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Tire Reviews

Hankook Ipike RSV Review

The Hankook iPike RSV are premium winter season tires that feature a variety of technologies to improve your vehicle’s stability and traction in winter conditions. Some of these features include stud hole technology, intricate 3D sipe patterns and unidirectional tread design. The increased traction provides a safe and reliable grip on difficult surfaces and the optimized design allows for responsive navigation on curved roads and good braking capacity in the winter months.

Let’s take a closer look at the Hankook iPike RSV signature features:

Hankook iPike RSV Features

Stud hole technology

Rather than opt for metal studs directly embedded in the tires, the Hankook RSV features stud holes on the outer shoulders of the tire. These stud holes serve multiple functions. As your car rolls over snowdrift, the increased surface area of the tire helps irrigate water from under the tire, improving grip on both snowy and slushy terrain. Many winter tires are technically studdable but do not come with factory studs. In this case, users either need to stud tires themselves or take them to a local garage and have them done for a fee. In both cases, these post-purchase stud holes pose risks if they are not done properly, leading to punctures or flat tires. The Hankook RSV makes sure the stud holes in your tires are safe and secure, giving you the option to insert metal studs in the rubber should you wish to further enhance your vehicle’s grip over icy and snowy roads.

Unidirectional tread pattern

Treadwear patterns of winter tires can either be symmetrical (unidirectional) or asymmetrical. Unidirectional designs are conceived specifically to increase the vehicle’s forward motion, focusing the wheel’s grip in one direction by continually anchoring the tire in the driving surface. This comes in particularly handy when driving in fresh or lightly compacted snow or ice and helps increase the car’s handling.

3D siping

A central aspect of this unidirectional tread pattern is the Hankook’s 3D groove pattern. This siping runs in two asymmetrical sections along the middle of the tire. The asymmetry of the two lines increase means that both grooves maintain two slightly different holds on the road to maximize stability. The angled cuts stop any blockages in the crevices and facilitate the flow of water from beneath the tire, thus resulting in better contact with the road and improving the tire’s handling.

Lateral groove

This tire also features a wide lateral groove on the edges of the surface. These large, flat sipes allow the tire to cut into soft surfaces and helps pull your vehicle forwards. The width of the grooves improves grip and gives you an enhanced hold, crucial when climbing snow banks or navigating less busy roads.

Assistant sipes

Along with the variety of larger siping featured on the tire come the smaller, assistant sipes. These appear across the entire contact surface of the tire in two variations. The principle function of these grooves is to maximize surface area so that the tire can be in as close contact as possible with the road beneath. This increases traction and improves the tire’s grip. In addition, in snowy weather the small grooves collect snow and use it as a sticking point to create snow on snow adhesion.

Ice edge

The ice edge appears as a slit in the groove at the centre of the wheel. By adapting the centre groove to bend, the tire creates a sharp angle which optimizes the tire’s ability to break through icy surfaces. This results in a tire that can easily navigate hard, compacted surfaces.

3D shoulder block

In tandem with the large lateral grooves, this Hankook tire employs a stairway-type block pattern on the shoulder to further increase its ability to pull through deeper snowfall. As the snake suggests, the blocks form a sort of staircase around the outer rim of the tire and strengthen the tire’s hold on any surface. This feature works like teeth on a zipper or on the side of a cog, locking the tire’s surface in place and allowing you to move forwards smoothly.

2-in-1 block

The blocks on this wheel come in two shapes and their formation results in an aggressive traction mechanism. The heavy duty design over the whole tire provides stability and balance to compliment the intricate groove system. So, your car will not only be able to easily pull itself forward easily, you will also experience a comfortably smooth and steady ride the whole way.

Strong centre rib

Running along the middle of the tire is the core sipe. This central rib is in continuous asymmetrical triangle formations and provides essential strength and durability to the tire. The specific design makes the tire exceptionally strong and able to support ample weight.

How do they handle icy terrain?

