Toyo M-55

Jim K in PA

Adventurer
I recently switched from KM2 to M55. Although I only have a few hundred miles on the M55, I think I can make some useful comparisons between the two tires because my KM2 were not worn out before switching them. The KM2 had about 13,000 miles on them, and I swapped them out primarily because I was concerned about accumulating sidewall damage. They had some scary-looking cuts in them, although they did not ever actually fail. I do a lot of backcountry travel solo and it is not a practical risk to drive on four damaged tires. I made some comparison photographs using my spare tire which had zero miles on it.

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I see the M55 as one of the best choices in 255/85R16. In other sizes, there's more choices. The KM2 would have been a better bargain. They are $100 less expensive per tire. For a highway user, I am sure they will get more miles from the M55, but for my use, the snow and ice performance are the only clear advantage I can hope for. Nevertheless, off road they are not disappointing at all. I don't see a disadvantage compared to the KM2 except possibly in mud -- and the KM2 was not an awesome mud tire anyway. I'm happy with the M55 and I expect to get even happier as fall and winter set in over the next couple months. I don't expect any of my trail companions to swap to the M55. They'd have to give up their 37's and 40's. For a narrow 33, I don't see what more one could expect.
Outstanding first post, Ben. Welcome to the Portal, and thanks for this in depth review. You hit all of the questions I was contemplating. I have KM2s on my Jeep, and am considering changing to the Toyos for the reasons you list (same size). Be sure to post a follow up after you hit some snow and other challenges.
 

DEFENDERBEAM

strategic command
I was looking at M-55 on a jeep JKUR. I noticed the 18" has a 33.6" OD, and the 16" has 33.3" OD (I think). I drive a lot of windy roads so the 18" version could possibly help handling, + a tiny bit taller? but the 16" I imagine could be a bit more comfy of a ride? The harshest riding jeep can't be much worse than a modified STI or EVO.

Outstanding first post, Ben. Welcome to the Portal, and thanks for this in depth review. You hit all of the questions I was contemplating. I have KM2s on my Jeep, and am considering changing to the Toyos for the reasons you list (same size). Be sure to post a follow up after you hit some snow and other challenges.
 

Redline

Likes to Drive and Ride
I was looking at M-55 on a jeep JKUR. I noticed the 18" has a 33.6" OD, and the 16" has 33.3" OD (I think). I drive a lot of windy roads so the 18" version could possibly help handling, + a tiny bit taller? but the 16" I imagine could be a bit more comfy of a ride? The harshest riding jeep can't be much worse than a modified STI or EVO.
I think you are on the mark with your comments... And I too drive often in windy conditions.

The 18" (275/70R18) might be a bit better in windy condition due to a shorter, stiffer sidewall. I like that the 275/70R18 M55 is tall for the 275 size, but it would not make me chose an 18" tire/wheel over a 16" if I had the choice.

I have a truck that takes 18" wheels now, so I'm into the 275/70R18 size. However, I still prefer the better ride and flex offered by a taller sidewall for what is essentially the same diameter (33") tire.

If you start to consider the 275/70R18 size then you will have many tread options.
 

Erik N

Adventurer
Update 2014

OK so I am several months late doing this.

The M-55's are still a great industrial tire. Put another 800 miles on them last August, after sitting for a year or so. No loss of pressure over time yet...

Crap, computer won't let me upload pics.
 
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Redline

Likes to Drive and Ride
Good timing bumping this thread... Just yesterday I was at my local Les Schwab store for some tire mounting and while waiting, found myself looking at the M55 tread pattern yet again.

It's unlikely I'll run a set again anytime soon, but I still like them and see how this old design can still work great as a simple, old-style commercial traction. Since I like deep lugs and won't run shallow tread, I can’t get over the center stone guard reducing the tread depth down the middle of the tire, it will make the half-life of the tire much shorter for those who don't run lower tread depths. And I prefer a little more void overall… Still, the M55 is still a good tire, and if I was in need of tires while on the road I’d not hesitate to buy them.
 

Erik N

Adventurer
Good timing bumping this thread... Just yesterday I was at my local Les Schwab store for some tire mounting and while waiting, found myself looking at the M55 tread pattern yet again.

It's unlikely I'll run a set again anytime soon, but I still like them and see how this old design can still work great as a simple, old-style commercial traction. Since I like deep lugs and won't run shallow tread, I can’t get over the center stone guard reducing the tread depth down the middle of the tire, it will make the half-life of the tire much shorter for those who don't run lower tread depths. And I prefer a little more void overall… Still, the M55 is still a good tire, and if I was in need of tires while on the road I’d not hesitate to buy them.
Yeah but they sure look good new!:cool: These only have a few thousand miles on them.
 

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Ben in Nevada

New member
I reviewed the tires in post #174 when I first fitted them. It's been a while, but I have about six or seven thousand miles on the tires. Unfortunately, I locked up the tires on a county road and flat-spotted two of them. I had them balanced, and they did balance-out, but they still thump badly, probably only one of them is really bad.

