The Blizzak WS90 is one of Bridgestone’s latest winter tires. But is it the right winter tire for you? This Blizzak WS90 tire review has the answers.
The Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 delivers as promised. Its traction and grip on snow, ice, dry roads, wet and slippery conditions, as well as dry roads is excellent. It also delivers outstanding steering response combined with safe, steady and assured handling on ice, snow and wet conditions.
In this Bridgestone Blizzak WS90, we will take an in-depth look at some of its key performance features, its performance in different conditions, its ride quality, it's off-roading capabilities as well as its warranties and guarantees. We will also explore some of the vehicles it’s compatible with, its price range as well as its strengths and drawbacks. And by the end of this Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 review, you will have all the information you need, to decide whether it’s the right winter tire for your vehicle.
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About the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90
First released in 1988, Bridgestone Blizzaks have been some of the most dependable tires for driving in harsh wintry conditions.
They are renowned for their excellent grip, traction, handling and stable handling in ice, snow and rainy conditions.
And the new Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 aims to build upon that strong legacy. This Bridgestone winter tire is available in a wide range of sizes, ranging from 14 inches to 19 inches.
With such a vast selection of sizes, it can fit the majority of sedans, minivans, crossovers, and compact hatchbacks, just to name a few.
According to Bridgestone, this studless ice and snow tire is engineered to deliver secure handling, confident control, and safe driving in the harshest winter conditions.
Key Features and Technologies
Bridgestone tires are renowned for their advanced technologies when it comes to winter traction. And this follows that trend.
It has been equipped with several standout features and technologies, to ensure it can deliver the best performance in the harshest winter conditions. They include:
Bridgestone Multicell Technology
Bridgestone has equipped this tire with its proprietary Multicell Technology. Multicell is a specialized tread compound, featuring millions of microscopic pores.
Whenever these pores come into contact with ice, they will attract and diffuse the water away from the tire’s surface, resulting in enhanced grip and traction on ice and snow.
Optimized Rubber Compounds
Conventional rubber found in all-season tires tends to harden and become stiff, once the temperatures start falling.
And as a result, the tire may lose its traction and grip in such conditions, making it hard to control the vehicle.
To avoid such issues, Bridgestone has equipped the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 winter tire with an optimized rubber compound, designed to remain supple, even in freezing conditions.
This flexibility, combined with the tire’s optimized tread compound will ensure enhanced grip, traction and performance in ice or snow.
Superior Tread Design
Bridgestone has further outfitted this winter and snow tire with two deep and wide circumferential grooves.
These grooves help to evacuate water and slush away from the tire’s surface, thus improving its hydroplaning resistance.
The Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 also comes with larger shoulder blocks as well as additional block edges, designed to provide better control, stability and handling, especially during cornering.
Bridgestone has further provisioned this tire with 3D sipes and interlocking sipes, which provide extra biting edges, for enhanced performance in snow and ice.
At the same time, the added zigzag sipes improve the tire’s grip and traction in ice and snow-covered roads.
Sturdy Tread Compound
Winter tires come with a softer rubber compound, compared to all-season or summer touring tires.
And as a result, they tend to wear out faster. But with the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90, you are assured of longer tread life.
According to Bridgestone, this tire features approximately 30% more block stiffness, compared to the previous iteration.
Therefore, you can expect to get an additional winter season out of this tire.
Performance in Snowy Conditions
As mentioned earlier, it’s specifically designed for harsh winter conditions. So, does it perform according to expectations?
Without a doubt, the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 is one of the best winter tires. It delivers outstanding acceleration in snowy and icy conditions.
With this tire, the chances of getting stuck in snowy conditions are almost zero. Its braking in snowy conditions is also outstanding.
When it comes to handling and stability in winter conditions, you will struggle to find a tire that can compete with the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90.
During my test ride, this tire responded to my inputs quite fast. And, my vehicle was always feeling sure-footed, even when driving the vehicle through thick layers of snow.
With the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90, it felt as if I was driving on wet pavement, as opposed to snowy conditions.
Its performance on ice-covered roads is equally outstanding. I was able to accelerate with ease and the braking distances on ice-covered roads were among the shortest I’ve recorded in this category.
Its handling on snow is also top-notch, thanks to its superior tread design.
And considering that this tire features the 3PMSF symbol, it’s an indication that it meets the required performance criteria in ice and snow.
I decided to give this tire a test on dry roads, to evaluate its usability in such conditions. And its dry performance is honestly better than I had expected.
Its steering responsiveness is great, especially when you consider it’s a winter tire. It also delivers dependable grip and traction on dry surfaces.
As the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 may not match the performance levels of a summer tire or an all-season touring tire, the grip it delivers on dry roads is adequate.
I also noticed that my vehicle didn’t lose stability, even during fast cornering. Its high-speed stability is also outstanding.
And when it comes to braking distances on dry roads, they are among the shortest, compared to the other winter tires I’ve tested.
However, it doesn’t provide as much feedback as you want on dry roads. And this is expected, considering it’s not engineered for these conditions.
As mentioned earlier, Bridgestone has equipped this tire with two wide circumferential grooves, 3D sipes, interlocking sipes, and zigzag sipes.
And all these features work together, to enhance the tire’s performance in wet and slippery conditions.
For instance, the wide circumferential grooves help to channel water away from its surface, thus helping to minimize hydroplaning resistance.
