We like to give real-world testimonials on some of the most common tire offerings on the market for our trucks. Up next on the docket is a set from Toyo Tires. Only this time it is their widely popular Open Country C/T. What does a street-looking tire with some aggressive sidewall do on all sorts of terrain? Let’s find out.
The truck we’re going to be trying these out on is Project Tow Boat. Tow Boat is our ’11 mega cab Ram that features compound turbochargers, a built transmission, upgrading tuning, and suspension mods that allow us to tow anything safely. We set out to build the “ultimate tow rig” and this is what we’ve come up with.
The truck faces just about every terrain possible. When we’re out on the open road headed to a race, sometimes we face the rough highways. When we’re back home, going off-road is inevitable. Like most areas, we’re facing a lot of rain this spring which allows us to test tires on wet roads. But how do they do? Let’s find out.
Pulling The Cover Off
I heard about these tires quite a bit prior to getting a set. I knew these were more of a highway tire than anything else but when they arrived, I was surprised. These tires look way better than I expected. They have some serious tread, and the sidewall was surprisingly meaty. We headed over to Plaza Tire Service to get these puppies mounted up.
Once we got them mounted on our wheels and balanced we hit the road. Off rip, I was pleased that I couldn’t hear the tires. Even with the radio off, I could barely hear a buzz of noise. For those of you who hate tire noise, these tires could fit in your wheelhouse. This tread pattern maneuvered in and out of traffic with no issues and managed to keep traction even making turns probably too fast.
I whipped into the house and pulled into the yard to get a better look now that we had twenty or thirty miles on these and noticed the three-peak mountain snowflake 3PMSF (Three Peak Mountain Snowflake) symbol. That tells me that these tires feature the criteria to pass snow testing. These are what you would call severe snow service rated. We don’t get an astronomical amount of snow here in Missouri but it is nice knowing that we have a tire that can handle it.
Post Batte Analysis
The Open Country C/T is a commercial-grade tire that is supposed to offer strength, durability, handling, and traction for both on and off-road driving. I’ve put almost 1,000-miles on these tires since this testing has started and I can assure you, they are up for the task. I really like that the tires offer an aggressive sidewall in any off-road scenario but the best part of it for me is the fact that it offers such a comfortable ride on the road.
The package as a whole is awesome. Per Toyo, these tires use a tougher cut and chip resistance compound, 3-ply construction, and unique deeper tread grooves to ensure that these tires give you the traction and performance required in most off-road driving conditions. Other than mud, the most “off-road” that I’ve encountered since upgrading to these are some heavily graveled roads. When you think of gravel, especially with big nice trucks, some worry about the damage that can be done.
I was pleased that the capabilities of rock throwing for these tires are pretty low. I will not, however, say that they won’t throw rocks. If you’re into some really small gravel, once you hit the pavement, you will hear some dings. I mean, at some point you almost have to expect that from any tire with a larger than tiny tread width, right?
Comparing this to other tires, in the rock throwing category they get an A-. Next, we moved on to wet grass and mud. Tires that I have had in the past have kept me from ever having them again. I’ve been into a scenario where I have to get home and I’m literally hung up on wet grass. I won’t name names but there are tires out there that aren’t as good as advertised.
The Open Country C/T has earned yet another passing grade. I questioned their performance in mud with that highway style tread but believe it or not, they really work well. Now, I wasn’t “bogging” and didn’t have the truck buried but it was enough that I was able to see how these tires would react. I maneuvered through the tracks, never lost traction, and easily exited the property as needed. Once again, nice work, Open Country C/T.
Now that I’ve made it off of the mud, how do they handle wet roads? Regardless of where you live or whether or not you go off-road, driving in the rain is inevitable. A tire’s wet road performance is very important. I am pleased to announce that the C/T’s have earned yet another passing grade. Even with the compound turbocharged 6.7-Liter Cummins engine, these tires maintained traction in some pretty serious rain.
Simply put, I’ve run into traction and hydroplaning issues with other tires. When I hit rain-covered roads, I’ve had to really white knuckle and hang on to the rig. I’ve always had a meatier tire and I thought that that was what it was all bout. Well, now that I’m seeing that it isn’t always about the aggressiveness of the tread pattern but having a wide surface area making contact with the road, the C/T hits the mark.
Yes, it does offer that aggressive pattern but it also manages to still have a nice flat soft footprint that keeps these tires hooked to the ground even in the heavy rain. I’ve noticed in heavy rain you really have to try to break traction with these tires. I’ve had tires before where you casually leaving a stoplight can be too much because the tires really aren’t suctioned to the street well enough.
Unfortunately, after a night at the dragstrip, it had rained but I still needed to get the truck and trailer home. Even with a full load behind us, these meats managed to take off, turn, and stop with ease. For those of you out there who use a truck, these are a solid option in my opinion.
Size Availability, Pro’s, And Con’s
If you’re interested in a set of Open Country C/T tires, you need to have a 16-inch wheel up to a 20-inch wheel. Sizes range from an LT215/85R16 all the way up to a big boy 35/12.50R20. All of these tires feature a Load E rating, which for the biggest tires, gives you a capacity of 4,080-pounds per tire.
- Great on-road handling wet or dry
- Minimal tread wear
- Surprising off-road traction in gravel, mud, etc.
- Size Availability
As you can see, the con list wasn’t very long. I want to clarify why what’s there is. In this diesel truck industry, aftermarket wheels are becoming an absolute must. I mean, the first thing people do when they get a new ride is start specing out a new set of shoes, right? That being said, the popularity of the larger wheels is climbing.
Now, I understand that when you start reaching a certain wheel size, developing a tire that can fit that large of a wheel and still manage their everyday tasks can sometimes be tough. All I’m saying is 22-inch and larger wheels out there are starting to appear and they could be missing the mark. But, I also understand that there are more people out there with trucks with factory wheels (up to 20-inch on the newer trucks) that don’t need this availability.
I might just be acting like a stickler at this point, but I think most tires should be offered up to a 22-inch wheel. Again, just my opinion.
In my opinion, the Toyo Open Country C/T could tap into that “most popular tire” realm. It offers the rugged sidewall appearance, the highway-style tread that gives us that smooth ride, and they are offered at a competitive price. When I use these tires, I think of your Nitto Terra Grapplers, Falken Wildpeaks, and Toyo’s Open Country AT-III.
The self-cleaning ability these tires have is a huge plus, too. This gives drivers better handling, grip, traction on all surfaces as well as longer tread life. When talking about the demands of today’s light trucks and most four wheel drive owners, these tires hit the mark. I can honestly say they delivered a swell performance thus far.
For more information about Toyo Open Country C/T, or on any of their tires, head on over to the Toyo Tire website right here. For more tire testing, tech articles, product reviews, and event coverage stay tuned right here to Diesel Army. What are your thoughts on the Open Country C/T now? Do you think these would look good on your rig? Let us know in the comments below.