When it comes to buying new car tyres, you might find yourself asking ‘Bridgestone or Dunlop’? They are two giants of the tyre industry, but which brand will be best for your wheels? We’ve taken it upon ourselves to end the dispute once and for all with an objective look at what both of the manufacturers offer to the everyday Aussie motorist.
- We’ve compared both brands using the most common car tyre size in Australia – 205/65/15.
- Keep in mind your car – especially if it’s a large car or SUV – may feature tyres much larger than this, and your mileage (excuse the pun) may vary.
Take a look below to see what you’re getting with each brand, and which brand has what you’re after.
Dunlop Car Tyres
We all know Dunlop for its Volley shoe, a classic Aussie icon, but you may not know that the company was founded in the year 1888, by John Boyd Dunlop, who invented the pneumatic tyre after his son experienced problems riding his bike. This sowed the seeds to become the Dunlop Rubber Company, which in 1999 was bought out by Goodyear Tyres. Dunlop has also enjoyed a lengthy contract with the (V8) Supercars.
A visit to Dunlop’s website immediately addresses its main consumer targets – “everyday performance”. With a history in elite cycling, it’s little wonder the brand wants to cater towards performance, but how does this fare for the everyday driver? Take a look at the table below for a comparison of Dunlop’s car tyre offerings:
|Model||Purpose||Approx Price Per Tyre From|
|SP Touring R1||Improved wet performance & durability||$115|
|SP Sport FM800||Mid-level sports performance||$125|
|SP Touring T1||Durable tread life for long distances||$100|
|SP Sport 300E||Entry-level performance||$110|
|Monza 200R||Reduced rolling resistance, touring tyre||$105|
Source: Dunlop website April 2018
Dunlop impresses with its relatively solid range and shows that it has major sides of the market covered – those wanting cheap durable tyres, and those wanting entry-level sports tyres. With the SP Touring T1, for example, you can get a set balanced and fitted for around $400, which is certainly a bargain. And for performance, both the SP Sport models are sure to impress with their prices suited to almost everyone.
- Dunlop provides a solid range of entry-level performance tyres, which may add a bit of pizzazz to your small hot hatch or sedan.
- Prices per 15” tyre are mostly under $130, which is an accessible price for many.
Additionally, being owned by a large company such as Goodyear also ensures reliability, and reliability in warranty claims. For the average Aussie passenger car owner, Dunlop is a very viable option.
Bridgestone Car Tyres
It may not have such a lengthy history as Dunlop, but Bridgestone has cemented itself as one of the premier tyre brands in the world. Founded in 1931 in Japan, the company became the largest tyre manufacturer on the planet in 2015, with a US $27.4bn market value.
Bridgestone’s tyres are situated in the mid to high-end range, with offerings catering to a variety of different applications, both commercial and passenger. Once again, tyres under the spotlight are in the 205/65/15 size.
|Model||Purpose||Approx Price Per Tyre|
|Ecopia EP100||Fuel economy, durability||$112|
|Ecopia EP300||Low rolling resistance, durability and wet braking||$112|
|Potenza RE92||Durability and ride quality||$118|
|Potenza RE88||Smooth ride, braking performance||$139|
|Turanza T001||High mileage, durability||$116|
|Ecopia PZ-X||Fuel efficiency, eco-friendliness||$130|
Source: Bridgestone website April 2018.
Bridgestone features a very expansive tyre range for the 205/65/15 tyre size. Bridgestone knows who its customers are. This is a targeted range, expected from the largest tyre manufacturer in the world. Whether you want more life from your tyres, improved fuel economy, or a well-performing tyre, Bridgestone has these aspects covered.
- Priced slightly higher than Dunlop, this is perhaps expected and accepted as Bridgestone is very much established and has proven reliability and trustworthiness in the consumer psyche.
- Bridgestone somewhat lacks in comparison with entry-level performance tyres at this tyre size compared to Dunlop.
However, with softer-compounded and more ‘performance’ oriented tyres often considered to be safer in the wet, why not spend a little extra on the RE88? Nevertheless, Bridgestone shines for its eco-friendly tyres with durable, high-mileage models also available.
Who skids ahead: Bridgestone or Dunlop?
Bridgestone and Dunlop are two car tyre giants in Australia, both with steeped histories and a solid range. However, which tyre suits you best? That’s a bit harder to answer, especially with the general increase in tyre sizes on passenger cars over the years.
- For small passenger cars – as highlighted above – Dunlop tends to focus more on basic performance, while Bridgestone focuses on eco-friendly and economic tyres.
Dunlop also tends to feature a cheaper entry price, while with Bridgestone you may pay a bit more for what’s on offer. In any case, with the fairly small tyre size of 205/65/15 in mind, neither are especially expensive, so it does pay to compare the two in your own tyre size. If you own a larger car or an SUV, chances are your wheels are 17” in diameter or larger. This is when prices start to creep up. In any case, shop around and you may be surprised at what can you find. Safe drive!