Deciding between a cheap brand and a premium brand is easy. It all comes down to your budget and your expectations for quality. However, what happens when you want to decide between two premium brands?
That brings us to the main topic of this article, BFGoodrich vs. Michelin. Both brands design and manufacture world-class tires, both brands have a rich history, and both brands have the loyalty of thousands of satisfied customers.
So how do you choose what is the best tire brand for your case?
Hopefully, after reading the detailed comparison we have put together, you will be prepared to answer that question.
BFGoodrich vs Michelin
BFGoodrich was founded in 1870 in Akron, Ohio, by Dr. Benjamin Franklin Goodrich as the "Goodrich, Tew & Co.” In its humble beginnings, the company manufactured mainly rubber hoses. However, by 1880, the “B.F. Goodrich Company” was eager to diversify into new markets. This is how Goodrich's vision led the company to become North America's first tire manufacturer.
Moreover, Charles Cross Goodrich, son of Benjamin Goodrich, went further by creating the first tire research center in the United States. His passion for developing high-performance products paid off when in 1903, the first car to cross the United States from east to west, the Winton Touring Car, used BFGoodrich tires.
Other notable achievements include the use of BFGoodrich in the "Spirit of St. Louis,” the first aircraft to make an uninterrupted transatlantic flight, or the use of BFGoodrich tires in the Columbia space shuttle in 1977.
Over the years, the brand became one of the world's leading tire manufacturers, to the point of merging with one of its rivals, Uniroyal, in 1986. However, BFGoodrich's enormous interest in chemical operations and aerospace products & services motivated the company to sell its entire tire business a few years later. Thus, in 1989 the French tire manufacturer Michelin acquired the "Uniroyal-Goodrich Tire Company" and relaunched the brand as "BFGoodrich.”
Today, BFGoodrich has a huge catalog of products ranging from high-quality tires for daily use to ultra-high-performance tires for passenger vehicles and extreme off-road applications.
Like BFGoodrich, Michelin, the second largest tire manufacturer in the world, had quite humble origins. By 1889, the brothers Édouard Michelin and André Michelin founded their first rubber factory in Clermont-Ferrand, France. The Michelin brothers’ natural talent led them to patent in 1891 the first removable pneumatic tire in the world, which was one of its many contributions to the industry.
By 1934 Michelin once again showed off its innovation by introducing the first run-flat-tire to the market. Years later, in 1946, Michelin patented one of the largest advances in the automotive sector to date, the radial tire. More recently, in 2019, Michelin unveiled Uptis (Unique Puncture-Proof Tire System), the airless tire, a disrupting technology that negates any risk of punctures.
Even though Michelin has had some setbacks throughout history (like the famous strike in Michelin's Thuân-Loï rubber plantation in 1930), It has managed to establish itself as one of the most recognized brands in the world, this thanks to its high-quality products and its famous mascot, Bibendum (The Michelin Man).
Today, Michelin manufactures tires for various applications, including space shuttles, aircraft, cars, heavy equipment, motorcycles, and bicycles, all through its multiple brands, such as Kléber, BFGoodrich, Kormoran, Riken, Tigar, Uniroyal, and Camso.
It is normal to wonder what differentiates one company from another. In the following table, we do a general review of both Michelin and BFGoodrich.
Most BFGoodrich tires are made in the US; however, the company also has factories in Canada and China.
Where Are Their Products Made?
France, Serbia, Poland, Spain, Germany, the US, the UK, Canada, Brazil, Thailand, Japan, India, Italy, and several other countries
BFGoodrich, using independent design and engineering teams from its parent company Michelin.
Who Manufactures Their Products?
Michelin, through its own factories around the world.
Michelin North America., Inc owns BFGoodrich since 1989
Who Owns These Companies?
Michelin SCA is a public traded company (ML) with a free-float of 93.8%
Over 150 years
How Long Have They Been Around?
Over 130 years
All BFGoodrich tires have a Standard Manufacturer’s Limited Warranty against defects in workmanship and materials. This warranty is valid for the life of the original usable tread or for 6 years from the date of purchase (whichever occurs first). Also, many tread designs come with a limited mileage warranty.
