Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental CrossContact LX20 with EcoPlus Technology

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental CrossContact LX20 with EcoPlus Technology Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.86

2003 Cadillac Escalade AWD
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Miles driven on tires: 2,000
Location: Seattle, WA
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 2,000 Miles on Tires
May 25, 2014

I'm impressed: I raced automobiles, and am sensitive to everything from the engine to tires. Since I wanted the softest, quietest riding tire for the Escalade (opposite of the track), I ended up going with these. They are super quiet, reduced noise by at least 30 per cent and are very comfortable. It is even quieter than when new. Also, the guys at Tru-Line in Bellevue, WA did the best alignment I've seen on any vehicle. Amazing what a difference that makes.

Best All-Terrain Tire Choices for 275/55R20 Size

Monday, June 30, 2014 by Gary Stanley

Not too long ago, 20-inch tires were rare, exotic and mostly reserved for high-end European SUVs or show vehicles gracing the cover of automobile magazines. Those that were available were ultra high performance tires, often with little to no all-season traction and wore very quickly. This is not the case today. In fact, 20" tires are an option on many popular trucks, SUVs and domestic and import crossovers. 

Of the 20" sizes that are used, one of the most common is 275/55R20. This size is often used on SUVs like the Cadillac Escalade, Chevy Suburban, Ford Expedition and GMC Yukon. Trucks that commonly use this size include the Chevy Silverado, Dodge Ram 1500, Ford F-150 and can even be used with 20" wheels on newer Toyota Tundras. 

A popular misconception is that one can't find more aggressive On-/Off-Road All-Terrain tires in this size. This performance category is one of the most effective in snow traction and light off-road capability in a tire that can be used year-round. Many of the best all-terrain tires on the market are available in this size, such as the Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure with Kevlar and Michelin LTX A/T 2.   

 Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure with Kevlar
Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure with Kevlar
 Michelin LTX A/T 2
Michelin LTX
A/T 2

If you're looking for a more street friendly ride and longer wear, I'd suggest the Michelin LTX A/T 2. It compares quite favorably to a long-time favorite that you can learn about by reading, "BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO vs. Michelin LTX A/T 2." For more aggressive snow and off-road traction, consider the Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure with Kevlar as your top choice.  

Does your vehicle require a different tire size? Shop by size and view the complete selection available for your vehicle. 

Upgrade Your Vehicle's Performance with Brembo Brakes

Tuesday, January 28, 2014 by Zig Ziegler

Brembo is the brake component manufacturer many race teams, enthusiasts and daily drivers depend on to give their vehicle the increased braking performance they demand.

To Brembo, racing is the most advanced experimental laboratory for assessing the success of its products. Teams equipped with Brembo brakes have won hundreds of automobile and motorcycle racing championships in such internationally recognized racing organizations as Formula 1, CART, NASCAR, FIA World Rally and Superbike.

Their race-inspired braking systems and components are used as Original Equipment on the world’s finest passenger cars and light trucks. Vehicle manufacturers using Brembo components include BMW, Porsche and Ferrari, along with specific applications for such automobiles as Mercedes-Benz, Dodge Viper and the Ford Mustang Cobra.

 Brembo Sport Drilled Rotors
Brembo Sport Drilled Rotors
 Brembo Sport Slotted Rotors
Brembo Sport Slotted Rotors

Tire Rack offers Brembo pads and rotors for most vehicles which are a simple upgrade to your vehicle's performance and style. We also offer Brembo Ceramic Brake Pads, as well as Brembo Replacement Rotors, Brembo Sport Drilled Rotors and Brembo Sport Slotted Rotors.

Brembo Sport Drilled Rotor:

  • Gold finish
  • For everyday use, as well as high performance street and highway driving
  • Matches O.E. dimensions
  • Bold, aggressive appearance

Brembo Sport Slotted Rotors:

  • Gold finish
  • For everyday use, as well as high performance street and track driving
  • Matches O.E. dimensions
  • Race-ready look

Shop by vehicle and view the full line of brake products offered for your driving needs. When it comes time to find the best braking components for your vehicle, consider upgrading your performance with Brembo brake pads and rotors.