I am reluctant to just swap on my spare because I found the used tires are at 68% of tread depth compared to the new-condition spare. This is the other pertinent update. I thought it was remarkable that the tires are half-way to the point where I would replace them after less than 7000 miles. This is the condition of all four tires, which were rotated twice already (approximately every 3000 miles). I estimate this wear to be about the same as the KM2, not the far greater endurance that some have attributed to the M55.

One of the tires, the same one with the less severe flat-spot of the two, also has a two-inch circumferential sidewall crack. It looks pretty deep, but probably does not penetrate the casing. I suspect this is from a rock hazard offroading. The sidewalls have some other minor damage.

I have ordered another one. I will probably dispose of the cracked and flatspotted tire, move the badly flat-spotted tire to the spare position, and install the new tire and the unworn spare on the rear axle.
 

IdaSHO

IDACAMPER
Last time my pickup was due for tires, I spent some considerable time weighing my options between the M55 and the AT2



Both are fantastic tires, in so many ways.

Ultimately for me it came down to not really needing a such an aggressive tire and the tread-wear warranty on the AT2

While we go off pavement a lot, like most we spend a great deal on the blacktop as well. So tire noise is a concern.

And never have I been in a situation (knock on wood) where AT tires and a set of tire chains wasnt enough.



Running heavy with the camper, Ive gone through a few sets of tires over the years, and treadwear is much more pronounced with a heavy rig.

So a 50k mile treadwear warranty seemed like great insurance on my investment, for a rig that has yet to see more than 30k out of a set of Load E's



The M55 is one heck of a tire, industrial as you can find in an LT, and from what Ive seen provides great treadwear.

Depending upon the life I get out of the AT2, I may try the M55 next go around. But so far, Im 100% sold on the AT2


So my simple take, is that if you do not feel the need for a mud terrain tire, go AT2

If you actually need such an aggressive tire, the M55 is arguably the best best, especially for heavy rigs.
 

fisher205

Explorer
I had the M 55 in a 255/85-16 on my Dodge with an Alaskan camper. I have been unimpressed with them. I went with them because a lot of the loggers and oil field people around here use them.

First of all I never liked the way they drove. Maybe if I had went with a 285/75-16 they wouldn't have felt so flexy. I used these tires on my trip to Alaska (http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/34534-Alaska-2009) so has a lot of continuous driving in various conditions on them. 2nd, even though the wear has been longer than other tires I have had, due to the center tread design, there is not much left for traction in snow or mud. I currently have about 25,000 miles on these and consider them worthless.

I am running some Hankook Mud terrain in a 285/75-16 on my F350 with the Alaskan on it. I have like the way these tires drive way better but the wear has not been as good. Anyway that's been my impression of these tires. I plan on trying the Coopers Maxx's or Kelly Springfields next. But will get one more summer out of the Hankook's

Brad
 

RLeech

New member
Valuable thread, thank you! My 2017 Power Wagon has an @EarthCruiser HQ GZL400 camper on the back weighing in wet and geared up at approx 1500lbs. With the stock 33" GY Duratracs I've had two tears (on tire replaced and the other patched and needs replacing) and also 1 puncture off road, plus 2 additional punctures on-road all in less than 30,000 KM's, so my faith in them just isn't what it needs to be for multi-day off road adventures. I'm not doing anything too serious, loads of logging roads in British Columbia, light crawling in Moab and Arizona, snowy mountain passes on/off road and of course regular road miles in between all the adventure.

Everyone tells me I need bigger tires, and while a little extra ground clearance would be nice, the tire options are somewhat reduced. So I certainly could have gone up to 35" with the popular and fashionable suggestions in the overland world without any truck mods, or something in between like a 285/75R17, but I decided that proven toughness and reliability was more important.

I just ordered M55's today. It doesn't seem like the fashionable choice, but it certainly does seem like the wise choice for my needs.

Thanks again to everyone here for sharing your experiences!
 

Redline

Likes to Drive and Ride
snip

Everyone tells me I need bigger tires, and while a little extra ground clearance would be nice, the tire options are somewhat reduced. So I certainly could have gone up to 35" with the popular and fashionable suggestions in the overland world without any truck mods, or something in between like a 285/75R17, but I decided that proven toughness and reliability was more important.

I just ordered M55's today. It doesn't seem like the fashionable choice, but it certainly does seem like the wise choice for my needs.

Thanks again to everyone here for sharing your experiences!

Although I've not run them in years, I still think they are a good rugged choice. Last week I sold a slide-in camper to a semi-retired geologist (plenty of time in the backcountry on rough roads) from the other side of my state. I noted and commented on his M55 tires, and he replied that he was tired of chewing up sets of OE/stock type treads in 10,000 miles.

Also agree the 285/75R17 is a fantastic size, I have them in Cooper's Discoverer S/T MAXX, also a rugged tire, on a Dodge/Ram 2500.
 
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