If you own a Porsche, you care about its performance. You care about how it drives and how you feel when you’re driving it, but more importantly, you want that performance to be consistent. If you pay any attention to Porsche while it develops its next generation of sports cars, you know the German automaker spends a lot of time at the Nürburgring track, where it tests and refines the tires it’ll use on its vehicles. Tires are so important to Porsche that it certifies proper rubber using N-spec approval, which means the tire meets or exceeds quality and performance levels set by the automaker.
So if you’re in the market for new tires for your Porsche and you’re thinking performance, then these recommendations are made for you. Below are our picks for the best performance tires for your Porsche, with a range of options that should satisfy your needs whether you drive a Taycan, 911, or a Cayenne.
1. Top pick: Michelin Pilot Sport PS2
Our top pick falls under the “Max Performance Summer” category and it’s the Michelin Pilot Sport PS2. If you have any doubts about its performance, know that the Pilot Sport PS2 was an original tire on certain Porsche GT2 and GT3 models, along with other high-performance cars like the BMW M3 and Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. Since it is a summer tire, you should not be using the Pilot Sport PS2 in near-freezing temperatures, snow, or on ice.
The tread design on this tire offers dry and wet traction with a focus on tight cornering and high speed capabilities. It uses a hybrid rubber compound and unique tread pattern to maximize grip. One standout feature in this ultra-high performance tire is a limited, 20,000-mile treadwear warranty which isn’t often seen seen on tires in this class.
2. Best for track/street: Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2
If you’re looking for a performance tire for your Porsche that’s great on the street and performs exceptionally well on the track, the Pilot Sport Cup 2 has your name on it. This particular tire was developed in partnership with the 918 Spyder and 911 GT3, which should leave little doubt in your mind it’s designed for performance. The Bi-Compound Technology uses two different rubber on the tread. One is a High Molecular Chain elastomer to offer excellent grip for cornering, while a rigid compound optimizes steering control and delivers wet grip.
Although this tire is designed primarily for track use, it does offer a surprisingly comfortable ride thanks to a specialized polyester casing. This is the tire to go with if you are a weekend track warrior.
3. Best for crossovers/SUVs: Michelin Latitude Sport 3
Designed for sporty luxury crossovers, the Michelin Latitude Sport 3 is an ultra-high performance summer tire that uses a special compound to offer exceptional grip on dry and wet roads. If you’re driving a crossover however, practicality is also important to you, so it’s good to know that this tire also focuses on maximizing your fuel economy. By using variable thickness sipes, Michelin was able to reduce tread block deformation and rolling resistance to offer better gas mileage.
This tire was developed as factory equipment for the Porsche Macan S and Macan Turbo and it comes with a 20,000-mile warranty.
4. Also consider: Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+
If you want a great performing all-season tire, you’ll want the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+. It’s designed to offer superb traction in both dry and wet conditions, delivering a 45,000-mile warranty. Features on this tire include Michelin’s Variable Control Contact Patch 3.0, which is designed to not only provide more predictable control but better treadwear. The tread compound uses Extreme Silica+, while 3D sipes and oversized tread grooves helps prevent hydroplaning in the wet. It performs even in snow and cold weather, thanks to Helio+ Technology and hidden biting edges.
This is our recommendation for a great, performance all-season tire for your Porsche sports car or crossover.
5. Honorable mention: Pirelli P Zero Corsa System
If, for whatever reason, you’re not a fan of Michelin tires and sitting there rolling your eyes at all of our recommendations so far, consider Pirelli’s P Zero Corsa System. The company says this tire is its “most sporting tire in the road car range” and it has been developed in collaboration with numerous supercar manufacturers for both road and track use. At some point in time, you would have found this tire as factory equipment on the Ferrari 360 Challenge, Lamborghini Gallardo, and select Porsche GT2 and GT3 models.
Although this tire does meet DOT requirements, we don’t recommend using them in wet conditions. They should definitely not be used in near-freezing temperatures, snow, or on ice.
What are Porsche N-marked tires?
Porsches have always been designed with performance in mind, so it’s little surprise the German automaker places a huge focus on the tires it uses. So much so that Porsche works directly with tire manufacturers to jointly develop the ideal tire for each of its models so that they meet the necessary performance requirements. Tires that have been tested and approved by Porsche sport an N-marking, with the letter N standing for Nürburgring, the world-famous track where the tires are tested.
According to Porsche, these N-marked tires are different primarily when it comes to geometry, rubber composition, and testing methods. During testing, Porsche and the tire manufacturer focus on three main areas: subjective outdoor criteria (handling and driving comfort), objective outdoor criteria (braking performance and service life), and indoor criteria (rolling resistance and high-speed performance).
Why are so many of your recommendations from Michelin?
Most of our recommendations come from Michelin because Porsche and Michelin have worked together for almost half a century. In fact, since 2002, Michelin has been Porsche’s global tire co-operation partner. The two companies work collaboratively to create just the right tires for a Porsche model, long before it’s even debuted. Porsche trusts Michelin and so do we.