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4WD MODIFICATIONS - TYRES & WHEELS

KUMHO'S AT52 TYRE TEST
The advanced-technology AT52 arrived, to replace the reliable, long-serving AT51.

 

Kumho Tyre Australia has released its award-winning All Terrain tyre range, the Road Venture AT52. We’ve been testing a set since early 2023.

 

 

The much anticipated AT52 arrived in early 2023 in Australia, having received a number of major design awards and with favourable reviews following its launch in some overseas markets, including North America.

The AT52 is the direct replacement for Kumho’s popular top-selling AT51 tyre, which has won admiration from ute, SUV and 4WD users over the past decade. We’ve been using AT51 tyres on our Suzuki Grand Vitara for the past eight years and have found it to be excellent on and off road.

The new Kumho AT52 was awarded the 2022 Good Design Award (G-Mark) 2022 in Japan, in one of the most prestigious international design competitions.

The AT52 has been extensively tested across the globe in a number of harsh environments,  where its combination of strong performance, on and off-road and in rough terrain – including dry stony conditions, mud and sand – has won it favour with both SUV and pick-up/ute drivers, Kumho said.

 

 

The AT52’s sawtooth-shaped shoulder block tread design tread has been engineered to improve off-road traction, while also delivering a comfortable and quiet ride.

Its five-length, pitch block design also benefits durability, wear and straight line driving performance.

The AT52 features zig-zag-shaped groove and sipe design, with multiple angles for safer driving in marginal traction conditions, particularly on snow and ice, making it a true multi-season tyre.

Kumho engineers have also designed AT52 with a Side Biter design for improved sidewall resistance to damage caused by external impacts.

The AT52 is moulded with a cut-and-chip resistant compound and polymer blend ratio, plus a symmetric tread pattern, to resist irregular wear.

Kumho Tyre Australia national marketing manager Kenny Chun said that the AT52 has been much anticipated and gave Australian SUV and ute drivers a tyre that will deliver premium performance across a wide range of road conditions, as well as returning long life and durability.

“The AT52 has a lot of innovative Kumho design features to deliver premium performance, durability and comfort in a range of conditions for 4×4 and SUV drivers,” said Kenny Chun.

“With the performance of vehicles in this sector getting better and better all the time, they demand tyres that can match their capabilities and to take drivers to where they want to go.

“Kumho engineers started with a clean sheet of paper and the AT52 is the result of the latest tyre technologies and innovation to optimise performance on and off road,” he said.

“The new AT52 arrives in Australia after some delays due to global supply chain issues, however now it is here it will satisfy a huge demand, fuelled by the strong reviews the new tyre has received in overseas markets, particularly in the USA,” said Kenny Chun.

The Kumho AT52 is available in a wide range of profiles and widths to fit 15,16,17,18 and 20 inch rim sizes on the majority of SUVs, 4WDs and utes.

 

 

OTA testing

 

 

We fitted a set of five early-production AT52s to our LandCruiser 75 Series and were immediately impressed by the good ride quality and quiet performance at all road speeds. Handling and braking were excellent on sealed roads.

We spent all of February 2023 in Tasmania, travelling on a mixture of roads, tracks and beaches, and the AT52s were outstanding on all surfaces.

They’ve now done 15,000km of mixed-surface driving and still look like brand new. There is no shoulder wear on the steer tyres and no sign of cutting or chipping.

The original tread depth averaged 12-13mm and the front tyres now average 11mm depth. The more heavily laden rears average 10-10.5mm tread depth.

It seems that there’s around a five-percent improvement in fuel economy, compared with running on the previous mud tyres were were testing, but our newly rebuilt engine is bedding in, so that may be affecting the fuel figures as well. We’ll know more over the next few testing months.

We’ll keep evaluating the AT52s during our spring 2023 and summer 2024 travels and update this report periodically.

 

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