General Tire X3 and AT3 make an onslaught on the offroad market!
If you’re in the market for a functional aftermarket offroad tyre, the General Tire brand would almost certainly be on your shortlist. The American tyre company, now a subsidiary of Continental in South Africa has just shipped in the new X3 and AT3. Two perfectly suited tyres for the off-road crazy South African market. We look at the two new offerings from General Tire the X3 and T3 and discuss and feel the differences
The new AT3 is suitable for on and off-road applications. The manufacturer calls this a 50/50 tyre which means it’s ideal for 50% on road and 50% off road. On the N2 the tyre performed flawlessly with minimal roll or flex and even at higher cruising speed, the tyre performed much like any road tyre. On wet winding roads, grip levels were high and again, at least on par with much more premium, and costly OEM tyres that come shipped with new bakkies. Deflate the AT3 and you have a very capable tyre for off road conditions. Our off road course consisted mainly of dunes and loose sand and occasional mud tracks. AT3 compresses the sand rather well with its large flat track and at no point did the car feel uncomfortable, even when I forgot to change into 4LL mode in the less slippery parts of the course. Available in 15 to 20-inch diameters, it comes in 13 different sizes. An LT (light truck) option is available which is ideal for when bakkies are loaded regularly. They range between 15 and 18-inch.
AT3 has reinforced rib shields giving it a stronger sidewall and the many other enhancements over the old AT give claimed increases of 5% when it comes to noise and wear, 7% more mileage and a superb 15% increase in snow. Time to plan that Ceres trip for next winter?
If dune driving or weekend off road excursions is what you’re about, then the AT3 is a perfect after market option that won’t break the bank.
For hardcore off road enthusiasts, the 80/20 grabber gets through almost any terrain and for the wannabe off-road experts (read journalists) the grabber made quick work of mud, rocks, VERY steep sandy inclines and much more. This is the tyre that really does give the GT phrase, #anywhereispossible meaning. X3 is available in five sizes between 15 and 17 inches.
X3 uses a three ply system for added strength and makes use of new technology making the tyre much more cut and chip resistant. In muddy conditions, the open tread pattern disperses mud easier than before and the new block and chamfer notches create additional biting edges on loose terrain.
Compared to the grabber MT, the Grabber X3 has a claimed improvement of 5% on dirt, loose rock, and mud, while offering 10% higher traction on wet grass.
Noise levels are claimed to be 3% better on road. Although this tyre is not recommended for everyday road use, General Tire realizes that certain buyers will, in fact, use the tyre on road more than off-road and again, this isn’t recommended but increased strength for road use is engineered into X3.
Priced below the premium brands but offering specialied 4×4 technology from a company that knows a thing or two about offroading, the General Tire range is a must for the 4×4 hobbyist or enthusiast. For more technical information, have a look at the videos attached to this article.