This may help someone in the future so I’ll keep a running account of my tire buying experience.
I bought my Michelin Premier A/Ss from Costco. Thankfully they will take them back for a full refund, not just an exchange. They are so wonderful that I really wanted to stay with them. However their tire selection is pretty limited. I researched the heck out of all their options for the Quest and was not finding something that sounded right.
My new search focused on only minivan user reviews because clearly a top ranked tire for a car or SUV was not going to fit the bill. The Nissan Quest users are not represented in the reviews (in other words I could find none). So I moved on to Sienna and Odyssey reviews. There were more of those but they were not positive for the Costco offered tires.
The Goodyear Assurance ComforTred Touring had some good reviews on the tire review sites. And to my happiness it showed up with good reviews in the Honda and Toyota forums. I saw one review for someone who had bought it from Sam’s club and did not like it but Sam’s club exchanged it for the Michelin Defender (not offered in my tire size). Ah ha! A place that let you exchange across brands, just like Costco. Goodyear and their authorized dealers want to only let you exchange within a brand. I also checked prices and Sam’s club was competitive with only a $45 club join fee and they had a large selection of alternatives should these not work. They also ranked top for their road hazard guarantee and installation package. So I placed my order and they should be in within a week.
Consumer Reports ranking (in their 2015 buying guide) for the Goodyear Assurance ComforTred Touring is as follows:
8th in the Performance All-Season V-Speed Rated – actually the 7th, 8th and 9th scores were tied.
Full striped circle – snow traction, tread life
Half striped circle – hydroplaning, ride comfort, noise, rolling resistance
Plain white circle – dry braking, wet braking, handling, ice braking
Half black or full black – nothing
Is this what I would have chosen based in the ratings or the rep. of Goodyear? No. I have never heard good things about Goodyear tires but one cannot deny real users experience. The suspension system, weight, driving characteristics of the minivan are different than the BWM or other brand sedans that the tests use.
In about a week I will get the tires so will report on my experiences after that. I’m looking for a good soft, comfy ride, reasonable handling and enough snow traction that I can get up my driveway into my garage if it starts snowing while I am out.
I am comforted that the tire does the best in snow traction and at least middle of the line or better in all the other categories. It does nothing poorly which cannot be said of 4 of the higher ranking tires in it’s category. If you took those 4 out then this tire is ranked 4th, with the 2nd and 3rd place one not offered in my size.
The top ranked one Continental PureContact which I researched and found poor reviews for the Toyota Sienna, referencing loud, wander, rough riding, noisy. The reviews for the Goodyear included poor tread wear, traction and handling decent, low noise, good ride to about the 25K to 35K mileage mark, poor balance (meaning the tires need to be balanced). These were off the tire review sites. The responses on the user forums were overwhelmingly positive for the Goodyear Assurance ComforTred Touring. Another point in its favor is that TireRack lists it as the top suggested tire for minivans.