Despite the onslaught of crossovers on the market in recent years, real off-road-focused SUVs are still going very strong. As a matter of fact, the sales of these vehicles accelerated, which prompted the manufacturers to make even more hardcore off-road versions of the same SUVs and trucks. Models like the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, Toyota 4Runner TRD, and Colorado ZR2. This opened the market for tire makers as well, especially in the “extreme” category.
A great example of this is the General Grabber X3, a tire on which the mother company spent a lot of time perfecting the off-road formula. It seems that they view it as one of the most important tires in their lineup, which surely sounds sweet to the ears of off-road driving enthusiasts. Thanks to that, this is now one of the best off-road tires you can put on your hardcore SUV or truck. Of course, as always, we will explain why our opinion is so positive in this detailed General Grabber X3 Review.
Before we do that, though, it’s best to clear some things out. First of all, even though some crossovers can work on rougher terrains, these tires aren’t the best choice for them. Why? Well, you will not gain too much in off-road abilities (the vehicle itself is the bottleneck here), and these tires will worsen the on-road stability, and especially comfort and quietness. If you own a crossover, we suggest going for all-terrain tires if you really want something more capable for off-road driving.
On the other hand, owners of 4×4 SUVs and trucks that want to extract that extra performance on very demanding off-road sections should really put this tire on the shortlist. The Grabber X3 was specifically designed to work in the most extreme conditions, giving the driver outstanding traction and durability. Vehicles that should work outstandingly well with a set of these tires are Toyota 4Runner, Tundra, and Tacoma (especially the TRD versions), Ford Ranger, F-150 and Raptor, Jeep Wrangler and Cherokee, RAM 1500, etc. As you can see, all of these vehicles are body-on-frame design, which makes them much more capable for off-road driving. That said, if you own the 2WD versions of these models, please note that the tires will not help that much for off-road driving.
The General Grabber X3 is available in sizes ranging from 15 to 20 inches. Almost all versions are LT-rated, which means that they’re suitable for towing, and there are also models in the 33-inch, 35-inch and 37-inch categories for the most extreme off-road SUVs and trucks, like the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon.
With all that said, let’s jump onto the features of the General Grabber X3, or in other words, what design decisions the manufacturer made to make the tire more capable for extreme off-road driving.
What are the features of the General Grabber X3?
According to General Tire, the Grabber X3 is “a bold and aggressive Mud-Terrain tire that delivers extreme off-road performance in mud, dirt and rocky terrain, with 3-ply durability, balanced with an impressive on-road performance”. So, despite the Mud-Terrain moniker, the Grabber X3, in reality, is an off-road tire that should work in every condition you encounter, including dirt and rocky terrain. That’s what the “X3” in the name stands for by the way.
To achieve all those things, General Tire equipped the Grabber X3 with several key technologies that make it more capable for off-road scenarios. As with every tire, they started with the robust off-road tread compound that is molded into a high-void symmetric pattern that is one of the most aggressive in its category. The open tread design is further enhanced with block chamfers and traction notches for additional grip on loose surfaces.
As with most mud-terrain tires, the Grabber X3 is equipped with evacuation channels that clear the mud from the tread. Thanks to this, the tire will keep its traction even after hundreds of miles driven in the mud. On top of that, the X3 is equipped with stone bumpers and grooves that clean the tire from debris and stones, another feature that should help in long off-road sessions.
Like all other tires from its Grabber lineup, General also equipped the Grabber X3 with the DuraGen Technology that makes the tire cut-and-chip resistant, and also much more flexible in cold weather. On top of that, the Sidewall Protection Lugs enhance grip during extreme off-roading, while further enhancing the cut-and-chip resistance. The three-ply body casing and twin ultra-high-strength steel belts give the tire its extreme toughness which can come in handy in the most demanding terrain surfaces.
General Tire also made sure that the Grabber X3 works on the road. The Multi-Pitch Pattern Design not only enhances off-road traction, but it also gives the owner a quieter ride on the highway. The Grabber X3 also has siped tread design for improved traction in wet conditions, as well as safer driving experience on snow.
Apart from performance, General Tire also made sure that the Grabber X3 looks good when installed on aggressive off-road SUVs. The aggressive tread design is accompanied by red lettering on the sidewalls, something that most of its competitors lack.
To better understand how much effort General Tire put into this tire, here’s a fun fact: they developed the Grabber X3 for three years and done over 2 million miles in testing to make sure that you get the best possible performance. Bravo!
What are the maintenance indicators?
Unlike its road-focused lineup of tires, the Grabber X3 is not equipped with the Replacement Tire Monitor technology. This is understandable – the aggressive tread design with deep lugs isn’t suited to the technology. Also, the Grabber X3 isn’t equipped with the VAI (Visual Alignment Indicators), that help you see if the tread wears down unevenly.
That said, most off-road enthusiasts know when their tire is about to be replaced, so this shouldn’t be a problem. You can also check the tread depth with the penny test – if the tire tread is at least touching Abraham Lincoln’s upside-down head, the tire tread depth is at least 2/32”. Please note that this only covers on-road driving as a tread as deep as the one on this tire won’t work on extreme terrain.
Like most mud-terrain tires, the Grabber X3 doesn’t come with any treadlife warranty. Still, owners seem to be very satisfied with this tire when it comes to longevity and durability, and the company is known for producing tires that are long-lasting.
Is it good for off-road driving?
Absolutely. The Grabber X3 is among the best tires for extreme off-roading. It provides exceptional traction on mud-terrain thanks to the aggressive tread pattern, but it is also extremely useful on other surfaces. More precisely, the X3 works great on rocky terrain, both on smaller and bigger rocks. Climbing over very big rocks should also not be an issue – the tire is tough enough for even the sharpest objects.
On top of that, it also works in dirt and sand. In these conditions, it is good enough to give you traction not to get stuck, and stable enough for faster driving on some dirt tracks. This is one of the best off-road tires you can put on your SUV or truck for sure.
How does it behave on dry tarmac?
Off-road enthusiasts are often ready to overlook somewhat worse performance on the road in order to get better traction on rough terrains. The Grabber X3 isn’t the worst off-road tire for on-road driving by any stretch of the imagination, but it is also not the worst. Overall, it provides a safe driving experience with good grip in the corners and very good highway stability.
How is it over wet and slippery roads?
The Grabber X3 has sipes on the lugs, unlike some other mud-terrain tires. Thanks to that, it provides better traction and grip when it rains. However, the performance it offers is still far from what a good set of all-terrain tires will give you, and especially highway tires. In other words, you should be cautious when it rains.
With that being said, how is it in snowy roads?
The Grabber X3 is better than most mud-terrain tires in loose snow, giving you the ability to enjoy off-road driving in the winter months. However, the tire lacks enough siping for reliable traction on packed snow, the one you will encounter on the road. That’s why, if you want safe driving experience in the winter, proper winter tires will still be a much better option.
Is it comfortable and refined?
Not really. Comfort will be a little bit worse than what a set of all-terrain tires will give you, which is expected, but noise can be a real issue, especially on the highway. Still, this is something that most buyers in this category already expect and perhaps not a very big issue.
You can see more General Grabber X3 Review here: videos created by Workplaytv
Should I buy the General Grabber X3?
Noise issues aside, the General Grabber X3 is one of the best extreme off-road tires on the market right now. It is tough and durable, it provides the driver with outstanding traction on most off-road surfaces, and it looks the part. Oh, and it is also reasonably priced. If you’re in the market for a tire with these abilities, you should surely put the Grabber X3 on your shortlist.
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