Studded vs non-studded Nokian LT2/3 - calling fellow northerners & Canadians

Blaise

Well-known member
Skip the studs dude. I understand you're not the average idiot cutting ruts into i-90 driving on studded chinese $30 tires year round, but like others have stated the performance of non-studded tires is has been so insanely good lately that it's no longer necessary. I couldn't believe how hard I was braking/turning while ice racing on the lakes in northern NY on studless winter tires.

That being said, I'm *so* jealous of having winter tires for your LR3. We have blizzaks for both subarus and it's the only reason the LR3 is left home during parts of the winter :(
 

Red90

Adventurer
Stealing the thread, changing pace for all those who want a beer... The journey to Winlaw is an adventure.
You should hit some of the backcountry hot springs. More fitting to these forums. We may incorporate a few of them into an off road trip this summer through the eats Kootenays.
 

nickw

Adventurer
Skip the studs dude. I understand you're not the average idiot cutting ruts into i-90 driving on studded chinese $30 tires year round, but like others have stated the performance of non-studded tires is has been so insanely good lately that it's no longer necessary. I couldn't believe how hard I was braking/turning while ice racing on the lakes in northern NY on studless winter tires.

That being said, I'm *so* jealous of having winter tires for your LR3. We have blizzaks for both subarus and it's the only reason the LR3 is left home during parts of the winter :(
The problem is there are not a lot of good studdless options in LT and/or tall narrow sizes for 4x4's. I came to the conclusion, based mostly on reviews on Tire Rack and multiple forums, that most of the studless LT tires have stiffer compound to deal with heavier weight and thus won't perform like the studless passenger car tires that so many of us love. I've had Blizzaks on my 'cars' for years, they are unbelievable. I didn't wanna risk questionable performance in my truck. I ended up with studded Nokian LT3's in 235/85R16.
 

billiebob

My Uncle drove a government issued Jeep in Europe
You should hit some of the backcountry hot springs. More fitting to these forums. We may incorporate a few of them into an off road trip this summer through the eats Kootenays.
the back country ones are secret
 

Trikebubble

Adventurer
I'm a firm believe in studded winter tires. Always have been. I guess everyone can post their anecdotal perspective, here's mine. I live in BC and drive up and down mountains for work and pleasure. I bought a Dodge Caravan work van 2 years ago that came with those Nokian Hakkkappppollllotttii-whatever (supposed to be super-awesome)non-studded tires. Ran them for a season and did not like how they handled in icy twisty corner type conditions. Felt the van would not track where I wanted it too, nor stop as quick on icy condistions as I wanted or thought it should. I swapped to a studded Goodyear winter specific for last winter and they were remarkably superior. The tires tracked where I wanted, I stopped when and where I needed to, and I had confidence on those slippery and icy downhill corners.

I have also run studded winters on all my personal trucks and suv's for as long as i can remember. The Tundra/Hawk currently has Avalanche Xtreme studded tires and they get the job done very well. They work well in moderately deep snow snow, and perform exactly as I need in icy conditions. Coming down off the ski hill and hitting those icy tight downhill corners is exactly where I appreciate having a decent set of studded tires. I don't see a scenario where I'd forego studs on my next set of winter tires.
 

Jwestpro

Explorer
and/or tall narrow sizes for 4x4
Yes, this is the annoying part. The studless Nokian LT2 and 3 are only appreciably narrow in the 17 or under sizes. The new lt3 size of 265/70-18 is marginal at best. The 245/75-17 is a proper snow tire width but the work I had to do just to fit a 17 was stupid.
 

Jwestpro

Explorer
I came to the conclusion, based mostly on reviews on Tire Rack and multiple forums, that most of the studless LT tires have stiffer compound to deal with heavier weight and thus won't perform like the studless passenger car tires that so many of us love
I wonder if there is any actual testing vs the almost useless "i felt this or that" on reviews.
 

nickw

Adventurer
I wonder if there is any actual testing vs the almost useless "i felt this or that" on reviews.
not a lot of good data out there but based on a number of reviews I read, nobody seemed to gush over they studless LT tires like you read about with the P tires. Lots of they "work ok, good traction but not blown away" type of reviews. Not scientific but thought it was telling.

Logically it makes sense given the LT tires need to be stiffer, but again, that is a heavy dose of conjecture on my part but they certainly dont feel as soft by hand.

I couldn't even get the studless LT3s so maybe Nokian knows something we dont.
 

shade

Well-known member
not a lot of good data out there but based on a number of reviews I read, nobody seemed to gush over they studless LT tires like you read about with the P tires. Lots of they "work ok, good traction but not blown away" type of reviews. Not scientific but thought it was telling.

Logically it makes sense given the LT tires need to be stiffer, but again, that is a heavy dose of conjecture on my part but they certainly dont feel as soft by hand.

I couldn't even get the studless LT3s so maybe Nokian knows something we dont.
Judging by the lack of options and long model cycles, I don't think LT tyres have seen nearly as much development as P tyres. I can't say if that's due to a lack of interest or a technical issue, though.
 

Colin Hughes

Explorer
Let’s not forget the Sandon ghost town if you’re in that area. Love the Kootenays. My parents lived in Winlaw for a couple of years a while back. South side of town, white bungalow on east side of the highway. I heard stories of people driving that highway in the fog with one hand out the window touching the rock so they didn’t drive over the edge. Pick up a Backroad Mapbooks, give you lots of ideas. BTW, it’s nice to see an American ask Canadians about tires, I thought they assumed we all had dog sleds to get to our igloos in the winter. 😉😀
 

Speedkills

New member
not a lot of good data out there but based on a number of reviews I read, nobody seemed to gush over they studless LT tires like you read about with the P tires. Lots of they "work ok, good traction but not blown away" type of reviews. Not scientific but thought it was telling.

Logically it makes sense given the LT tires need to be stiffer, but again, that is a heavy dose of conjecture on my part but they certainly dont feel as soft by hand.

I couldn't even get the studless LT3s so maybe Nokian knows something we dont.
I had the opposite experience, just ordered a set of LT3's and couldn't get them studded. The tire shop offered to stud them when they come in next week though, I'm still on the fence. I'm leaning towards no studs thinking they would perform better on the rocks I see so much of around Colorado. On the road I actually am perfectly comfortable on a set of all-terrains so either way is going to be a nice improvement on-road.
 

shade

Well-known member
Many shops won't stud used tyres, so keep that in mind before putting them in service.
 
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