Tires may seem like a simple piece of rubber, but they’re so much more than that. A tire is what separates your vehicle from the pavement, and when there is a hazard coming your way, you want to make sure your tire overcomes it safely. Today, shopping for tires is more than finding the cheapest replacement: you need to buy for the right tire for the job.
There are dozens of tire manufacturers on the market. Some companies like Goodyear and Cooper claim to be the best, while other companies like Lexani and Kenda claim to be the most affordable. While most companies hold true to their promise, Nankang Tires offers you a different promise. A pledge of affordable tires that perform just as well, if not better, than the best brands on the market.
Engineered and perfected over decades in Taiwan, Nankang has become one of the largest tire companies on the planet. They ship to over eighty nations, and their premium tires incorporate some of the best design features you can find. Not only do Nankang tires offer exceptional performance, but they bring that performance to you for under $500 per set on average.
Nankang tires have been around for a while, and the company offers one of the largest tire catalogs around. Featuring tires for almost every application, it’s difficult to shop with Nankang Tires and not find the tire you need. If you’re curious about whether or not a Nankang tire is right for you, read on. We’re going to take you through everything you need to know about Nankang tires.
- Nankang Tires History
- What Sets Nankang Apart
- Nankang Tires Design Features
- Nankang Tires Recognition and Sponsorships
- Best Selling Nankang Tires
- A List of Nankang Tires
Nankang Tires History
The history of a tire company makes all of the difference. When you look at a company’s roots, you can see how they developed into the company they are today. So, we’re going to take you through Nankang’s rich heritage.
Nankang Rubber Tire Corporation was established in 1940, and its first manufacturing plant opened up on February 25th, 1959. The company was started by a handful of engineers that knew a lot about rubber and how to craft it into high-quality tires. Many of the design features in early Nankang tires were inspired by Japanese design technologies at the time, which led to a lot of initial success within Taiwan.
The name of the company was based on the location of its first manufacturing plant in Nankang, Taiwan. While the company enjoyed short-term success in the Tawainese markets, growth was minimal until their second plant opened in Hsinfung. The second plant allowed the tire company to begin mass-producing their tires, and at the same time, their prices became more affordable. With two large manufacturing plants in operation, Nankang Tires focused on producing high-quality tires that everyday drivers could afford.
Some of the first tires that Nankang produced were tractor tires for farmers in Taiwan. These tires were a massive success and helped the company build recognition within their country. Also, Nankang claims to be one of the first companies to develop a radial tire. Radial tires are fairly standard in today’s market, but their radial-ply design was unique when they first came out. Radial tires offer better durability and performance at a lower cost.
During the 1940s and 1950s, Nankang Tires was in murky water. When the company was first created, it operated as a state-owned military company. Nankang produced rubber tires and worked on projects alongside the Taiwanese government for weapons of war. This went on for a few decades, but towards the end of the 1950s, the company became privatized and shifted their focus from war machines to automobiles. One thing that contributed to their success during the 1950s was a partnership with Yokohama Tires, which at the time was a brand most people were familiar with.
The company changed its name from the Nankang Rubber Tire Corporation to the Nankang Tire Corporation in 1959, and began to produce tires for any vehicle they could. With the freedom to grow, the company invested in a Chinese factory during the 1970s to help keep up with high demands. Demand was so high that by the late 1970s Nankang Tires was producing tires for most types of passenger cars, and even airplanes.
Thanks to their partnership with Yokohama, Nankang Tires was in a unique position to grow. Instead of producing rubber for everything they could, Nankang honed in on the passenger car market. For this reason, Nankang Tires never faced significant setbacks to their growth. Plus, with more money coming in from global markets, they were able to engineer cost-effective and premium tires.
Today, Nankang Tires has over 1,200 employees and over $280 million in total annual revenue. About 99% of their income comes from automotive tires, and about 35% of their business is done in the United States and Europe. These figures mean that Nankang Tires is here to stay, and as the company grows, so do their ambitions.