Mixing Run-Flat Tires with Non-Run-Flat Tires? Read This First!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013 by Gary Stanley

A frequently asked question on BMW forums is in regards to replacing run-flat tires with conventional non-run-flat tires. There is much debate about this topic. In fact, I have a blog post titled "Ditching Your Run-Flat Tires for Non-Run-Flat Tires on Your BMW? Read This First!" that you might want to check out if you're considering making the switch to non-run-flat tires.

What should you do if you only need two tires? Can you replace just two tires with non-run-flat options while keeping the other two run-flat tires on the vehicle? The best advice I can give is to avoid mixing run-flat tires and non-run-flat tires. The consensus between tire manufacturers, automobile manufacturers, customer feedback and real life experience is that mixing run-flat tires with non-run-flat tires often causes very unstable handling. This is especially true at highway speeds and when making turns with the vehicle, even at moderate speeds. 


Why does this occur? Most run-flats have stiffer sidewall construction to maintain stability during an air pressure loss. Stiff sidewall designs are what primarily give run-flat tires their quick steering response and firmer ride. Installing tires on the front of a vehicle that has handling characteristics very different from the rear tires results in a vehicle that feels loose and not planted to the road. This is similar to a person trying to jog a few miles while wearing a snow boot on one foot and a tennis shoe on the other.

For further information, read "Mixing Tires."



Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Pirelli Scorpion ATR

Thursday, February 28, 2013 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Pirelli Scorpion ATR Reviewer's Overall Rating: 6.83

2010 Ford F150 King Ranch 4x4
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Miles driven on tires: 38,000
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 38,000 Miles on Tires
February 21, 2013

Came standard on my King Ranch - very familiar with Pirelli, we have Pirelli tires on 3 fine German automobiles, including their respective sets of winter tires. These are quiet and smooth, even at highway speeds. Handling is superb in the dry and still pretty good in the wet. Sure they spin now and again when you pull away from a standstill in the wet, but it's a truck, with a suspension that has to cover a pretty wide range of loads. They do a pretty good job of handling everything from dry pavement to ice and snow, winter tires would be better in ice and snow, performance tire better on dry pavement, but they're a pretty good compromise, performing well across the spectrum. I'm used to changing my P Zeros at 10 to 15,000 miles, so I'm delighted these are only partially worn at 38,000 miles. They're coming on for 4 years old, I might need to replace them before they wear much more, mainly because of the rubber aging and hardening. I'm a big believer in sticking with the brand that the OEM fitted, so I'll replace them with the same.


Sway Bars: A Cost-Effective Suspension Upgrade

Monday, August 6, 2012 by Marshall Wisler

One of the most simple, yet beneficial upgrades you can make to your suspension set-up is an improved sway bar. Available in front and rear matched kits, or as stand alone front or rear units, sway bars are a great way to reduce unwanted body roll under cornering loads.

If your car is well balanced from the factory, a full sway bar kit is likely the way to go. However, many people will see improvements with just a front or rear bar. Do you have a car that understeers or pushes into corners? A rear sway bar may be what your vehicle needs. In this scenario, a stronger and stiffer rear sway bar will help the car rotate into corners and reduce some of that understeer present in many of today's automobiles.

With options available from Eibach, H&R and Hotchkis, Tire Rack has the suspension products you need to properly fit your vehicle.

Yokohama's AVID Ascend Built with Orange Peels?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012 by Doc Horvath

Yokohama introduced the AVID Ascend in a variety of popular sizes for most passenger car and minivan applications. The AVID Ascend is Yokohama's first mass-produced Grand Touring Touring All-Season tire in the United States to feature their Orange Oil technology which uses oil extracted from renewable orange peels to improve treadlife, fuel efficiency and traction in dry, wet and light snow conditions. 