At the same time, the different siping combinations help the tire to grip the road, even when the surface is wet and slippery.
Its handling in wet and slippery conditions is secure and its steering response is fast, resulting in a safe ride.
Perhaps what you will like most about this tire is its braking performance in wet and slippery conditions.
Compared to other winter tires, its braking distances are the shortest. So, whether you are driving through rainy or slippery conditions, you are assured of a safe, secure, and stable ride, as long as you’ve equipped your vehicle with a set of these tires.
Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 Ride Quality
As highlighted earlier, the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 comes with larger and stiffer tread blocks.
And as you may expect, it may produce some road noise, especially during highway driving.
But its noise levels are acceptable, compared to most of the other winter tires I have used.
The main issue that I experienced with this tire is that it doesn’t absorb road imperfections as much as you would want.
Is the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 Suitable for Off-Roading?
With its rugged tread design and deep circumferential grooves, the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 appears like a capable off-road performer.
And it does deliver some dependable traction and grip in muddy conditions. It can also provide some grip on loose gravel.
But considering that it’s made of soft and pliable rubber, it can be easily damaged by the various elements found in off-road conditions.
For instance, tree stumps, roots, small rocks and large stones can easily puncture this tire or damage its tread extensively.
So, if you have some upcoming off-roading expeditions, it will be highly advisable to equip your vehicle with proper off-road tires.
Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 Warranties and Guarantees
The Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 only comes with a single warranty. And that is a materials and workmanship warranty.
Under this warranty, Bridgestone offers to replace your Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 tire if it’s removed from service due to defects within the manufacturer’s control.
But unlike other Bridgestone tires that come with a free replacement period, the replacement for the Blizzak WS90 is purely on a prorated basis.
Coverage under this warranty extends for 5 years from the tire’s date of purchase or 6 years from the date of manufacture.
So, if your Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 tire is removed from service during this period, Bridgestone will replace it on a prorated basis.
Under the pro-rated basis, you will share the replacement costs with Bridgestone. Your replacement amount will depend on the percentage of tread wear worn off the tire.
This percentage will then be multiplied by the dealer’s current selling price for this tire.
For example, your Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 may be removed from service after 3 years, due to defects within the manufacturer’s control, with 60% tread wear.
Assuming that the dealer is currently selling this tire for $100, then your replacement amount will be $60.
You will also have to pay for mounting and balancing fees, tire disposal fees, applicable taxes and miscellaneous service charges.
The remaining $40 will be applied as a discount or credit at the time of the tire’s replacement.
Tire warranties are aimed at protecting buyers against loss, in case a tire is removed from service due to issues within the manufacturer’s control.
However, some tires may not be eligible to be replaced. And this is also the case with this warranty.
For instance, if your Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 tire is removed from service due to damage caused by road hazards, improper use, improper operation, or any form of abuse, Bridgestone may opt not to replace it.
Also, if it becomes unserviceable due to weather cracking after four years from its manufacture date, then it may not be replaced.
Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 Fitment
As mentioned earlier, this tire is available in several sizes, ranging from 14 inches to 19 inches. It can fit several types of vehicles such as:
- Cadillac ATS, DTS, CT4, CT6, CT5, CTS, and STS
- Dodge Journey, Caliber, Grand Caravan, Charger, Avenger, and Dart
- Chevrolet Camaro, Corvette, Equinox, City Express, Caprice, Cruze, Colorado, Corvette, Malibu, Impala, Sonic, Trailblazer, Volt, Spark, and Trax
- Ford Fiesta, Escape, Bronco Sport, EcoSport, C-Max, Focus, Crown Victoria, Flex, Fusion, Transit, Mustang, and Taurus
- Honda Clarity, CR-V, Crosstour, Civic, Insight, Fit and HR-V
- Jeep Renegade, Cherokee, Patriot, and Compass
- Mazda CX-3, RX-8, CX-30, Mazda 2 to 6 and CX-5
- Mitsubishi Galant, Outlander Sport, Eclipse, Lancer and Outlander Sport
- Hyundai Kona, Azera, Elantra, Accent, Kona Electric, Sonata, Ioniq, Tucson, Venue and Veloster
- Nissan Versa, Quest, Sentra, Rogue, Sentra, Maxima, Kicks, Leaf, Cube, and 370Z
- Toyota Matrix, Corolla, Prius, Mirai, RAV4, Camry, Avalon, Tacoma, Sienna, Yaris and C-HR
Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 Price Range
The Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 is currently retailing at approximately $90 to $220 per tire. So, a set of four tires will cost you around $360 to $880.
Your vehicle’s wheel size as well as where you opt to purchase the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 will determine the amount you will spend on this tire.
Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 Pros
- Excellent traction and grip in snow and ice
- Outstanding steering response and handling in snow and ice
- Dependable traction in wet conditions
Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 Cons
- No treadwear mileage warranty
Should You Buy the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90?
The Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 achieves what it sets out to do. It delivers outstanding grip and traction in ice and snow. Its performance in rainy conditions is equally excellent. Furthermore, its braking distances in snow, ice and wet surfaces are among the shortest. Simply put, it’s one of the best studless winter tires. So, if you are looking for a dependable winter tire that will provide value for your money, then you will struggle to find a better option than the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90.
About THE AUTHOR
I've spent many years selling cars, working with auto detailers, mechanics, dealership service teams, quoting and researching car insurance, modding my own cars, and much more.Read More About Charles Redding