The Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position is the runner up in Car and Driver's test. The editors say it "presents a great blend of wet and dry performance, plus it's quiet and provides a good ride." As a summer tire it has "no mind-blowing traits, just solid performance all around," says K.C. Colwell with Car and Driver magazine. TireRack.com experts say the Bridgestone "strikes a good balance between road manners and overall traction."
First-class wet and dry performance. The Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position is one of the fastest tires in our report -- able to reach speeds up to 186 mph -- though experts say this doesn't translate into first-place finishes on the track. Car and Driver's test drivers appreciate the Bridgestone's "steering precision as well as its nice combination of roadholding attributes." The Bridgestone's "second place in wet-braking and skidpad tests backed up our subjective feeling of high grip on the wet autocross, too," notes Car and Driver. In its test, TireRack.com says the Bridgestone "felt well-balanced and poised, with equal levels of initial steering response, cornering grip and drive traction."
Smooth and refined. "Among the four tires in our test, the (Bridgestone) Potenza S-04 Pole Position delivers a slightly more comfortable ride than the others," says TireRack.com. Car and Driver gives it second place overall in its comparison, but not because it excels in any one category. "The high finish can be attributed to it doing everything well, bolstered by its top score in ride quietness," says Colwell with Car and Driver. Not all professionals give the Bridgestone good marks for tread noise: One comparison by a leading consumer organization says the Potenza S-04 is louder than comparable models from brands like Pirelli and Michelin.
Short tread life. The Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position delivers the lowest miles per gallon in a tire review by TireRack.com, costing up to $67 a year more than a similar tire from Dunlop. A leading consumer organization also estimates only fair rolling resistance and tread life in its comparison. On TireRack.com, owners rate tread life as average for the maximum-performance category. Many say the Potenza S-04 Pole Position lasts about 25,000 miles, though a few owners report more than 40,000 miles from their set. Similar to summer tires from brands like Dunlop and Yokohama, Bridgestone includes a defect warranty (for up to 2/32-inches of tread life) but doesn't cover treadwear.
Editors test 21 models of ZR-speed-rated tires, including the Y-speed-rated Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position. They use a rigorous series of tests, rating each tire's ability to maintain traction across wet and dry pavement, evaluating ride comfort and measuring rolling resistance.
Review: Ultra High Performance Summer Tire Ratings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, Not Dated
2. Car and Driver
The Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position takes second place in this Car and Driver tire review, behind the top-rated high-performance Michelin Pilot Super Sport. It doesn't stand out in any single category, but has great performance across the board.
Review: Monsters of Grip: Nine Summer-Performance Tires Tested, K.C. Colwell, July 2012
3. Motor Trend
Race car driver Randy Pobst tests a series of original equipment, maximum-performance and extreme-performance tires in this video. He rates the Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position against the Michelin Primacy HP, saying it delivers an immediately noticeable improvement in speed and steering response.
Review: Performance Tires Explored on New Episode of The Downshift, Alex Nishimoto, Sept. 17, 2013
4. Tire Rack
This test from TireRack.com focuses on four models of maximum-performance summer tires: Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position, Dunlop Sport Maxx RT, Michelin Pilot Super Sport and Yokohama ADVAN Sport V105. The Bridgestone ties for second place with Yokohama, with editors saying it lacks a little in overall traction.
Review: Testing New Max Performance Summer Tires: Can the Latest Keep Up With the Greatest?, Editors of TireRack.com, July 12, 2013
5. Tire Rack
After testing alongside the Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2, Michelin Pilot Super Sport and Toyo Proxes 1, the Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position takes second place. Editors praise its handling and road manners, but say overall traction doesn't match the Michelin.
Review: Testing Max Performance Summer Tires, Editors of TireRack.com, June 22, 2012
6. Tire Rack
A few test drivers with TireRack.com have the opportunity to try the Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position following its debut. Their side-by-side test includes a set of the Pirelli P Zero on a test course. After their brief test drive, editors say the Bridgestone feels balanced and responsive.
Review: Potenza S-04 Pole Position Introductory Track Drive, Editors of TireRack.com, March 25, 2011
7. Tire Rack
About 140 owners review the Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position here. With an average rating of 8.7 out of 10, the Bridgestone is the runner up in a survey of the best maximum-performance summer tires. Owners say its stable cornering, dry traction and responsive steering are top attributes.
Review: Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position, Contributors to TireRack.com, As of April 2014