Firestone Tire and Rubber Company, a subsidiary of the Japanese Bridgestone Coporation, was founded in 1900 in Nashville, Tennessee. With more than 100 years of experience in designing and manufacturing tires, the company has become one of the most popular tire businesses in the U.S. and around the world.
Just last year, Firestone expanded their commercial truck tire portfolio with the launch of the Firestone FD711 tire. Built for long- and regional-haul service, pickup and delivery service, as well as light to moderate on/off highway environments, the model offers balanced architecture, good grip and long wear. But is it a good fit for your truck, needs and budget? Hopefully, this review will help you decide that.
The FD711 is the Firestone’s newest commercial truck tire that is engineered for long-lasting and durable performance in high traction and high scrub applications. Using a number of innovative features in truck tire technology, Firestone has built a model that promises exceptional traction, solid grip, even wear and ultra-long tread life. The FD711 performs well in all seasons, including winter, which is proven by the model’s severe weather symbol.
Because this is a high-quality truck tire with fantastic design and versatile functions, the price reflects this. It’s not one of most expensive truck tires (thankfully), but it is a mid- to high-range truck tire, for sure. Is this justified? We’ll let the most important features of the Firestone FD711 speak for themselves.
- Open Shoulder Design + Lateral Shoulder Channels: the Firestone FD711 tire boasts an open shoulder design to promote traction and grip in all weather conditions, especially in rain, mud and snow. Lateral shoulder channels help channel water and slush away from the footprint, further improving traction.
- Aggressive Blocks with Griping Edges: to further provide grip in snow and mud, the tire uses aggressive blocks with multiple gripping edges. This makes the Firestone FD711 perfectly stable even in deep snow.
- Staggered Tread Blck Design: to resist irregular tread wear and prolong the life of the tire in general, the model sports staggered tread block design that distributes forces evenly throughout the tire.
- Deep Horizontal Lugs: to further prolong the original tread life, the tire has deep horizontal lugs. This also helps with traction in all weather conditions, especially snow.
- Tough Tread Compounds: the Firestone FD711 uses special tread compounds that ensure the tire has excellent wear and abrasion resistance. This results in ultra-long tread life.
- Cap/Base Compounding: slow wearing cap compound coupled with a cool running base protect the casing from heat and damage.
- Four Belt Construction: the Firestone FD711 has four steel belts that provide additional protection to the casing. They also provide extra strength and promote tire durability.
Clearly, Bridgestone Firestone FD711 boasts a number of innovative tire technologies and features, which help make it incredibly tough and long-lasting. This model is recommended for a wide range of applications, including long haul vehicles and delivery vehicles.
Looking at the tire’s key features, it appears this tire has it all. But what about its cons, and more importantly, its performance in different weather conditions? To help you figure out if this is the right fit for your needs, we’ve outlined the Firestone FD711’s major pros and cons. We also write about the tire’s performance in dry, wet and snowy weather, so make sure you check the whole blog out before making purchasing decisions.
Pros & Cons
Like most tires out there, the Firestone FD711 has many positives and just a couple of expected negatives. Thankfully, the advantages far outweigh any negatives, however, how good of a fit this model will be for your specific needs, depends on your budget first and foremost as this is an expensive tire.
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Finally, let’s talk about the Bridgestone Firestone FD711’s actual performance in different weather conditions. With so many impressive features, it’s not a shock that this model has absolutely fantastic traction in all weather situations and on almost all terrains. It goes smoothly and safely over pavement, mud, rain and snow, and maintains its grip and keeps its balance. How is this tire able to perform so well on dry, wet, snowy and icy roads all at once? It’s actually due to several factors, the most important ones being its aggressive and durable design, quality build materials and innovative features included in the construction.
For example, the Firestone FD711’s four belt construction with an open shoulder design provide not only strength, stability and balance needed for driving on wet and snowy roads, but also superior rigidity much needed for long and regional hauls. The belts in particular help keep the tire’s weight well-balanced, providing excellent handling capabilities in all weather conditions. Speaking of which, you can read about the FD711’s performance in dry, wet and snowy conditions in detail down below.
The Firestone FD711 is one of the safest, long-lasting and most stable truck tires on the market. As mentioned, the tire’s structure and design play a huge role in this – four belt construction plus open shoulder design help keep the tire stable even when you’re hauling heavy cargo over snow. But when it comes to dry performance specifically, this model checks all the possible right boxes, and then some. This true radial tire is suitable for high speed and high scrub long haul applications, as it can withstand almost anything you throw at it. Its sturdy construction and strong build materials improve the tire’s ability to cope with stress in stop and go hauls. In fact, this model is similar to the threaded tires of armored vehicles, and with a load capacity of up to 6175 or 6610 pounds (each tire), it’s an incredibly tough and durable tire all around.
