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Triple Duty: Testing Falken’s WildPeak M/T

Posted in How To: Wheels Tires on December 7, 2016 Comment (0)
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When we set out to upgrade the current tire setup on our ’09 GMC 2500HD 4x4 Duramax, the options were limitless and a bit confusing when it came down to making a decision. We needed a tire that could handle it all. With the truck serving double and sometimes triple-duty as a daily driver, tow pig, and occasional off-road expedition vehicle on the weekends, we needed a tire that could essentially do it all with ease.

The original set of factory rubber, a great all-around tire in its own right, was worn out and ready to be replaced. It served as a perfect opportunity to upgrade to a fresh set of 35x12.50R17 Falken WildPeak M/Ts.

With that in mind, we ordered a set of 35x12.50R17 Falken WildPeak M/Ts for our GMC, mounted on a set of 9-inch-wide Raceline Avenger wheels.

After a quick mount and balance, we were off to California City, California, for a little weekend wheeling in the desert. The WildPeak M/Ts made quick work of the loose desert sand, scooping and pulling while maintaining excellent grip throughout the trail. Tread blocks also stayed clean and clear of small rocks.

Built for maximum duty on or off the trail. Falken has designed a tire with strength in numbers, literally. Falken delivered exactly what we needed in the WildPeak M/T. With proprietary three-ply Duraspec Sidewall Technology, three layers of sidewall give it superior protection from punctures or gashes. There are also two high-ply turn-ups that provide an additional layer of protection.

Up close, notice the large rugged and rigid tread blocks and aggressive upper sidewall with offset shoulder blocks. An optimized tread pattern serves double duty for excellent grip and superior ride quality both on and off the trail.

Tired of picking out stones and small rocks from tread grooves? Unique to the Falken WildPeak M/T is center tread blocks that feature step-down support. This not only allows for tread-pattern rigidity in the contact patch but also prevents stones from becoming trapped in the grooves. For the muddy jobs, Falken integrated exclusive tread grooves to shed the goo while preventing loss of traction.

Heat kills and can be one of a tire’s worst enemies. To combat tire-killing temperatures, Falken added heat diffuser technology in the lower sidewall to wick away intense temperatures, protect internal tire components, and ensure the sidewall remains stable when towing or on the trail. Along the upper sidewall, Falken also added aggressive offset shoulder blocks, which protect the tire from sharp rocks while also providing extra off-road traction in low tire pressure or off-camber situations on the trail.

Fire road blasts were an absolute breeze with the Falken WildPeak M/Ts under our 6,000-plus-pound truck. The ride was supple and confident, and even after an entire weekend of being abused in the sand and hard-pack dirt, the WildPeak MTs showed little, if any, abnormal wear.

Falken has essentially delivered a unique mud-terrain tire for on- or off-road confidence. Fortified sidewalls and a heat-wicking tread design help to keep the rubber safe and reliable for thousands of miles. While our initial testing has only included dry desert trails, we are happy to report that after 5,000-plus miles, our Falken WildPeak M/T’s not only still look fresh but have also proven their ability on and off the road. We can only conclude by asking why we didn’t upgrade sooner.

When it comes to tools of the trade, a set of tires can make a world of difference. Whether you’re commuting daily and desire an aggressive look or simply require a tire that can truly do it all with ease, the Falken WildPeak M/T not only looks the part but works just as hard.

SPECIFICATIONS (as tested)

Tire: Falken WildPeak M/T
Size: 35x12.50R17LT
Type: Radial
Load range: E
Max load (lb): 3,195
Sidewall construction: Duraspec three-ply
Tread construction: Three-ply polyester, two-ply steel
Approved rim width (in): 8.5-11
Tread depth (in): 21/32
Tread width (in): 9.4
Section width (in): 13.0
Overall diameter (in): 34.8
Maximum psi: 65
Weight (lb): 79.6

Sources

Falken Tire
Fontana, CA 92335
800-723-2553
http://www.falkentire.com

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