mile treadwear warranty on the product, which is unheard for a max-performance summer tire.

Pros

  • Outstanding handling ability
  • Exceptional grip and traction
  • Excellent high-speed stability
  • Very good wet traction and braking
  • Excellent 30,000-mile treadwear warranty

Cons

  • Pricey

9. Falken Azenis FK510

Best Summer High-Performance Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The Falken Azenis FK510 is a nice budget-oriented alternative to the Pilot Sport 4S. While the Falken can’t compete directly with the Michelin, it’s still an amazing tire in its own right.

Your Subaru Impreza will handle outstandingly well with a set of these tires. Responsiveness is top-notch, grip, and traction levels are outstanding, while highway stability is excellent. The Azenis FK510 even works on wet surfaces.

Unlike many summer ultra-high-performance tires, Falken’s model is very quiet, but the ride is still harsher than we would’ve liked.

Pros

  • Amazing handling abilities
  • High levels of grip and traction
  • Excellent wet handling
  • Very quiet

Cons

  • The ride is a bit harsh

10. Michelin X-Ice Xi3

Best Winter Tires for Subaru Impreza

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza

The Subaru Impreza and its symmetrical all-wheel-drive system is a great vehicle for snowy weather. Paired with the Michelin X-Ice Xi3 tires, it becomes an excellent snow car.

Michelin’s winter tire offers a blend of qualities that’s hard to beat. It provides consistent performance on snow, ice, and slush, both in terms of braking and traction. If we are nitpicking, the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 brakes slightly better on snow and ice, but the difference is very small.

More importantly, Michelin provides a 40,000-mile treadwear warranty, an outstanding result for a winter tire.

Pros

  • Very good snow and ice traction
  • Excellent dry and wet handling
  • Supreme 40,000-mile treadwear warranty

Cons

  • Slightly worse snow braking than the best winter tires, but we’re nitpicking really

Best Tires for Subaru Impreza: Buyer's Guide

1. Touring Tires are the Best Choice for a Comfortable and Safe Everyday Driving

Despite the fact that the Impreza is mainly known for the WRX versions, the standard models are actually sold in much bigger numbers. People that buy these vehicles do that largely for the fuel efficiency, comfort, and reliability they provide.

Touring tires share almost the same qualities with standard Impreza models. That’s why we are confident that a good set of touring tires will give you everything you need for normal driving. And the best thing about these tires is that they are much cheaper than other tire types. Sure, premium models will still cost significantly, but when compared to other tires, they are cheaper.

Despite the lower price point, touring tires last for a very long time. Even some budget-oriented alternatives have treadwear warranties of over 70,000-miles, which is 5-6 years of carefree driving. Some companies even offer up to 90,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is amazing. The outstanding treadlife of touring versions is also important when it comes to safety – the tires will have excellent wet traction 4-5 years after you bought them.

When it comes to overall performance, modern touring tires are good enough for normal street and highway driving. They aren’t overly responsive, but still good enough for the average driver. Moreover, touring tires possess enough traction for brisk acceleration, especially when paired with Impreza’s symmetrical all-wheel drive. Touring tires also provide the driver with ample traction for street driving and short braking distances. The best thing about them is that they work very well on wet surfaces, both in light and heavy rain.

That said, while the average driver might never notice that, touring tires aren’t very good for spirited driving. Push them harder in the corners, and they will immediately lose grip. Put them on a more powerful WRX version of the Impreza and they will lack proper traction. Also, enthusiast drivers will not be impressed by the unresponsive nature of these products. Touring tires are simply not designed for very fast and aggressive driving. They are safe, don’t get us wrong, but won’t cut the mustard for enthusiast drivers.

Luckily, what touring tires don’t offer performance-wise, they offer in terms of comfort. Thanks to the larger and softer sidewalls, touring tires don’t transfer vibrations from the road to the cabin. Most touring tires are also designed to be very quiet – the best ones are almost inaudible on the highway! With a set of touring Subaru Impreza tires, your next road trip will be as comfortable as it gets.

Considering the lower price and comfort-oriented performance, we recommend touring tires for older Impreza models. You can install them even on the newest car, but don’t expect exhilarating performance.

2. Grand-Touring Tires are a Step Above in Terms of Performance

Grand-touring tires are a variation of touring tires available in higher speed ratings. This means that they are made for faster vehicles, like the new Subaru Impreza, for example.

