Michelin Pilot Super Sport Review: Max-Performance Summer Tire
The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is Michelin’s Max Performance tire built for drivers who care about how tire technology enhances their vehicle performance. It delivers durability, handling, and traction while increasing tread life.
It was originally designed as an OEM for some of the world’s most sophisticated performance vehicles, including the limited-edition Ferrari 599 GTO, Ferrari’s fastest road car.
Even after more than a decade on the market, this Michelin product continues to rank among the most popular performance tires among owners of sports cars. And the reason? Outstanding performance.
In this guide, we’ll go over all of its impressive features and performance in various conditions so you can decide if it’s the right one for your vehicle.
- Best-in-class handling and cornering grip on dry roads
- Excellent wet surface traction
- Super-short braking distances on dry surfaces
- Highly responsive
- Smooth, comfortable, and refined ride on pavement
- Extended treadwear warranty
- Average wet grip
- Poor snow performance
Michelin Pilot Super Sport Review: Design Features and Technologies
The Pilot Super Sport is designed to offer the highest level of handling precision, improved braking capability, and long tread life. Michelin has included several cutting-edge features and technology into this tire to help it achieve these goals, including:
A race-inspired bi-carbon tread compound moulded into an asymmetric design. This rubber tread comprises a dry compound inspired by the Le Man’s racetrack and a wet compound inspired by the tire’s inboard shoulders.
The low void outboard employs a track-type compound to endure strain and stress during high-speed turning. In contrast, the notched center ribs and inboard shoulder use a compound intended for exceptional performance on wet roads and hydroplaning resistance.
The Pilot Super Sport’s internal construction features dual belts that are strengthened by spirally coiled Twaron strands. This material is perfect for tire reinforcement to improve high-speed handling, wear, and longevity.
Using FAZ Technology (Filament at Zero Degrees), the cord is then wound around the tire’s circumference in a manner akin to how a fishing line is wound into reels, enabling Michelin engineers to adjust the cable’s tension and tensile strength.
With this technology, Michelin makes the tire lighter by up to 10%, enhancing handling and performance.
Lastly, Michelin Acoustic Technology is available in limited sizes of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport, which involves the manufacturer adhering a layer of sound-absorbing foam to the inner liner of the tire to reduce cabin noise in the vehicle.
Michelin Pilot Super Sport Review: Performance
Maximum-performance tires are designed to provide improved driving responses, particularly in dry conditions. These tires will allow your vehicle to respond to driving inputs quickly.
Furthermore, these tires are made with softer rubber, improving grip and cornering performance while providing a smoother driving experience.
Given that the Michelin Pilot Super Sport is marketed as a summer performance tire, this level of performance should be expected. So, does it live up to the hype? Let’s find out.
The PSS performs admirably on the dry tarmac after reaching its optimal temperature. Its high-speed stability is also among the best in the class, outperforming more modern competitors. Meanwhile, grip levels are exceptional, and the braking distances are short.
This tire, regardless of its age, is also very easy to control and provides granular feedback from the road, even when pushed to the limit. Overall, its dry performance is outstanding.
The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is not the best performer in wet and slippery conditions. However, it delivers reliable handling, and its braking, traction, and grip are impressive too.
The PSS is not intended to be a winter tire. It is designed specifically for use in dry conditions. If used, its tread compound will become extremely hard in freezing temperatures, resulting in significant traction loss.
So, if you own a high-performance vehicle and live in an area that experiences severe wintry conditions, you should use a dedicated UHP winter tire.
Comfort and Road Noise
The Michelin Pilot Super Sport provided a smooth and refined ride as well. Even at higher-than-average speeds, the ride remains smooth and quiet the entire time.
However, the Michelin Pilot Super Sport tends to lag behind some of the other tires in its class.
Considering that this tire is more than 10 years old, this is to be expected as more recent UHP tires have more advanced features and technologies.
Michelin Pilot Super Sport Warranties and Guarantees
Treadwear warranty: 6 years or 30,000 miles. Half the mileage coverage if you use different sizes in the rear than in the front.
Uniformity Warranty: 1 year or the first 2/32 inch of wear
Materials and workmanship warranty: 6 years and include free tire replacement during the first year or first 25% of wear. Michelin prorates out the amount for the remaining period down to the final 2/32 inch of tread depth.
Manufacturer’s special warranty: 30-day satisfaction guarantee and a 3-year flat tire changing service
Michelin Pilot Super Sport Review: Vehicle Compatibility
The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is available in various sizes ranging from 17 to 22 inches to accommodate most sports cars and performance vehicles. The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is compatible with the following vehicles:
- Acura: RSX, TL, TSX, NSX, ILX
- BMW: 740i, M3, 335i, M5, 328i, 550i, Z4, X2, X6, X1, X3, X4
- Cadillac: CTS, CT6, ELR, CT4, ATS, XTS
- Chevrolet: Corvette, Camaro, Malibu, Cruze, Impala, Cruze Limited, SS
- Ford: Mustang GT
- Honda: Civic, Accord, S2000, HR-V, CR-Z
- Infiniti: G37, M35, M56, Q60, M37, Q50, Q70
- Mazda: RX-8, Mazda3, MX-5
- Mercedes-Benz: S65 AMG, C300, E63 AMG, SL500
- Mini Cooper: S, Mini Cooper Paceman, Mini Cooper Countryman, Mini Cooper Clubman
- Mitsubishi: Lancer
- Nissan: 350Z, GT-R, 370Z, Juke
- Pontiac: Solstice, G8, GTO
- Porsche: 911, Cayman, Boxster, Spyder, Taycan
- Subaru: Impreza WRX, Legacy
- Volkswagen: R32, Beetle, GTi, Tiguan, Golf, Jetta, Golf Alltrack, Golf SportWagen,
- Audi: A3, A4, A5, A3 Quattro, A4 Quattro, A5 Quattro, A6, A5 Sportback, A7, A6 Quattro, A8, Q3, RS5, RS7, S5, S3, S4, S6, S7
- Kia: Stinger, Forte5, Forte, Rio, Forte Koup, Optima, Niro, Soul
- Buick: LaCrosse, Cascada
- Lotus: Evora GT, Evija, Evora
- Hyundai: Sonata, Elantra, Veloster, Accent, Genesis, Veloster N, Elantra GT
- Toyota: Corolla, Avalon, Camry, GR Supra, C-HR
- Lincoln: Continental, MKZ, MKC
- Volvo: XC40, S90, V60 Cross Country, S80
Despite being more than a decade old, the Michelin Pilot Super Sport remains one of the best performance tires on the market. It has excellent wet and dry traction, good steering response, handling and stability, and a comfortable and refined ride. It also has one of the industry’s longest treadwear warranties in the category.
Overall, if you own a sports car, a sporty sedan, a sports coupe, or any other high-performance vehicle, the Michelin Pilot Super Sport is an excellent choice.
If you want more information on Michelin UHP tires, read our review on the Pilot Sport 4S.Back