Tires are one of the most crucial elements of a vehicle’s handling. Tire companies have developed a wide range of tires for different uses, two of the most common of which are performance tires and all season tires.
Performance tires (also called summer tires) are tires that, as their name implies, are tires that are designed to maximize a car’s handling, particularly in dry conditions.
Performance tires generally feature larger tread blocks that increase the amount of rubber that touches the ground (the contact patch). They are made from a softer rubber compound that grips the road better and usually have a more aggressive tread pattern.
Performance tires handle much better in dry conditions than all season tires thanks to the more aggressive tread pattern and the softer compound rubber. Performance tires may not handle as well in wet conditions though. They also wear more quickly and may need to be replaced more often than all season tires.
All season tires have smaller tread blocks, intended to increase grip in wet conditions. All season tires generally are made from a harder compound than performance tires.
All season tires are designed to provide more grip in wet conditions than performance tires. They do not, however, provide nearly as much grip in dry conditions as performance tires.