Best Tires for Diesel Trucks

Diesel trucks are hard on tires. They weigh a lot, carry a lot and pull a lot. Plus, the high-torque of a diesel motor is particularly tough on tires, adding plenty of extra flex into the tire every time you pull away from a stop.

So you’ll want something that can last, while also meeting numerous other needs. Below we’ve listed our top picks for diesel truck tires in a few different categories, including on-road-focused highway all-season tires, more off-road focused all-terrain tires, as well as rugged and durable commercial tires.

Best Highway Tires for Diesel Trucks

Michelin Defender LTX MS

One of our top rated truck tires no matter what you drive, the Michelin Defender LTX MS is well-suited for diesel trucks that want to pack on the highway miles.

Plenty of 10-ply or Load E Range fitments are offered and the tire’s Evertread compound is naturally designed to hold up well on large, powerful trucks.

The specific tread design with plenty of siping gives this tire more grip in the cold than pretty much any other all-season tire, while internal testing has show wet weather braking distances are significantly shorter than rival tires.

It’s durable too, and while designed for on-road performance it holds up well on gravel roads too.

Tread life is excellent with mileage warranty that goes up to 70,000 miles. Plus, Michelin takes particular care to design tires that perform highly after thousands of miles of use, so you can expect impressive performance for years and years.

If there’s a down-side to this tire it’s that, as a Michelin, it’s definitely not cheap.


Firestone Transforce HT2

The Firestone Transforce HT2 is an unusual option because while we don’t love it for most applications, on diesel trucks it’s much better suited.

While a highway-terrain tire, it’s much less on-road focused than most and so it’s not ideal for many applications. However, it has many commercial tire attributes that make it a good fit for an HD truck. The tread compound is cut and chip resistant and will offer some off-road grip if and when you need it.

There’s no mileage warranty which is unusual for an HT tire and owners report around 55,000 mile per set, which is quite low. However, that’s not bad for a tire on a diesel truck that will hold to that mileage under heavy use as well.

Reasonably affordable, if we have any issue with this tire it’s that its grip in colder temperatures is quite low, so we really only recommend it for warmer climates.


General Grabber HTS60

An excellent highway tire with some added off-road benefits, the General Grabber HTS60 is a budget-friendly option for diesel truck owners.

Using a more conventional all-season tread design for on-road performance and low noise, it also makes use of some unique features to give it off-road grip when required.

Reinforced shoulder tread blocks help cornering capability, while also working to resist the high-torque flex and potential premature wear than a diesel motor can have on tires.

A center tread section composed of tiny conjoined blocks delivers excellent highway stability and turn-in response while delivering some added grip when required.

LT versions of the tire come with a 50,000 mile warranty which isn’t amazing but the price is quite attractive.


Best All-Terrain Tires for Diesel Trucks

BFGoodrich All-Terrain TA KO2

Generally our top pick for all-terrain tires no matter what you drive, if you need off-road grip and durability in your diesel truck you really can’t beat the BFGoodrich All-Terrain TA KO2. Specifically, this tire offers an option for heavy duty diesel-powered pickups. Those specific tires come branded with the “DT” label at the end of their name. DT versions feature a unique tread compound designed to withstand high-torque motors better. They’re tread life is the same 50,000 miles, although unlike the standard version they are not certified for winter use.

Beyond that, the tread is designed into a unique pattern with a wide-distribution of grip as well as plenty of void space, making it an amazing off-road tire. The 3-ply sidewall construction is also a unique feature that makes sure this tire will withstand ultra tough off-road environments without cutting a sidewall.

It’s expensive, but it’s worth it.


Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure with Kevlar

Another of the industry’s best all-terrain tires, the Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure with Kevlar combines amazing off-road grip, durability and on-road performance.

It also offers a specific version of the tire designed exclusively for diesel-powered pickup trucks. This “Pro-Grade” version comes in Load Range E sizes. The tread compound is designed to better resist cutting and chipping, better handle heavy payloads and towing, while also holding up against the high-torque motors that can quickly wear conventional tires.

Notable elements include Goodyear’s Durawall Technology in the sidewall, which adds an extra layer of protection. At the same time, the stand-out feature is the layer of Kevlar between the tread and the tire casing which helps maintain tire shape to prolong wear (and grip) while also protecting against punctures on the face of the tread.

