Bridgestone Dueler All Terrain AT002 Review


The Bridgestone Dueler All-Terrain AT002 is an appreciable option for those seeking an A/T option that balances on-road and off-road capabilities, with a few areas of improvements. Let’s check this tire out in greater details.

Bridgestone Dueler All Terrain AT002
Bridgestone Dueler AT002 sidewalls could be improved.

Tire Sizes

The Dueler All-Terrain A/T002 is available in an extensive range of 43 sizes, from 15 to 19 inches (rim), the caters to a diverse array of 4×4 vehicles.

  • Speed ratings: S, T and H.
  • Load ratings: Both standard and LT.
  • Tread depth: 11 to 14/32″.
  • Treadwear warranty: None
  • White lettered sidewalls on some sizes.
  • Also, all sizes carry 3PMSF and M+S markings.

Interesting Note: The tire lineup includes two sizes specifically designed for the Lamborghini Huracán Sterrato, complementing its high-speed all-terrain capabilities. These are the 235/40 RF19 96W XL RFT for the front and 285/40 RF19 107W XL RFT for the rear, each providing vehicle, with the unique performance requirements.

Key Takeaway

Overall, the Bridgestone Dueler All-Terrain A/T002 excels in:

  • Dry performance, offering impressive grip and handling.
  • Wet traction, effectively dispersing water and resisting hydroplaning.
  • Winter conditions, particularly in snow, due to its ample tread voids, and adhering rubber.
  • Noise reduction, ensuring a quieter and more comfortable ride.

However, it needs improvements in:

  • Mid-cornering handling, where the tire’s heavier weight and softer tread compound affect its balance.
  • Off-road traction in sandy environments, where its average performance could be enhanced.
  • Mud performance, with its narrower grooves and closely spaced lugs limiting mud evacuation.

Tread Design

Bridgestone Dueler All Terrain AT002 comes with a very on-road oriented 5 rib symmetric pattern.

Bridgestone Dueler All Terrain AT002
Bridgestone Dueler All Terrain AT002 offers a high silica composition, enhancing its road adherence.

The three central ribs, or block columns, of the tire feature narrower widths compared to the outer shoulder ones.

Here, the middle-most rib is distinctively designed with hexagonal-shaped lugs, complete with full-depth interlocking sipes.

Adjacent to this, the neighboring lugs are more aggressive, characterized by numerous offset edges and a greater number of sipes, along with notches that face towards the shoulders.

The shoulder lugs themselves are notably squared-off and larger in size than the central lugs.

Additionally, they are staggered, creating a unique pattern where they meet the sidewalls.

However, these blocks maintain a similar sipe design to what is observed throughout the tread.

Dry Performance

Highway driving necessitates a robust connection between the tire and the road to guarantee effective traction. However, off-road tires, characterized by their aggressive tread patterns, often require some trade-offs.

Nonetheless, the Dueler AT stands out admirably in this context, providing decent steering responsiveness, grip, and lateral stability. Let’s discuss them in greater details.

Overall Grip

Tire’s overall traction has two elements, lateral and directional grip. To accurately assess these characteristics, it’s important to examine both the central tread area and the edges.

The central tread area is indicative of directional grip, typically evaluated through braking distances. Conversely, the (edges) shoulders become significant during cornering.

Basically, the distribution of weight plays a significant role here. When moving straight, the weight concentrates in the middle, making the central lugs the primary point of contact. In contrast, as the tire corners, the weight shifts towards the shoulders due to centripetal force.

Having said that, it can be seen why the Bridgestone Dueler All-Terrain A/T002 shows really appreciable grip performance, (even though it loses its effectiveness with higher speeds, according to my tests).

It’s central most rib although is narrower, the lugs there are very closed up together, optimizing contact patch. Moreover, due to their hexagonal shapes and slanted designs, they, combined with a ton of offset edges on adjacent ribs, provide with superb braking abilities (which measures directional grip).