What’s their Warranty Like?
Michelin tires have a standard warranty consisting of a 60-day satisfaction guarantee and 3-year 24/7 roadside assistance. Additionally, all OEM ties from 2011-2017 have a standard limited warranty and limited mileage warranty for treadwear.
What BFGoodrich Does Better Than Michelin
Despite belonging to the Michelin group for more than three decades, BFGoodrich has remained independent from its parent company in two key aspects, tread design and engineering. This has allowed BFGoodrich to stand out in two very profitable market niches, tires for high-performance vehicles and tires for serious off-roaders.
BFGoodrich Product Catalog
BFGoodrich’s main focus is producing tires for passenger cars, light trucks, UTVs, motorsports, and commercial light trucks. However, the company also has a separate division dedicated exclusively to commercial heavy trucks and agricultural applications.
It is worth noting that from all its catalog, the brand favors two of its best-selling lines, ultra-high-performance tires (specifically the g-Force COMP-2 A/S) and off-road tires for all-terrain (All-Terrain T/A K02 and Rugged Trail T/A).
- Passenger cars: BFGoodrich manufactures tires for seven categories, including extreme performance summer, ultra-high-performance summer, ultra-high-performance all-season, standard touring all-season, performance all-season, grand touring all-season, and racetrack & autocross.
- Light truck & SUVs: BFGoodrich manufactures tires for five categories, including crossover/SUV touring all-season, highway all-season, on/off-road all-terrain, off-road maximum traction, on/off-road commercial traction.
- Heavy truck: Currently, BFGoodrich has five lines of tires focused on commercial heavy trucks and agricultural applications such as coach/bus, highway, on/off-road, regional, and urban.
In the case of BFGoodrich's social networks, we can see how these align perfectly with their best-selling products. Around 90% of the posts are dedicated to adventure and off-road lovers, while the remaining 10% have to do with racing/high-performance applications.
- Facebook, over 1 million followers.
- Twitter, over 48k followers.
- YouTube, over 34k subscribers.
- Instagram, over 278k followers.
These indicators are usually based on verified reviews of users who have had problems with the product. It happens in every industry, so don't expect to see 5-star ratings very often.
- Better Business Bureau (BBB): BFGoodrich scored 1.17/5 (6 reviews). It is important to note that this score does not actually correspond to BFGoodrich but is shared between the brands that make up the Michelin group.
- Consumer Affairs: BFGoodrich scored 2.1/5 based on 222 verified reviews.
Brand Quality Standards
BFGoodrich has always stood out for maintaining high-quality standards in all its products. After its acquisition in 1989 by Michelin, this aspect has not changed. On the contrary, BFGoodrich currently exceeds the strict quality standards of both the United States and the European Union.
As we mentioned before, BFGoodrich has an incredible standard warranty that is valid for the tread life, or 6 years (whichever occurs first). Additionally, the premium tire lines also come with a limited mileage warranty. In our opinion, this gives BFGoodrich an advantage over Michelin, especially for drivers who are constantly on the road.
BFGoodrich stands out for its high-performance and off-road tires, two categories in which Michelin also has excellent products to offer. However, if we had to choose in which of these categories BFGoodrich beats Michelin, we would not hesitate to choose off-road tires.
This is not to say that BFGoodrich’s high-performance tires are a bad choice. Quite the opposite, they are top-notch. However, Michelin is the undisputed leader in that market niche.
In short, it is our opinion that if you are looking for high-performance or off-road tires, BFGoodrich will not disappoint.
What Michelin Does Better Than BFGoodrich
As you will see shortly, Michelin has a much broader product portfolio than BFGoodrich. This should not be surprising given that Michelin is constantly contending with Bridgestone for the number one spot as the world's largest tire manufacturer.
Nevertheless, Michelin excels in a greater number of categories than BFGoodrich, including ultra-high-performance tires, high-performance tires, and luxury sedan tires.
