And now, possibly a level below tier 3...
IMO, Tier 2 is the sweet spot for price, performance, safety, and longevity.
Also IMO, Tier 1 tires, do provide a safety edge - at a cost. But, whats the cost of life, or damage from a bow out?
A third, IMO, is Tier 3 and below - is not only gambling with your safety, but those around you as you drive.
Road conditions in most of the USA, are getting worse, and most likely will continue to get worse, before they get better. My Dad and I used to have a friendly disagreement on tires. He grow up in the early teens and 20's - with a 19 as the first two digits. (8 years old delivery paper in Amarillo, TX in a Model T, with a block of wood tied to the pedals so he could reach them!). To him, due to his experience, tires just did not last. Retreads were very normal for several decades in our country. (Still are, especially in trucking.). He never was worried about tossing retreads on a car, especially in around town driving conditions. Me? Well, thanks to a generation like my Dad, and many millions that put their live's on the line for us. I grew up in a different world and technology as far as tires were concerned. And, automobile performance and handling improved during these decades too. So, I always felt that having the best tires you can buy, for performance more than say longer miles, provided a 'safety edge'. Those four little patches of tire making contact to the ground, are all that keep you moving forward, turning and stopping.
Just about done with my little set of 'IMO's'
As mentioned. Do your research, do what you feel is right not just for you and your family, but for your fellow drivers too.
One sentence opinion, repeated for my Daughter, sisters, nieces and nephews, as well as close friends:
"Don't try to save money on tires. Buy the best quality tire you can. Keep your tires, and car, maintained properly. OR DON'T DRIVE UNTIL YOU CAN DO SO!"
I'm done, and yes - obviously opinions do vary
! Heck, some people like Chevy, and some people like Ford's!
Be safe, have fun,