Falken Wildpeak AT3W vs BF Goodrich KO2

While these All-Terrain tires make you sacrifice some comfort on road, their adaptability to various terrains really make up for it. And that’s because they are built tough.

BF Goodrich says its their toughest tire ever, but how would it perform against the Falken Wildpeak AT3w? Well, the answer lies in their design.

PS. Have you ever noticed, that the BFG KO2 looks exactly like the General Grabber ATX? We compared them in the link.

Design of Both Tires:

Right off the bat, you’ll notice that the BFG KO2 also offers you with more aggressive shoulders in comparison.

BF Goodrich Features

One block has a lateral cut in its design which also makes a scoop at the edge, making these shoulders staggered.

The other block also has a cut in it but its slanted a little. And both of these blocks together then join together in the middle joining a sidewall lug with a sharp cut in between.

Shoulder of BFG Ko2
KO2
Sidewalls of Falken Wildpeak AT3w
Wildpeak AT3W

On the other hand, the Falken Wildpeak’s varying width shoulder blocks have sharp stepped edges on the outer sides which also join together in a similar fashion forming bulky lugs.

And a closer inspection tells us that one of the shoulder block has a notch in it and the other one has side steps. Both of them further enhances the tires grip.

In the center, the tire has prominent Z shaped blocks which show sharp edges and steps on the sides.

Central pattern of Falken Wildpeak AT3w

These blocks are then surrounded by other blocks where incisions in them make them look like the alphabet “C”.

On the other side, with KO2 the tire shows worm like blocks with an interlocking arrangement.

You’ll notice that with its consistent middle design there isn’t any proper longitudinal channels here. Instead its just a web of grooves.

Central Part of BFG KO2

You’ll also notice the rectilinear siping on these blocks. These sipes further divide these blocks down to the tread’s base allowing them move or squirm depending on the surface the tire’s on.

And although these sipes may look straight here, they have a zig zag design, allowing this tire to further bite the surface on a micro level.

Following are the specs of both tires we compared:

 BFG KO2Falken Wildpeak
Mountain snowflake ratings (3PMSF)yesyes
Tested sizeLT265/75R16   LT265/75R16   
Tread depth15/32’’18/32’’
Average Tread Depth15/32″16.4/32″
Average Weight55.3 lbs54.8 lbs
Average tread depth and weight is the average of all of the tires sizes available.

Lets see how both of these tires performed in various terrain.

Don’t want to read the whole thing? Watch our video instead.

Starting with their On Road Traction:

With All Terrain tires, its always been a long lived battle between the off road performance and the on road comfort.

With BF Goodrich KO2’s aggressive design, the tire offers less area in contact with the road.

With the wider grooves the overall grip is compromised. But the surprising thing is that even with the aggressive design of KO2 the tire is still very quite on road. (This has to do with its middle uniform design).

Falken Wildpeak AT3w Features

On the other hand, the Flaken Wildpeak offers more compact blocks especially in the shoulders, so it provides better handling times in both wet and dry roads.

Why Shoulders?

Well, because when it comes to cornering the tire sides come in to action. And KO2 with its bolder stone ejectors does not allow great contact here, in comparison.

Durability and Traction on Rocks:

Rocky terrain can get pretty harsh, and the durability of both tires really make them handle it well.

Both tires have 2 high strength steel belts and 2 ply nylon covering. But in case of KO2, there are 3 layers of polyester in between them compared to Wildpeak’s 2 layers.

So the tire is built tough. How tough? Well, BFG dropped this tire from 10k feet and the tire survived the impact.

So does this means, the tire provides more safety to the most vulnerable part of the tire? (Sidewalls).

Well, no, because here the Falken Wildpeak has 2 extra layers of polyamide, running around its bead, so you get a 4 layer sidewall construction, protecting this tire even better, especially from sharper rocks.

The tire also has bulky lugs which allows this tire to crawl through all kinds of rocky terrain.

And with lesser weight (in most sizes) and less stiffer sidewalls, the Falken Wildpeak comes out to be a better climber out of the two.

Falken Wildpeak Tread Pattern

Here, you see the saw tooth edges of these shoulder blocks which on the inner side, make a very biting zig zag longitudinal grooves. Furthermore, the notches of the shoulder are and the one in the central area combined allow this tire to have a very gripping climb.

On the other hand, on KO2, the tire is better in other area of the rocky traction. This tire with its more aggressive shoulder blocks, give out more lateral traction in comparison. This type of traction grips the tire from sideways and doesn’t allow them to slip on their sides, which can cause damage to the vehicle.

BF Goodrich KO2 off road
KO2

And although the difference is very little, with less sittfer sidewalls, the KO2 would have been better even in the climbing part as well.

Both tires also offer great high speed gravel with their cut resistant rubber. So very minimal wear is seen which allows both of these tires to last a long time.

 KO2Wildpeak AT3W
DurabilityHighA little Low
Treadwear mileage warranty50,000 miles55,000 miles/ 5 years
Workmanship warranty6 years5 years

Mud Traction Comparison:

Mud is the All-Terrain tires biggest enemy, and having said that, you can’t expect them to perform like the Mud Terrain tires, but they are still great.

But Ko2 still takes a little bit of lead here.

The competitive shoulder design of the KO2 where you see multiple variations of deep cuts, allow this tire to shed more dirt and mud out of its way. While the bold stone ejectors combined with the triangular ones that are strategically placed between the tread blocks, expel debris that would otherwise lodge itself in between.

On Falken Wildpeak the tread wont’ be able to handle that much mud or dirt in comparison, as these tires tend to get packed, and mud to mud contact loses traction.

But still the tire with deeper grooves (1.6 mm deeper on average in comparison) still gives a pretty tough time to this terrain.

The tire’s shoulder blocks forming a jagged circumferential grooves slash the mud as it tires to escape from it.

Snow Traction Comparison:

Both tires with their 3 Peak Mountain Snowflake Rating, perform great on snow.

The 3PMSF is basically branded to the tires that have at-least 25% more traction than an average All Season tire. It shows that these tires have a great acceleration on average snow and there isn’t much slippage.

Both of these tires have enough biting edges, where Falken Wildpeak has deeper tread with notches and two different designs of 3D siping.

And the BFG KO2, with its wider grooves, deep siping and aggressive shoulders blocks.

So its a tie between both of these tires. Still if you are mostly staying on road, Falken Wildpeak would perform better with more compact blocks, while the KO2 can handle deeper snow in a better way.

So what’s the Verdict?

Well, if you are planing to stay mostly on road, then you shouldn’t miss out on the better wet performance of the Falken Wildpeak, espicially on wet roads.

On the other hand, although KO2’s on road traction can get a little better, the tire would definitely won’t disappoint you on road. You can put anything in front of these powerful tires and they would simply crawl their way out without any trouble.

Compare BFG KO2 with other AT tires:

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