Michelin Product Catalog
As mentioned before, Michelin has a huge catalog of products. In addition to manufacturing tires for passenger cars, light trucks, ATVs, and SUVs, Michelin also produces tires for F1 racing cars, MotoGP, heavy trucks, agriculture, construction, industrial, large RV, tweel, and more. In short, Michelin manufactures tires for just about any type of vehicle you can think of.
Despite its enormous diversity of tires, historically Michelin has always emerged as a leader in the categories of Max Performance Summer tires (Pilot Sport PS2, and Pilot Super Sport), Grand Touring All-Season tires (Pilot HX MXM4, Energy MXV4 S8, Primacy MXM4), Ultra High-Performance All-Season tires (Pilot Sport A/S 3+), and Passenger All-Season tires (Energy LX4, Energy Saver A/S).
- Passenger cars: Michelin manufactures tires for twelve categories, including extreme performance summer, max performance summer, ultra-high performance summer, ultra-high performance all-season, high-performance all-season, standard touring all-season, grand touring summer, grand touring all-season, passenger all-season, studless ice & snow, performance winter/snow, and street track & competition.
- Light truck & SUVs: Michelin manufactures tires for seven categories, including street/sport truck summer, crossover/SUV touring all-season, highway rib summer, highway all-season, on/off-road, light truck/SUV studless ice & snow, and light truck/SUV performance winter/snow.
- Other applications: Michelin also manufactures many products for light-duty, racing, aerospace, and industrial applications, including motorcycles, freight transport, heavy-duty industrial vehicles, and more.
As you might expect, Michelin has a larger follower base than BFGoodrich, surpassing the latter by as much as 5x in some cases. However, the posts are more oriented to environmental responsibility, technology, high performance, and luxury cars.
Brand Quality Standards
All tires marketed by Michelin are produced using premium materials and state-of-the-art manufacturing processes. Moreover, Michelin invests millions in the research and development of new products and materials, which keeps the brand ahead of its competitors.
That said, Michelin products benefit from these advancements before BFGoodrich, which partly explains why Michelin tires tend to be more expensive.
The guarantee offered by Michelin is exceptional. The 3-year roadside assistance is really convenient; however, BFGoodrich’s warranty on the tread life / 6-year may be more attractive to the average driver.
Michelin is a brand with a rich history in the tire industry. Its strengths have always been the tires for luxury cars and high-performance applications, including sports cars and Formula 1. In this sense, if you are looking for grand touring or high-performance tires, there is no doubt that Michelin can offer you more options than BFGoodrich.
However, Michelin's undeniable advantage in quality, performance, and technology comes with a higher price.
BFGoodrich vs Michelin: Similarities
While it is true that Michelin and BFGoodrich share some traits, this is not because they belong to the same corporation. The truth is that BFGoodrich maintains healthy independence in the design and engineering of the tread of its tires, which has allowed it to develop its own personality, very different from that of Michelin.
For this reason, it could be said that the similarities between the two brands have more to do with the fact that they both share an enormous passion for the key aspects that we discuss below.
- Durability. Both Michelin and BFGoodrich tires are manufactured using cutting-edge technology and top-quality materials, resulting in long tread life.
Offering tires with enormous durability has been part of both companies’ mission since their inception, so it is not surprising that today it remains one of Michelin and BFGoodrich’s highest priorities to exceed current industry standards. In that sense, most of their tires come with thicker tread, stronger sidewalls, and premium rubber compounds.
- Safety. Another value shared by Michelin and BFGoodrich is the emphasis both brands have on passenger safety. In fact, it could be said that their tires’ durability and robustness are the results of such concern for safety. This passion for safety is evident in the tread design, which considers factors such as hydroplaning, high-temperature behavior, road contact area, and more.
- Performance. Both Michelin and BFGoodrich tires are perceived as high-performance products. And for a good reason. Both brands have a long history in motorsports, so striving to design and manufacture high-performance tires is part of their DNA.
