Among the most frequently chosen tyres are those in size 225/45 R17. We checked which winter models in this size are best rated by our customers. This year's ranking may be a surprise to many.

Selection of the best winter tyres depends on many factors, e.g., driving style or car power.

225/45 R17 size winter tyres are fitted to cars such as Mercedes CLK A-Class and C-Class, Audi A3, RS4 and TT, Alfa Romeo Giulietta, GT and Spider, BMW M3, Series 3 and Z4, Renault Megane, Opel Zafira, Seat Leon, VW Golf, Jetta, Passat and Scirocco, and Volvo C70. 

So, which of these tyre models are the best for such car brands? As you see, the above models include both family cars and vehicles of a more sporty nature. According to drivers, who have posted their opinions on our website, the best 225/45 R17 size winter tyres were offered by Nokian, Pirelli and Uniroyal.

Best 225/45 R17 winter tyres according to drivers

In preparing the ranking, we took into account the scores (on a 1-6 rating scale) for a particular model in a specific size, given from the beginning of January 2018 to September 2019. The ratings presented in a separate tab on the pages of individual tyres are the sum of all the reviews, so they may differ slightly from those in the ranking.

    Tyre model

Rating* 

Dębica Frigo HP2

5,05

Imperial Snowdragon UHP

4,95

Imperial Snowdragon 3

4,9

Zeetex WH1000

4,65

Dębica wins

It turns out that the best reviewed tyre in size 225/45 R17 is Dębica Frigo HP2 (rated 5.05), that is a model from the winter series, which appears regularly in our ranking. This is a proposal from a Polish brand, which currently belongs to the world leader in the tyre industry – Goodyear.

Dębica Frigo HP2 is recommended by as many as 99% of its users, by drivers preferring a moderate driving style and driving mostly around the city. As the manufacturer assures, the model is safe and cost-effective, which is confirmed by the reviews of its users. Sophisticated tread structure and ply design improve tyre life and reduce rolling resistance, which translates into lower operating costs. The system of grooves and sipes is responsible for good traction on snow, which is the basic feature of winter tyres.

What were the drivers' opinions on Dębica Frigo HP2?

  • They are great when considering the price and what these tyres offer. I see no difference compared to other premium brands like Continental or Nokian. They're only slightly behind them in terms of dry driving, but in other aspects I see no difference. They're amazing in drifted snow, ESP and ASR were very rarely activated unless I just wanted to accelerate quickly, which is understandable at freezing temperatures. Surprisingly, I don't see any signs of wear after 10 thousands of kilometers. The car does not "wander". And the tyres in size 225/45/17 are unbeatable in cost-effectiveness. I recommend them! – Les W.
  • Very good quality as for this price. I highly recommend them. They do very well in deep snow. – Sean

Imperial twice

This year's 225/45 R17 tyre ranking is entirely dominated by economy class models. The podium is complemented by two proposals of the Imperial brand – last season's new entry, that is Snowdragon UHP (rating 4.95) and Snowdragon 3 (rating 4.9), which has been a popular choice for the last several years. In both cases the drivers appreciated very good value for money.

Imperial Snowdragon UHP is a tyre designed for cars with slightly more power, which translates into higher requirements. Its advantage turned out to be not only the safety of driving but also comfort and savings associated with use. This is certainly due to elements such as reinforced sidewalls and deep grooves for water discharge. Here is what our customers wrote about the model:

  • Tyres used throughout the last winter season. I had no problems with them during the whole period. The tyres are really recommendable. – Martin
  • The first season with Imperials is completed. I think that they performed very well. There are no signs of wear despite that they had to work in varying conditions due to weather anomalies. I recommend these tyres to all. – Dark
  • The tyres are reasonably priced. No signs of excessive wear after the winter season. Very good snow and braking performance. They perform a little worse on slush, but comparably to the branded tyres in this category that I used in the past. – Ralph


The drivers equally praised Imperial Snowdragon 3. The tyre stands out with its asymmetrical tread, which is primarily designed to improve traction when manoeuvring in difficult winter conditions. Our customers have made more than 4.6 million kilometers on these tyres! And here are some of their reviews:


  • I'm very pleased that I chose this particular model. Despite the initial fears, the first snowfall confirmed that I made the right decision when buying these tyres. Throughout the winter season I never had any problems with driving in deep snow, on slush or on wet roads, both in the city and in the countryside, e.g. during numerous skiing trips to the mountains. I highly recommend them. The tyres are in surprisingly good condition after the first season, and they will certainly serve me well for the next several seasons. Very good value for money. – PaBlo

  • Very good quality for money. It performs very well on snow and slush. – Mark S.


Zeetex comes last

Zeetex WH1000 (rating 4.65) took the last place in the ranking. The model is distinguished by an asymmetrical tread that improves steering during manoeuvring. The tread is also fitted with grooves for water discharge and sipes, which are a must during winter. This model features 3D sipes, used mainly by premium manufacturers, which significantly improves safety.

Low noise on the road is also a big advantage of this tyre. The applied compound is also intended to extend the product life. This is what the manufacturer says - and what is the drivers' opinion?

  • I can't imagine better tyres in this price range. First of all, they're very quiet, even at speeds above 150 km/h. The tread height after 14,000 km has only marginally decreased, which is another plus, and it's worth noting that the car is used for my taxi work, so it isn't all that easy. My only complaint is about tyre grip when the tarmac is wet, e.g. during fog. I don't know why, but on such a surface they easily lose traction when starting, and ABS has more work to do when braking. Ironically, when it rains and the tarmac is wet, the tyres have excellent grip. – Zach

  • Good quality at a reasonable price. I had no problems during the entire period of use. – Bill


How to buy decent winter tyres?

User reviews of a given product, e.g. tyres, are one of the factors that undoubtedly influence many purchasing decisions. And no wonder, because who would be better at reviewing a given model than the person who has tested its properties? In the case of tyres, however, one must also bear in mind one's own preferences, which are of great importance for the subsequent opinion. Drivers who drive dynamically and mainly on motorways will have different requirements than those who mostly travel in urban areas and do not put the pedal to the metal on every straight.

Also, tests by independent automotive organisations should be taken into account when selecting new tyres. They test the behaviour of individual models in season-specific conditions and identify the products that deliver the best performance, and thus safety and travel comfort. The EU Tyre Label on every tyre is, on the other hand, a source of information on fuel efficiency, noise levels and wet grip.