Same is the case in terms of lateral grip, where the tire offers leading scores in the group, thanks to its squared-off lugs, forming an effective rubber-to-road contact, while the off-set edges there add to the tire’s overall lateral grip.

To give you an idea about its performance, its overall dry grip is very similar to Cooper Discoverer Road+Trail (review).

Overall Handling

To better understand the overall handling of a tire, it’s important to consider its performance during three key phases of cornering: entering the corner, mid-cornering, and exiting the corner.

When entering a corner, a vehicle must first decelerate. And this is where the Bridgestone A/T002 shines with its superior braking capabilities, enabling quicker stopping and faster entry into the turn.

Additionally, the Dueler All-Terrain excels in directional grip and on-center feel, enhancing its performance during the exit phase of a corner. This results in improved acceleration and stability, consequently reducing overall lap times during these phases of handling.

However, the tire’s performance in mid-cornering is less impressive. This shortfall is because of its heavier weight and a tread compound akin to that of winter tires, with softer composition, I mean.

These factors tend to make the tire’s lugs prone to bending, disrupting the balance between over and understeering during mid-cornering.

In other words, the tire doesn’t effectively tell you about the available grip, while in the corner, leading to slightly slower handling lap times.

Wet Performance

The overall wet traction of a tire is largely determined by its ability to effectively disperse water (in front of it), as it rolls.

And the Bridgestone Dueler All-Terrain A/T002 excels in this regard, making wet traction one of its strongest features. This superior performance is largely due to its thoughtfully designed sipes and grooves.

The tire features four wide, interconnected circumferential grooves, as highlighted in its construction section. These grooves work efficiently to disperse water rapidly, offering excellent resistance to hydroplaning.

And while these grooves handle the majority of the water, any residual moisture is dealt with by the tire’s ample biters and sipes.

These sipes may appear as mere slits, they are pretty crucial. Think of them as small water reservoirs.

Water particles pressed between the tread and the road surface are channeled/squeezed into these slits, creating behind a drier contact patch for the rubber to grip onto.

So Dueler A/T is able to provide you with wet traction performance, which is relatively superior compared to many other on-road oriented all-terrain tires, in its category.

See my list of all-terrain tires, I reviewed here.

However, there is still scope for improvement, particularly in the design of its sipes. Currently, the tire’s linear sipe structure can become stiff during sharp cornering, impacting traction and steering response.

This is especially noticeable in extreme conditions when the tire is pushed to its limits, leading to lighter steering and a tendency towards understeering. Though thanks to the tire’s high silica composition, this understeering is still pretty manageable.

For Your Info: The overall wet handling of the tire reminds me of Kumho AT52 (review).

Off-Road Performance

In the world of off-roading, tires face a multitude of terrain types, each demanding specific capabilities. Let’s examine the tire’s performance in each of them, starting with rocky terrains.

Rock Climbing Abilities

A well-designed tire for rocky terrains should incorporate a pliable tread pattern with flexible/bendable blocks or lugs to adapt to uneven surfaces.

Moreover, it’s also crucial to have multi-directional traction for enhanced stability and robust sidewalls for protection against sharp objects, which are common causes of punctures in these terrains.

Having said that, the Bridgestone Dueler All-Terrain A/T002, while not offering an extensive array of biting edges, compensates with its broad, multi-angled grooves.

These grooves provide significant grip and effective all-around climbing capabilities.

For gravel surfaces, (which is also a part of rocky terrains), the tire’s composition including a chip-resistant rubber, enhancing durability. And although it doesn’t come with stone ejectors, its grooves are designed to resist catching small rocks/stones.

In other words, stones are dislodged off the tread easily without any stone ejectors.

Sand Traction

For effective traction on sand, a tire with a lightweight design and a softer rubber compound is ideal. These features enable the tire to “float” on the sand, rather than “digging in” which can easily be a synonym for “getting stuck”.

