I had the intention of purchasing the Hankook Optimo for replacing the Firestone FR710 on my Malibu. I was told by two tire shops that Hankook does not offer the Optimo in the size that I needed, and that the Kinergy GT was Hankooks newer design inteded to replace the Optimo. Whether thats true or not, I do not know.
So far these tires are okay, but perform well as my summer only tire. The pro's are decent dry performance, decent ride quality and low noise.
The cons are below average wet performance when it comes to braking and acceleration. They seem to resist hydroplaning fairly well, which is surprising because they break traction easily when hitting the brakes hard, or accelerating hard from a stop on wet roads. I drove these one time in the snow, and you guessed it, they performed poorly. The tread design reminds me more of a summer tire than an all season.
For the price I paid, I cannot complain too much, but do not buy these tires if you plan to use them in snow/ice conditions, or in a region that gets a lot of rain. The old Hankook optimos performed better in every category. I hope to get at least 50,000 miles out of them, but at only 7,000 miles its hard to see how the tread is wearing without a guage.
These tires perform well when new. The problem is that after 30,000 miles the tread will be nearing replacement and noises/vibrations will grow increasingly worse. On my 2nd set after the dealership replaced the first set under warranty. Same problems with the first and second set. Alignment is fine. Wet and Snow traction is only good when the tires are relatively new as well.
I've had these on since November 2016 and drive roughly 100 miles round trip to work and back. I wish the rating system were more complex when rating winter tires on different road conditions because there are a handful of different types of weather conditions you will encounter in the winter. I will make an effort to rate these tires under different conditions you may experience. Along with my regular driving I make an attempt to do an unscientific in empty parking lots under different conditions.
Heavy Snow 4/5: There is no replacement for AWD/4WD, but these tires do well. Momentum is still key, but increased traction is noticeable.
Light Snow/Slush 5/5: Simply great.
Hard Packed Snow/Ice Mix 5/5: These tires really shine under these conditions.
Heavy Slush 2/5: Without the ability to get any grip from the road surface, these tires seem to struggle frequently in heavy slush during acceleration and turning.
Ice 2/5: While braking is slightly improved as well as turning at slow speeds, you cannot defy the laws of physics.
Warm Heavy Rain 2/5: The day that I installed these was after thanksgiving and we had an unusual 60 degree day with heavy rain. These tires perform poorly during breaking under these conditions.
I have mixed feelings about these tires and but when it comes down to it, they do perform better than all seasons in winter conditions. Ice and heavy slush will demand caution in any vehicle and these snow tires will not give you a big advantage in those conditions. Overall ride quality is great, handling is a little less precise but still very good. Cannot comment on tread life, but after 6,000 miles there is little to no noticeable wear. My fuel consumption has increased by 1-2mpg compared to previous winters.
I wish I could take back my old 5 year old tires and trade them for this brand. I also had an alignment done at the time of the installation of the new tires, so these sliding in wet conditions such as rain or snow is not due to the alignment; additionally I took my car in to the dealer because it's under warranty and they stated there's nothing wrong with the suspension, the issues with handling in wet conditions is due to the quality of the tires I chose