Product review: Cooper Discoverer AT3.
I have a confession to make: after nearly three years and 30 000 km, my Mud Terrain (MT) tyres have yet to see mud. Don’t get me wrong – it’s moerse fun to drive through the gooey stuff (especially in someone else’s 4x4), but the fact remains that mud is highly abrasive and damaging to a 4x4. Mud penetrates your 4x4’s U-joints, CV-joints, ball joints and tie-rod ends, wearing these components down prematurely. It’s also an overlander’s worst nightmare and it should be avoided at all costs when you’re miles from nowhere – or from the nearest helping snatch strap. So, I guess the obvious question is: why did I fit MTs if I wasn’t going to use them for their designed purpose? Well, though I haven’t tackled mud, I have gone off-road plenty of times, on rock and sand, where they performed really well. But, if I had to be perfectly honest about why I fitted MTs in the first instance, it was because they look bloody awesome!
Of course, there’s the age-old debate about whether MTs offer an overall increase in offroad performance, when compared to ATs. I’ve certainly found that my MTs never let me down; however, I’ve always wondered if they were, indeed, much better than a good set of ATs. Conveniently, I will soon be able to answer that question. Sometime last year, Cooper Tyres launched their new Discoverer AT3 tyre; they’re particularly proud of this new all-terrain tyre and they’ve now asked us to give them a try. So, with tears streaming down my face, I recently stripped off my vehicle’s MT tyres and lent them to a mate of mine, while a set of Cooper AT3s were fitted to my Jeep. The question I’ll be keeping in mind is: Are ATs the logical choice for most off-roaders, or are MTs still the best by far?
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