The Ridge Grappler is one of the most popular hybrid tires. But does it offer value for money? This Nitto Ridge Grappler tire review has the answers.
The Nitto Ridge Grappler is one of the best hybrid tires on the market today. It provides outstanding traction and handling on dry roads and wet roads. It also delivers superior off-road performance and great fuel economy while offering a comfortable, quiet and smooth ride.
In this Nitto Ridge Grappler review, we will explore its design features and technologies, its performance on dry and wet roads, it's off-road performance, ride quality, hauling and towing capacity, warranties and guarantees, available sizes and compatibility, its price as well as pros and cons. By the end of this Ridge Grappler tire review, you will have all the information that you need, to decide whether it’s the right hybrid tire for your truck or SUV.
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About the Nitto Ridge Grappler
If you love the performance of a mud terrain tire but you tend to engage in a lot of on-road driving, then you will need a hybrid terrain tire.
And the Nitto Ridge Grappler is one of such tires. It combines the best of both worlds. It delivers a rugged off-road performance combined with a quiet and comfortable on-road ride.
Simply put, it blends all the benefits of a rugged mud tire with those of an all-terrain tire, minus the drawbacks.
And with an F-load rating, you can also use this tire to tow or haul heavy loads, making it a capable tire in almost all areas.
Considering its price point, it’s easy to see why this tire has become such a popular choice for drivers in this category.
The Nitto Ridge Grappler is perfect for trucks, 4x4s, pickups and other vehicles that need a sturdy, dependable and capable on-road and off-road tire.
Design Features and Technology
According to Nitto, the Ridge Grappler is designed to provide a balanced performance between two terrains: all-terrain conditions and mud-terrain.
Nitto has equipped this tire with several advanced design features and technologies, to ensure it will deliver according to expectations. They include:
High-Void Tread Pattern
The Nitto Ridge Grappler features a high-void tread pattern, designed to deliver robust off-road performance.
It helps to channel water away from the tire’s surface, thus reducing the risk of hydroplaning.
This tread pattern also helps the tire to continuously adapt to different road surfaces and weather conditions.
And this makes it the ideal tire for drivers who frequently shift between highway driving and off-road terrains.
Variable Tread Pitch
One of the complaints that people raise about hybrid tires is that they tend to make too much noise, especially when being driven on the highway.
And the high noise levels can be attributed to their large tread blocks, as they come into contact with the tarmac.
But with the Nitto Ridge Grappler, such issues are almost non-existent. Nitto has utilized a variable tread pitch on this tire, which helps to significantly reduce road noise.
So, if you are looking for a hybrid, mud-terrain and all-terrain tire that will not produce too much noise on the highway, then you will love driving on this tire.
Whenever you are off-roading, your tire can pick rock chippings, smaller stones, and other elements.
And these stones can cut through the tire’s under tread, thus exposing its belt package to various elements.
Eventually, you may end up with punctures or the tire may become worn off prematurely.
To prevent the occurrence of such problems, Nitto has outfitted this tire with stone ejectors, which toss out sharp stones and rocks from the tire’s tread grooves.
Shoulder and Lateral Grooves
Nitto has further equipped this tire with shoulder and lateral Z grooves. The alternating shoulder grooves help to clear mud from the tire and supply constant traction.
On the other hand, the lateral Z grooves provide biting edges for the tire, resulting in enhanced traction on snowy roads.
Step Block Edges
The Nitto Ridge Grappler also comes with step block edges, designed to deliver optimal off-road performance.
These step block edges provide enhanced traction on uneven and loose terrain. So, whether you are driving through mud, sand, gravel, large rocks or any other obstacle, this tire will roll over them with ease.
Considering the rugged terrains that this tire is built for, rocks, gravel, sand and other elements can lead to premature wear and tear.
And when that happens, you will have to replace your Nitto Ridge Grappler tire. The problem is, replacing this tire will not come cheap.
To minimize premature wear and tear, Nitto has significantly reinforced this tire, to ensure it can withstand rugged conditions and elements.
For instance, it comes with reinforced tread blocks, which help the tire to absorb and spread the weight load uniformly over its surface.
It also features a 3-ply sidewall construction, which makes it highly resistant to puncture as well as premature wear and tear.
Nitto Ridge Grappler Dry and Wet Performance
As noted earlier, the Nitto Ridge Grappler is a hybrid tire. It merges the qualities of 3 different types of tires into one.
It combines the qualities of an all-terrain tire, a mud-terrain tire and an all-season high-performance tire.
So, whenever you are driving on the streets with this tire, it will supply outstanding grip and traction on both wet and dry roads.
And besides its dependable traction and solid braking, this Nitto hybrid tire also delivers decent handling on dry and wet roads.
As much as it’s not a summer performance tire, it delivers the sporty handling that you will normally get from an ultra-performance tire.
Nitto Ridge Grappler Off-road Driving
While the Nitto Ridge Grappler may deliver refined driving and handling on the street, its off-road performance is one of the best in the category.
It can comfortably handle deep mud, thick snow, loose terrain and soft sand. With this tire, you can easily transition from the street to the mountains, without experiencing any performance-related issues.
Whether you encounter large rocks, loose terrain, standing water, slush, deep mud, gravel or a mix of it all, the Nitto Ridge Grappler doesn’t shy off from any challenge.
Most off-road tires produce too much noise especially when being driven on the highway. And you may even be forced to shout just to hold a conversation.
