Firestone Destination XT vs AT2 vs MT

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With their symmetric tread designs adorned with distinct features, Firestone Destination tires are masterfully crafted to deliver amazing traction regardless on both off and on road (depending on the tire). Join us as we delve into an in-depth comparison, of all these Destination family members.

Firestone Destination X/T
Firestone Destination XT offers thick enough lugs which aid off road.

Being a tire engineer from my perspective the Firestone Destination AT2 is the least aggressive off all, so it makes sense why it brings top-notch on-road traction in comparison. The Destination XT is also great, but lacks in wet traction, but offers superior off road traction. The Destination MT provides the best durability here, surprise, surprise, and it’s best among all on rocky, muddy, and gravely terrains, though sand traction is amazing to see.

Tire Facts

Firestone Destination AT2 16 to 20 inches, with following specs.

  • Speed ratings: going up to T.
  • Load ratings: SL and XL,
  • Weight: 29 to 45 lbs.
  • Tread depth: All have 12/32″.
  • Warranty: 55k miles for all.

On the other side Destination XT comes with following.

  • Sizes come in 15 to 20 inches (wheel diameter).
  • Speed ratings stay in R and S.
  • Load ratings available are C and E.
  • Weight: 35 to 60 lbs.
  • Tread depth: 14, 15, 16 and 17/32″
  • Warranty: 50k miles.

And lastly, the Firestone Destination M/T2, offers limited sizes in 15 to 20 inches, with following specifications.

  • Speed Ratings only in Q.
  • Load Ratings: C and E.
  • Tread Depth Range: 18 to 22/32″.
  • Weight Range: 40 to 75 lbs.
  • Sizes have no warranty.

Tread Structuring

Let me start here with the least aggressive tire of all, the Firestone Destination AT2.

Firestone Destination A/T2

This tire is primarily designed with road performance in mind.

As you can see its central rib is made continous and the surroudning ribs have lugs with very closed up tread voids. This allows for maximum rubber to road contact.

Moreover, as these lugs are equipped with ton of siping, you’d also have no complaints in the wet traction department.

These sipes are full depth by the way.

Moving on towards the shoulders, they carry small notches like the middle, and rectalinear sipes, and each lug here is staggered on itself, so you get nice biters at the outer edges, but no proper mud scoops.

And yes, this tire is missing with sidewall lugs.

Moving on to the Firestone XT, this model edges towards the aggressive side, designed for both on-road performance and challenging terrains. Lets check the tire out.

Firestone Destination X/T
Firestone Destination XT has deep slits on sides for snow traction.

The shoulder lugs on the XT are quite noteworthy. So lets talk about them.

They feature sharp saw-tooth edges (called snow vices), that bite into slippery surfaces.

And their blocky design doesn’t sacrifice pavement performance, ensuring excellent traction on standard roads.

Moreover, with wide enough tread voids, these lugs offer remarkable self-cleaning abilities when navigating through dirt-filled tracks.

And yes, their U shaped sidewall lugs also help off-road, more on that later.

Moving inward, the central ribs are adorned with uniquely F and S-shaped lugs. And they come equipped with a variety of biting elements, including snow vices, on the outer ribs, directed towards the shoulder lugs.

And adding to its intricate design, these central lugs feature an interlocking or wave-like siping pattern, contrasting with the more straightforward rectilinear design of the shoulder blocks.

Now lets move towards the most aggressive mud terrain tire.

Firestone Destination M/T2
Firestone Destination M/T2

So the Firestone M/T offers two fat prominent ribs in the middle, where the blocks have chamfered edges, a little bit of (full depth siping), and wild surrounding gaps, where curving stone ejectors are placed.

(These lugs are also stud-able, see if you can find holes on them).

The outer ribs, have similar styled shoulder lugs, and although they also carry stud holes, there are additional tread features, which include sharp notches on sides, and slightly interlocking siping.

The lateral gaps between these lugs are even wider and they are again placed with more stone ejectors.

Moreover, it’s shoulder lugs are staggered and they make the bulkiest of all sidewall lugs, though they resemble a lot of Destination XT, as they are U shaped here as well.

