Few ultra-high-performance summer tires satisfy drivers’ increasing demands in handling and traction, but Nitto NT555 G2 is one of the few exceptions. The tire still has several drawbacks Nitto could have addressed more effectively, but overall, customer reviews are generally favorable.
We’ve included the tire in our COR Wheels Tire Test and will explain the results in more detail below.
In this review:
Nitto NT555 G2 Specifications & Features
The NT555 G2 is the brand’s next-gen ultra high-performance summer tire designed for sedans, performance coupes, sports cars, and muscle cars. Like most summer tires, it promises optimal wet and dry traction in summer only and is not meant to be serviced, stored, or driven in freezing temperatures, such as on ice and snow.
- The stiff, silica-reinforced compound comes with a directional pattern, featuring large tread blocks to enhance grip on dry tracks.
- Two solid, circumferential center ribs promote stability on straight roads during acceleration and hard braking.
- Aggressive shoulder blocks strengthen the tire’s cornering and grip in both wet and dry conditions.
- The wide circumferential grooves channel water to the lateral notches, reducing hydroplaning.
- 2-ply polyester casing and double steel belts (reinforced by 2 cap lies) further support the tire’s flexibility, stability, and higher-speed capabilities.
Nitto NT555 G2 Review & Performance Test Results
As part of the 2023 COR Wheels Tire Test, we installed the Nitto NT555 G2 (the 235/45R17 tire size version) on our 2022 Subaru WRX.
1. Dry Performance: 8.7/10
Dry Traction: 8.9/10
The Nitto NT555 was excellent on dry tracks. The powerful, large tread blocks stabilized the tire well with minimal traction loss, allowing our Subaru to start off at 55 MPH easily. We had no difficulty accelerating and decelerating mid-way, changing lanes, or overtaking vehicles. Navigating unexpected roadblocks and extremely sharp turns was just as smooth, with less chance of crashing or overreacting.
The tire’s confidence slightly wavered when we exceeded 65 MPH; fortunately, the G2 was still generally manageable. As a result, you can easily load cargo of more than 500 lbs or transport full passengers without experiencing serious tire drag.
Cornering Stability: 8.5/10
The G2 impressed us with its stability. The center rib still wavered at high speeds above 55 MPH (similar to our straight-line tests) but posed no real danger. Therefore, we could manage smooth corner entries with consistent traction down to the exit. Rough acceleration and deceleration did not catch us off guard, thanks to the aggressive shoulder blocks supporting the tire’s rib and sidewalls. Even hard braking did not result in much gliding, except for minor, imperceptible shudders.
Still, if you are a beginner, avoid aggressive handling around tight corners or off-camber bends. While the NT555 G2 was well-controlled most of the time, there were a few instances where its vibrations were quite unpredictable, especially during mild understeering or oversteering.
Steering Response: 8.6/10
The G2’s steering was quick and responsive in all basic driving situations, including some adventurous endeavors, such as sharp turns, wide skids, aggressive body rolls, etc. Better yet, it did not stutter during speed changes or when we transitioned between different road textures, ensuring responsive and consistent feedback.
On another note, you might notice brief response delays when going uphill or downhill. Strong push-pulls could address these delays to a certain extent, but they are quite challenging for inexperienced drivers.
2. Wet Performance: 8.3/10
Wet Traction: 8.4/10
The aggressive shoulder blocks worked much less efficiently on wet roads than on dry ones. The tire could still roll over shallow puddles and lightly slippery surfaces quite well, even at high speeds, but we could not say the same about our test rides in deep water and heavy storms. The traction loss felt clear despite our consistent steering inputs, and traveling faster than 55 MPH only resulted in even more slippage and shudders around corners and inclines.
Fortunately, once we returned to the 35-40 MPH range, the G2 regained some confidence on dry tracks, establishing a quite strong connection with the road. You can also load cargo of 300 to 500 lbs easily on roads without complex twists and turns.
Hydroplaning Resistance: 8.2/10
Hydroplaning issues were tolerable when we drove through water below 4 inches deep. Water still clung persistently on some parts of the sidewalls, but most of it was channeled through the grooves before we could notice any significant sign of floating under the contact patch. Firm and consistent palm-to-palm steering also supported the tire to evacuate water more quickly.
Unfortunately, the tire struggled in deeper water and exhibited severe traction loss around corners. Worse, traveling at high speeds made it twice as difficult for the grooves to displace the water effectively, resulting in dramatic over-reactions and stalls even on straight roads.
3. Comfort: 7.8/10
Ride Quality: 7.9/10
Driving with the NT555 felt cushioned and smooth on paved roads and winding curves despite the aggressive upper sidewalls; better yet, the extra cargo did not weigh it down as much as we expected, further boosting its overall riding comfort.
Unfortunately, driving our Subaru in wet weather did not give us the same pleasant experience, even at low speeds. You should also think twice before making sharp turns around tight corners, or your car will shudder and vibrate dramatically.
Road Noise: 7.6/10
The NT555’s noise control almost bottomed the entire list of our tested tires; the loud squeaks and screechings, even on straight roads, were hard to tolerate, even when most of us were not noise-sensitive.
The noise quieted a little when we drove below 30 MPH on dry roads but returned unexpectedly when accelerating, hard braking, or traveling on wet surfaces.
4. Treadwear and Durability: 7.9/10
The G2 did not resist extremely rough textures and sharp debris as well as we expected, given the aggressive shoulder blocks. Plus, like most summer tires, its stability on flooded roads or at cold temperatures needs lots of improvement.
On a brighter note, the tire withstood heat well and, as mentioned, did not drag much on the road when carrying heavy cargo. Therefore, you can expect 4-5 years of driving, even with excessive usage.
Nitto NT555 G2 Pros & Cons
Great dry traction control
Reliable cornering and steering responses
Decent durability for a summer tire
Wet performances could have been better
Underwhelming riding comfort and noise control
The Nitto NT555 G2 is smooth and quite confident on dry tracks in summer. However, the tire has to sacrifice a little bit of riding comfort and noise control during the ride, and its wet performance is not sufficient for inclement weather in rainy seasons. Using it in winter is also out of the question.