Tires for any vehicle are important, but when it comes to off-roading, their performance can make or break a sale. After all, having the proper tire on the trail could help one get out of a sticky situation.
In the quest for finding the perfect tire, we got our hands on Falken’s all-new redesigned Wildpeak M/T and Dirty Life’s Roadkill Racing beadlock wheel. The tire is the mud terrain counterpart to the Wildpeak A/T3W that we tested previously on our prerunner/race truck, Project Storm Trooper.
Features Of The Wildpeak M/T
At first glance, the Wildpeak M/T is an aggressive tire that is built to handle all types of off-road terrain.
Plenty of testing goes into producing a tire; for this tire it was no different. The Wildpeak M/T was flogged by some of the biggest names in off-road, including Tony and Jordan Pellegrino. “Both Tony and his son Jordan are considered a part of the Falken family,” Jeremy Templeman of Falken said. “Tony brutally tested the Wildpeak M/T in several King of the Hammers events.”
The location of the tread blocks to the staggered outer tread blocks give this tire an aggressive, but functional look.
The Pellegrinos were not the only ones to appraise the tire. “The Brenthel brothers also tested the first generation Wildpeak A/T and the prototype M/T,” Templeman continued. “They are now utilizing the latest production specification in numerous high-speed desert racing events.”
People may think that a mud terrain tire is only designed for handling its namesake, but that is far from the truth. In fact, the tire has plenty of advantages for all types of off-roading.
Falken Wildpeak M/T Features
Optimized tread pattern
Rugged and rigid tread blocks
Rock and mud defense features
Offset shoulder blocks
Heat diffuser technology
Aggressive upper sidewall features
Duraspec three-ply sidewall
For some, the way the tread is laid out on a tire may just look cool, but the tread on the Wildpeak M/T has a pattern to provide a quieter ride than traditional mud terrain tires. The tire has rugged and rigid tread blocks. These help the contact patch for added stability, while also preventing stones from becoming trapped in the grooves.
The outer edge of the tread has offset shoulder blocks to provide traction in mud, on rugged terrain, or in off-camber situations. Also, in between each outer tread lug, there is a defense feature that helps shed mud from the tread grooves.
The sidewall of tires can be the weak point off-road, but Falken took a hard look at this with the Wildpeak M/T. “Falken’s proprietary Duraspec three-ply sidewall technology was developed to endure the most punishing off-road conditions,” Templeman said. “The Duraspec sidewall also
features two additional high ply turn-ups that provide an additional layer of protection.”
Like the Wildpeak A/T3W that we tested, the M/T has heat diffuser technology. This is located in the lower sidewall and helps dissipate heat as the tire rotates.
Roadkill Beadlock Features
To keep the Wildpeak M/T gripping in any condition, we mounted them on a set of Dirty Life Roadkill Racing 17-inch beadlocks. We went with the matte gunmetal and black beadlock ring option.
The wheel is only available in a 17-inch by 9-inch wheel with five, six, and eight-lug options. “The wheel features a reinforced rim wall, which provides increased strength and higher load carrying capacity,” Joe Podlovits of The Wheel Group explained. “The beadlock ring is made from forged 6061 T-6 aluminum.”
Dirty Life's Roadkill Racing beadlock is available in a 17x9 with five, six, or eight-lug options, and is also available in all black.
The wheel uses 24 zinc bolts to attach the ring. It also has two sets of holes, so in case one gets cross-threaded or stripped, the ring can be rotated to utilize the next set of holes. The wheel is capable of mounting DOT, high-ply race, and specialty tires.
Testing It All Types Of Terrain
To test the tire out, we headed back out to Ocotillo Wells SVRA to see how the tire would handle in similar conditions as the A/T3W. This off-road location gave us plenty of terrain types to check out all in one area.
For our test, we explored both Ocotillo Wells SVRA and Anza-Borrego State Park.
In addition to testing the tire in the dirt, the drive to the OHV area gave us plenty of time and pavement to test its on-road capabilities. On-road, we were surprised at how quiet the tire was. The exhaust drone on Project Storm Trooper could probably drown out a bomb going off, but even standing outside the vehicle as it drives, by the tires sounded rather tame.
On the highway or the windy roads down to the desert floor, we never felt like we didn’t have the grip we needed. The tires maintained traction, even when sand had blown over the highway.
Within the SVRA, we were able to test the tire out on many different types of terrain.
Off-road is where we saw the tire shine. It seemed like no matter what we went through, the tires prevailed. From the soft sandy sections to areas full of rocks, we had no issues pushing further on the trail.
We did not get to test the tire in mud as much as we liked, but the areas that had standing water were no match for the tire. The tire did fling a lot of mud through those areas, but it could have been more noticeable because of the offset on the wheels and being outside of the fenders.
With the Dirty Life beadlocks, we were able to see just how low we could get. Pictured here is the tire at 5 psi.
While we were out in testing, we had a chance to see just how the tire would handle at lower tire pressures. With the beadlocks, we were able to go lower than we would normally go on traditional wheels. We got as low as 5 psi with no issues, just plenty of traction.
Overall, we were surprised at how much the Wildpeak M/T could handle. By the looks of the tire, we thought we would be in store for a loud hum while driving, but we received just the opposite. On-road, the tire provided the traction we needed, while in the dirt the tire gave us plenty of grip to help out in all types of terrains.
These tires are great for a vehicle that is going to see both on and off-road driving, or a rig that will only see the harshest terrains. We feel that you will be pleased at how much the Wildpeak M/T can handle.
The tread on the Wildpeak M/T acted like little fingers gripping everything we drove over.
To find a tire size for your vehicle, be sure to check out Falken’s website and to find a wheel to mount, check out Dirty Life’s selection of wheels. What vehicle would look good with these tires on them? Tell us in the comments below!