You May Want to Skip These Cheap 'Sexy Beast' and 'MuchoMacho' All-Season Tires
Funny names. Unfunny decision.
Budget tires range from mediocre to dangerous, but the reality is $250 for a set of shoes will never buy you the same quality, performance, longevity, and potential safety that, say, $600 will. Of course, that’s a lot of money, especially when the vehicle wearing them might only be worth a couple grand itself. So if manufacturers can't sell people shopping in the discount space on the objective merits of cheap rubber, they'll seek other ways to stand out—which is how we end up with something like the new Cosmo Tires MuchoMacho and Sexy Beast all-season tires.
Yes, that's a real product from a real American manufacturer. Cosmo Tires is a sub-brand of Florida-based Tire Group International that recently expanded its fledgling passenger car lineup with four bizarrely-named and super cheap all-season patterns: Sexy Beast, MuchoMacho, Kitty Kat, and El Jefe H/T. There's also an off-road truck tire called the Chubby Nubby MT. Be warned, we're linking the product page above because the Cosmo Tires homepage features some extremely loud autoplaying music.
"TGI says it conducted in depth market research to identify model names that would resonate with today's millennial, female and Hispanic consumers," the release announcing the tires reads. Should it resonate with you, you can now buy a set of four MuchoMacho all-seasons on Amazon for $213 shipped, and the rest will be on sale shortly at similar competitive price points. We won't stop you—but unless you're doing it in the name of science, or you need a set of disposable tires for burnouts, it's not the best idea. Don't cheap out with tires if you can afford it.
For its part, Tire Group International sent along the following statement about its products.
"Cosmo Tires' 25-year reputation has been built on the foundation of performance, durability, and value. That is why Mucho Machos are chosen for drift cars, amateur endurance racing, and other extreme sports driving," Cosmo Tires President Joaquin Gonzalez Jr. said. "Cosmo outperforms the competition, imagine how well it will take care of your family car. Our tires have cool names and fun branding, because life is too short to be boring. Make no mistake, Cosmo is all about delivering value."
Granted, we haven't tested any of these, and we're not trying to crucify Cosmo Tires for the crime of simply existing (though its creepy, anthropomorphic take on American Gothic with tigers is a tempting target). This is not an exposé on crashes and injuries tied to their products. Instead, consider this a reminder that there's a simple maxim when it comes to tires: You get what you pay for.
For example, while the Chubby Nubby price hasn't been announced, there's just no way it's going to perform on par with those BFGoodrich mud tires you really want. Those cost $700 and up because of the extensive, highly scientific development process backing up their claims, and aftermarket comparison tests bear out the difference. But to the untrained consumer, Cosmo Tires and BFGoodrich products look the same, because all tires are pretty much the same. The crazy names exist to catch those shopping purely on price.
Speaking of which, with winter on the way, be sure to have a set of winter tires at the ready if you live anywhere that gets significant amounts of snow. The difference between season-appropriate rubber and all-season tires is so extreme that once you go Blizzak, you never go back.
This story has been updated with a statement from Tire Group International.