What Sets Nankang Apart
Nankang Tires is a unique company that offers one of the largest tire catalogs on the market. The company makes sure that the everyday driver is taken care of right alongside auto-enthusiasts. When shopping for tires, there are plenty of reasons to choose Nankang over the competition.
Japanese Design Influence
During the 20th century, Japanese tires were among the best being made. Even now, Japanese tires excel at cornering, hooking, drifting, and longevity. Nankang partnered with the Japanese company Yokohama Tires, and shared design features with them. In competitive markets, the blend of Japanese engineering and inexpensive rubber helped Nankang become a reliable and affordable company.
When you shop for the best tire, every company has something in common: they brag about being the best tires on the market. While some tire manufacturers keep this promise, others fall short. A straightforward way to determine whether or not a tire company is serious about this claim is to take a look at their customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction is generally made up of a blend between the company’s ratings and customer feedback.
Nankang Tires is one of the few companies that hold true to their claim, and the evidence is within their ratings. Based on Mavis Tire’s reviews, Nankang Tires, on average, typically boast high ratings. In fact, for most of their tire options, over 60% of the people that used Nankang tires said that they would repurchase them. Tires often receive a lot of complaints, because they’re a wear item, which means that anything over 50% is an indication that a tire company is trustworthy.
A Diverse Catalog
Every tire shopper has different needs depending on the vehicle and type of driving they’re doing. Tire manufacturers do their best to make sure that there is a tire for everyone, but the focus has shifted to all-season and touring tires over high-performance and off-road tires. Companies do this to make sure the everyday driver is taken care of.
Nankang Tires is one of the few companies that includes a vast selection in their tire catalog. Nankang has one of the largest tire selections on the market, ranging from light trucks, off-road vehicles, and passenger cars. For each of these vehicles, Nankang has specific tire classifications. For example, if you’re shopping for a winter tire for a Honda Civic, Nankang has a catalog devoted to those needs. This applies to all of Nankang’s tire lines, meaning you can find high-performance summer tires for both light trucks and passenger cars separately.
While this may seem standard, you’ll be surprised by how many companies lack this type of depth in their catalogs. More often than not, high-performance summer tires tend to be geared towards passenger cars over light trucks. Nankang understands that every driver has different needs regardless of their vehicle, which is why they maintain such a diverse catalog. In fact, Nankang even manufactures tires for motorcycles, trailers, and tractors.
In this day and age, tires cost a fortune. If you need a new set of tires, even for a replacement, the bill can run you well over $500. Nankang Tires leverages inexpensive Chinese rubber to keep their prices low while their engineers strive to maintain quality. The result is low-cost tires that perform better than most premium tires on the market.
While Nankang can easily compete with inexpensive all-season and touring tires, their prices are low for all of their products. Even if you need a high-performance summer tire or a track-ready radial tire, Nankang tires typically cost under $500 for a whole set. To accomplish this, some companies undercut quality, but Nankang tires are known to be just as good, if not better, than similar high-performance tires.
Every vehicle has different size requirements from the factory, and if you happen to use aftermarket rims, those sizes differ significantly. This situation can make shopping for tires a nightmare, and it’s often difficult to find the perfect fit. Nankang Tires adds to the value of their catalog by offering their tires in plenty of different sizes.
Most tire companies have sizes for their tires based on the make and model of a vehicle. For example, General Tires has tires ranging from 15 inches to 24 inches for most of their products. While those sizes are standard, Nankang offers a much more diverse range of size options for all of their tire likes. Instead of sticking between 15 inches and 24 inches, Nankang offers tires as small as 14 inches and as large as 30-plus inches. In fact, if you need custom tires, Nankang is open to working with you.
The warranty that’s offered with a tire is one of its most essential features. Companies tend to have different warranties, depending on the specific tire, so you want to make sure that the tire you shop for comes with some type of warranty. While many shoppers are quick to jump on a standard warranty of 40,000 miles, Nankang offers excellent warranties across their tires options. Nankang has two different types of warranties: their standard limited warranty and limited mileage warranty.
