Amidst all the major additions to the Michelin’s tire categories, defender and premier have been successful at catching the eye of the most audience, and most of the customers out there are confused about what to buy.
Are you also one of those? Are you also confused about which one could be a better choice for you? Well, you’re not alone. In fact, it’s quite confusing when a certain company releases two similarly looking products with a minor difference between them.
So, sit back and let me explain the differences to you in detail, which will help you make the best choice between the two. Let’s start without any further ado.
What’s the Difference?
Well, to completely get what’s the difference between the two, we will first need to go through each model in detail, and only then will we be capable of determining how they are different from one another.
Before diving into that, you need to make sure of one thing. Both of them are top-notch models and are great at delivering high quality around the calendar.
So, if you’re not an enthusiast or not fond of going into the details and just want a good quality all-season tire, going with either of these won’t affect you much.
However, for the more avid tire-stars, let’s dig a bit deeper to see what they have to offer.
Michelin Defender is one of the latest additions to the all-season tire collection and tops the models, especially when it comes to passenger cars or even minivans. Even though it’s a great all-purpose tire, but it is specifically great in terms of handling and tread life.
So, once you have bought it, you don’t need to worry about its long life or your safety during road trips.
The underlying technology used in the production of Michelin defender is IntelliSipe Tech, which is responsible for the amazing grip it delivers, that I talked about previously.
Not only does it increase the number of sipes in the tire, but it greatly enhances the contact force with the ground as well, which results in very efficient braking in addition to controlling.
Taking a look at the numbers, if you apply brakes at any given speed, your car will come to a stop on around 30 feet shorter distance when you compare to any regular tire. To be honest, this is a huge distance and can even be life-saving in some scenarios.
So, when I say the control is great, I REALLY do mean it with these tires!
While the grip of the tires on the road is already exceptional, there’s even more to it! On top of the additional sipes and the technology used, there have been raining grooves fitted on the tires as well, which is another top of the line technology.
What this essentially does is that it increases the resistance on the walls of the tire when the road is wet; this is referred to as the hydroplane resistance, in case you’re a specs nerd.
So, even if you want to drive relentlessly on wet roads in rainy seasons, that won’t be an issue as well. This makes the tire all-season in a very true sense, and you can drive freely without any fear of weather in your mind.
Now, another feature includes giving you a very comfortable and tireless experience throughout your journey. Well, this one is known as Michelin Comfort Control Technology.
What this essentially does is that it limits the noises and vibrations coming from the ground to a very minimal level that becomes pretty unnoticeable to you.
No matter what speed you’re driving at or what angle you’re turning the steering at, you will never be bothered by the unwanted noise or vibrations coming as a result of friction between the tire and the road.
Pretty amazing, right? Tires have never been manufactured with such a level of customer consideration in mind.
One last thing I wanted to mention before we jump to conclusions is that if you are using these tires, you will notice a very minimal level of road contact during acceleration, braking, or turning.
This is partially the reason why it is so easy to develop so many technologies with these and provide such a great experience.
The tread block rigidity is amazing. This automatically increases the life of the tire and the discomfort experienced during driving.
So, now we come to the section where we talk about the shortcomings of the tires. Well, every silver cloud has a dark lining, right? Everything great comes with some sort of disadvantages as well.
Well, the only thing I didn’t like about these tires is their performance in snow. Whether the snow is deep, icy, or frozen, these tires just don’t tend to have a firm grip over them and hence fail to provide a safe drive over snow, regardless of the snow’s conditions.
I know that there is hardly anything which is great on snow, but with these, I felt like the performance would be better, but it wasn’t.
So, even though I’ve mentioned these are all-season tires, they just don’t have the thing it takes to become the star even in snowy conditions. Hence, the only thing which could keep you from choosing this is this fact.
If you’re someone who’s particularly interested in performance in snow, you might have to take a look around.
Finally, it’s time to address the elephant in the room. Coming from the same manufacturer, this tire also delivers top-notch quality, and there’s hardly anything that we find missing from this tire.
In fact, there are some things about this tire that are completely surprising, and you would not be expecting them from it. Let’s see.
First off, let me make it extremely clear that most of the specs of both these tires are quite similar, and just as we saw with the previous one, this model also specializes in providing top drawer control and braking in most situations.
No matter the roads are clear or muddy, you will never face a problem with controlling the steering or braking. Also, the braking distance is minimal here, as well.
Coming to the comfort, you get a very smooth and quiet ride with these tires as well, again like the previous ones. Now, let’s talk about performance in a more detailed manner.
I talked about how Michelin Defender struggles on icy roads; well, we have good news here that Premier is actually noticeably better when it comes to slick roads as compared to the Defender.
The treads in these tires are specially designed to combat the surfaces at lower temperatures, such as ice. There is sunflower oil used in the treads for this purpose, and they are responsible for keeping the rubber of the tire soft and flexible.
This technology is really effective and helps a lot.
Another major and mart development in this model is that the grooves are designed in a way that they start to expand as the tire goes through wear and tear.
So, as your tire is aging, the performance doesn’t deteriorate, and the grip of the tire on the road stays almost the same as it was before.
This is a very smart move, and I haven’t been this much impressed by a manufacturer in a long time.
So, no matter how old the tire becomes, you will never feel the performance going down. Even after using them for, say, eight years, they will perform as good as new on all surfaces throughout the year.
So, when it comes to smart designing, there is nothing that surpasses Michelin Premier. You can count on them for delivering extreme performance, and even if you’re a rough driver who doesn’t take much care of the tires, these ones won’t be going old anytime soon.
So, we have gone through both models in detail, and while both are great in delivering all-season performance, there are certain differences between the two, which could affect your decision to choose the more suitable one for yourself.
If you know your requirements fully, I expect you would have already decided what’s best for you.
If you are looking for longer tread life, a more comfortable ride, and a great overall all-around performance, I wouldn’t doubt going with the Michelin Defender.
However, if you place consistent performance and going for high-speeds and extreme usage, Michelin Premier should definitely be your choice.
While they may not last as long as the Defender, their performance doesn’t deteriorate with their life, unlike the Defender. So, the performance will stay the same as long as you keep using them.