BFGoodrich Products vs Michelin Products
While we have already mentioned the niche markets in which Michelin and BFGoodrich excel, so far, we have not made a direct comparison of the best tires from each manufacturer. That is exactly what this section is about.
We will face the best of Michelin vs. the best of BFGoodrich in the three categories where these brands lead the market, Ultra-High-Performance summer tires, Light Truck (on-road) tires, and All-Terrain (off-road) tires. Ready to discover the winner in each segment?
High-Performance Summer: BFGoodrich vs Michelin
The first market niche that we will analyze is one of the most exciting of all, ultra-high-performance tires. These are the tires that you expect to find on sports cars and muscle cars alike. They are designed for drivers who are passionate about driving their cars to the limit and need tires that allow them to take full advantage of their engines’ power.
BFGoodrich: G-FORCE SPORT COMP-2
BFGoodrich G-FORCE SPORT COMP-2 tires have all the necessary attributes to improve any sports car’s handling and brake performance.
The directional pattern and the special silica compound used in this tire allow it to have an extraordinary dry grip, which translates into phenomenal handling, almost on par with Michelin's PILOT SUPER SPORT.
Moreover, BFGoodrich's Performance Racing Core (PRC) and ETEC (Equal Tension Containment) System give it incredible stiffness, contributing to excellent lateral stability. However, the similarities to its Michelin counterpart end there.
Despite their advanced design, the BFGoodrich G-FORCE SPORT COMP-2 does not provide the same results as the PILOT SUPER SPORT on wet roads, nor do they compare to the latter in terms of comfort. In our opinion, these are the ideal tires for sports car owners who know the limitations of the G-FORCE SPORT COMP-2 but are only looking for a dry performance similar to Michelin tires at a lower price.
Michelin: PILOT SUPER SPORT
There is no doubt that Michelin’s PILOT SUPER SPORT is a high-end product. Proof of this is that they were selected as the OEM tires for the fastest road car ever, the limited-edition Ferrari 599 GTO.
From a performance point of view, they outmatch their competitor BFGoodrich's G-FORCE SPORT COMP-2 in all departments, wet performance, dry performance, and comfort. However, the question to ask is, are they worth the price difference?
If you own a super sports car or a luxury sports sedan, the answer is most probable yes. Michelin PILOT SUPER SPORT tires deliver ride quality and noise levels unsurpassed in their class, not to mention unmatched grip regardless of the road conditions.
But what about drivers looking for a less expensive alternative that doesn't sacrifice durability or safety? Wouldn't the BFGoodrich G-FORCE SPORT COMP-2 be a better option? Our vision is that this is the main difference that separates both products. Michelin is the ideal option for those looking for quality and performance without compromise, BFGoodrich on the other hand, provides enviable performance levels at a lower price point than its counterpart.
Light Truck (On-Road): BFGoodrich vs Michelin
Let's move on to a more mundane category, tires for light trucks and SUVs. Which one do you think will be the winner in this category? When it comes to vehicles like Ferrari, BMW, or Mercedes-Benz, the price may not be a problem, but it can make a big difference in this category. Let's take a look at the contenders.
BFGoodrich: ADVANTAGE T/A SPORT LT
If you drive a light truck, SUV, or crossover, then this tire may be what you have been looking for. The BFGoodrich ADVANTAGE T/A SPORT LT provides all the benefits you can expect in one product. They have an all-season tread with a symmetrical design that facilitates regular tire rotation, provides incredible durability, and their grip on dry, wet, and even snow roads is unrivaled. But that is not all. They are cheaper than their rival, the Michelin LATITUDE TOUR HP. All in all, you can think of the BFGoodrich ADVANTAGE T/A SPORT LT as the ideal option for anyone looking for the best all-season tires for daily driving SUVs, crossovers, or light trucks.
Michelin: LATITUDE TOUR HP
After reading how amazing BFGoodrich ADVANTAGE T/A SPORT LT tires are, you may be wondering, what is the point of considering another alternative?