Standard Limited Warranty
Nankang’s Standard Limited Warranty applies to defects that occur within five years of a tire purchase. The warranty can apply for up to a total of six years from the date of production, and covers any defects in the tire’s material that led to accelerated tread wear within that time frame. If a tire fails, and it’s within the terms of the warranty, you’re eligible for a prorated replacement.
Standard Limited Mileage Warranty
Nankang also offers a standard limited mileage warranty that applies to select Nankang tires. The warranty covers between 40,000 and 50,000 miles of wear. If a tire wears evenly to 2/32 of the tread indicator before it reaches that mileage, you’re eligible for a prorated credit towards a replacement tire. The Nankang AS-1, CX668, and SP-7 tires all apply for a 40,000-mile warranty, while the Nankang SP-9 and AT-5 tires apply for their 50,000-mile warranty.
Nankang Tires Design Features
Nankang has been producing tires for decades, and while they used to mirror other companies, Nankang has their own innovations. Nankang tires feature unique tire designs that you can’t find elsewhere, so we’re going to take you through their unique design features.
The treads on a tire are arguably the most critical part. Different tread designs have been toyed with over the years, but there are a few specialized tread designs that are proven to work. For this reason, engineers at Nankang Tires discovered their pattern could enhance that tread life.
Depending on the type of tire, Nankang has a few different tread designs that it uses. In truck tires, Nankang uses wider tread gaps and thicker tread to ward off damage caused by debris, while high-performance tires leverage dual double grooves to improve traction on pavement. Nankang tires also feature either an asymmetrical or symmetrical tread design based on the application of a tire.
Asymmetrical treads means that one side of a tire is different than the other. For example, one side of a tire might have thicker treads than the opposite side. Asymmetrical tread patterns are generally used in high-performance summer tires to enhance a tire’s ability to corner and hook in harsh conditions. When the tread is uneven, while it may seem like a hindrance, it improves the performance of a tire in different circumstances. Nankang’s high-performance tires, and their all-season tires, are known for having asymmetrical tread designs.
Symmetrical treads are precisely as their name suggests; the treads are the same on both sides of the tire. Symmetrical treads are often reliable, wear down evenly, and work well for touring and high-performance situations. When a tire can wear down evenly, it increases the longevity of that tire. Symmetrical tread patterns also work well in high-performance track applications, but the conditions have to be perfect for optimal performance. Nankang track tires, and touring tires, tend to feature reliable symmetrical tread designs.
The handling of a tire is impacted by various factors that include weight, treads, size, and biting edges. Getting superior handling out of a tire is difficult, but Nankang found a way to provide excellent handling at a low cost. It all comes down to their biting edges, sipes, and angled shoulder blocks. Plus, every Nankang tire is tested by 3D imaging technology to meet engineering standards before it hits the shelves.
For all-season and touring tires, Nankang uses deep sipes. The sipe of a tire acts as a deterrent for water and reduces the chance of hydroplaning on wet surfaces. Even when Nankang uses light sipes on their high-performance summer tires, the sipes work efficiently.
For off-road tires, like the Nankang Mudstar M/T, Nankang uses micro-biting edges to increase the tire’s chance of hooking on unstable surfaces. With more biting edges, Nankang tires can remain on-track even when the track is nowhere to be found.
Shoulder blocks determine the angle that a tire can turn on. For handling, shoulder blocks play a crucial role in how sharp of a turn a tire can handle. For their high-performance summer tires, Nankang uses angled shoulder blocks that increase the tire’s ability to corner effectively.
Unique Tread Grooves
One feature that’s often overlooked is tread grooves. The grooves within treads may appear similar across most tires, but the size and depth of a tread groove plays a role in the performance of a tire. Thanks to superior testing and decades of development, Nankang knows how to design tread grooves with subtle details that enhance performance.
