First Test: Bfgoodrich Rugged Terrain T/A
BFGoodrich, known known for off-road tires, has expanded to include more on-road truck tires, such as the Rugged Terrain T/A. Where other tires from this company are biased more toward trail use but are still acceptable on-road, the Rugged Terrain T/A is more road biased, but also does a good job in milder off-road situations. The Rugged Terrain isn't an official replacement for the Rugged Trail, but you will see the Terrain appear more as the Trail eventually gets phased out. These tires are more ideal for someone who is interested in mostly highway and daily driving, but doesn't want to have to change tires when heading to the backcountry. And even though they're designed more for on-road use than off, they have the aggressive look of an off-road tire. Features include tread clearing elements to help eject gravel from the tread, BFG's Equal Tension Containment System for durability on varying terrain, and a noise-reducing tread design.
We tested these tires near Flagstaff, Arizona, where most of our time was spent driving Nissan trucks on two-lane roads. The biggest surprise was that, despite its off-road appearance and tread pattern that wraps onto the sidewall, the tire is fairly quiet on the road. Along the route, we occasionally got off the highway and drove through mud, over ruts, and onto a mildly rocky path, and the tires did well through it all. This is a tire that can appeal to those who want the look of an off-road tire but seldom visit the trails, yet the Rugged Terrain is from BFGoodrich, so there is still plenty of off-road capability backing the tire's style. The Rugged Terrain T/A comes in 36 sizes, for 15- to 20-inch wheels. They start at $125 per tire.