Off-road driving had a resurgence in recent years, especially among the middle-aged male demographic. And that’s totally understandable – having an off-roader lets you escape from the chaos of the urban jungle. The level of freedom these vehicles provide is simply on another level.
With that said, not a lot of trucks and SUVs can satisfy the need of the real off-road enthusiasts right out from the factory. When you buy a new truck or SUV, it will probably come with a set of highway tires, or with all-terrain tires in a few models.
Real off-road tires aren’t installed from the factory, simply because they don’t work very well on the road. They are loud and uncomfortable, and more importantly, often don’t provide the driver with enough grip and traction for spirited driving.
Nonetheless, real off-road enthusiasts are prepared to accept the disadvantages of these tires in order to get a better experience in the wilderness. That’s why most of them immediately replace the highway tires with off-road or mud-terrain tires, which offer much, much better traction for off-roading.
That said, the best mud-terrain tires can cost a fortune. Fortunately, some manufacturers offer lower-priced alternatives that promise excellent off-road performance, without taking too much toll on the street performance.
One such product is the Federal Couragia MT – a budget-oriented mud-terrain tire that looks aggressively on the outside and promises outstanding off-road traction. The Couragia MT is also available in many sizes, which cover most trucks and SUVs on sale today, but also some past models.
That said, in order to truly appreciate a set of these tires, you’ll need an off-road capable model. In our Federal Couragia MT review, we found that you won’t get much if you put these tires on a crossover or street-oriented SUV.
In other words, we think that this tire is a good fit for drivers of Jeep’s, Toyota 4Runners, FJ Cruisers, and Tacoma’s, Chevy Colorado ZR2, Ford Raptor, Hummer H3, Land Rover Defender, etc.
However, with many options available on the market, this tire will have a hard time emerging as the clear favorite among buyers. That’s why we recommend reading through our detailed Federal Couragia MT review to find out if the qualities of this tire match your expectations.
In this article, you will find out how this tire handles most off-road surfaces, but also how it works on the road in terms of performance and comfort. Additionally, we checked online to see what owners of the product say about its durability and treadlife. In the end, we will give you our definitive conclusion on whether you should buy this tire.
- What are the features of the Federal Couragia MT?
- What are the maintenance indicators?
- Is it good for off-road driving?
- How does it behave on a dry tarmac?
- How is it over wet and slippery roads?
- With that being said, how is it on snowy roads?
- Is it comfortable and refined?
- Should I buy the Federal Couragia MT?
What are the features of the Federal Couragia MT?
According to Federal Tire, the Couragia MT is the “ultimate off-road tire.” We’ve heard that dozen of times by now, without getting the promised performance in the real world. Moreover, the Couragia MT is a low-priced alternative, which often means that the company must’ve cut corners to achieve the price point.
Still, from the look of it, the Couragia MT seems legit. The tread pattern is very aggressive and looks rugged, similar to most of the competition. The deep tread should give the driver better traction in mud, but you have to wait for our off-road part of the review to find out about that.
Furthermore, the Couragia MT features strengthened shoulders that deliver additional traction on slippery surfaces, but also better protection from off-road impact. The off-road traction is further enhanced by the optimized block design, at least according to Federal Tire.
The Couragia MT also has a Sloped Radius Gradient, a feature that makes the whole tread stiffer and encourages better stability. Ultimately, the uniquely designed incremental block edge quickly sheds dirt, sand, and gravel for ultimate off-road traction.
Like most mud-terrain tires, the Federal Couragia MT features a reinforced tread compound. According to the manufacturer, the compound is very durable and resistant to cuts, chips, and abrasions. That said, we couldn’t find any information on puncture resistance, something that most of its competitors offer.
Finally, the Federal offers the Couragia MT in many sizes, starting from 15-inches and all the way up to 24-inches.
What are the maintenance indicators?
The Federal Couragia MT isn’t equipped with maintenance indicators like most of the rivals. That said, experience off-road drivers will now when it’s time to replace the tires, especially on models with such a prominent tread.
