Walmart is a great place for shopping. You can buy home and garden stuff there, clothing, technology, toys, video games, etc. Hell, you can even purchase tires from Walmart, but should you? See, unlike clothing or furniture, tires are an important safety feature. With bad tires, you’re risking your safety, but also the lives of other traffic participants. Meanwhile, lower-quality clothing means that you’d probably need to change it sooner.
This brings me to Crosswind, a new-ish tire brand that you can get at Walmart. As expected, the tires are very cheap, almost three times less than the premium competition from Bridgestone and Michelin. In my experience thus far, I would almost never purchase tires that are that cheap. The extremely low price usually means low-quality materials and almost no research or testing. It also means that your vehicle might be unsafe for driving, especially on wet or snowy surfaces.
But is Crosswind different than the usual crop of cheap tires? Well, before I start delving into its range, let me tell you about the company. Or the brand, since it operates under Linglong Tire, a Chinese tire company. It’s actually among the five largest tiremakers in Mainland China, but honestly, that doesn’t mean much. China still lags behind in tire manufacturing, especially in quality and safety.
A quick web search will show you that Linglong Tires has a very bad reputation. When its tires first arrived at the North-American market, Consumer Reports tested them against the usual competition. In the tests, Linglong tires required an extra 22 feet to stop from 50 mph compared to the class average. Frankly, that’s a lot. And the difference will be even larger at 70mph. It might be the difference between hitting the car in front of escaping unscathed.
Now, I can’t claim this for sure, but I suspect Linglong launched the Crosswind brand to cover for the shortcomings. The Chinese company claims that Crosswind is the “premium brand” of tires it produces, but there is nothing premium about a product that’s only a fraction of the price of real premium tires.
I’m all about budget tires since I understand not everybody has deep pockets. However, as I already said, dirt cheap tires usually equal bad tires. And, on this website, at least, safety is always the priority. Thus, when covering Crosswind’s tire range, we’ll view the products from that prism.
- Crosswind Tire Range of 2021
- 1. Crosswind HP010 & HP010 Plus: Passenger All-Season Tire
- 2. Crosswind Ecotouring: Touring All-Season Tire
- 3. Crosswind All-Season UHP: Ultra-High-Performance All-Season Tire
- 4. Crosswind 4x4 HP: All-Season Crossover/SUV Tire
- 5. Crosswind H/T: Highway Tire
- 6. Crosswind A/T: All-Terrain Tire
- 7. Crosswind M/T: Mud-Terrain Off-Road Tire
- Crosswind Tires Review: Buying Guide
Crosswind Tire Range of 2021
Crosswind has a pretty comprehensive tire portfolio for a cheap brand. With its range, it covers most vehicles on the market, especially those with smaller wheels. Owners of vehicles with very large wheels might want to look elsewhere, though.
1. Crosswind HP010 & HP010 Plus: Passenger All-Season Tire
The HP010 and HP010 Plus are Crosswind’s bread-and-butter tires. They have an all-season tread compound and a pretty regular tread pattern. Crosswind offers sizes that fit compact cars, mid-size sedans, minivans, coupes, crossovers, and even some SUVs.
The company doesn’t provide information about the HP010 as other tire makers do. Thus, I can’t say what type of tread compound it has. However, I know that it won’t stick to the road like premium tires. Not even close, guys (and girls)!
The stopping distances are longer, the cornering grip is pretty low, and high-speed stability is abysmal. Things become even worse in wet conditions, where the HP010 and HP010 Plus can’t hold a candle to the more expensive competition. In addition, the snow traction is way behind the more expensive competition.
Furthermore, the 45,000-mile treadwear warranty is much lower than those tires, meaning you’ll have to replace them more regularly.
2. Crosswind Ecotouring: Touring All-Season Tire
The Ecotouring is a similar tire to the HP010 and HP010 Plus, although more focused on better fuel consumption. It also features an all-season tread compound, but no words on whether it has silica in it, which is important for wet and snow traction.
Overall, you shouldn’t expect miracles. The Crosswind Ecotouring drives reasonably well at urban speeds, but as soon as you hit the highway, stability decreases significantly. Again, stopping distances are longer, especially on wet roads, and cornering grip is abysmal. Hey, but at least it improves fuel economy!
Nonetheless, the Ecotouring comes with a longer 55,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is closer to tires from premium brands.
3. Crosswind All-Season UHP: Ultra-High-Performance All-Season Tire
The Crosswind All-Season UHP is the company’s highest-performing tire. It also comes in Y, W, and V-rated speed ratings, which makes it usable on sportier mid-size sedans, coupes, crossovers, and SUVs.
