Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus vs Michelin Crossclimate 2


Both of these are unique grand touring all-season tires, where Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus is known for its superb run-flat capabilities along with increased year-round traction, and Michelin Crossclimate 2 for its winter performance. Let’s find a better tire for you here.

Chevrolet TrailBlazer
Both tires work great on Chevrolet TrailBlazer (especially XL ones).

Main Takeaway

So both tires have their pros and cons. The Crossclimate 2 excels in:

  • Dry Braking: Superior rubber-to-road contact.
  • Ride Smoothness: Softer rubber and deeper tread.
  • Winter Performance: Better handling in snow and ice.
  • Wet Traction: Efficient water expulsion, reducing hydroplaning.

Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus leads in:

  • Dry Cornering: Strong contact and traction during turns.
  • Steering Responsiveness: Stiffer sidewalls for sharper steering.
  • Noise Comfort: Thanks to its closed up shoulders.

Layout of Tread Pattern

Let’s start off with Michelin’s tire, which stands out with its distinct directional pattern, setting it apart from its competitor here.

Crossclimate 2
Crossclimate 2 comes with max speed rating of V.

The tire’s V shaped lugs can be divided in to two sections.

With the outer ribs, getting splitting up with slanted longitudinal cuts/grooves.

Since these groove join up with the lateral voids, they really help in overall water evacuation.

These shoulder blocks also feature thick lateral (linear siping).

And towards the middle, they get thinner, while the middle most area have wave-like pattern.

Speaking of which, this area forms the most rubber to road contact, where the interlocking block edges are much more packed up relatively.

The internal structure of the tire comprises a two-ply polyester casing, reinforced with two steel belts and a polyamide cap ply.

On the flip side, the Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus, while featuring a similar 5-rib structure, presents an asymmetrical tread pattern.

Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus
Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus offers sidewalls which are robustly built, enabling its run-flat design.

Now first off, the tire comes with Cooling Fin technology, as all lugs have reinforced foundations underneath.

This helps with heat dissipation, allowing for more tread longevity.

The tire is almost more pronounced in terms of voids, compared to Crossclimate.

And it doesn’t offer any interlocking siping (structure), and instead is seen with a balanced blend of linear and lateral biters across both internal and outer ribs.

Though the outer shoulder ribs are a little more packed up, and more streamlined, due to their continuous running designs.

Internally, the tire is constructed with a two-ply polyester casing, supported by two steel belts and a nylon cap ply.

Sizes Measurements

Both tires have slightly varying sizes and specs, especially in terms of their weight, tread depth and available rim sizes.

SpecsMichelin’s TireBridgestone’s Tire
Rim Size (inches)16 to 2216 to 19
Speed RatingsH, VH, V, W
Load RatingsSL, XLSL, XL
Tread Depth (32″)10.5 (all sizes)9 (all sizes)
Tread Warranty60k miles65k miles
UTQG Rating640 B A640 A A
Detailed ReviewCrossclimate 2 ReviewDriveGuard Plus Review
Out of both tires, only Michelin’s tire offers 3PMSF rating, I explained it further in the winter performance section.

Dry Braking

Dry braking measures the tire’s straight-line grip, which is influenced by a lot of factors, such as tread composition, the area of rubber in contact with the road, tire weight, and rolling resistance.

Now given these considerations, it can be explained why the Crossclimate 2 takes the lead here.

Simply put, it just offers a better rubber to road contact, particularly form its middle (tread area), which I should add, is the most important factor, when it comes to braking.

The tire comes with a very well-engineered rounded contact patch, with interlocking central lugs, all providing the needed bite, fort stopping relatively quicker, (as seen on averaged tests).

In-fact the tire outperforms all other tires (in its category), in terms of longitudinal traction, getting the spot in my list of top grand touring tires. See the list here:

Dry Cornering

Cornering performance largely depends on the tire’s shoulders, since they maintain the most contact with the road during turns.

Now don’t want to teach physics here, but this has to do with centripetal force.

Having said that, Bridgestone’s tire takes the lead, as it offers shoulder lugs, which maintain a strong contact with the road during turns.

The tire basically has continuous-running outer (shoulder) ribs, so it’s able to provide you with uninterrupted contact with the ground, leading to superior lateral traction.

Moreover, due to the tire’s run-flat technology, its able to provide you with stiffer sidewalls, allowing for a more direct and sharper steering responsiveness, compared to Crossclimate 2.

Though the difference between the two tires is very low, I should add. This is because Michelin’s tire here has the edge of lighter construction.

Ride Smoothness

The quality of a tire’s ride is directly linked to its ability to absorb and smooth out road irregularities. This largely relies on the tire’s design and the composition of the tread material.

Now here the Michelin Crossclimate 2 clearly takes the lead, as it’s crafted with a softer (thermally adaptive) rubber, and offers a greater tread depth on average, (meaning there’s more room for road imperfections to flat down).

On the other hand, the Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus does the opposite. It’s a stiffer rubber, with tread depth of 9/32″ (on all its sizes).