But with the Nitto Ridge Grappler, you are assured of a comfortable, smooth and quiet ride on the interstate.
After your exciting and enjoyable off-road escapades, this tire is always ready to take you home comfortably.
As long as you observe speed limits on the highway, this tire will deliver a smooth and refined ride, which is quite surprising for a tire with such large and chunky tread blocks.
Hauling and Towing Capacity
The Nitto Ridge Grappler is available in XL and LT metric sizes. Furthermore, its reinforced tread blocks combined with its rugged construction making it a capable tire for hauling and towing heavy loads.
According to Nitto, this tire can haul and tow approximately 3,750 lbs, as long as you maintain an air pressure of 80 psi.
And even if you air this tire up to 80 psi, you will not experience ride quality issues. So, if you do a lot of towing and hauling with your truck or SUV, you can rely on this tire to get the job done.
Nitto Ridge Grappler Warranties and Guarantees
Nitto backs the Ridge Grappler with only one warranty. And this is the workmanship and materials warranty.
Let’s take a closer look at this warranty for this tire, what’s covered and the coverage eligibility.
Workmanship and Materials Warranty
As its name suggests, this warranty is designed to cover the tire against damage caused by workmanship-related or materials-related defects.
So, if your Nitto Ridge Grappler tire becomes unserviceable due to a workmanship or materials defect, then you should get a free replacement.
Tread Uniformity Issues
Under this warranty, Nitto offers to provide a free replacement, if the tire develops tread uniformity issues during its first 1/32-inch of original usable tread.
Hence, if your Ridge Grappler experiences uniformity issues such as pulling, out-of-balance or out-of-round during its first 1/32-inch of usable tread, then you will get a free replacement.
Nitto will also cover mounting and balancing charges while the buyer will be responsible for applicable charges and other related costs.
If your Ridge Grappler tire is removed from service due to non-uniformity issue, then Nitto will also replace it free of charge.
For the tire to be eligible for free replacement, it shouldn’t be worn by more than 25% of its original usable tread. If the tread is worn by more than 25%, then the replacement will be done on a prorated basis.
You will be required to provide proof of purchase when you are filing for a claim under this warranty. And if the proof of purchase is not currently available, then the tire’s date of manufacture will be used.
As mentioned above, if your Ridge Grappler tire is worn by more than 25% of its original usable tread, then Nitto will replace it on a prorated basis. Under the pro-rated basis, Nitto and the buyer will share the replacement charges.
The buyer’s pro-rated cost is determined by multiplying the percentage of original usable worn off the tire by the dealer’s current selling price.
Assuming the percentage of original usable tread worn off the tire is 50% and the tire is currently going for $200, the buyer’s replacement charge will be $100 while Nitto will cover the remaining $100 towards the tire’s replacement.
Coverage extends for up to 5 years from the date of purchase.
To qualify for this warranty, you must meet some conditions as set out by Nitto. First, it should be properly serviced and maintained.
Second, your Ridge Grappler tire should have uniform tread wear across its surface. Also, it should be strictly used on the road surface it was engineered for.
Third, the tire shouldn’t be more than 60 months old from the date of purchase. You will also be required to produce proof of purchase.
While Nitto offers to replace the Ridge Grappler if it’s removed from service due to workmanship or manufacturer-related defect, some tires may not be eligible.
For instance, any damage caused by improper vehicle or tire use will not be eligible for a replacement.
Also, tires damaged by improper storage, elements, improper application, improper mounting and balancing, or improper repair methods don’t qualify for a replacement.
Nitto Ridge Grappler Sizes and Compatibility
The Ridge Grappler is currently available in more than 80 different sizes, ranging from 16 inches to 24 inches.
It’s also available in an F-load rating, meaning you can use it for towing and hauling heavy loads. Some of the vehicles that this tire can fit include:
- Chevrolet Avalanche, Colorado, Avalanche, Express 2500, Silverado 2500, Silverado 3500 and Express 3500.
- Ford Ranger, Expedition, F-150, F-250, Excursion and Explorer
- Honda Passport
- GMC Yukon, Suburban and Sierra
- Dodge Durango, Nitro, Ram 1500 and Ram 2500
- Isuzu Trooper
- Ram 2500 and 3500
- Nissan Xterra, Frontier, Pathfinder and Titan
- Land Rover Discovery
- Honda Passport
- Jeep Commander, Wrangler, Cherokee and Liberty
- Toyota 4Runner, Tacoma, Land Cruiser, Tundra and FJ Cruiser
Nitto Ridge Grappler Price
If you opt to install the Ridge Grappler on your vehicle, then you will spend approximately $180 to $740. The actual price will depend on your vehicle’s wheel size.
And if you were to install the Ridge Grappler LT versions, then you may end up spending as much as $10,000 per tire.
Nitto Ridge Grappler Pros
- Impressive on-road performance
- Superior off-road performance
- Rugged, sturdy and durable construction
- Stylish off-road design
- Great towing and hauling capabilities
Nitto Ridge Grappler Cons
- A bit pricey
- Lacks treadwear warranty
Should You Buy the Ridge Grappler?
If you own a truck or SUV and you are looking for a hybrid tire that combines all the impressive features of an all-terrain tire and a mud-terrain tire, then the Nitto Ridge Grappler will be a great choice.
And while it may be pricier than most of the other tires in its class, its superior all-season performance, comfortable and refined on-road ride, sturdy construction and remarkable off-road performance means you will get value for your money.
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