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Thanks to an impressive traction control system with center and rear locking differentials, VW has been able to get away with what we'd consider a street tire on its off-road vehicle. Naturally, we found the limits of the OEM 255/55/VR18 Continental 4x4 Contact tire over our yearlong test. Not on the trail mind you, but on the street where granite curbs eat these sissy sidewalls alive! At $168 from the Tire Rack, they're about the same price as a 35-inch mud-terrain, which we would have considered an option if we could have fit them.

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