The Firestone FD711 has firm tread compounds which offer impressive wear and abrasion resistance, making the tire extra strong, with long-lasting tread life. It also helps the model has a cap/base compounding with a cool running base, as this aids in the protection of the casing from heat damage. Staggered tread block design further prolongs tread life as it distributes forces evenly throughout the tire, helping it resist irregular wear and tear. In general, truck tires need stronger and more rigid materials than passenger vehicle tires as they have to withstand much more abuse and wear. The Firestone FD711 doesn’t disappoint here as it utilizes ultra-tough and rigid materials that make it firmer not only than passenger vehicle tires but most conventional truck tires as well. As a result, the tread stays in its original state for a long time, while the sidewalls remain resistant to damage longer than usual. Indeed, this is one strong truck tire with a supremely long life.
Thanks to the open shoulder design and lateral shoulder channels, the Firestone FD711 provides not only excellent traction and solid grip in wet weather conditions, but the ability to channel water away from the footprint quickly and easily. Aggressive blocks with multiple gripping edges also help provide good grip, so even when you’re driving over super slippery roads, stability is guaranteed.
The special tough tread compounds also improve the tire’s wet performance, enhancing handling and traction on wet roads. Another feature that helps with the tire’s wet performance is deep and wide horizontal lugs which cut through the water and slush until the tire touches the firm pavement. Overall, accelerating and braking in wet conditions is just as good as it is in dry environments, and that is saying something. Undoubtedly, the Firestone FD711 is one safe, stable and responsive tire with excellent wet handling capabilities.
Bridgestone Firestone FD711 has brilliant winter performance and its mountain snowflake symbol proves it. The winter emblem indicates that the tire meets the real winter tire’s capabilities in harsh conditions, including good traction in the snow and ice. This tire not only meets these minimum requirements, but surpasses them in several ways. In case you’re interested in the specifics, the manufacturer states that the Firestone FD711 meets 3 Peak Mountain Snow Flake criteria for snow traction performance.
There are two major features that help this tire’s winter performance superior:
- Open shoulder design and lateral shoulder channels: this tire sports an open shoulder design that helps provide exceptional traction and grip in the snow. Lateral shoulder channels provide additional snow traction as they channel slush and snow away from the footprint.
- Aggressive blocks with gripping edges: thanks to large and aggressive blocks with multiple gripping edges, the Firestone FD711 has an excellent grip on snow. This is extremely helpful when driving over slush, but equally beneficial when driving over both light and deep snow.
Finally, the tire’s internal structure itself plays a huge role in how well it behaves in the snow. The Firestone FD711 has four steel belts that not only improve the durability of the tire, but help keep it stable and safe in different conditions, including snow and ice. It’s worth mentioning that this same design also combats casing damage and improves retread capability. This means that under certain conditions, you can re-tread the tire to get more service life out of it. Since retreading is pretty common in the trucking business, it’s no wonder Firestone has made the FD711 re-treadable.
Size and Specifications
Bridgestone Firestone FD711 comes in two sizes: 11R22.5 (smaller) and 11R24.5 (bigger). The load range rating of each of these is G, with a ply rating of 14. The 11R22.5 size weighs 125 pounds or 57 kg, has a 6175 pound (2800 kg) load capacity, and rotates at 496 revolutions per mile (or 308 per km). The 11R24.5 size weighs 133 pounds or 60 kg, has a 6610 (3000 kg) pound load capacity and rotates 473 revolutions per mile (or 294 per km).
This model is specifically recommended for high traction and high scrub applications, so will suit long and regional haul trucks and pickup and delivery vehicles. It’s also recommended for on-/off-highway services.
Firestone guarantees the durability and dependability of the FD711 tire with a 90 day buy and try guarantee. So, if you purchase four or more of these tires and decide you don’t like them during this time period, you can return them. It’s worth noting that this guarantee does not cover damages caused by road hazard or collision.
Firestone also has a re-treading warranty, which is a huge plus. The company gives a full refund if the tire is found to be un-serviceable within the first 2/32” of tread wear. Of course, to claim any of these guarantees or warranties, the original dealer will need a proof of purchase.