Nankang’s all-season tires have double grooves on the shoulders. The double grooves work by using two sets of straight grooves that make sure a tire maintains its balance. While two straight grooves are standard, double grooves provide twice the stability and support that a single set of straight grooves does.
Nankang’s all-season tires, like the SP-7, feature arc sub-grooves. Arc sub-grooves provide additional resistance against hydroplaning by creating a larger contact patch between the tire and a surface. When you have a larger contact patch on a tire, the tire can grab more ground, which leads to a reduced chance of slippage. The arc sub-grooves work in conjunction with deep sipes to disperse water that gets caught in the treads.
Noise Reduction Bars
The noise levels that a tire emits is dependent on the tread. While noise on the road may seem ordinary, Nankang has worked hard to develop sound reduction bars within the grooves of their tires. These bars work as a direct counter to the noise generated by a tire driving over a surface. Noise reduction bars also add weight to a tire to keep it level across uneven surfaces.
Silica-infused treads have become more prevalent in recent years, which is why Nankang uses the mixture of rubber and sand in most of their all-season and off-road tires. Silica-infused treads reduce the amount of rolling resistance that a tire has. When a tire has less rolling resistance, not only will it handle better, but the sound is reduced as well.
While the appearance of a tire doesn’t play a huge role in its performance, it’s nice to see a tire that enhances curb appeal. One area that Nankang excels in is off-road tire design. Tires like the Mudstar M/T have an aggressive tread pattern that improves the appearance of the vehicle it’s mounted on. For some, the presentation is half of the meal.
Nankang Tires Recognition and Sponsorships
It’s one thing to know that a tire is suitable based on its features, but great companies set themselves apart by getting recognized. Nankang Tires is a brand that’s accumulated a lot of recognition over the past decade through racing success and community-serving sponsorships.
Ford Motor Company’s Q1 Certification
Ford Motor Company makes sure that only the best tires are used on their vehicles. Motor companies often enter contracts with tire companies to supply OEM tires for their cars, and Nankang has become one of Ford’s most reliable tire manufacturers. The Q1 Certification, given out by Ford, is given to companies that maintain a high level of quality.
Tire Maker and Tire Run
Nankang made an exciting move in April of 2020 to collaborate with an indie game developer. The developer, King One Design, and Nankang Tires produced a mobile app that takes users through the process of tire creation and production. While the app is not the most exciting game of 2020, it’s unique that Nankang is partnering with an indie game developer to highlight the tire making process.
The other game, Tire Run, is a bit more exciting than Tire Maker. Tire Run allows you to compete in five different racing challenges, and each challenge educates you on the differences of various tread patterns. Both mobile games were designed to inform consumers about the tire making process and what to look out for.
The Fast and Furious Live
The Fast and Furious Live Show is an event inspired by the Fast and Furious movie franchise. The event includes 11 racers that put their vehicles to the test in a series of drifting, near misses, and plenty of action. While everything is rehearsed within the area before the show, the event requires durable tires that can handle harsh punishment on the track. Nankang was quick to sponsor the event, and even to lend some of their high-performance tires to the drivers. If Nankang tires can perform well in an event like this, there is no question that they’re high-quality tires.
The TÜV award is Germany’s SUV fuel efficiency award. The award is given out to tire manufacturers that exceed fuel efficiency expectations and help reduce humanity’s carbon footprint. Back in 2014, Nankang’s ECO-2+ received the award for delivering a tire that keeps more gas in the tank than other brands.
Best Selling Nankang Tires
Nankang Tires produces a lot of premium tires, but there are a handful that sell more than the rest. Nankang makes premium tires for a lot of different applications, so we were careful to include a diverse list of Nankang’s best sellers. If you’re curious about which Nankang tires are the most popular, read on.
