Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate Review

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The Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate offers a compelling combination of durability, comfort, and performance, making it a strong contender in the ultra-high performance all-season category.

Jaguar
Eagle Exhilarate on Jaguar.

Key Takeaway

Overall, the Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate excels in:

  • Wet performance, which is actually one of the best among UHP all-season tires.
  • Dry traction, thanks to its adhesive rubber composition.
  • Ride comfort, where it excels particularly in noise reduction.
  • Tread longevity, due to its durable design.
  • Fuel efficiency, achieved through lightweight construction and technology minimizing energy loss.

Though the tire needs improvements in:

  • Snow performance, where it lags behind others in its category.
  • Absorption of larger road imperfections.
  • Maintaining stability on slightly rough surfaces.

Available Tire Sizes

The tire comes in 17 to 22 inches rims. And these sizes have following specs.

  • Speed ratings: W and Y.
  • Load ratings: SL and XL. (Learn all about load/ply ratings).
  • Tread depth: 10/32″.
  • Weight: 20 to 34 lbs.
  • UTQG: 500 AA A (Learn all about UTQG here).
  • Treadwear warranty: 45k miles.
  • Internal construction: Two-ply polyester cord casing, twin steel belts, and two polyamide cap plies.

Tread Structure

With its asymmetric tread pattern, the Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate showcases five distinct ribs, also known as block columns.

Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate
Eagle Exhilarate comes with very subtle differences, on its central ribs, which makes its tread asymmetrical.

Starting with the outer shoulder ribs, there is a consistency in design on both sides, as each features lugs with linear and longitudinal sipes, as you may have noticed.

Progressing towards the center, the central-most rib is defined by lateral notches that extend outwards on both sides.

These notches are interconnected by sipes, creating a pattern of square-shaped sipes.

Adjacent to the central rib, the ribs differ significantly from each other.

One rib mirrors the design of the central rib, while the other, though less siped, still manages to present a siping pattern similar to the central rib, including small notches that face towards the shoulders.

Compare Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate with:

Wet Performance

Goodyear Eagle is one of the best tires when it comes to overall wet traction, in its ultra high performance all season category.

While it shows a minor shortfall in directional grip, as indicated by its slightly longer average braking distances, it excels in slalom, and overall lap time tests.

For Your Info: Slalom performance testing involves maneuvering a vehicle through a straight line of cones at a consistent speed, which differs from overall lap time assessments.

To give you an idea about its performance, in comparison to the Continental DWS06+, the Exhilarate trails behind by only half a second, in wet lap time tests, (on average).

For Your Info: I mentioned DWS06+ here, because this tire offers fastest wet lap times, in the category. You can review the tire here: https://tiredriver.com/continental-extremecontact-dws-06-plus-review/

So what makes Goodyear great on wet asphalts? Well the tire’s performance is attributed to its ingeniously engineered grooves combined with full-depth interlocking and linear sipes of varying angles across the tread.

It’s grooves are very effective in taking out majority of water, allowing for decent float speeds, and resistant to hydroplaning, And with such effective grooves, there’s less reliance on sipes to begin with.

And let me tell you, its sipes don’t need any help, as they are pretty great on their own.

These sipes, combined with thick lateral slits, and multi-angled in-groove notches, provide superb wet traction in all directions.

For Your Info: The Goodyear’s tire here, is ranked in my list of top UHP All-Season tires. You may check the list here: https://tiredriver.com/best-ultra-high-performance-all-season-tires/

Overall Dry Performance

When talking about dry traction, we usually focus on two things: directional grip and handling.

Let’s take a closer look at both.

Directional Grip

Directional grip is the measure of a tire’s traction as it moves linearly, significantly influencing its braking capabilities. This grip is determined by factors such as tread structure, material composition, and notably, the tire’s central footprint.

Now, the Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate stands out in this regard, thanks to its stable and adhesive rubber composition and a densely structured central area.

The tire’s design includes three continuous-running circumferential ribs, ensuring consistent contact between the rubber and the road, translating in to efficient grip.

Moreover, as these ribs offer a lot of biters, including angular, chunky notches, the overall traction gets enhanced further.

Moreover, the tire also features a lighter structure, and a ActiveGrip Technology, optimizing tire’s contact patch, and keeping momentum inertia low (allowing for easier stopping).

For Your Info: The ActiveGrip tech. ensures even pressure distribution across the tire’s footprint.

Overall Handling

Overall handling of a tire is influenced by various factors, such as directional and lateral grip, steering response, and slalom performance.

And consider all, the Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate’s performance is very notable, offering above-average results in these areas.

As already discussed the tire offers superb directional grip. And while it may not provide the highest level of lateral traction, it excels in steering feedback as well.

During tests, the tire demonstrated immediate and direct responsiveness to steering inputs, making the vehicle feel more agile and precise.

In fact, its performance was actually pretty close to Continental DWS06 Plus (which is the best rated tire here).

So what makes Goodyear so great here?

Well, this can be attributed to its design, particularly the compact shoulder lugs, which are reinforced with additional foundational supports.

This construction prevents the lugs from bending, allowing the tire to maintain an optimal balance between understeering and oversteering, contributing to its proficient handling characteristics.

Snow Performance

The Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate, while not as proficient in winter conditions, as it is in wet and dry scenarios, still performs admirably here.

So what I mean by that?

Well, although the tire trails behind the Bridgestone Potenza 980+ (review) in snow braking by 10 feet and is around 5 seconds slower in snow handling tests, it still remains a viable option, when considering its overall performance, including slalom times, braking and steering feedback.