When compared to other tires from the company, the UHP provides the highest grip in the corners. It is also responsive enough to give you a good driving experience. However, it’s still far from other ultra-high-performance tires. It’s especially worse on snowy surfaces, where it doesn’t provide usable traction.
Anyway, the UHP at least comes with a 40,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is good for the price and category.
4. Crosswind 4x4 HP: All-Season Crossover/SUV Tire
The Crosswind 4x4 UHP is a touring tire designed primarily for SUVs and crossovers. It’s extremely cheap, especially in the larger sizes. It comes with a 40,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is way below the premium competition.
In terms of performance, you really shouldn’t expect miracles. It’s good for daily driving, but don’t expect grip and traction on the level of premium tires. The difference is especially large on wet and snowy roads, where I found the stopping distances are too long.
That said, the 4x4 HP is pretty comfortable and quiet, despite its lower price point. Other than that, though, nothing spectacular.
5. Crosswind H/T: Highway Tire
The Crosswind H/T is designed for larger SUVs and trucks that can haul and tow heavier items. What I found about this tire is that it has zig-zag sipes, which improve traction on snowy and wet conditions slightly. Still not great, though.
Performance on dry roads is a mixed bag. The tire is stable enough on the highway but doesn’t react quickly to the driver’s inputs. It also loses traction and grip quickly. On the positive side, it comes with a 50,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is good for a cheap all-season highway tire.
6. Crosswind A/T: All-Terrain Tire
Crosswind’s all-terrain tire has a more aggressive tread pattern that improves snow traction significantly, and it also helps with hydroplaning resistance. It also works for off-roading, but only on hardpacked surfaces. Deep mud and large rocks can still be an issue.
On the highway, stability is fine, but traction and grip are still much lower than the premium competition. The stopping distances are longer, too. Fortunately, the tire comes with a 50,000-mile treadwear warranty, which is excellent for the price. Nonetheless, I can’t confirm how long the Crosswind A/T will really last.
7. Crosswind M/T: Mud-Terrain Off-Road Tire
The M/T has the most aggressive tread pattern of any Crosswind tire, but of course, it has, since it’s a mud-terrain tire. I was actually surprised at the grip in mud and over large rocks, making it a good option for off-roading. Snow traction is excellent, too.
However, on-road performance is way below the more expensive competition and comparable to other cheap brands. Cornering grip is abysmal, both on dry and wet roads, and the stopping distances are long. Fortunately, the Crosswind M/T is at least quiet for a mud-terrain tire. It also comes with a pretty good 40,000-mile treadwear warranty.
Crosswind Tires Review: Buying Guide
Linglong, Crosswind’s father company, has its own testing facilities and research and development team. However, the company lacks experience, which shows in its products.
Sure, the tires are cheap, but they perform just like you’d expect from such products. In other words, you won’t get premium-level performance here, sorry.
1. Crosswind Tires Positive Aspects
- Comfortable and quiet
Crosswind’s tires are very quiet and comfortable, especially for the price. They are not on the level of the premium competition, sure, but they are closer than you would imagine.
- Treadwear warranties
Each Crosswind tire comes with a treadwear warranty, which is a nice thing to have, especially at that price. However, although not many owners reviewed these tires online, treadlife is definitely shorter than the premium competition.
2. Crosswind Tires Negative Aspects
- Worse traction and grip than higher-priced tires
There is no escaping the fact that Crosswind tires simply don’t perform as modern tires should. They might be fine for driving in urban scenarios, but even then, the longer stopping distances are clearly evident.
Moreover, the cornering grip is lower, meaning you can’t drive enthusiastically, and the high-speed stability is only average.
Things are even worse in wet conditions, where Crosswind’s tires lag behind the competition significantly.
- Won’t last very long
If you change a regular tire from a reputable manufacturer every four years, then you would need to change Crosswind’s every two years. What this means is that these tires will become more expensive as you use them, simply because you’ll need to replace them more frequently.
While there are some companies that produce good (although not great) cheap tires, Crosswind is not one of them. It still lacks in the safety department, meaning it doesn’t stick to the road as a modern tire should. For that reason, it’s hard for me to recommend these tires, even at the dirt-cheap prices, they are offered at Walmart.
Besides, by paying 30-40% more, you can get tires from Sumitomo, General, Kumho, or Cooper, which will perform much better in absolutely every category. They will also last longer and might prove to be cheaper in the long run.