Tires wear out. It’s just a fact of life in the automotive world. Like many crossover and SUV owners who drive 15,000-or more miles a year, I had come to the realization that the OEM tires beneath my 2018 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD had run their course. They only had 35,670 miles on them and still had about ½-the tread depth remaining. But their time had come.
After experiencing a couple of rock punctures driving over gravel roads in the past few months, and the stock Toyo A36’s poor showing during a couple of light snows last winter, I felt it was time to retire the OEM “street” tires to a corner in the garage—and replace them with an all-terrain tire more suitable to my needs. The goal: to have better winter/rain/light snow traction, and a tire better suited for occasional off-pavement use on forest, mountain, and desert backroads.
After a lot of research, and talking with friends in the tire industry, my attention turned to the Yokohama Geolander A/T G015. This all-terrain tire is specifically designed for use on crossovers, SUVs, and light-duty pickups, and was a good fit for my Mazda CX-5 AWD.
Yokohama Geolander A/T G015 Review
An order through Amazon, followed by an appointment with my local tire dealer, set the CX-5 up with a set of 235/55R19 105H Geolanders replacing the OEM Toyo 225/55R19 A36s. That was a little more than 5,000 miles ago. As I write this, Christmas is just a week away, and the winter storms have lashed the Pacific Northwest pretty hard with rain and wind. The G015s have performed their job admirably so far.
Low Noise ATs
My biggest concern about switching to a tire with the more aggressive tread of the G015 A/Ts was them being louder on pavement than the street-tread Toyos. That fear was short-lived. To my pleasant surprise, there was no noticeable difference in sound volume or pitch with the Geolander A/Ts. Conversations between driver and passenger, and between those in the front seats and the rear seats, remained easy and relaxed.
Wet Road Performance
What I have noticed, especially the day of the tire swap, is the Yokohama Geolander A/Ts feel slightly firmer going over expansion joints and cracks in the pavement, but are actually better in overall ride quality and handling than the OEM Toyos they replaced. The A/T tread design provides a slightly quicker response to steering inputs at all speeds. The deep tread and the pattern does a superb job of forcing the water out, so driving on rain-slicked pavement and through standing water has kept the Mazda’s footing strong even in heavy Oregon Coast downpours.
As for snow traction, I’ve yet to test the new treads in fresh powder. But am very confident in the Geolander A/T G015s snow capability, as they have achieved the three-peak mountain snowflake rating. That’s partly due to the Enduro Compound that helps rubber remain pliable over a broad range of temperatures for enhanced braking and handling in wet and snow, and the micro-siping in the tread that helps grip snow for better traction.
Driving along backcountry, Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management roads showed how the side grips enhance traction in loose dirt, sand, and light mud. The A/T’s more open tread and stronger inner belts are more robust than the A36 Toyos, too, so I don’t have any puncture fears.
On the downside, Yokohama’s Geolander A/T G015s are not available in 225/55/R19s, which were the factory size on the Grand Touring Mazda AWDs. So that meant up-sizing to Geolander 235/55R19 105H, which are about a 3/8-inch taller and 3-pounds heavier than the OEM tires that they replaced.
OEM Toyo A36 Yokohama Geolander A/T G015
225/55/R19 (Size) 235/55R19
29 lbs. (Weight) 32 lbs.
10.2/32” (Tread Depth) 11/32”
7.3” (Tread Width) 7.5”
28.8” (Height) 29.1”
722 (Revs/Mile) 713
1,709 lbs (Max Load) 2,039 lbs
Conclusion: Yokohama Geolander G015 Tires
Fortunately, that size difference isn’t anything to be concerned about. No change in speedometer readings. No tire clearance issues.
What I did see, and wasn’t really expecting, was a 1- 1.5mpg drop in highway fuel economy because of the heavier taller Geolanders. But for me, that very slight loss of fuel economy is an acceptable trade-off for better traction in winter driving and those off-pavement forays coupled with better durability over the long run.
Yokohama Geolander A/T G015s are available to fit a very wide range of vehicles with rim sizes from 15-to 20 inches. Treadwear warranties vary from 50,000 miles to 60,000 miles depending on the tire size and vehicle. The tires I now have under my Mazda CX-5 AWD are in the former range. Overall, I am quite pleased with my choice of a replacement tire for the factory Toyo A36s. Now, let it snow!