The Nankang SW-5 tire is a cheap winter tire that is pinned for studs. It has a tread pattern and rubber compound optimized for snow and ice. The Nankang SW-5 tire has a directional tread pattern which means better handling on all types of road conditions. The directional tread means snow, slush and water gets cleared out from under the tread more effectively. The many full depth sipes in the tread provides the biting edges needed on ice and packed snow, but if you live in a rural area and winter travel is usually on packed snow, you can add studs. A studded Nankang SW-5 tire is tough to beat on snow, particularly if you consider it is a low priced winter tire.