With so many good reviews of the CrossClimate+ (both here and elsewhere) during my research of what to buy I felt it was necessary to give some balance and point out the very significant flaws these tyres have, after spending (wasting?) £547 on a set in 215/50/17 for a Nissan Leaf Tekna.
In short, the ride is atrociously harsh compared to the summer tyres (Dunlop Enasave) they replaced. I've used All Seasons tyres before on previous cars (most recently Vredstein Quatrac 5) and they tend to ride a bit softer than the same size summer tyre - somewhere between a summer tyre and a winter tyre, as you might expect. I'm fine with that - I actually prefer a more comfortable ride to outright cornering grip for a daily commuter car like this.
So I was pretty shocked and disappointed at just how bad the ride is after fitting these compared to the summer tyres in the same size. I'm a big Michelin fan, my other (petrol) car has Michelin Energy Savers on it which ride GREAT and over the years I have bought lots of Michelin tyres and been very happy. But Michelin have dropped the ball on this one, and it pains me to say so.
Every tiniest line, crack or imperfection in the road crashes through the body of the car as if the tyres were solid rubber not pneumatic tyres. Potholes or recessed manhole covers feel so bad you think something is going to break. I don't think I've ever driven a harsher riding tyre in over 25 years driving. There is just no isolation from the road at all. It probably sounds like I'm exaggerating but really I'm not.
The tyres ride like they are massively overinflated at the correct 36 psi. To test this theory I've dropped them down to 33psi and they start to feel a bit more tolerable and more like a normal tyre with some isolation from road imperfections but even then they still ride a lot harder than the original summer tyre and this lower pressure may cause faster tyre wear. (But since I can't put up with the harshness at 36psi it will just have to stay like this)
If you care about ride comfort and don't like a harsh ride do not buy these tyres, you have been warned. While it's true that they might ride slightly better in higher profile smaller wheel versions, I suspect the real issue is that these are XL rated tyres on a car which is not heavy enough to require XL tyres. They have extremely stiff sidewalls which are nearly flat and barely bulge at all even at the reduced 33psi. In other words the sidewalls have no give and consequently don't provide any isolation from the road surface.
The second problem these tyres have is they are VERY noisy. Many reviews say they are quiet, but that is a lie. They are quite quiet at lower speeds when the car is coasting, yes. But as soon as you accelerate they make a loud "slithering" noise like an angry hissing snake which is proportional to the power you put down. It is more audible on smooth surfaces. Coast and they're silent. Accelerate and they hiss like crazy. They also hiss under stronger braking and cornering to a lesser degree. The Leaf only has 107HP so a car with more power would presumably make them generate even more noise under acceleration.
I suspect reviewers overlook this because they are usually driving in petrol/diesel cars where the engine noise when accelerating will drown out the high pitched "hiss" the tyres make under acceleration (and braking) loads, however in an otherwise quiet EV with no engine noise the hiss they make every time you put your foot down is quite loud and intrusive, and easily loud enough for passengers to comment on and ask what the source of the strange noise is. The summer tyres they replaced were absolutely silent under acceleration - only the G forces would let you know you were accelerating.
Another noise problem they have which has been reported on in some reviews is a weird buzzing noise which can be heard from around 50-70mph particularly on smooth motorway. This is supposedly a result of the V shaped tread pattern. It's not loud but in a quiet EV it is audible and very strange sounding. It sounds like you're on a motorway with grooves/ruts even when it's perfectly smooth, a sort of tonal droning noise. In a petrol/diesel car it would probably be drowned out by engine noise. If this was the only fault the tyres had I could live with it.
Now for the good points - wet grip is fantastic just as the reviews have said, and dry grip in hot weather is also very good, comparable to the summer tyre. Steering precision is good although not quite as direct as the summer tyre probably due to the flexible isolated tread blocks. Cold weather grip is also excellent - no loss of grip noticeable at 2C vs 15C.
I have not yet been through a winter with these so I cannot comment on their snow or ice performance, I presume their winter performance will be adequate and probably comparable to the Quatrac 5 I've used before.
Would I buy them again ? Not a chance. I could almost live with the slithering noise under acceleration if the ride was comfortable, but the harsh ride totally ruins the driving experience for me and actually makes me want to avoid driving the car. I seriously regret buying these tyres and replacing some part worn still perfectly usable summer tyres instead of picking up a second set of smaller wheels and putting some conventional soft riding winter tyres on them.
I drove Quatrac 5's all year round on my last car and had no real complaints with them except unusual tread wear patterns. But their ride comfort, snow, ice and wet performance were great and dry summer performance was adequate. (Although a little soft - I actually had to increase their pressure 2psi in summer, not reduce it like the CrossClimates!)
Once the winter is over I'll be getting a second set of wheels to put the most comfortable riding summer tyres on I can find so that I can start enjoying driving the car again, and through the winter I'm just going to have to run them at a lower pressure to make them tolerable.
Until manufacturers can start making non-XL rated All Season tyres in the larger sizes I think I'm going to have to stick to summer and winter sets of tyres. The loss in ride quality year round due to the XL rating just to get through a few days or weeks of snow just isn't worth it in my opinion.