Goodyear UltraGrip 8 vs UltraGrip 9

These tires are two variants of the same series of winter tires from Goodyear. Their tread composition is optimized to perform on ice and snow. Hence, their tread compound does not lose its flexibility in low temperatures, sustaining its functionality in cold weather. That is why both of these are 3-peak mountain snowflake rated (3PMSF).

UltraGrip 8 offers firm traction on dry paved surfaces owing to the benefit of its large, bulky tread. Plus, its enhanced biting edges will further improve its on-road abilities. Extensive siping and zigzag grooves make it a reliable option for driving in rainy weather or on an icy road by providing reliable hydroplaning resistivity.

UltraGrip 9 takes the edge over its competitor with respect to wet traction. The credit goes to its enhanced ability to prevent aquaplaning and slip-offs. It rolls smoothly over soft snow as its abilities to grip and evacuate snow are comparatively higher. Also, this tire comes with the financial benefit of lesser fuel consumption and longer tread life.

In comparison, UltraGrip 8 provides a stronger grip and better steering response on a dry road and produces low rolling sound while UltraGrip offers superior wet traction, better snow performance, enhanced aquaplaning resistance, and long-term financial benefits like improved fuel averages, and slower tread wear.

Quick Comparison table

 UltraGrip 8UltraGrip 9
UsagePassenger carsPassenger cars
Tire typeWinterWinter
Sever snow service rated (3PMSF)Yesyes
Tested size205/60R16205/60R16
Load index9696
speed ratingHH

Tread Comparison

UltraGrip 8 characterizes a directional, symmetrical but relatively compact tread design. Its central portion is formed by large-sized, irregular blocks arranged in an overlapping manner. Two zigzag longitudinal grooves are formed at their sides. Wave-like sipes are present on all of its blocks. Shoulder blocks are separated by wide lateral grooves between them. Its tread channels are relatively less deep than the competitor.

The Tread of UltraGrip 9 is also symmetrical and directional but it characterizes a relatively open design. Small rectangular blocks of different sizes are arranged in the middle portion of the tread to create a central groove and numerous curved-shape lateral grooves. Its siping pattern is identical to its competitor. However, shoulder blocks are relatively smaller and tread depth is also minor than the competitor.

Tire Performance Comparison

 UltraGrip 8UltraGrip 9
Hydroplaning resistanceModerateHigh
Rolling resistanceHighModerate
Off roading abilityLow-ModerateModerate-high
DurabilityModerate-highHigh

Road Grip Comparison

UltraGrip 8 rolls on dry pavements with more confidence as its dry grip is better than the competitor. Its large-sized irregular blocks present a higher biting ability on dry rigid surfaces. However, its grip is minimized when the competition is on a wet or icy road. The reason is the lack of central grooves and smaller vacuum provided by marginal channels. Resultantly, it shows lesser wet and ice grip due to decreased efficiency of water wiping action. In snowy areas, this tire shows a good ability due to Goodyear 3D BIS technology. However, its traction is comparatively minor than the competitor. This is because it offers decreased competence to evacuate snow from its narrow and shallow grooves.

Conversely, UltraGrip 9 presents a minor performance on a dry road as its contact patch is made smaller due to its high void ratio. Resultantly, it offers a lesser dry grip in comparison. But increased tread depth, relatively broad lateral and longitudinal spaces, and the presence of central circumferential channels enable its tread to deal efficiently with the water standing on a road. It presents a similar performance on icy pathways. Similarly, its snow performance is comparatively enhanced as small blocks within a network of broad grooves lead to better snow traction. Its construction also employs 3D BIS technology. Hence, not only such tread has more biting edges but also specifies improved evacuation ability.

 UltraGrip 8UltraGrip 9
Dry GripHighModerate
Wet/ Ice GripModerateHigh
Snow GripModerate- highHigh

Handling Comparison

Goodyear 8 gives more control to the driver while taking turns on a dry street because its bulky shoulders have more ability to sustain traction under high pressure. On a wet or icy pathway, it does provide a reliable but its score is comparatively lower due to reduced slip resistance. Likewise, its steering performance on snow is minimized by the lesser evacuation ability of its smaller lateral grooves.

UltraGrip 9 shows less efficient handling performance on the dry paved surface as its shoulders are smaller than the competitor, offering lesser traction while taking turns. But it provides more responsive wet handling owing to its deeper tread. As its lateral grooves can channel out water more efficiently, its shoulders are able to provide a strong grip when you take a turn on a wet or frozen track. On the snow-covered road, deeper voids again provide more benefit as they quickly evacuate snow and allow shoulders to bite more firmly as the vehicle turns along a corner.

 UltraGrip 8UltraGrip 9
Dry HandlingHighModerate
Wet/ Ice HandlingModerateHigh
Snow HandlingModerateHigh

Comparison of Hydroplaning Resistance 

Goodyear 9 provides higher safety from aquaplaning due to its relatively open tread. Its tread has a larger depth, a central longitudinal groove, an extensive network of curved, interconnected, horizontal grooves, and frequent wave-like sipes. These features enable it to remove the water layer from the road surface. Thus, the risk of hydroplaning is minimized.

Goodyear 8 also provides good protection from slip-offs owing to its zigzag grooves and wavy sipes. Nonetheless, lesser tread depth reduces its ability to channel out water, making its hydroplaning resistivity minor than the competitor.

Comparison of Rolling Resistance

Goodyear 8 encounters more rolling resistance because a larger surface area of tread is directly touching the road. Hence, more energy is dissipated when it rolls and fuel efficiency is lowered in comparison.

UltraGrip 9 is more fuel-efficient than its competitor because it utilizes a smaller amount of fuel to roll over the rigid surface. This advantage comes from the high void ratio which minimizes the rubber-to-road contact of its tread, giving rise to a menial amount of rolling resistance.

Comparison of Noise and comfort

UltraGrip 8 scores higher for driving comfort on a dry road because its dry traction is superior. But low void ratio, lack of central groove, and minimized aquaplaning resistivity render driving on the wet road relatively uncomfortable. Nonetheless, this tire presents less noise production because menial void capacity hinders the free circulation of wind particles. Moreover, the crisp structure of grooves makes sound resonation relatively difficult.

In contrast, UltraGrip 9 offers less comfort while driving on the dry paved road due to its lesser contact patch. However, it provides a relatively comfortable experience on a wet path as its hydroplaning resistance is higher. Its rolling sound is also louder than the competitor’s because air can easily circulate in its curved, deep grooves.

 UltraGrip 8UltraGrip 9
Noise LevelModerateModerate-high

Durability and treadwear

Both tires offer a long-lasting performance due to their enhanced tread composition that presents high resilience to weather and temperature fluctuations as well as accidental chips and cuts. Nonetheless, UltraGrip 9 is more durable owing to its open tread design. As its tread encounters lower friction, it gets consumed away relatively slowly.

On the other side, UltraGrip 8 experiences a larger resistance and its tread bear more hysteresis. As a result, its tread wears pretty quickly than its competitor.

Quick Summary

Both are all-season tires.

UltraGrip 8:

  • Presents superior dry traction.
  • Makes lesser rolling noise in comparison.

UltraGrip 9:

  • Safeguards against hydroplaning more efficiently.
  • Provides relatively improved wet traction.
  • Has better fuel averages than the competitor.