That’s why its always recommended to lower tire’s air pressure, (it’s a common practice for navigating sandy terrains, particularly deeper dunes).

For Your Info: You can check out my air pressure guide for A/T tires here:

Lowering air pressure basically help with increasing tire’s contact patch, and here, the Dueler’s softer rubber compound helps, as it mold better, providing traction.

But, yes, the tire would greatly benefit form good-enough sidewalls, and a less weightier design/construction.

As both of these features play a significant role in preventing the tire from sinking into the sand. So, yes overall, the Bridgestone A/T002 is just an average performer on sand.

Mud Performance

On mud, you need balder tires that can throw out the accumulating dirt, faster.

And so it makes sense why you can’t expect too much out of the packed up design of Dueler tire here. And this goes when you compare this tire to its counterparts in the same (less aggressive) A/T tires category.

The tire shows a lot of limitations, mainly due to its narrower grooves, and packed up shoulder lugs.

Now, sure, there are lateral voids, apparently, they aren’t all the way (down to the tread’s base). That’s because all lugs are closely spaced and connected longitudinally.

And needless to say, this hampers the efficient release of thick mud, especially in lateral directions.

However, on the upside, the Bridgestone Dueler offers staggered shoulders. This design feature is crucial in muddy conditions as it provides effective paddling and shoveling abilities.

I mean, theses shoulders with “mud scoops”, help in displacing thick clay backward, aiding the tire to propel forward and reducing the likelihood of becoming stuck in light muddy environments.

Winter Performance

The performance of a tire in winter conditions is critically assessed based on its capability to handle snowy and icy surfaces, focusing on aspects such as stability, control, and acceleration.

And here, the Bridgestone Dueler A/T002 stands out, (in its category), particularly in terms of snow acceleration. That’s why it makes sense why the tire comes with a 3-peak mountain snowflake rating along with an M+S (Mud and Snow) designation.

Since, the Tri-Peak rating basically tells you that the tire is at least 10% better at acceleration, compared to standard touring tires.

So what makes Dueler so effective here? Well, this can be attributed to several key features:

  • Ample Tread Voids: These voids are essential in winter tires as they pick up snow, facilitating snow-to-snow contact. This interaction is crucial because snow adheres better to itself than to rubber, thereby enhancing friction and grip on softer, snowy terrains.
  • Numerous Siping: The Dueler A/T002 incorporates extensive siping, like that of a dedicated winter-tire. These sipes create a significant grip on compacted snow and icy surfaces, providing enhanced traction in challenging conditions.
  • Specialized Rubber Composition: The rubber compound used in the Dueler tire is pretty pliant, and thermally adaptive. So it prevents the tire from hardening in freezing temperatures, keeping its sipes/notches flexible enough to bite effectively.

Overall, these features combine to make Bridgestone A/T002 a reliable choice for majority of winter conditions.

Noise Comfort

Tread noise significantly affects overall comfort, with the primary source being air particles hitting the walls of the tread.

These “particles” typically enter through the shoulder grooves, hitting walls around, generating in-groove resonance, and tread vibrato, that further leads to various tones, and cavity sounds.

Now, the Bridgestone A/T002 addresses this issue effectively with its tightly closed-up lugs, which significantly restrict air entry, thereby reducing noise at its source.

Additionally, the tire’s tread is engineered to be less deflective of noise waves, meaning, the Dueler All-Terrain’s advanced rubber compound is adept at absorbing noise energy, contributing to a quieter and more comfortable ride.

For Your Info: Certain rubber compounds can reflect more noise, leading to echoing and amplifying overall noise levels.

Take Home Points

So overall it all comes down to this.

Excelling in dry performance due to its superior grip and handling, and in wet conditions with its effective water dispersal capabilities, the tire sets a high standard.

Moreover, its winter performance is notable too, especially in snow, thanks to its ample tread voids, numerous siping, and specialized rubber composition.