Pro-Grade models even get a second Kevlar layer!

Overall, it’s not quite as off-road capable as the BFG’s above, but it does offer better on-road manners, particularly in the wet.


Michelin LTX AT2

If you’re looking for a less-extreme all-terrain tire that’s still plenty capable but offers more on-road civility, grip and tread life, then the Michelin LTX AT2 is the way to go.

The stand-out feature has to be the 60,000 mile tread life warranty and the fact that real users report much higher numbers than that. And, this warranty applies to LT tires with the Load Range E rating too!

As a Michelin, this tire has an extremely high level of road comfort and low noise, combined with excellent grip on-road as well. If you’re doing plenty of towing, but also need to off-road grip of an all-terrain tire then this is a top pick.


Best Commercial Truck Tires for Diesel Trucks

General Grabber HD

General Grabber HD Review

Numerous brands make LT-specific sizes for tires designed to meet the needs of heavy duty truck owners, but a few brands offer specific tires build just for those trucks – which usually come with a diesel engine under the hood.

One such option of the General Grabber HD. It’s made specifically to handle high-torque motors and ones where there’s a lot of stopping and starting.

Internally the tire is reinforced using dual polyamide bands to help hold up under heavy loads. Outside the tire’s shape is unique with a flatter and wider footprint. This gives better weight distribution and, therefore, better resistance to flex under load.

As an added benefit, specifically for commercial van applications, is an extra layer of rubber on the sidewall which is designed to protect the tire against repeated curb rash.

There’s no tread life warranty on these tires, however, they should last around 50,000 miles and are quite affordable too.


Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac

Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac Review

A fantastic heavy duty truck tire for those looking to go off-road, the Wrangler Duatrac is a serious option for serious work. This all-terrain tire is almost a mud-terrain tire, with extra large tread lugs and plenty of void space between them.

The tread compound itself is extremely durable and holds up well to pretty much anything. It’s designed to get you anywhere, while also handling your payload or towing whatever you need.

Added off-road grip comes from siping on the tread base and it is three-peak mountain snowflake certified for true winter performance. Plus, it’s even studdable (LT sizes are) if you want.

About the only thing this tire doesn’t offer is a 3-ply sidewall.

Milage guarantees fluctuate based on the specific tire anywhere from 45,000 to 60,000 miles.

This tire is a top choice for those who work off-road and is extremely highly rated by owners.


Frequently Asked Questions

Does a 3/4 Ton Truck Need 10-Ply Tires

10-Ply ties (also known as Load Range E tires) are required for 3/4 and 1 ton trucks. The reinforced casing allows for not just the heavier load of the vehicle itself, but also for the added payload capability and towing.

Do 10-Ply Tires Ride Rough?

One of the drawbacks of the reinforced structure on 10-Ply / Load Range E tires is that they offer less cushioning from bumps in the road. As a result, expect a less comfortable ride. With all the reinforcement, these tires are heavier as well, which does negatively impact fuel economy.

2 thoughts on “Best Tires for Diesel Trucks”

  1. I would strongly suggest adding the Falken Wildpeak AT to this comparison. Living on dirt roads and pulling a lot of heavy roads, I’ve struggled for many years to find a tire that stands up to the cut and chip of the dirt, the torque of the diesel, behaves well under heavy loads on pavement, and will perform reasonably well (we know these aren’t MTs) in mud and snow. The Falken Wildpeak AT amazingly checks all the boxes and is the only one in my experience to do so. I’ve absolutely gotten the most mileage out of these tires of any I’ve ever tried.
    ST Maxx and DuraTrac are too squishy under loads on pavement (first 50% of wear) and wear out quickly. Otherwise great for off road and around the ranch. Hercules commercial terrain behaves poorly on ice and mud. Grabber AT2 and BFG KO look tough but just don’t cut it in real mountain conditions. Most other AT’s either wear fast, don’t cut it off road, or aren’t firm enough under heavy loads.

  2. Just got my new set of Toyo Open Country R/T’s and I gotta say, these tires are a game changer for my stout Ford Powerstroke! Smooth ride, excellent traction, and the beefy sidewalls can handle the toughest terrain. I’m loving the added confidence on the road and off!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.