AVID Ascend tires feature a mildly asymmetric tread design that allows for criss-cross tire rotation and a quiet ride. With a 75,000 mile warranty for the H-speed rated tire and an 80,000 mile warranty for the T-speed rated option to go along with a 30-day test drive guarantee, customers are sure to love this latest offering from Yokohama. We are in the process of wrapping up our testing for this tire, however customer reviews are already pouring in with positive feedback.

"Best tires I have ever bought in my 50 years of buying tires! After buying the Yokohama AVID Ascend, my Hyundai Genesis rides like a true luxury automobile like I expected when I bought it. As a bonus, because they are LRR (Low Rolling Resistance) tires, my mileage improved." -- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2011 Hyundai  Genesis Sedan 3.8

"I got the tires installed just 3 days before driving a 2,000 miler to Florida from Ohio and back with family and luggage in tow. I was immediately glad I had these new tires, as it poured rain and hailed along most of the drive to Florida. The tires felt firm and sure the entire time, which was a great experience in comparison to the Kumhos which were previously on our van. The tires handled remarkably well in cornering, stopping and under quick acceleration. While in Florida we did a good but of driving under dry conditions and was equally impressed with the Ascend. My wife and I both noticed how solid and sure these tires felt. We are very impressed with this tire!" -- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT




Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ProContact with EcoPlus Technology

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Continental ProContact with EcoPlus TechnologyReviewer's Overall Rating: 8.71

2004 Toyota Sienna LE FWD
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Miles driven on tires: 6,000
Location: West Memphis, AR
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 6,000 Miles on Tires
May 09, 2012

After installing these tires on my wife's 2004 Toyota Sienna it felt like a new van again. The tires ride better than anything we've had on before and they're quiet. It was definately an amazing change in the automobile.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Yokohama AVID Ascend (H&V)

Friday, May 18, 2012 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Yokohama AVID Ascend (H&V)Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.7

2011 Hyundai Genesis Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 2,500
Location: Newfane, NY
Driving Condition: Easy Going

Initial Review, 2,500 Miles on Tires
May 14, 2012

Best tires I have ever bought in my 50 years of buying tires! I rode on the factory installed Dunlop Sport 5000 tires and was disappointed that Hyundai would install such a hard riding and noisy tire on their luxury vehicle. After buying the Yokohama Avid Ascends, my Hyundai Genesis rides like a true luxury automobile like I expected when I bought it. I bought these tires and the next day we had a snowstorm. They handled extremely well in the snow and are awesome on dry pavement. As a bonus, because they are LRR (Low Rolling Resistance) tires, my mileage improve almost 2 miles per gallon. They are also made in America so we keep a few jobs here and that's not so bad either!

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Dunlop Grandtrek WT M3

Thursday, January 5, 2012 by Tire Rack Consumer Reviews

The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.

Dunlop Grandtrek WT M3Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.67

2008 Mercedes-Benz ML550 Standard Suspension
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Miles driven on tires: 1000
Location: Billings, MT
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 1000 Miles on Tires
December 22, 2011

Spent considerable time researching best winter tire for my heavy weight ml550. The WT M3 is new and not many reviews, so it was a leap of faith based on what I did find. The tire is just plain exceptional! Grip is excellent, yet I have not experienced deep snow yet. The stability and steering response is considerably better than the OEM Conti 4x4 tires that came on the car (shame on Mercedes for putting "junk" tires on a $75,000 automobile!!) Cornering control is 80% better and the tires are not one bit noisier than the Conti driving at sustained speeds of 65 to 85 miles per hour-- a very real surprise. The sidewalls are stiffer, so the ride will not be as cushy as the Conti; the trade off is worth it, believe me. I am not easily impressed (by something as mundane as tires) ,but these tires feel safe, sturdy and worth the cost, in my opinion. Heartily recommend the WT M3 for any heavy, mechanically-sophisticated SUV. Dunlop did it right this time.

recommend them for any heavy, mechanically -sophisticated SUV. Dunlop did it right this time.