(Sidewalls can be seen on the right most side of the image above, on the tire next to it).

Tread and Fuel Economy

A tire’s weight and tread stickiness significantly influence a vehicle’s fuel consumption.

In this light, it’s no wonder that the Firestone Destination AT2 yields superior fuel mileage. Its design features a lighter structure, more stable lugs, and smaller spaces in between.

The benefits of a lightweight tire are clear, it takes less energy for its movement. and with stable supports, and smaller tread gaps, the lug bending is limited. So less energy is used up/wasted in flexing and more is channeled into tire rolling.

In contrast, the Firestone Destination M/T2 and XT are very lacking here, mostly because of their weight.

These heavyweights showcase more rolling inertia and their lugs are more susceptible to bending, consequently burning more fuel.

Their increased weight also means that their lugs press harder against the road. This combined with a softer tread compound results in faster wear as well.

So it makes sense why in terms of tread life, the Firestone Destination M/T2 falls behind, offering no warranty.

Whereas, the Firestone Destination XT provides a 50,000-mile warranty, while the Firestone Destination AT2 impresses with a 55,000-mile warranty on all sizes.

Durability And Toughness

Off-road ventures often involve rigorous terrains and harsh elements, necessitating off-road tires’ sturdiness.

But since almost all off-road tires are designed with cut-resistant rubber, their tire’s internal construction is how we judge their overall durability.

Having said that, no one would be surprised that the Firestone Destination M/T2 comes out on top in this aspect. Its tough 3-ply polyester casing accompanied by two steel belts and further reinforced with a single cap ply of nylon ensures superior durability.

Interestingly, despite its rugged construction, the tire is not excessively heavy compared to other mud-terrain tires.

In contrast, the lacking Destination XT and AT2 models feature only 2-ply sidewalls and a comparatively thinner top layer of rubber.


In the tire realm, a more voided or “balder” design typically faces greater challenges in maintaining grip, as there is minimum rubber to surface contact.

And so it makes sense why the aggressively designed Destination M/T2, with its pronounced voids, tends to struggle in this specific category.

In contrast, the Firestone Destination AT2, which is specifically crafted for versatile all-terrain use, (both on and off-road, that is), showcases larger road connectivity.

The tire features continuous running central most rib, and its surrounding lugs are also more compacted up compared to other variants.

Moreover all its lugs are fortified by sturdy foundations, so besides greater road contact, you also get the needed stability.

The Firestone Destination XT, straddling the line between the mud-terrain and all-terrain designs, slightly trails the AT2.

To give you a perspective, the XT’s braking distance, (which is the direct measure of directional grip), is only about a foot longer than the AT2’s on average.


A tire’s overall handling depends on tire’s tread flexibility and shoulder lug design.

And considering both, its not unexpected that the Firestone Destination AT2 shows up with amazing handling capabilities here.

Its shoulder lugs feature robust foundational supports beneath them (all lugs are sitting on a secondary layer of rubber, basically). This restricts excessive lug movement, as the tire corners, allowing for swift steering response time, enhancing its superior handling capabilities.

In contrast, the Destination M/T2, owing to its more flexible compound and less block support, displays a higher susceptibility for oversteering and understeering.

Moreover, with its excessively spaces apart lugs, the tread to ground contact is severly compromised, which of course limits the handling efficacy.

The Firestone Destination X/T although is missing with lug supports too, but its lugs aren’t that spaced apart, so you still get a better perforce compared to its mud variant.

For Your Info: During cornering, the tire’s weight shifts towards the shoulders, leading to increased flexing and bending of the lugs. This induces a delay and a propensity for understeering and oversteering, which in turn slows down the steering response, ultimately affecting overall handling effectiveness.

Rugged-Terrain Traction

Off-road, its expected that Firestone M/T2 would be much better, but how well those other less aggressive tire do here? Well lets find out by considering all the terrain types.

Desert Performance

On sand you need tires which can float better. I mean you have to avoid tire sinking here, as much as possible, as that means game over folks.

So does that mean heavier tires would do bad here? As they wold be more susceptible to sinking right?

Well not really. You see, its about the tire’s density, and the Firestone Destination MT2 despite being the heaviest, still get to float better with it’s expanding sidewall lugs (when you lower the air pressure, which you always do).

