Nokian Tyres is headquartered in Finland and has the distinction of being the most northern-most tiremaker in the world. As you might expect, they have a reputation for making tires that perform well in winter conditions. You may have heard of their Hakkapelliitta tire, which for many years was considered to be one of the best winter tires.
In recent years, several top tier manufacturers have come out with competitive snow and winter tires of their own. For example, Bridgestone also has a well known winter tire called Blizzak, which consistently score well. We do think the Nokians are worth looking into based on their years of experience in the north as well as throughout Europe.
They also manufacture all-season tires. We have some first-hand experience, having recently purchased a set of Nokian eNTYRE tires for our minivan. These were not provided for consideration by Nokian - we purchased them at Walmart.com in the U.S., so this is an independent review. We did some initial research before settling on these tires, with our first choice being the highly rated General AltiMAX RT43 Touring tire. However, the Nokians were priced very aggressively and had one of the highest hydroplaning resistance numbers when tested by Consumer Reports. Confident wet weather performance is important not only for family minivans but for most any car or truck. Additionally, Nokian markets the eNTYREs as being an eco-friendly tire, both in terms of the manufacturing process and also having low rolling resistance (LRR).
We've only put a little over 1,000 miles on the eNTYRE. So far, both dry and wet performance have been above average. Road noise is reasonable - they sound similar to the Goodyear Assurance tires that were replaced by the Nokians. Cornering performance has been above average, but that is most likely due to our expectations that a non-performance oriented, LRR tire would squeal or break-away (slide) during aggressive handling. As of now, we would purchase these tires again. We'll update this page with more thoughts once we've put more miles on the tires.
When the eNTYRE first came out, there were some reports of premature wear. As a result, Nokian adjusted the warranty for the affected tires. If you plan on buying these, check with your dealer to see if your tires would be affected.Check prices and read detailed reviews on Nokian eNTYRE tires at Amazon.com
The Nokian Hakkapeliitta R2 is a dependable winter tire. In recent years, top tier manufacturers have improved their winter tire offerings. The Hakkapeliitta came in slightly behind the Michelin X-Ice Xi3 in Consumer Reports' 2015 winter tire test. An interesting tidbit is that the Hercules Avalanche R G2 tire has the same tread pattern - it may be manufactured by Nokian for Hercules.Check prices and reviews for the Hakkapeliitta R2 at Discount Tire