General AltiMAX Arctic vs. Firestone Winterforce

Wednesday, November 30, 2011 by Cy Chowattukunnel
Are you still researching winter / snow tires? Well, Thanksgiving has just passed us by and it's time to pare down your list and decide what tires are right for your vehicle. And to help you with your decision, take a look at two options available in the Studdable Winter/Snow category: the Firestone Winterforce and General AltiMAX Arctic.

Firestone Winterforce
Firestone Winterforce
General AltiMAX Arctic
General AltiMAX Arctic

While a set of these Firestone auto tires and General winter tires can be studded ($15 per tire), most drivers are better off running them unstudded. Our testing found that driving without studs gives most drivers a better balance of snow traction, dry and wet road performance and ice grip.

Both tires are good choices but the General AltiMAX Arctic outperforms the Winterforce in many areas. The Firestone and General tires are comparable in moderate and deep snow, however the AltiMAX Arctic performs better in dry road handling, packed snow, ice and wet grip. Although all winter tires have tread noise, the AltiMAX Arctic has the added bonus of being significantly quieter. Customers agree with our test results as well, as this winter / snow tire is currently the top-rated tire in our Tire Survey Results.

General is owned by German tire manufacturer Continental, who supplies Original Equipment tires to many automobile manufacturers including Audi, BMW, Porsche and Volkswagen. So it's really no surprise that the AltiMAX Arctic is engineered so well to be a set of General truck tires for light duty applications, as well as a set of winter / snow tires for your SUV, coupe, sedan, minivan or crossover.

And whether you decide to purchase a new set of General AltiMAX Arctic tires or are looking for a set of Firestone tires for sale, use our Upgrade Garage to help you make an informed decision.

Value All-Season Car Tire Options

Friday, November 11, 2011 by Alex Mouroulis
Tires in the Standard Touring All-Season category offer lower speed ratings like S (112 mph) and T (118 mph). These tires are known for longer mileage - usually greater than 50,000 miles of service life. They are not an aggressive handling group of tires due to their lower speed rating. However, you'll receive the benefit of a smoother and more comfortable ride.

Pirelli P4 Four Seasons
Pirelli P4 Four Seasons
Kumho Solus KR21
Kumho Solus KR21

Take a look at what consumers are saying about their experiences with these Standard Touring All-Season tires, starting with a Pirelli review of the P4 Four Seasons:

"I have waited nearly two years and 47,000 miles to give this review. These are hands down the best overall tires I have ever owned. The mileage speaks for itself, the lack of noise, hum, harmonic sound was as quiet as the day I bought them, and they were near silent on that day. Snow traction was good even last winter here in New England and we had a long hard winter. Unbelievable tire. I have driven over 1 million miles and have owned 24 vehicles, foreign and domestic, had Michelins, other Pirellis, Goodyears, Bridgestone, Goodrich, Toyo, Kumho, Hankook, Brand X's claiming to be just as good as a Michelin and these Pirellis eclipsed all of those to the very end."
-- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2008 Ford Taurus SEL FWD (Pirelli P4 Four Seasons)

"I have put 45,000 miles on this set of tires, and still have almost half the tread left! Ride has been smooth and comfortable since day one. For the money, could not honestly purchase a better set of tires. Will definitely buy again, whenever these finally wear out."
-- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2008 Mitsubishi Galant DE (Yokohama AVID TOURING-S)

"7000 ft in the foothills of the Rockies in Colorado with winter temps sometimes 20 below zero with substantial snow and ice has been a great testing ground. We live 3 miles off of pavement and put on approx. 125 miles a week in these conditions on rock and dirt/mud. Both vehicle and tires have been totally reliable and have never been stuck with them in the AWD even in all wheel lock. Winter is almost here and I'm putting on a new set this week...great tires!!!"
-- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2009 Nissan Murano S (Kumho Solus KR21)

And since choosing the right tire for your vehicle is such an important decision, read "Selecting the Right Tires" to help ensure you enjoy your driving experience over the life of your new automobile tires.

