The first challenge was a very large tree that had fallen across the track many years ago and has been stacked with rocks on either side to allow vehicle access. It’s a pretty tough approach and the log is very slippery. We sent the Pajero over first with the AT51’s and it struggled to get over, but with a bit of effort made it over. The Amarok was next, and made it up onto the log easily with the MT tyres. However, we had a few less capable cars with us so decided to back out, having successfully mounted the log, proving the MT-71’s were up to the task.
The next challenge we set for these Mud Terrain tyres was some hill and rock climbs. We dropped the air pressure down a bit more for this test to give us more traction and climbing ability. I’ve set them at 20 PSI as the terrain on the side of this hill is quite steep. The rocks are also quite slick after the rain shower we’d experienced just before we arrived at the rock climbs.
The Amarok made it up very easily with the MT-71 biting into the sandstone and gripping extremely well. The Amarok’s traction control helped a lot, but the car has travelled up the rock steps far better than the other cars that are with us on the test.
The last test is to find some clay-based mud roads. Nothing like some red clay to thoroughly test a Mud Terrain tyre and we have found the perfect track with mud, clay and a decent hill to go down and return back up to make it even more difficult.
We sent the Pajero down first and straight away the AT style tyres clogged up with mud. In comparison, the tread on the MT-71’s cleared far better as we moved forward and they did not slide nearly as much on the slick mud surface.
The return trip up the hill was also done with ease in comparison to the Pajero with the AT-51’s with the Amarok performing far better on the MT-71’s. We also a had a few other 4WD’s with us and there’s no doubt that the MT-71’s made the climb from the bottom of the hill in the muddy conditions a breeze in comparison, which is what we were obviously hoping.
Conclusion: These are an excellent Mud Terrain tyre, probably the best we have driven on, with the added benefit of being very quiet and well balanced on-road. We thought they might be a bit slippy on wet bitumen, but they hung on extremely well. They also gripped exceptionally well under heavy braking, which means you could easily have them on your daily drive.
In terms of wear, we cannot give any prediction other than Kumho’s marketing which claims you should get at least 80,000kms from a set. Being such a new tyre in Australia, we couldn’t find any information on websites or other videos from any owners with facts on their wear performance.
We rate these tyres very highly and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them to any serious off-roader. We didn’t do any crazy tracks in the testing, and our 4WD is a standard VW Amarok. However, we are sure that a set the Kumho MT-71 tyres on a big, well set up 4WD rig would see it go anywhere.
In fact, we are so impressed that we’ve bought a few sets of the MT-71 for the OTD Safari Rally Vehicle… more on that later.
DISCLOSURE: The opinions and information provided in this story are completely our own and have not been influenced by the tyre manufacturer in any way. Kumho had no input into the content of the video or story. However, to be completely open and transparent, the author of the video and story has provided services to Kumho in a commercial arrangement.