ProPickup Tire Test
All-terrain, multi-purpose, high-floatation replacement/upgrade tire for work trucks
by Bruce W. Smith
A lot of general consumers upgrade tires just to change their truck’s look.
But most contractors and business owners can’t afford the cost of changing out tires just to make a statement; there has to be a return on the investment to warrant the expense.
One tire I recently had the pleasure of running for some 3,000 miles on a 2013 Ram 2500HD 4×4 Crew Cab is the latest iteration of the Dick Cepek Fun Country.
These light-truck radials are a big step up in on- and off-pavement traction, handling and overall ride comfort than the factory Firestone Transforce HTs commercial tires that came on the big Ram diesel.
I tested the DC Fun Countrys in an LT305/65R17 on the stock Ram rims. No truck mods required, either.
They are an inch taller and 1.5-inches wider than the OE tires. That provides more ground clearance and more bite, both on pavement and off, especially in wet grass, light mud, dirt, sand, gravel and rock.
The downside, and it’s a small one, is their more aggressive tread and wider footprint cause them to emit a high-pitched whine at highway speeds. (At 70mph the change is about 3dB higher than stock inside the Ram cab.)
(A slight rise in noise is a typical trait of aftermarket truck tires in all-terrain and mud-traction lug patterns.)
The Fun Country was developed using a unique combination of design elements, technology and engineering to deliver excellent off-road traction and good long-term durability for today’s light trucks and 4×4’s.
Wide lateral and offset tread grooves together with the larger surface area deliver excellent grip and responsive off-road traction. Spin the tires up a little and mud ejects in clumps.
They perform even better in gravel, rock and sand, which are these tire’s true comfort zones.
Stone ejector ribs and ultra-thin sipes resist stone retention and cracking while the unique notched shoulder edges, scalloped ribs, and an enhanced buttress design maximize off-road traction and prevent lug tearing.
They also wear very well. Cepek used a new compound in this new generation that offers improved cut and chip protection, while keeping pavement tread wear minimized.
Then there’s the load-carrying/trailering aspect. These tires have 3-ply sidewalls with cross ply technology for better handling, increased puncture and tear resistance at the sidewall, and more stable towing capabilities.
Overall, if you are in need of improving your heavy-duty pickup’s off-pavement and trailering performance, the Fun Country would be a good performance/functionality upgrade.
And these 33s just happen to make any truck look a little nicer. — BWS
Size: LT305/65R17 Load: 3,195 lbs Rim: 8.5-11″ Section Width: 12.3″ Tread Width: 10″