And with it’s run-flat design, you also also get pretty firm internal construction too, especially around its shoulders and sidewalls.

And needless to say, this rigidity hampers its ability to effectively absorb road vibrations, (especially when the tire is turning, where it feels very jittery).

Winter Performance

When it comes to winter performance, both boys here offer distinct characteristics, in terms of their handling/acceleration and braking performance (on both icy and snowy conditions).

But still, we have a clear winner here, the Michelin CrossClimate 2, which offers better overall performance and comes with 3-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) rating, unlike its competitor.

So what makes this tire better? Well, there are a lot of factors, but let me go through some important ones.

  • The tire offers thermally adaptive rubber, allowing it to operate below 7 °C, (or 44.6 °F), unlike its counterpart.
  • It comes with snow vices, and thick plus shaped siping towards shoulders, which combined with tinnier sipes, and interlocking (wave-like) ones (in the middle most), provide greater and more efficient snow-to-snow contact, allowing for superior ice and snow performance.
  • It’s directional tread pattern, with swooping lugs, scoop out the snow/slush, throwing it back and generating excellent forward momentum, or acceleration.
  • It’s tread is relatively narrower, and its construction is heavier. Both these put pressure on the snow, trapping them in, again adding to the snow-to-snow contact, enhancing grip.
  • And lastly, it’s features a rounded contact path, and simply put, this allows for excess snow to be channeled out, so the tire doesn’t get itself packed up with snow.

Now the Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus is missing with most of these features, so the tire really lacks here, especially when it comes to icy terrains, (I mean it’s still okay on soft/powdery snowy roads).

Wet Traction

In the world of wet traction, efficient siping design (on the tread) is the key.

Sure, they seem like mere slits, they actually pretty important.

Here’s how they work: Sipes contain air, and as they make contact with the surface/ground, that air gets expelled, creating a negative pressure behind. And this action then draws in water particles, which are then dispersed (out) as the tire rolls over.

So for optimal wet traction, a tire should possess abundant siping, and these sipes should be sufficiently flexible to produce effective suction.

Having said that, the Bridgestone’s tire, despite its generous siping, doesn’t fully deliver on this front. And that’s because of it’s more rigid rubber compound, resulting from its run-flat technology.

This rigidity hinders the sipes from effectively drawing in and expelling water, compromising its wet traction abilities.

In contrast, the Crossclimate 2, with its softer tread, allows its sipes to function more efficiently. Its interlocking central siping enhances braking, and while the linear sipes on its shoulders (although could be refined), still outperform those on the DriveGuard Plus.

Moreover, Michelin’s directional tread pattern is already doing most of the work, as it throws out more water through it’s V shaped swooping lugs, leaving less burden on sipes, to begin with.

So in conclusion, the Crossclimate 2 excels in both, offering superior resistance to hydroplaning and enhanced wet traction.

Tread Life

How long a tread would last depends on tire’s rolling resistance, it’s overall composition make-up and tread depth.

But what makes, each of these factors important?

Well, rolling resistance is self-explanatory, while in terms of composition, harder rubber compounds tend to last longer, as they are less prone to wear.

And greater the tread depth, the longer the tire would take to reach down towards replacement levels (though too much tread depth also increases rolling resistance, ironically).

Having said that, it can be explained why both tires showcase similar tread longevity overall.

Simply put, the Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus is heavier, but comes with a stiffer rubber composition. So it only wears with the same rate as seen on Crossclimate 2, which although comes with a softer compound but has greater tread depth and lighter weight.

How is that important?

Well with lighter weight, lugs are pushed down with smaller force, and with greater tread depth, the tire takes just as long to reach down to 2/32″ (legal tread depth limit in US), despite being softer.

As a result, both tires offer comparable longevity. And this can be guessed, looking at their treadwear warranties, which differ only slightly, with the DriveGuard Plus offering 65k miles, and the Crossclimate 2 coming up with 60k miles.

In a Nutshell

Let me share the distinct pros for each tire, which can make your final call easier, up to your likes and the driving scenarios you encounter.

For dry braking, the CrossClimate 2 leads with its superior rubber-to-road contact, though the Bridgestone’s tire edges still ahead in overall handling.

In wet conditions, the Michelin’s tire takes the lead in both departments though (I mean both in wet braking and handling), but where the tire truly sines is in winter performance, thanks to its thermally adaptive rubber.

Lastly, tread life is comparable for both tires; the DriveGuard Plus’s heavier weight and stiffer rubber balance out against the CrossClimate 2’s softer compound and greater tread depth, resulting in similar longevity.

2 thoughts on “Bridgestone DriveGuard Plus vs Michelin Crossclimate 2”

  1. Good article. These two tires by comparison are different tires in general. It all comes down to if you want run flats or not. In my situation, I had no choice. My van came stock with run flats. Of course I can ride with regular tires but it voids the warranty unless I go buy a spare tire and physically keep it in the trunk… ridiculous

    • Yes you’re right. I was actually getting a lot of email regarding these two tires in general, so decided to compare them anyway. And yes its weird what you shared about the warranty.


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