The Firestone XT also offers amazing floating abilities here with its U shaped sidewall lugs, though with smaller mud scoops, the tire would not paddle as effectively as its more aggressive counterpart.

The Destination AT2 lacks the most here though, with missing sidewall lugs and sharper (staggered on themselves) shoulders, which makes the tire more prone to sinking in this soft terrain.

Gravely Roads

On dirt filled roads, resisting cuts is only half the battle, you need to emit those sharp rocks too, otherwise, they would severely impact the overall traction.

That’s why out of both tires, the Firestone Destination M/T2, equipped with bold stone ejectors, steals the show. Its balder structure doesn’t allow debris to settle, and anything that tries to settle is promptly ejected by the bold stone ejectors.

In comparison both the Destination AT2 and XT lack with their missing stone ejectors and less durable overall rubber compositions.

Climbing Rocks

Climbing rocks is pretty challenging, as it can sometimes overturn your vehicles, if the tire would not produce enough lateral traction.

So needless to say, here you need multi-angled grip.

And since its the most puncturing terrain out there, you also need toughness too.

Now in case of toughness, we already know that the Destination M/T2 with 3 ply sidewalls, and thicker rubber on top gets to be way better. But what about grip.

Well, that’s also better on MT2.

The tire features bigger groove mouth, so its lugs bite in to the rocky surface with better efficacy. Moreover with lowered air pressure, its aggressive sidewall lugs come in to action, grabbing and pulling very effectively.

The Firestone Destination XT comes in 2nd. It’s U shaped sidewall lugs allow for extra contact patch to meet with the rocks, and it’s interlocking central lugs grip on rocks in a better way compared to AT2.

Speaking of which the AT2 really lacks in providing the lateral traction, and I already told you at the start, how that is very dangerous. Its continuous running central ribs, and longitudinally aligned rest of the ribs only features directional grip. And its closed up shoulders and missing sidewall lugs don’t allow for good enough sideways grip.

So this tire comes in last in terms of overall rocky terrain performance.

Muddy Trails

On mud, you need shoveling combined with evacuation capabilities.

And the Destination AT2 is severely lacking in both. It’s missing staggered shoulders compromise when it comes to “shoveling” and it’s closed up, continuous running central ribs, don’t allow fast enough mud escaping, (especially sideways).

The Destination XT does better here with it’s interconnected tread voids, and mud scoops on outer lugs. Though still the biggest piece of the pie is taken away by the MT variant, without doubt.

So the Firestone Destination M/T2, with such voided structure allow mud a lot of room, from where it gushes out without any hurdles, and it extremely thick mud scoops combined with sidewall lugs supply with amazing paddling abilities.

Snow Performance

The year-round abilities of off-road tires have been steadily progressing. Most of these tires now deliver reliable traction during summer while impressing on snow-laden terrains. And both the Firestone Destination AT2 and XT are in that list.

And they feature 3 peak mountain snowflake rating (unlike the M/T2) and offer numerous snow grippers across the tread.

However, my testing with these tires show that the Firestone Destination XT still manages to outshines its rest of the family members, mostly due to its greater snow holding abilities.

It tread is narrower (on average), and its numerous biters, including snow vices grab the ground, to make snow contact with the lodged snow (which is significant as snow adhere to itself better rather then the tread).

Though still overall, the Firestone AT2 is only slightly lacking here. It although offers great on-road grip, really falls short when it comes to handling.

But the Destination MT2 only works with deeper terrains. It’s thicker lugs basically do paddling really well, so they scoop the snow out of their way, backwards, generating forward momentum as a result.

To Sum Up

Let me summarize all of the above.

The Firestone Destination AT2 excels in on-road grip, handling, and steering response, and it comes on top when it comes to other on-road aspects, such fuel efficiency, comfort, and tread life.

Though, interestingly, the Firestone Destination XT outperforms all its variants, in snow traction, showing much better handling effectiveness compared to other two.

And off-road, however, the true titan, the Firestone Destination M/T2, outshines the others across all terrains, though on sand, its performance is almost on par to Destination XT.

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