Highway Terrain (HT) Tyres

Highway Terrain tyres are designed to offer the best in road travel conditions with good ride comfort, low noise and freeway speed durability and road handling. Many brand new 4WDs and especially the compact 4WDs are fitted standard with these tyres. Regular four wheel drivers often replace the original HT tyres with more specific offroad capability but in doing so you may compromise some road handling performance.
Article By: ExplorOz Team - Damian
Created: October 2006
Revised: March 2015
Latest Feedback: August 2013

HT Tyre Overview

HT (High Terrain) tyres are recommended for drivers who spend limited time off-road. These tyres have a shallower tread depth, which allows lower noise levels because there is less air passing through the tread grooves. This shallow depth also improves speed durability due to the lower heat generation. The shallow grooves may not be very good for a muddy trail however, it’s good enough to expel water on wet bitumen.

The tyres have thinner side walls when compared to other terrain types and this greatly improves ride comfort because the tyre casing is more flexible. The use of thinner belt wire also gives a smoother ride because the tread area conforms to the road surface much more easily.

Using HT tyres will limit your off-road driving capabilities. It's not that the tyre is incapable of handling offroad situations, however it will make obstacles such as sand and mud far more difficult to manoeuvre with ease.

HT Tyre Models

In this section we have introduced a short list of some popular makes/models along with a review. We invite you to submit reviews for any specific HT tyre that you would like included on this page by using the Send Feedback form below.

Cooper Discoverer H/T

Cooper offer six different Highway Terrain tyre options; H/T (Standard), H/T Plus, HT3 (Premium), CS5 (SUV Light Duty Touring), CTS (SUV Premium Touring), and Zeon XST-A (Premium).

This tyre has all the qualities of a passenger tyre including variable tread block pitch, which reduces noise on the road. The solid rib centre & close pitch shoulder rib improves steering response while also reducing noise, which according to Coopers means it will handle better than most other tyres.

Coopers also claim that their H/T belts are up to 27.5% stronger than most original tyres with latered tred gooves 67% deeper than comparable original equipment tyres.

Maxxis MA-751

The Maxxis MA-751 large tread block design offers excellent traction off road, while the all-season tread pattern delivers a smooth, commanding highway ride.

A heavy-duty sidewall provides excellent durability and long life. A solid construction maximises uniformity. A jointless spiral-wrapped full nylon cap adds strength and stability.

Toyo Open Country H/T

The Open Country H/T (Highway Terrain) is an RV tyre designed for users who predominantly use their vehicles on sealed roads. The Open Country H/T provides high levels of grip on wet or dry sealed roads, very low levels of tread noise and high levels of ride comfort. Suitable for mild off-road use. Excellent flotation on sand.

This tyre features wear resistant tread compound, wide circumferential shoulder ribs and square tread shoulder, multi-wave sipes on shoulder blocks, and wide circumferential tread grooves.

Bridgestone D689

The Bridgestone D689 highway terrain tyre is fitted as original equipment on many popular smaller recreational vehicles. It combines eye-catching looks with a modern, computer-designed tread pattern that provides excellent handling stability and sedan-like comfort.

Its all-season tread offers outstanding traction on dry, wet and even light snow-covered roads. The symmetric independent block tread design is extra deep, providing extended tyre life and traction. Construction-wise, the D689 features twin steel to stabilise the tread area and a polyester cord body to assist with cushioning the ride.

Yokohama G051 HT

Travel in comfort on the highway and motor with confidence on the back roads. The Yokohama G051 HT is a highway terrain tyre that claims to have versatility at its core.

There’s a lot to like about the way this tyre is put together: a uni-directional tread design promotes outstanding steering response, cornering and water evacuation, while large shoulder blocks provide strength to further enhance cornering.

The proprietary tread compound of the Yokohama has two key benefits: longer wear and excellent wet weather traction. Take a good look at the G051 when searching for the right combination of comfort and toughness.

Tyre Usage Tips

Once you've selected the optimum tyre for your driving usage whether it be HT, AT or MT, you need to understand some basic rules for obtaining maximum longevity from your tyre investment plus you need to observe some safety issues regarding tyre pressures when travelling.

Most tyre manufacturers recommend that 4WD tyres are rotated every 10,000km (check these specifics with your supplier as warranty conditions may be affected). Rotation is important in a 4WD vehicle because each tyre will wear differently due to breaking, cornering and weight distribution factors. If the vehicle operates in constant 4WD, all wheels are driving wheels, but if not, then whichever are the driving wheels (front or rear wheel drive) will also wear quicker. The more evenly your tyres wear, the longer life you should achieve. Obviously it goes without saying that tyre pressures should be regularly checked for the same reasons.

When travelling on dirt roads with a heavily loaded vehicle (usually adding weight above the standard vehicle's tyre-rated load capacity), a few important rules need to be observed:

To ease the comfort of the ride and to aid in traction on particularly bad corrugations, it is best to reduce tyre pressures about 4 -6 psi lower than what you run on the bitumen with this same load. Very stony country, such as the Birdsville Track, can handle even softer tyre pressures. This may not seem to make sense at first, but if you consider that your tyre is just like a balloon being bounced over sharp objects then you can see how the higher pressure would make it more prone to "popping" - termed by tyre manufacturers as stone fractures. This is most common reason for flat tyres occurring on outback roads and can be easily avoided by reducing tyre pressures.

It is also far preferable to keep speed constant and if possible around 85km/hr over corrugated roads (presuming the road is free from washouts and corners and it would otherwise be safe to do so). You will find that you can "ride" over the worst of the corrugations, provided your tyre pressures are reduced as suggested above. Any faster can be dangerous, slower and the corrugations may shake you and your vehicle to pieces. If handling of your vehicle appears poor, then a good look at suspension might be prudent. The best indication is "bottoming-out" when travelling as per the above suggested optimums. Most 4WD vehicles do not come with a suspension system that is rated to handle the load that is carried for extended trips (ie. water, fuel, supplies and spares). The correctly rated suspension-weight load ratio will also aid in improved tyre wear and longevity.

There is no perfect tyre or tyre pressure and a combination of speed and driver skill (plus a little bit of luck) will be the secret to minimising flat tyres and maximising tyre wear.

Tyre pressures are best checked when cool, because hot tyres give an incorrect reading. And don't forget that tyres on an off-road trailer can be inflated and deflated to suit conditions as you would your vehicle.

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