And yes, the tire also manages to minimize noise, enhancing ride comfort.

However, its performance in off-road conditions is mixed. While it handles rocky terrains effectively with its multi-angled grooves and chip-resistant rubber, it’s just average in sandy environments and faces limitations in muddy conditions as well.

7 thoughts on “Bridgestone Dueler All Terrain AT002 Review”

  1. Hello – first of all, thanks for the hard work invested in this site, it really is a great source of information! Well appreciated.

    My question is rather simple, I assume. I am getting a ’24 Forester e-Boxer (European version) in a month, and it comes on the Bridgestone Dueler HP Sport – I will remove those very soon afterwards. My driving profile is 90-95% on-road + 5-10% off-road, only gravel and forest roads, but the off-road part is always there – so the Duelers HP Sport won’t do it, especially as I’d like to have just one set, so winter performance is also desirable.

    Now, as you can already see, my off-road driving is rather light, so I am looking at mildest AT tire there is, that is also 3PMSF rated and not very noisy. I would even go for an all-weather tire, if I knew that it’s a bit more offroady and puncture resistant, but usually non of that is even mentioned when AW tires are described/tested.

    Anyway, based on my research so far, the Bridgestone Dueler AT002 seems to be the optimal choice for me (having in mind the selection in Europe is far more limited compared to US/Australia). As it’s a relatively new tire, I couldn’t find any of the “usual” tests, like Tyre Reviews or Autobild or anything like that.

    The “worst” part is that the size I am looking for (225/60 R17) is very rare with AT tires, which eliminates Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S and Falken WildPeak AT3WA, for instance. There are General Grabber AT3 and Toyo Open Country AT3 in that size, but those don’t seem to fit to my description very well.

    So, aside from the Bridgestones, the alternatives are Geolandar AT G015 and MAYBE some AW tires, that might seem to be fine for light offroading, like Goodyear Vector 4seasons SUV, Kleber Quadraxer SUV or Yokohama Geolandar CV 4S G061 (they are all available in my size).

    What do you think, should I just go for the Dueler ATs, or is there something I am missing?

    Thank you in advance for your answer!

    • Hey man, yea that’s the question I get asked around here a lot. So what you need is a less aggressive (or say on-road oriented) A/T tires, and according to my tests and research the best ones are:

      – Cooper Discoverer Road+Trail (The best so far)
      – Falken Wildpeak AT Trail (Great for wet)
      – BFG Trail Terrain (Great for snowy tracks)
      – Yokohama Geolandar G015 (Awesome for overall comfort).

      PS make sure to check out my list of best A/T tires, read its every word, so you don’t miss out on anything… Its a lot of my hours and work.

  2. Thanks for your answer! And, rest assured, I went through your list of best AT tires, and enjoyed every line of it. 🙂 I actually even shared it on a forum I post/read regularly.

    Unfortunately, in Serbia, where I live (and, as far as I can see, in the whole Europe), the first two tires you mention here in your reply are not available… They would definitely be the ones I would go for! To make matters worse, their alternatives (Discoverer AT3 4S and WildPeak AT3WA, available in Europe) don’t come in the 225/60 R17 size.

    The BFG Trail Terrain is the best in snow, which we don’t get a lot around where I live (a couple of weeks a year, maybe), and it’s for some reason also very expensive. So, the Geolandar G015 is a tire I was looking into (it’s available in my size as 99T and 103V + rim protection – I think both are fine for me), along with the Dueler AT002.

    I’ve also read all the comparisons of the G015 you’ve made, and none of the tires you compared it against wouldn’t be a better fit for me – I just don’t know about the Dueler AT002. Which one would you choose out of those two, with the criteria being dry and wet traction, 3PMSF certification and gravel roads? No deep mud, no “real” rocky terrains, and some road comfort is desirable, but not the most important.

    Thanks a lot – looking forward to more of your reviews!


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