The Pirelli Scorpion ATR was once the critics' favorite all-terrain tire for SUVs and light trucks, but experts now prefer the longer tread life, better snow grip and more comfortable ride of the Cooper Discoverer A/T3 (*Est. $200) . Testers say either tire provides as much off-road traction as most SUV and pickup drivers will ever need, but the Cooper's tread lasts noticeably longer in an independent test. The Cooper carries a 55,000-mile tread-wear warranty versus 40,000 miles for the Pirelli.
Experts and owners agree that the Scorpion ATR isn't the best choice for icy roads, but that is typical for an all-terrain tire. The Scorpion ATR displays higher rolling resistance than the Cooper in one test, which can hurt fuel economy. Note that this tire is not designed for extreme off-roading; if you plan to go rock crawling or mud bogging, reviews say a mud tire such as the Goodyear Wrangler MT/R with Kevlar (*Est. $210) is a better bet.
ConsumerReports.org conducts the most scientific tests of the Pirelli Scorpion ATR, but testing is done on-road at their test track. Magazines for off-road enthusiasts -- including Four Wheeler and Petersen's 4Wheel & Off-Road -- take the Scorpion ATR into the mud and onto rocks for further evaluation. A reviewer at Canadian website Autos.ca tests the Scorpion ATR both on and off the pavement at a media event organized by Pirelli. We found more than 500 owner reviews for the Scorpion ATR at TireRack.com. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website publishes manufacturers' official ratings for tread wear, traction and heat resistance.
ConsumerReports.org compares the Pirelli Scorpion ATR with 12 other all-terrain tires. Editors rank the tires from best to worst based on expert tests of handling, braking, rolling resistance, tread wear and more.
Review: All-terrain Truck Tire Ratings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org
2. Four Wheeler
Four Wheeler magazine tests the Pirelli Scorpion ATR at a Pirelli-sponsored event in Nevada using several vehicles, on pavement and off-road. The tire proves relatively quiet, with better traction on dirt and rock than on sand and mud, according to author Jimmy Nylund.
Review: Truck Tires -- Tire Test: Pirelli Scorpion ATR, Jimmy Nylund, Oct. 2006
Autos.ca's Jil McIntosh tests the Pirelli Scorpion ATR at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway and a Pirelli-built off-road track, accompanied by expert tire dealers. She finds the tire very quiet on pavement, with excellent traction off-road -- even on a steep, muddy hill.
Review: Tire Test: Pirelli Scorpion ATR, Jil McIntosh, April 18, 2006
4. Petersen's 4 Wheel & Off Road
Petersen's 4Wheel & Off-Road tests the Pirelli Scorpion ATR -- though only off-road -- on more than one vehicle, finding traction better than average on dirt and rocks. Writer Rick PŽwŽ conducted the evaluation at Pirelli's Nevada launch event for the Scorpion ATR.
Review: Pirelli Scorpion ATR Tire -- A Tough Tire (For Town and Dirt), Rick Pewe, Feb. 2009
5. Tire Rack
The Pirelli Scorpion ATR earns sixth place among on- and off-road, all-terrain tires from consumers submitting reviews at TireRack.com. Owners say the Scorpion ATR performs well on- and off-road, although some downgrade its performance on snow and ice.
Review: Pirelli Scorpion ATR, Contributors to TireRack.com
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration requires manufacturers to test their tires for tread wear, traction and heat resistance, and to label the tires with these ratings. The Pirelli Scorpion ATR's tread-wear rating places it in the top 6 percent of tires. It gets an A for traction on wet pavement (the maximum rating is AA) and a B for resistance to heat.
Review: Tire Rating Lookup, Editors of SaferCar.gov