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- Cooper tires earned an overall score of 4.0 out of 5.0 in our most recent tire study.
- The company is one of the more affordable brands in the industry.
- Cooper traditionally specializes in replacement tires, but now makes original equipment (OE) tires for several prominent automakers.
In Our Opinion:
Cooper tires are a strong choice for drivers looking for affordable replacement tires without breaking the bank. While it’s not the biggest manufacturer in the tire industry, Cooper is still competitive with Goodyear and Michelin. Many customer reviews mention brand loyalty, with some drivers purchasing Cooper tires for over 20 years with few complaints. However, other reviews mention issues with Cooper tires’ tread life.
Affordable tire options
Tires designed with a focus on safety first
Tires with treadwear warranties up to 80,00 miles
Only makes passenger car, SUV, and truck tires
Limited selection of original equipment tires
Cooper Tires is among the industry’s more affordable brands. Our editorial team wanted to see if those lower prices mean lower-quality tires.
In this article, we’ll discuss Cooper Tires in-depth, going over industry ratings, popular Cooper models, tire costs, and customer reviews. We’ll also see how the brand measures up to the best tire companies in the industry.
About Cooper Tires
The Cooper Tire & Rubber company first opened for business in 1914. Based in Findlay, Ohio, the company got its start selling tire patches and tire repair kits, but it quickly pivoted to become a chief replacement tire manufacturer. In recent years, Cooper Tires has landed OE tire contracts with Ford, Volkswagen, and Mercedes-Benz.
Cooper Tires makes products for cars, pickup trucks, SUVs, and minivans. The company accounted for almost five percent of all tire sales in North America in 2019. Goodyear acquired the company in 2021 but still operates Cooper as its own brand.
Cooper is also an independent manufacturer. That means its products are only distributed through independent dealerships, some regional and national retailers, and wholesale websites. Cooper also makes products under other tire brand names such as Dean, Mastercraft, Mickey Thompson, Roadmaster, and Starfire.
Cost of Cooper Tires
Cooper tires are known for their affordability. Popular day-to-day tires, like the Cooper Trendsetter SE, cost between $75 and $85 on TireBuyer. Other models range from $65 to about $475, depending on the tire size, vehicle type, and tire specialization.
If you purchase a large tire with specialty treads for mud or snow, it will cost significantly more than all-season, standard-sized tires for a passenger car or SUV. However, overall, Cooper tires cost notably less than competitors like Michelin and Goodyear.
Cooper Tires Industry Ratings
Like all consumer tires, Cooper Tires products follow the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) grading system, called Uniform Tire Quality Grading (UTQG). This system evaluates all tires (excluding winter tires) based on their traction, treadwear, and temperature resistance.
UTQG Grading Criteria
The UTQG system grades tires on three main criteria. These ratings can help you evaluate whether or not a specific Cooper tire is the right choice for you.
This measures how well your tires “grip” a wet road. Traction grades are rated highest to lowest using AA, A, B, or C. Most quality standard tires have an A rating or higher.
This estimates your tire’s lifespan and is rated by comparing a tire against a control. The control has a 100 rating, and most passenger tires fall between a 300 and 500 rating, meaning they last three to five times longer than the control.
This measures a tire’s heat resistance from highest to lowest using A, B, or C. This is important based on tires’ designs and how fast they rotate. For example, performance tires tend to have higher temperature ratings because they’re rotating at faster speeds.
Cooper Tire UTQG Scores
Below, we’ve compiled a few popular Cooper Tires models as well as their UTQG grades using data from NHTSA.gov (formerly hosted at SaferCar.gov).
|Cooper Tire Model||Tire Type||Treadwear Score||Traction Score||Temperature Resistance|
|Cooper Evolution Tour H/T||SUV/crossover
|Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S||All-terrain
Truck and SUV
|Cooper Zeon RS3-G1||Ultra high-performance
|Cooper Trendsetter SE||Passenger
|Cooper CS5 Grand Touring||SUV/Crossover
|Cooper Evolution H/T||SUV, Light duty truck
It’s important to note that the NHTSA does not assign these grades, as it does not conduct the tests itself. Manufacturers hire independent companies to handle tire testing. As such, these ratings should be taken with a grain of salt.
If you want to know more about a Cooper tire you already own, you can check the tire’s sidewall for its UTQG grade.
Most Popular Cooper Tire Models
Cooper specializes in replacement tires but also provides OE tires for Ford, Volkswagen, and Mercedes-Benz. As the fourth-largest tire manufacturer in the U.S., Cooper has become a trusted option for passenger car tires, all-terrain tires, and performance tires.
According to TireBuyer, a few of Cooper’s highest-rated tires include:
- Cooper Zeon LTZ: An all-terrain truck and SUV tire with a specialized hybrid design made for off-road and normal drives
- Cooper Evolution Tour: An all-season tire built for a comfortable driving feel with a long tread life and innovative safety features
- Cooper CS5 Ultra Touring: A long-lasting all-season tire with a silica compound tread for strong traction on dry and wet surfaces
- Cooper Evolution Winter: A studdable winter tire designed for road noise reduction, low rolling resistance, and optimal braking in ice and snow
Each of the Cooper tires above received at least a 4.0 out of 5.0 rating on TireBuyer, reflecting customer satisfaction and popularity. These models are also well-regarded throughout the tire industry.
Cooper Tires Buying Guide
No matter how well-made or well-designed a tire is, it won’t do its job properly if its not the right tire for your car. When you shop for new tires, it’s a good idea to carefully consider how well a certain model fits your vehicle, but also how it fits the weather where you live and how you like to drive.
