The Open Country H/T is the understated younger sibling of the Open Country A/T and M/T, whose aggressive yet highly street-friendly off-road designs helped change the way we look at tires. According to Toyo, the all-season H/T balances optimal comfort, quiet performance, and sure handling in city and open-road driving. It is designed specifically for light trucks, SUVs, and crossover vehicles, and is available in a wide range of OE sizes.
Open Country H/T features include a stability rib in the shoulder area and a symmetric, non-directional tread design. The latter enables cross rotation and both reduce irregular wear. There are also two deep grooves to evacuate water, and full-depth, multi-wave sipes that continue to increase all-season performance even when the tire is well-worn. Variable pitch tread blocks reduce noise generated between the road and tire.
The mild-treaded H/T and its improved siping should look intriguing to anybody who spends most of his or her time on the highway, yet wants a tire that is fairly competent in the dirt. We were intrigued, so we headed over to New Century Tire in Westminster, California, and mounted up a set of P275/65R18s on our well-worn but still easily balanced 18x9 OZ Wheels and installed them on our equally well-worn 1997 Ford F-150. The looks of our truck were instantly improved, as the H/T is aesthetically pleasing, foregoing the bells and whistles offered by most tires as of late for clean, simple sidewalls.
The funny thing about testing tires is that the better they work, the faster you forget you're testing. With the Open Country H/T, we forgot nearly instantaneously. This extremely well-mannered tire was like night and day compared with the old tire. There was no noise. There was zero tracking. The ride was extremely soft, yet the tires were extremely stable under hard cornering, especially considering their 32-inch height.
Luckily for us, we had some extremely rainy days during our test. Because we knew about the siping technique, we pushed the H/T a little harder than we normally would. Again, the tires exceeded our expectations, over and over again.
Next, we tried our luck off-road. A few sandy trails and hills later, we were still impressed, almost to the point of boredom. It took a series of bowling ball-size rocks and later some extremely wet sand to lose traction and finally set the limits on the H/Ts.
After plenty of drive time with more than favorable results, combined with all the technology that goes into making the Open Country H/T a long-lasting tire, we would recommend this tire to anyone looking for something on the OE range of sizes.