The Hankook RSV is practically unparalleled on icy surfaces. The tire tread is treated with a silica compound. Silica is a compound with an exceptionally low freezing temperature. When water and silica are cooled, water freezes into icy surfaces whereas silica does not and continues to supercool. This important property means that the compound can remain flexible and elastic in temperatures well below freezing and while in prolonged contact with ice. This not only improves the car’s traction but also heightens the wheel’s strength and resilience. The Hankook iPike RSV also performs exceptionally well on snowy surfaces thanks to the plethora of tread design technologies. The unidirectional patterning and grooves make a tire that is remarkably resistant to hydroplaning. The stud hole feature allows you to customize your wheels depending on what kind of terrain you will be using.

If you are planning a particularly tough climb up a snowy mountain, you might want to add studs to secure your vehicle to the maximum. With studs, the already impressive grip and braking capacity of your tires will only be improved. The combination of silica treated rubber with intricate patterning allows for firm grip, easy handling, and good braking capacity, all of which are essential when traveling in cold weather.

What is their noise level?

When driving on winter roads, though snowfall and over icy roads, the Hankook iPike RSVAs moves precisely and quietly. The wide block patterns balances your vehicle over even and uneven surfaces and allows for a smooth and relatively quiet journey. The only noise you are likely to notice from the inside of your vehicle is the sound of ice cracking under the powerful cutting edges. As with most winter tires, the Hankook iPike RSV does produce a little noise when driving on dry roads, especially if fitted with additional metal studs. When the seasons begin to change and ice becomes slush, simply remove your studs to reduce the exterior and interior noise level.

Warranties and cost

The manufacturer offers a one year warranty from the time of purchase and free repairs for damages up to 1.6 mm. Depending on where you purchase you tires, you may be eligible for further warranties from the retailer.  

The cost of this Hankook tire varies from one retailer to another, but broadly speaking they sell for around $100 dollars each. However, if you hunt around online you can find deals as low as $80. In stores, this model will probably fetch closer to $120.

Customer reviews

Looking across a range of websites, from Canadian Tire to Kijiji, customers appear extremely satisfied with Hankook’s products. Reviews highlight the tire’s smooth handling and balanced feel over harsh surfaces. Users are especially impressed with the tire’s grip, both with and without studs, and the resulting grip. Those who have opted for studs remark that the vehicle’s noise level is impressively low, especially at speeds over 30 km/hour. As for the price point, customers consider their money well spent, surprised at the quality, grip, and reliability of this product.

Specifications and sizes

The Hankook iPike RSV is designed specifically for standard passenger vehicles such as sedans, minivans, cupes, or SUVs. As such, all sizes available are made to be compatible with popular car models as come in three sizes: 14 inch (small), 15 inch, 16 inch, and 17 inch. The larger the size, the higher the weight bearing capacity. All product models have the same speed rating and are able to rotate at speeds of up to 190 km/hour.

Tire sizes available


  • 195/70R14 91T BSW
  • P195/75 R14 92T BSW
  • P205/75 R14 95T BSW


  • 185/65R15 92T XL BSW
  • 195/65R15 95T XL BSW
  • 205/60R15 91T BSW
  • P215/70R15 97T BSW
  • P215/75R15 100T BSW


  • 195/55R16 91T XL BSW
  • 205/65R16 95T BSW
  • 215/60R16 99T XL BSW
  • 215/65R16 98T BSW
  • 225/60R16 102T XL BSW


  • 215/45R17 91T XL BSW
  • 215/50R17 95T XL BSW
  • 225/45R17 94T XL BSW
  • 225/50R17 98T XL BSW


In summary, if you are looking for a reliable winter tire for your vehicle, these Hankook winter season wheels might be for you. Give your summer car a makeover for the coldest season through optimized performance over snowfall, icy terrain, inclines and declines. The main draw is, of course, the optional stud enhancement. For long journeys over unknown landscapes, secure both you and your vehicle with extra metal that will turn a slippery, treacherous car into a winter tank.