while driving a
Kia Motors Picanto
(175/65 R14) on
mostly country roads
I bought these on the strength of the UK Tyrereviews website piece on 2021 Summer tyres. Even though I do not live in the UK, so far as I was able to tell, the Advantage sold here in Australia is exactly the same as the Advantage sold in the UK that was reviewed, save for one extra ply in the sidewall. I purchased these tyres on the basis of them coming top of the heap in terms of comfort in the aforementioned review. The roads where I live are appalling and getting worse by the day and it might be some time (if ever) before I can buy a large SUV such as a Santa Fe or Sorento that would obviously be far better suited to them rather than my current tiny Kia Picanto. Combine that with me not getting any younger and comfort is the main thing I want in a tyre these days, especially when seemingly all modern vehicles are biased towards firm (albeit well controlled) rides.
Well I certainly have to agree with the Tyrereviews review - these tyres are definitely much more comfortable than any previous tyres I have owned and are surprisingly quiet. It was actually their quietness that took me most by surprise since it is not exactly a feature even the manufacturer appears to excessively harp on about. But maybe they should - they really are very quiet - but not so much in terms of a reading on the dB meter - it is because the noise seems to be "tuned" into a bandwidth that we humans find far less irritable - so much less "midrange" to use a hifi analogy. Further anecdotal evidence the noise is reduced is when listening to my usual radio station at 100 kmh on coarse chip roads, I can now listen three "clicks" lower in volume than before (volume 10 versus 13 previously).
As for handling, I do detect a little bit more understeer but I fully expected this given there is no free lunch if you want to bias a tyre more towards comfort. It is a compromise that I am more than willing to live with, especially given that the handling is very progressive such that I can feel the limit gradually approaching when driving on high speed winding roads. I did find too, that whereas all my previous tyres had caused mild rear end bump steer when the rear tyres were both simultaneously travelling over the same road defect over high speed curves, this particular annoyance is thankfully totally absent with these tyres.
All in all this is a decent tyre if you are not seeking "performance" and instead are seeking something more oriented to sedate driving with a bias towards comfort. On the other hand, if you like to pretend that you are in a kart when around roundabouts or want high precision combined with neutral handling on high speed winding roads, maybe choose something else!