A key feature of the tire is its specialized rubber compound, designed to retain flexibility even in extremely cold temperatures. This ensures that the tire continues to grip effectively in winter conditions.

Another benefit is the tire’s relatively narrower section width (looking at all sizes, I mean). This helps it exert more pressure on the snow, effectively trapping snow within the tire’s grooves, notches, and sipes, and facilitating optimal snow-to-snow contact.

Furthermore, the tire’s array of siping and notches works together, to deliver excellent traction on ice and snow, without compromising its leading handling in wet conditions.

For Your Info: Out of all tires in the UHP category, the Nokian WRG4 results with leading winter scores. You can review the tire here: https://tiredriver.com/nokian-wrg4-review/

Overall Ride Comfort

Ride comfort coming from tires is two parts, how well they are able to dampen down the noise, and overall road imperfections.

Let’s start with noise.

Noise Comfort

Tire noise is primarily generated by the interaction of air particles with the tire’s tread walls, with most air entering through the tread’s shoulder voids.

Now, here the Exhilarate effectively addresses this noise issue through its innovative design.

I mean, the tire features integrated connectors, (technically called ridges), between the shoulder lugs, which substantially reduce air penetration into the tread area, thereby lowering noise levels.

And while, these “ridges” lowers the tire’s wet performance, hindering effective water evacuation, they still make the Goodyear’s tire here, one of the quietest options in its category. This makes for a reasonable trade-off.

As a result, the tire exhibits only a low level of white background noise, minimal impact noise, and scarcely noticeable tread vibrato and cavity sounds.

Moreover, there’s also minimal growling noise, despite the tire featuring a ton of biters. This has to do with its effective variable pitch technology,

This technology involves varying lug geometries to create alternating frequencies as air particles collide, which helps to prevent the amplification of overall noise.

For Your Info: For a quieter driving experience, the Kumho Ecsta PA51 (review) tops the list as the quietest ultra high performance all-season tire.

Road Smoothness

Achieving the right mix of absorbing road irregularities and maintaining stability is crucial for a smooth and comfortable driving experience.

Ideally, the tire should not be too soft, allowing it to control and settle down bumps effectively.

In this regard, the Goodyear shows appreciable performance.

Its rubber composition, while not the absolute best at mitigating the impact of larger road imperfections compared to other UHP all-season tires, stands out for its stability and control on smoother surfaces.

This adept balance of firmness and cushioning positions the Eagle Exhilarate as a solid option for those seeking a ride that adeptly blends control with comfort.

Tread Longevity

The Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate distinguishes itself in tread longevity within the ultra-high performance all-season (UHPAS) tire category, thanks to its array of design innovations.

A significant contributor to its exceptional durability is the unique rubber composition, which is highly resistant to high temperatures, (a critical factor in reducing wear over time).

Though thanks to it’s lighter weight and ActiveGrip Technology, it doesn’t create too much heat to begin with.

I mean with lighter weight and this tech, tread gets evenly distributed weight, where each lug has less weight pressure on itself.

Needless to say, this minimizes the rolling resistance, and heat generation, enhancing wear.

Moreover, the tire features a firmer rubber, with reinforced foundations under all lugs, enhancing its structural integrity, (which is highly needed during fast/sharp maneuvers).

This means, the lugs don’t bend a lot, particularly, when the tire corners, again adding to the tire’s longevity.

That’s why the tire excels here, routinely surpassing 50,000 miles of usage, which is notably higher than the 45,000 miles warranty it offers.

Side Note: Among all other tires in Goodyear’s category of UHPAS, the Yokohama ADVAN Sport A/S+ ranks for the longest lasting tread. Review the tire here: https://tiredriver.com/yokohama-advan-sport-a-s-plus-review/

Fuel Efficiency

Fuel economy is typically not the strongest suit of ultra-high performance (UHP) all-season tires. However, the Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate sets itself apart in this regard.

The key to its efficiency lies in the tire’s ability to prevent lug bending.

Lug flexing or bending leads to higher energy consumption, as energy gets dissipated in reshaping the tread and generating heat.

To counteract this, the Eagle Exhilarate features a lighter weight, AdaptiveGrip (AG) technology, reinforced foundations, and a firmer rubber composition.

The lighter weight reduces the pressure exerted on the lugs, and the AG technology ensures this weight is evenly distributed, reducing stress on each lug.

Reinforced foundations help maintain the lugs’ position, while the firmer rubber contributes to their structural integrity.

So you see, all these features combined allow the tire to conserve more energy, directing it towards the actual rolling of the tire rather than wasting it on lug bending.

This design approach makes the tire a surprisingly efficient option in the UHP all-season category in terms of fuel economy.

FYI: For those on a budget, the Fuzion UHP Sport AS (review) ranks as the top tire in the ultra high performance all-season category.

To Conclude

In conclusion, the Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate showcases a remarkable balance of performance and efficiency, characterized by its asymmetric tread pattern and various design features.

It excels in dry traction due to its stable central footprint, and provides adequate grip in winter conditions.

As for wet, well, its the tire’s strongest suit, where it offers superb water clearance (from the tread), with advanced groove and sipe designs ensuring impressive traction and hydroplaning resistance.

Other than this, the tire’s ride comfort is another highlight, where it offers innovative noise reduction techniques and a balanced approach to road smoothness.

And thanks to its reinforced foundations (underneath all lugs), it also does okay in terms of fuel economy and tread longevity.

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