When it comes to handling and braking, grand-touring tires are a step above touring tires. They are more responsive, have higher traction, more grip in the corners, and stronger braking. Grand-touring tires are much better on the highway as well. Overall, they are a better solution if you mostly drive outside of the city, or if you own a newer and more powerful Impreza.

You won’t lose much in the comfort department with grand-touring tires. They still offer a plush ride quality and quiet rolling. Durability shouldn’t be a concern as well, even though grand-touring tires come with lesser treadwear warranties. The difference is pretty negligible – only 10,000 to 20,000-miles. If you need better stability and performance, we reckon that is a small price to pay.

While we are at it, grand-touring tires are pricier than touring tires, albeit not by much.

3. High-Performance Tires are the Best Choice for Enthusiast Drivers

If you really want to push your Impreza to the limit, installing high-performance tires is a must. These tires are designed specifically to give you more responsive handling and higher levels of grip and traction.

High-performance tires simply love being pushed in the corners. They also react very fast to the driver’s input, brake strongly, and have outstanding traction.

Please note that even performance tires are further classified. High-performance models are actually the worse when it comes to handling. Ultra-high-performance tires are a step above – they can even be used on the track.

Max-performance tires are the most aggressive type – they offer outstanding performance. However, max-performance tires aren’t really useful on wet surfaces, especially in heavy rain.

As much as performance tires are outstanding in terms of performance, they aren’t the happiest choice for comfort. The ride quality of performance tires will be busier, and they will produce more noise on the highway.

On top of that, performance tires won’t last as long as touring or grand-touring tires. Some all-season ultra-high-performance models come with up to 60,000-miles treadwear warranty, but that’s the best-case scenario. If you go the max-performance route, expect no treadwear warranty and treadlife of around 20,000-miles.

Finally, performance tires are also much more expensive and only come in larger sizes.

4. What About the Climate?

Up until now, we talked only about how the performance of the tires, without mentioning climate. Don’t worry, we will explain why choosing tires according to the climate in your area is also very, very important.

See, every tire has a rubber tread compound that’s designed for certain temperatures. For example, when the rubber compound is made for warmer climates, it becomes hard and brittle in freezing weather. When that happens, the tires lose the ability to grip the road well, especially on wet surfaces.

Conversely, tires that are designed for very cold weather become too soft in hot climates. When that happens, the tires become unresponsive, have worse highway stability, and wear much faster.

In order to offer drivers around the world good performance in most weather conditions, every tire manufacturer offers all-season tires. These tires have a rubber compound that works in a wider temperature range. In other words, the rubber doesn’t become too brittle in the winter, nor too soft in the summer. All-season tires also have deep grooves and a lot of siping for better wet and snow traction.

Some drivers view all-season tires as a compromise on both ends, which is true. However, if you want a reliable solution for any climate, all-season tires are the best bet. They work very well in warm and cold temperatures, both on dry and wet surfaces. They will suffer over snowy surfaces, though. If you live in areas with harsh winters, all-season tires won’t cut the mustard.

All-weather tires are a variant of all-season tires made for colder weather. The tread compound in these tires is softer, and they have even deeper grooves and more siping. Thanks to that, they have better snow, ice, and slush traction than all-season tires. That said, they perform slightly worse in warm conditions.

Winter tires, as their name suggests, work outstandingly well in the winter. With these tires, there is no compromise. They have a soft and pliable tread compound, very deep grooves, and a lot of siping. This gives them outstanding traction over snow, ice, and slush. As expected, winter tires don’t perform very well in warm weather.

Summer tires, on the other hand, are designed for the best possible handling in hot conditions. These tires have by far the best grip and traction on dry and damp tarmac. They perform very well in heavy rain, albeit not on the level of all-season tires.

Still, for performance driving, summer tires are outstanding. That’s why most performance tires come with a summer tread compound, especially ultra-high-performance and max-performance models.

Final Words

You probably noticed that we hadn’t included very cheap tires in our Top 10 list of the best Subaru Impreza tires. There is a reason for that. In our testing, extremely cheap tires from manufacturers that just emerged on the scene don’t offer a safe driving experience. They lack proper traction and grip for everyday driving, especially over wet surfaces. On top of that, they won’t last nearly as long and will be more expensive in the long run.

In other words, even if you don’t choose a set of tires from our list, at least purchase tires from reputable manufacturers with a long history of research and development.

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