With a few inland adventures planned, my attention turned to a more generic off-road tyre; so I swapped out the M/Ts on my Patrol to a set of Bridgestone Dueler A/T 697s.
They’ve been great, and the first thing noticed was the drop in tyre noise. Don’t get me wrong, the road noise generated by the muddies wasn’t overbearing, but the smoother tread pattern of the 697s provides excellent road-handling – plus I’m appreciating the extra few kays I’m getting out of each tank of diesel.
With 4000km now put into the new tyres across a variety of terrain, they’re proving to be a great all-rounder; smooth enough for the kids’ school runs, yet aggressive enough in the tread pattern for weekend fun.
I’ve had a ball testing them out in the hills around Melbourne, especially on the slippery tracks and bog holes in Murrindindi, Toolangi and Kinglake – they also performed without issue on an early season sun-chasing trip to the glorious Murray River at Echuca.
There are big plans ahead for the 697s, with a trip to Kangaroo Island on the cards for the summer break, as well as a month-long odyssey to Ayers Rock and the Red Centre jotted into the diary for mid-year.
The A/T 697s are proving the perfect tyres for the daily driver-cum-weekend adventurer.
THE Bridgestone Dueler A/T 697 is the ultimate 4WD tyre, designed to withstand Australia’s harshest conditions. The tread pattern design has been optimised for increased puncture resistance, and the dual compound tread features improved heat durability to cope with the harshest summer day.
The super-tough boots are cut-and-chip resistant; feature a protective ply for an added layer of protection from staking; utilise two heavy-duty, high-tensile steel belts; and have an advanced shoulder-block design to improve NVH.