Cooper Tires Factors To Consider
There are several key factors that differentiate one tire from another in terms of performance, application, and longevity. Understanding these factors can help you determine which type of tire is best for you and your car. They include:
- Tread pattern: The tread design of a tire is important to how it interacts with the road and handles activities like cornering. Most tires have either a diagonal, symmetrical, asymmetrical, or combined pattern.
- Tire life: Manufacturers typically list the expected lifetime of their tire treads in terms of miles.
- Tire build: Most tires are constructed using radial, bias-ply, or bias-belted designs. Bias-built tires tend to be more affordable in general, while radial tires are typically more durable overall.
- Weather rating: Some tires are rated for all weather conditions, but many are designed for specific conditions. Winter tires, for example, sometimes have studs or other elements that grip icy surfaces.
- Speed rating: Tires come with a maximum safe speed from the manufacturer. Exceeding this speed could result in a dangerous situation. This rating is an important consideration for drivers who like to go fast.
- Noise rating: Tires can produce a lot of road noise, but many companies design some tires to be much quieter. There can be a significant difference between these tires and others in terms of cabin noise.
Cooper Tire Warranties
Cooper Tires offers both a limited warranty and treadwear protection for its products. The limited warranty applies to replacement passenger and light truck tires under original ownership and replaces any defective Cooper tires before the tread wears out. Cooper treadwear protection varies based on the model, but its highest limit extends to 80,000 miles.
Cooper Customer Reviews
To give you a better idea of Cooper tires’ typical performance on the road, we gathered a few customer reviews from TireBuyer. Cooper reviews are mostly positive, but some customers mention issues with their tread life and tread separation while driving.
Here are a few examples of customer experiences with Cooper tires:
Positive Experiences with Cooper Tires
“This is the third time I purchased [Cooper Tour Evolution] tires online and ended up saving anywhere from $100 to $200 with the rebates. The first set I purchased for my truck, which hauls a horse trailer, and they are working out great. I have 40,000 [miles] on them, and they still have plenty of tread left.”
– Andio via TireBuyer
“I have only had [Cooper Discoverer A/T3 XLT tires] on the truck for three weeks, but they are smooth as glass and incredibly quiet for any tire – much less an all-terrain tread. I even rolled the windows down on the way to work and couldn’t hear anything.”
– BRK via Tirebuyer
Negative Experiences with Cooper Tires
“[Cooper CS5 Ultra Touring] tires aren’t worth the money. These may be fine on a small car, but they clearly aren’t suitable for a mid-size SUV. I’ve been buying Cooper tires for 20 years… that ends with these.”
– Lyle via TireBuyer
“Good for the price, but I’d recommend paying a little more for something that should last longer. [Cooper Trendsetter SE tires] seem to wear out fast and dry-cracked pretty early. They’re a good summer tire, they do OK in wet and OK in snow, light mud.”
– Tito via TireBuyer
Cooper Tires: Conclusion
We rated Cooper tires 4.0 out of 5.0 stars and named the manufacturer the Most Affordable tire company in our most recent study. Cooper’s price points, variety of replacement tire options, and focus on safety make tires from the American company a strong choice for most drivers.
However, Cooper tires are often not the most long-lasting on the market. Drivers looking for tires with an extended tread life may want to consider other options.
Cooper Tires: Recommended Competitors
While you’re shopping for tires, we also recommend checking out Michelin and Pirelli. These brands scored well in our review of the nation’s best tires and may offer strong tire options for your vehicle.
Michelin: Best Tires Overall
Michelin offers good choices in almost every tire category. Summer tires, all-terrain tires, highway commercial tires – Michelin tops industry and customer recommendation lists. We especially like its Michelin Defender T+H model for a long-lasting tire.
Compare Michelin tires at TireBuyer.com.
Pirelli: Best for High-Performance
You don’t have to own a Maserati or a Lamborghini to get Pirelli tires, although the tire manufacturer is famous for its high-performance tires for luxury and exotic car brands. Pirelli makes tires for day-to-day cars, trucks, and SUVs too. For a premium price, you can get high-quality tires that perform well in wet and dry road conditions.
Compare Pirelli tires at TireBuyer.com.
Cooper Tires: FAQ
Is Cooper a good brand of tire?
Cooper is a good brand of tire, especially for those looking for an affordable option. The company produces serviceable tires at a lower price point than many of its competitors.
Are Cooper tires as good as Michelin?
Cooper tires are typically not as good as Michelin tires when it comes to overall quality. However, Cooper tires tend to be significantly cheaper than Michelin models, so some people may find them to be a better option for their needs.
Are Cooper tires made by Goodyear?
Cooper Tires is now owned by Goodyear, although they still act as separate brands. Goodyear acquired Cooper in 2021.
Is Cooper a Chinese tire?
Cooper tires are not Chinese-made. The company makes its tires in the U.S.
Is it tires or tyres?
“Tires” is the correct North American spelling of the word. People in the UK, Australia, and elsewhere use “tyre.”
Our research team is committed to providing the most accurate, thorough, and unbiased information possible to help people make informed decisions about the tires they purchase. We use a standardized set of criteria to ensure the consistency and comparability of our reviews.
- Industry Reputation: To assess the overall reliability of each company, we looked at industry ratings from organizations like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and more, along with the company’s longevity and other factors.
- Tire Variety: Our team considered the full range of each manufacturer’s tire lineup, giving higher scores to companies that offered larger and more diverse selections.
- Affordability: Costs are an important consideration when buying tires. We evaluated the price range of each company’s products to determine its affordability relative to competitors.
- Customer Satisfaction: Our researchers scoured the internet for reviews from customers to assess how satisfied people are with their brand experience. We considered review scores as well as looked for consistent patterns of complaints or praise.