Comparison between the Michelin Defender 2 vs the Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus tires

By blackcircles Canada | Tuesday 18 October 2022 | BlogOn the road, Comparatif

All-season tires are evolving at an astounding speed, constantly integrating increasingly efficient technology. This year, Pirelli is offering an all-new model while Michelin has renewed its Defender! Find out more about the Michelin Defender 2 vs Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus.

Blackcircles Canada presents this comparison between these two new all-season tire models, now available on the market, in order to help you choose your next set.

Are your perhaps looking for a set for the upcoming cold season? Do not hesitate to take a look at our winter tire buying guide!

How do the Michelin Defender 2 vs Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus compare?

The first element the Michelin Defender vs Pirelli P4 have in common is, of course, the category they fit into, since both are all-season tires. They are also generally suited for the same types of vehicles, with a few differences.

On the one side, the Michelin Defender is specially made for:

  • Touring vehicles
  • Minivans
  • SUVs
  • Crossovers

Moreover, it also includes some specifications that make it an ideal model for electric vehicles as well.

On the other side, the Pirelli tire is best suited for touring vehicles (sedans and coupes) as well as minivans. Dimensions vary from 15 to 18 inches, and it comes with T, H and V speed ratings.

As for the Michelin tire, dimensions have been modified for this newest generation, and now range from 16 to 20 inches, with even more available dimensions to come for 2023 for SUVs. Only one speed rating (H) is offered for the time being.

Another aspect they share in common is the fact that both of them have a symmetrical tread. This tire profile is mostly known for the flexibility and stability it offers. The tread design does vary on both, obviously.

Despite these common attributes, we can also quickly notice a few differences between the two. This means that one or the other may be better suited to your vehicle due to size or speed rating, amongst other things. For both tire models, manufacturers aim at offering a durable and comfortable tire option.

Michelin Defender 2: specifications

With the arrival of the newest generation, the Michelin Defender 2 tire adds several innovations to its design, like:

  • An improved sculpted design;
  • The MaxTouch 2.0 technology;
  • The 3-D SipeLock technology;
  • The EverTread 2.0 rubber compound.

PIANO technology is also part of the lot; it is a redesigned block concept focused on reducing vibrations in the tire interior. In short, it offers an optimized tire that provides you with a smoother and quieter driving experience, for the whole duration of the tire’s life.

Amongst the changes that were made, there is also a new sculptural design. On the one hand, the tire’s grooves and sipes are deeper, which has a direct influence on its lifespan, since this provides the tread with a greater endurance to wear before the tire needs to be changed.

On the other hand, the tread is even more solid. How does this help? It allows a greater capacity to handle heavier vehicles or even higher maximum torques. As we mentioned above, these tires are great for electric vehicles, and this is precisely why; electric vehicles have both a higher maximum torque and a heavier weight due to the battery.

The MaxTouch 2.0 technology also improves the tire’s lifespan, since it spreads pressure evenly throughout the tire body, for a more even contact surface with the road. We all know that a more even contact surface translates into more even tread wear. The EverTread rubber compound was also designed to increase durability.

When it comes to the 3-D SipeLock technology, it consists of gripping sipes that ensure greater traction levels in slippery conditions.

All in all, the newest Michelin Defender generation proves to be even more durable than those that came before.

Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus: specifications

The Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus is also new to the all-season tire market. Amongst other things, it includes:

  • High levels of silica in the rubber compound
  • Longitudinal central grooves
  • Reinforced shoulder blocks
  • Grooves with variable angles
  • Continuous central ribs

This tire with a symmetrical tread design stands out with curved grooves with various different angles, and which allow it to easily adapt to several types of conditions. They also evacuate water quickly and efficiently, making the tire much more resistant to aquaplaning. Moreover, central ribs and grooves provide you with improved control in slippery conditions.

As for the shoulder blocks, they have been reinforced for overall greater tire stability. Just as for the Michelin tire, you can expect a more even tread wear here as well, and a tire that is truly focused on offering superior durability.

Finally, it is made from a rubber compound with high silica levels, which provide it with several advantages, like:

  • A quiet driving experience
  • Greater fuel efficiency
  • Lower CO2 emissions

In fact, given the low rolling resistance this tire offers, it is really quite fuel efficient, which gives it an edge compared to its competitors!

Here too, we have a tire that is truly focused on durability, comfort and stability.

Choosing between the Michelin Defender 2 and the Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus

If you are looking for the best tire for you, both of these models truly offer loads of advantages. Between the features they share in common and their differences, how can you better tell the Michelin Defender 2 vs Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus apart, so as to make the best possible choice?

Firstly, both offer excellent durability and therefore, a long warranty. How do they achieve this? By optimizing the contact surface with the road, making it more even and, by doing so, improving traction levels as well.

On this note, tests done on the latest Michelin Defender tire generation have shown that it was significantly more performant in terms of traction levels and braking distances than its rivals. Even though the Pirelli tire is also very performant, braking distances are shorter than with the Michelin tire.

Good traction levels sometimes translates into greater rolling resistance, and yet this tire remains quite reasonable. However, this is where the Pirelli tire excels: compared to the Michelin, the low rolling resistance its silica tread compound offers allows you to save significantly on fuel.

Traction on wet surfaces is also great on both models, although the Michelin does prove a little more efficient on this subject as well.

When choosing a new tire, it is also interesting to consider warranties. So, how do the Michelin Defender vs Pirelli P4 compare?

With Michelin, the warranty has been improved for this generation: the Defender 2 now offers a 130,000 km warranty on tread life. Slightly superior, the Pirelli P4 warranty reaches up to 135,000 km.

Both offer a satisfaction guarantee, which is 30 days with Pirelli and 60 days with Michelin. They also both offer a Manufacturer’s Limited Warranty covering defects in workmanship and materials for 6- years from date of purchase. However, Michelin has an added advantage since it includes road side assistance with the tire purchase.

Comparing the driving experience

Road tests that were completed by experts like TireRack1 have also allowed to compare the driving experience both tires offer. But since the Defender 2 has not yet been tested, this data is related to the previous generation.

During these tests, the Michelin Defender came out as a tire with a sporty and reactive driving experience, especially during turns. Response was quick and maneuverability optimal. 

As for the Pirelli P4 Persist AS Plus tire, stability during turns was also excellent, although the overall driving experience was less sporty. On the other hand, it offers a smoother and quieter driving experience.

Both are truly neck to neck when it comes to the quality of the driving experience they offer, as well as noise levels. In both cases, they offer a quiet drive, which is a feature that is common to tires with a symmetrical tread.

So, when it comes to making a decision, it truly depends on your priorities. Are you, first and foremost, looking for a performant and reactive tire? Or rather a comfortable and fuel efficient tire?

The Michelin model offers greater performance, but prices are higher as well, ranging between $ 199 and $ 357. The Pirelli is less expensive: you can find some between $ 130 and $ 207 with blackcircles.

In short, your budget, the driving experience and the warranty are the three main factors to take into consideration, no matter if you are leaning toward one model or the other. And regardless of which one you have your heart set on, blackcircles Canada offers both and will be glad to guide you towards making the best choice for you!

About the Author

Similar articles