The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is "legendary just in its short life in that it's showing up on a lot of super cars," says Matt Edmunds, vice president at Tire Rack. With ultimate traction and lap times, the Pilot Super Sport ranks at the top of numerous expert tests, outcompeting rivals in handling, comfort and wet-pavement performance. The Michelin even impresses race car driver Randy Pobst, who says it "really felt almost like a track tire."
Track favorite. Car and Driver names the Michelin Pilot Super Sport the best maximum-performance tire in its review, saying it has "the best balance of wet and dry performance we've ever experienced in testing." On the track, pro driver Woody Rogers with Hot Rod magazine says the Michelin Pilot Super Sport is "awesome at the front turn-in and under straight-line braking and acceleration but not as stable coming out of the apex, and it didn't perform well at lower tire pressures." Lap times are slower than rival tires from Dunlop, Hankook and BFGoodrich. "The Super Sport, which required more patience, might make a rookie driver nervous," says Hot Rod magazine.
Comfortable for its class. According to TireRack.com, the Michelin Pilot Super Sport's ride is better than comparable tires from Bridgestone, Goodyear and Toyo, though the Michelin lets "through a little more edge to the sharper and larger impacts." The one feature the editors would change is a "small improvement in ride comfort." The Pilot Super Sport demonstrates "less finesse and feedback" than a similar tire from Continental, says Car and Driver. Editors at TireRack.com describe tread and road noise as moderate, but owner reviews at the same site say Michelin's ride comfort is the best in the maximum performance class.
Excellent life span and warranty. High-performance tires are constructed out of softer materials to maximize grip, though this also leads to shorter life spans. The Michelin Pilot Super Sport stands out as one of the longer-lasting performance tires, with many owners getting 30,000 miles or more on one set. Michelin covers the Pilot Super Sport with a six-year, 30,000-mile tread warranty. Reviewers disagree on how fuel efficient these tires are. Two separate reviews by TireRack.com say the rolling resistance on the Pilot Super Sport is the lowest to maximize fuel efficiency, but a test from a leading consumer organization says rolling resistance is only average.
As part of their extensive tests on passenger tires, ConsumerReports.org evaluates 21 sets of high-performance ZR-speed-rated tires, including the Michelin Pilot Super Sport. The editors score each tire on a series of handling, performance and comfort factors.
Review: Ultra High Performance Summer Tire Ratings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, Not Dated
2. Car and Driver
Editors test nine maximum-performance tires for this test, searching for a set with the ultimate grip. They name the Michelin Pilot Super Sport as the best, above the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 and Yokohama ADVAN Neova AD08. Its wet and dry handling is especially outstanding.
Review: Monsters of Grip: Nine Summer-Performance Tires Tested, K.C. Colwell, July 2012
3. Motor Trend
Race car driver Randy Pobst uses a newer Ford Mustang to test out three sets of tires: OEM Pirelli Nero All-Season, Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 and Michelin Pilot Super Sport. The maximum-performance Pilot Super Sport has the most grip, with handling and performance that Pobst calls impressive.
Review: Performance Tires Explored on New Episode of The Downshift, Alex Nishimoto, Sept. 17, 2013
4. Hot Rod
The Michelin Pilot Super Sport places fifth (out of seven) in its lap times, with editors saying its steering takes a little more work and patience. On straight sections of the track, the test driver says acceleration and braking are outstanding.
Review: Traction Test - The Best 200-Treadwear Tires, Elana Scherr, Dec. 4, 2013
5. Tire Rack
Editors test the Michelin Pilot Super Sport alongside three other sets of maximum-performance tires -- Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position, Dunlop Sport Maxx RT and Yokohama ADVAN Sport V105. With high scores for handling, low tread noise and overall traction, the Michelin takes first place.
Review: Testing New Max Performance Summer Tires: Can the Latest Keep Up With the Greatest?, Editors of TireRack.com, July 12, 2013
6. Tire Rack
For its maximum-performance summer tire test, TireRack.com puts four different models through an extensive evaluation. The Michelin Pilot Super Sport ranks first overall, followed by the Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position, Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2 and Toyo Proxes 1.
Review: Testing Max Performance Summer Tires, Editors of TireRack.com, June 22, 2012