LAST UPDATED: October 24th, 2021

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Are you planning on tearing through the streets with your buffed up tires? Do you enjoy the stares of envy from other riders as you sit proudly on your truck or SUV?

Well, you might want to think twice about taking your mud-terrain tires out for a spin around the block. Many car enthusiasts ask, “are mud-terrain tires good on-road?”

The most accurate answer would be that it depends on certain factors. There are lots of things to consider before you can safely say that your top mud tires will be good for the streets.

Let’s first understand the difference between mud-terrain tires and all-terrain tires.

Mud-Terrain Tires vs. All-Terrain Tires

Let’s get to know both types of tires.

Mud-Terrain Tires

Mud-Terrain Tires

These tires have large, knobbly treads and big, gaping voids between the treads. They are designed in this way because this pattern helps the tires to grip onto muddy terrains, drive through rugged rocks, loose soil, sand, and in some cases, snow.

The voids on the tires help to clear away the sticky mud, dirt, or debris from the path so that the tires can grip onto the surface of the path and spin to move forward.

They also have sidewall lugs, stone and mud ejectors, and are highly puncture-resistant. All these are what makes mud-terrain tires perfect for your off-roading adventures.

However, because of the special pattern on the tires, they tend to create a lot of noise. They also require one to be an experienced driver, as they can be difficult to control and balance.

All-Terrain Tires

As the name suggests, these tires are designed to be used in all kinds of terrains. They may not be as powerful as mud tires when off-roading, but they’ll serve you well on streets, snow, sand, and somewhat muddy roads.

These tires have treads and voids that are much smaller than the mud tires. Their internal construction is not as strong either, so they’re more prone to punctures than mud tires.

To make up for the lost traction through smaller treads and voids, these tires do feature sipes all over the tire treads.

These help with the traction of Good all-terrain tires. Surprisingly it’s these sipes that make all-terrains perfect for wet, slippery, snowy, and icy paths where mud tires don’t fare too well.

A few other good things about these tires are that they are much quieter, allows better control, handling and smoother rides. Basically, they’re the ideal tires for every terrain except for the mud.

Are Mud-Terrain Tires Good On-Road?

Now that you know the major differences between the two different types of tires, let’s look at some of the factors that need to be considered before deciding on taking the muds tires out on the road.

Noise Suppression

If you’re cruising through the streets, you don’t want to cause noise pollution, nor do you want to shock other drivers leading to an eventual accident.

As we mentioned above, mud tires tend to make a lot of noise on the roads. It is because of the large treads and the deep voids.

This pattern is good for rough, muddy terrain and won’t make as much noise off-roads. But on the streets, these tires create lots of noise which can earn you some nasty looks.

However, if you do want to attract some attention without causing too much disturbance, you can look for mud tires that use noise suppression technology.

Since more and more car enthusiasts are looking to buy beefy tires for the road, tire manufacturers are developing new and improved tires all the time.

These new mud tires use noise reduction technology to make them more appropriate for street riding.

Tread Pattern

Mud tires use a knobbly, blocked tread pattern with wide voids for more traction on muddy surfaces. This causes the ride to become rough, and it’s also harder to balance and control.

It is also the reason mud tires don’t have much grip on wet or icy surfaces. So if you take your mud tires out on a rainy day or a frosty night, chances are you’ll end up in the hospital with your car being impounded.

Some car manufacturers recognize the fact that a lot of the mud tires they sell spend way too much time on the streets.

That’s why they construct their mud tires in a way that’ll do well on the streets and won’t take away from that cool adventurer vibe.

Some of these tires have treads where the blocks are counterbalanced by buttressed edges. This helps by giving the driver better handling and comfort when driving.

Another way the tread is designed to increase stability on the road is by making the treads wave-shaped and putting the scalloped blocks in a 3-2 alternating pattern.

Some tires are also made with an extra row of tread blocks that goes around the inside shoulder of the tire.

This helps the tires keep a good grip on the wet and slippery streets as well as on dry roads.

You may read: How Long Does Mud Tires Last on the Road?

Fuel Consumption

Heavy-duty mud tires require a lot of energy. The tires are heavy, and to keep them rolling forward takes up additional fuel. This leads to a decrease in the fuel economy of mud-terrain tires.

You might think that you won’t be taking it off-road where there are obstacles to overcome, which might require more energy.

But the tires itself are bulky, and even on the streets, it will need more energy to move it forward than what is needed for a highway car or even an all-terrain tire.

Suggested Topic: Nitto Ridge vs Terra vs Trail Grappler


Last but definitely not least is the matter of money. Most heavy-duty mud-terrain tires are more expensive than many all-terrain tires.

If you are spending most of your time on the streets, it might not be the best use of your money unless, of course, you have money to burn.


So you see, mud tires are specifically made for off-roading. They are not suitable for driving on the streets. However, there are mud tires that are made for the street.

These tires have special features that reduce noise, allow smoother rides and better balance and control over handling. But they will still be far more costly and fuel-consuming than highway cars or all-terrain cars.

We hope you have the answer to your question now. It really depends on you and your requirements and wishes.

Related Guide:

Which Tire Sizes Are Considered 35’s?

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