There is a endless world of options when it comes to off-road tires. There are small tires, large tires, all-terrains, mud-terrains, studded, 10-ply, and everything in between. It's easy to get lost in this world. This in-dept review will cover my thought process on why I choose these tires over similar competition and my initial impression for the first 20k miles.
When I bought my 2017 Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road the stock tires were still on the truck. These tires were one of the first things to go when I started to modify the truck to be a more off-road capable vehicle. Tires are the best quick and easy modification that can have the biggest impact on your vehicle. Even retaining the original stock size of the tire but upgrading to a larger ply or more aggressive pattern will yield great results off road.
Out with the old Goodyear Wrangler tires and in with the new General Grabber AT2. Tires were mounted and balanced at a local shop for $20!
Why did I choose the General Grabber AT2?
The primary reasons why I chose this tire were the self-cleaning somewhat aggressive tread pattern and cost. This tire is classified as a all-terrain tire so road noise will be significantly less than a more aggressive mud tire. Since about 80% of my current driving is highway I didn't want a excessively loud tire... at least not yet.
Looking at the tire specs below since this is a Standard Load tire. If I ever decide to add additional weight in the rear with anything such as a camper, I will need to upgrade this tire to a larger ply spec such as D which is a 8 ply tire.
I decided to purchase this tire from Walmart since they had the lowest price and the free shipping closed the deal for me. At the time of purchase, May 8th 2017, I was able to get 4 tires delivered to my door step for a grand total of $528. This price is great and I know any new tires/ upgrades will not be as cheap as this set.
While researching and reading reviews on this tire, I didn't find any major reports of issues with weak sidewalls or tread. Let's see if the reviews turned out to be truthful...
How did the tires perform?
On pavement & everyday highway driving these tires are great. There was hardly any noticeable noise difference from the stock Goodyear Wrangler tires. During wet conditions the large thread pattern does a great job of displacing that water from the tire's contact patch.
During our Big Bend National Park trip the tires were aired down to 18PSI to help the tires grip and cushion any sharp rocks & debris found on the trails. The tires had no issues in the dirt and rocks found in the several trails we ran during our visit. During our run of the Black Gap Road in BBNP, there were only a few spots where the rear diff locker was necessary but that was mostly due to loose rocks/ gravel. I didn't have a lot of weight in the rear of the truck so I doubt another tire in that same situation would have performed any better. During the entire Big Bend National Park trip we traversed approximately 150 miles of un-maintained gravel & rock roads with speeds up to 45 MPH. The General Grabbers did not experience one puncture or tire failure, which is rare these roads since they're notorious for creating flat tires.
Living in Texas there aren't a lot of public land to wheel around in. Often times if you want to go off-roading you have to visit a purpose built off-road park, the beach, Big Bend, or private land. Due to this reason, I've taken these tires to the beach plenty of times and actually had the opportunity to go to South Padre National Seashore a few months ago. This National Park has over 60 miles of un-incorporated beach front property. After mile 5, the sand transforms from pack-down and tamable to a deep-rutted soft surface. Tires and a 4WD system become critical after mile 20 since most visitors stop long before venturing out this far.
Once again the General Grabber AT2 did not disappoint. Even at points when there were no previous tire tracks on soft sand these tires continued to plow through and maintain traction. At the worst and deepest ruts I did notice a slight decrease in speed but the wheels kept turning and traction slowly increased back to normal after a dozen feet.
The General Grabber AT2 are a great overall All-Terrain tire with an unbeatable price. These tires are a much needed upgrade over the stock tires but still allow you to retain good MPG and minimal road noise. General Grabber did also release a third installment to this tire line, the AT3 which also has received great reviews. Which ever General Grabber model you decide to install on your vehicle, rest assured you are traveling with some of the best tires on the market.