Nankang SP7 Radial Tire
The Nankang SP7 Radial Tire is unique in that it offers a handful of Nankang’s best innovations. The tire features advanced grooves that work together to reduce hydroplaning in wet conditions, and for extra water evacuation, deep sipes are embedded within the grooves. While the Nankang SP7 Radial Tire offers enhanced traction, it doesn’t lack luxury features. The tire features a noise reduction bar that keeps road noises to a minimum, and the block tread design makes the tire durable. For light truck drivers that need stability for the long haul, the Nankang SP7 checks all of the boxes. In fact, Nankang even includes these tires in their 40,000-mile standard limited mileage warranty.
Nankang CX668 High-Performance Tire
If you’re shopping for a reliable summer touring tire, look no further than the Nankang CX668 High-Performance Tire. The tire leverages four straight grooves that excel at minimizing the threat of hydroplaning. For stability, the tire utilizes biting edges within the tread grooves to make sure your tire can hook on unstable surfaces. When shopping for a summer tire, you also want to make sure the ride is enjoyable. The Nankang CX668 High-Performance Summer Tire reduces the size of their sipes, without sacrificing performance, to make sure your journey is quiet. Nankang also offers a 40,000-mile warranty for their CX668 tire.
Nankang NS-25 High-Performance Radial Tire
The NS-25 is a unique tire. The tire functions as a high-performance summer tire, but it holds up just as well as an all-season tire. For drivers that love to have some fun with their vehicle, but don’t want to switch tires for the summer and winter seasons, the NS-25 is an excellent choice. The tire features a silica tread compound that reduces rolling resistance to enhance performance and a symmetrical tread design that enhances hooking, cornering, and sharp turns. Not only does the tire perform well, but it does so safely thanks to deep sipes that reduce the risk of slippage or hydroplaning.
Nankang SP-9 Cross-Sport All-Season Radial Tire
The SP-9 Cross-Sport is a true all-season tire that keeps its promises. The tire performers well during both the summer and winter, and makes life easy during tire rotations. When it comes time to rotate your tires, the SP-9 Cross-Sport can be changed to any wheel of your car thanks to an asymmetrical tread pattern. The tire also features deep sipes to reduce hydroplaning and angled tread blocks to enhance traction during turns and around corners. The SP-9 Cross-Sport is an excellent tire for shoppers looking for an efficient tire built to last.
Nankang Mudstar Radial M/T
The Nankang Mudstar is a monster of a tire. For off-road driving, this tire is second to none. The tire features aggressive tread blocks designed to keep your vehicle stable in the dirt, and open tread grooves reduce the risk of hydroplaning while maintaining handling. Not only does this tire perform well in the mud, but it looks aggressive. For light truck owners that love to have fun in the dirt, the Mudstar Radial M/T is a must-have.
A List of Nankang Tires
Nankang Tires is one of the largest tire manufacturers in the world, shipping to 80 countries. To meet high demands, Nankang mass-produces one of the largest tire catalogs available.
Competition and Track
Nankang AR 1
Extreme Performance Summer
Ultra High-Performance Summer
Nankang Sportnex AS2 Plus
Nankang Noble Sport NS20
Nankang Classe Premiere
Nankang CX 668
Nankang Eco 1
Nankang Eco 2
Nankang Eco 2 Plus
Nankang Econex NA1
Nankang Green Sport Eco 2
Nankang Green Sport Eco 2 Plus
Nankang N 729
Nankang NK Comfort Eco
Nankang Toursport 611
Nankang Cross Season AW 8 SUV
Nankang Cross Seasons AW6
Nankang N 605
Nankang NK 88 All Season
Nankang Ice Activa ICE 1
Nankang ESSN 1
Nankang SV1 Winter
Nankang Light Truck Tires
Ultra High-Performance Summer
Nankang ROLLNEX SP9
All-Terrain and Off-Road
Nankang Mudstar Radial M/T
Nankang ROLLNEX A/T5
Nankang ROLLNEX FT5
Nankang Activa SV 55
Nankang Ice Activa IA
Nankang Winter Activa WA1