In principle, the answer has to do with the type of driver to which each tire is aimed. Michelin LATITUDE TOUR HP wheels are designed for high-end SUVs, crossovers, and light trucks. In fact, they are the OE tires of Acura, BMW, Lexus, Porsche, and others. While its grip is inferior to its counterpart (especially in the snow), one deciding factor cannot be overlooked—the speed rating.
Most of the tires in the BFGoodrich ADVANTAGE T/A SPORT LT line offer a “T” speed rating (118 mph / 190 kph) while almost all the LATITUDE TOUR HP line comes with an “H” speed rating (130 mph / 210 kph). That may not be a problem for someone driving a Honda CR-V Touring. However, if you are the owner of a Porsche Cayenne, that difference may be all you need to make a decision, regardless of the higher price of Michelin tires.
All-Terrain (Off-Road): BFGoodrich vs Michelin
At this point, Michelin has shown its leadership in tires for Ultra-High-Performance vehicles, while BFGoodrich has excelled in tires for everyday light trucks and SUVs. The next category is as complex as it is interesting, off-road tires.
These are the kind of tires you expect to see on pickup trucks and SUVs like the Ford F150 Raptor, the Toyota 4Runner, or the Jeep Wrangler. Tires within this category should have an extraordinary capacity to withstand the harsh conditions of the toughest trails in the world. Who will be the winning brand?
BFGoodrich: ALL-TERRAIN T/A KO2
If you love outdoor adventures, then BFGoodrich ALL-TERRAIN T/A KO2 tires need no introduction. This is the second generation of one of BFGoodrich's most iconic tires. The ALL-TERRAIN T/A KO2 provides unsurpassed traction on basically any type of terrain.
The exclusive design of its tread and its sidewalls make these tires one of the most robust on the market. If you are looking for one of the best off-road tires, then the BFGoodrich ALL-TERRAIN T/A KO2 will not disappoint. They offer incredible On-/Off-road traction in addition to an incredible wet, dry, and snow grip performance.
Michelin: LTX A/T 2
Even though they belong to the same category, Michelin LTX A/T 2 tires are designed for a very different type of driver than ALL-TERRAIN T/A KO2. Instead of focusing on designing a tire ready to face the most demanding trails, Michelin opted for a tread that enhances traction on dirt, mud, gravel, wet grass, and snow while keeping a reasonable ride quality. Moreover, Michelin LTX A/T 2 tires are made of a compound that reduces tread wear.
In other words, the LTX A/T 2 offers good off-road performance and excellent wet and dry performance, not on the same level as BFGoodrich, but good enough to satisfy off-road enthusiasts. These tires definitely stand out over the ALL-TERRAIN T/A KO2 in terms of comfort and durability, two aspects in which they slightly outperform its counterpart.
Throughout this article, we have emphasized the elements that characterize both BFGoodrich and Michelin. On the one hand, BFGoodrich focuses on developing the best On- / Off-road tires on the market while also offering one of the best high-performance tires you can get.
On the other hand, Michelin shows off its enormous resources to offer the best ultra-high-performance tires, as well as premium tires for trucks, SUVs, and crossovers that favor comfort over other aspects.
All in all, BFGoodrich is a brand aimed at drivers who love adventure and performance at a reasonable price. At the same time, Michelin has a well-defined premium brand personality, focusing its efforts on providing the best driving experience possible.
People Also Ask
Are you curious to know more about Michelin's cute mascot? Well, you are not alone. In this section, we answer the most frequently asked questions related to this popular character.
What is the Michelin Man's Name?
Michelin's official mascot’s actual name is Bibendum (also known as Bib, Bibelobis, or simply The Michelin Man). Its name comes from a Latin phrase "Nunc est Bibendum" (now is the time for drinking) extracted from one of Horace's most famous poems, also known as the "Cleopatra Ode''.
Why is the Michelin Man White?
Bibendum (The Michelin Man) was created by the French cartoonist Marius Rossillon around 1898. At that time, the tires had a white-gray color since it was not until 1912 that carbon was incorporated into the rubber formula, giving them the appearance they have today.