The issue with these tires is that they aren’t known for their durability. Drivers that often venture in the wilderness complain about a very soft tread compound and very bad treadlife. Some of them even had the tread peel off from the tire, which is certainly something to be aware of.
We certainly didn’t have the time to test the Couragia MT to its limits when it comes to treadlife. However, we gathered enough information on its durability, which is far from spectacular. More precisely, the Couragia MT seems to be fine in mud, but it’s simply not strong enough for aggressive driving over hardpacked surfaces, such as dirt and gravel, or over rocks.
The only good thing when it comes to treadlife is that the Couragia MT costs much less than comparable mud-terrain tires, so you get what you paid for here.
Is it good for off-road driving?
Well, the main reason why people buy mud-terrain tires is to get the best possible traction for off-roading. The Federal Couragia MT will deliver on that front, no doubt about it. However, the tire is more successful on some surfaces, and less so on others.
In mud, we found that the Couragia MT performs almost as good as the best tires in this category. The deep tread with large blocks delivers excellent digging action, while the softish tread compound helps the tire retain traction easily.
However, Couragia MT isn’t the best choice for driving on hardpacked surfaces. Due to the softer tread compound, the tire lacks responsiveness on dirt and gravel, while also having less than stellar stability. There is traction, for sure, but that won’t help much.
Moreover, we wouldn’t use these tires over large rocks, as the softer tread compound might get damaged easily. Also, the digging action of the aggressive tread pattern isn’t suited to driving in deep sand.
Still, if your off-road driving covers mostly mud or wet surfaces, the Couragia MT will be an excellent choice.
How does it behave on a dry tarmac?
We don’t want to be too harsh on the Federal Couragia MT, but the tire left us wanting more on the street. Responsiveness isn’t its forte – the tire reacts very late to steering inputs. In other words, you won’t be very happy behind the steering wheel.
When it comes to traction, the Couragia MT isn’t bad, but it’s far from the best mud-terrain tires. The grip is also very limited – you wouldn’t want to push these tires too far. Finally, the braking distances are also longer than we anticipated.
Overall, while the Couragia MT can be used on the road without major issues, we suggest driving carefully and into the speed limit.
How is it over wet and slippery roads?
The Federal Couragia MT doesn’t feature any micro sipes, which are the main reason why modern mud-terrain tires have excellent traction on damp and wet surfaces.
In light rain, the Couragia MT wanders around, lacking traction and grip for a safe and reliable driving experience. The aggressive tread pattern helps with hydroplaning resistance in heavy rain, but even then, we weren’t impressed with the results.
This is simply not a tire that impresses on the street, especially when it rains.
With that being said, how is it on snowy roads?
Like most mud-terrain tires, the Couragia MT provides excellent traction in deep and unpacked snow. You can surely have a lot of fun with a set of these tires in the winter, especially when it comes to traction. To our surprise, the softer tread compound gives this tire very good traction over packed snow surfaces. That said, we recommend against using these tires over ice, as they lack traction and don’t brake safely.
Is it comfortable and refined?
To be honest, no mud-terrain tire is completely comfortable and refined for everyday driving. If you drive mostly on the street, a set of all-terrain tires is a much better choice.
Even with that in mind, though, the Federal Couragia is a loud and uncomfortable tire. Vibrations can be easily felt on the highway, and noise is an issue even at urban speeds. Other mud-terrain tires are better in this regard.
You can see more Federal Couragia MT Review here: videos created by Happiness is a Reef Tank
Should I buy the Federal Couragia MT?
Despite the very low price, it’s hard to recommend the Federal Couragia MT. For off-roading, the tire will satisfy the needs of most people, especially those that mostly drive in the mud. However, on-road performance leaves a lot to be desired – the Couragia MT doesn’t perform very well on dry and wet surfaces. Ultimately, the tire is loud on the highway and not the most comfortable around. Buy it only if you really want to save money – otherwise, look at competitors from Cooper Tire, Firestone, and Toyo.