When is The Right Time to Replace Tires?

Thursday, July 28, 2011 by Tire Rack Team
Tech ArticleWhile the legal minimum of 2/32" of remaining tread depth indicates a need to replace tires, should you buy tires even if part of Lincoln's head is covered when using a penny to measure your tire's tread depth? Take a look at "Measuring Tire Tread Depth with a Coin" to see how U.S. coins can be used in place of a tire tread depth gauge.

If you live in an area where you drive on snow-covered roads part of the year, then you may want to consider performance winter tires for your vehicle or replacing your current tires when less than 6/32" of tread depth remains. If snow is not an issue but rainy days are, then new automobile tires are recommended when you have approximately 4/32" of remaining tread depth.

To see how tread depth makes a difference in your vehicle's stopping distance, watch "Panic Stopping: How Much Tread Depth Do You Need?"

Checking Tire Pressure

Thursday, April 7, 2011 by Tire Rack Team
Intercomp 2.5" Deluxe Air Pressure GaugeAre you checking your tire’s air pressure?

The Tire Rack Street Survival teen driving schools are developed to provide a controlled environment for young drivers to learn car control through experiencing their vehicles’ handling and stopping capabilities. One year we decided to do a test and got out our air gauge to measure the tire pressure on the participants’ vehicles as they arrived for the hands-on driving school. And the results showed that only 59 of 280 tires checked were correctly inflated!

For more information on checking tire pressure, read:

“We’re Checking Who’s Checking Tire Pressures”

NOTE: Tire Rack offers air gauges from Intercomp and Accutire to help ensure your automobile tires are always properly inflated.

MSW Wheels for Your Winter / Snow Tire and Wheel Package

Thursday, October 28, 2010 by Clint Crabtree
Many customers ask for an economical wheel choice for their Winter / Snow Tire & Wheel package. The MSW wheel line fits the bill. MSW makes a simple alloy wheel that is inexpensive and looks good on your vehicle. Available in a wide variety of sizes that fit many of today's automobiles, you can get the look you want at an attractive price.

Here are two excellent choices. You can see all of the MSW wheels here.
MSW Type 22                  MSW Type 14       
MSW Type 22                                  MSW Type 14

Snow Tires: Two vs. Four and Why Four is the Only Way to Go!

Thursday, September 30, 2010 by Doc Horvath

There is a great difference in traction capabilities between winter / snow tires and all-season or high performance tires (especially on ice). You can imagine there is the potential for a loss of control when one end of the car performs very well and the other end just seems to have a mind of its own. Our tests have proven that again and again.

Consider the fact that leading automobile manufacturers such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Honda, Nissan and Toyota recommend in their owner's manuals that you install four winter tires for winter driving.
By installing four winter tires, you maintain the most balanced and controlled handling possible in all winter driving conditions. It is essential to keep the same level of traction at all four corners of the car; otherwise, the full benefits of ABS or traction control systems will be lost. Even with 4-wheel or all-wheel drive, you're only as good as the weakest link.

Read recent tests results and then shop for a full set of winter tires today!

O.Z. Racing Ultraleggera HLT Centerlock Now Available for Ordering

Friday, September 10, 2010 by Cooper

O.Z. Racing Ultraleggera HLT CenterlockSince creating its first wheels in 1971, O.Z. Racing has established itself as a leader in the world's light alloy wheel industry. O.Z. Racing produces standard equipment wheels for some of the most exclusive automobiles in the world including Porsche, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati, Aston Martin and Lotus.

Tire Rack is proud to announce the addition of the O.Z. Racing Ultraleggera HLT Centerlock for Porsche 911 GT3 and GT3 RS models (other models coming soon). These lightweight wheels are perfect for track and street use and are a great complement for your high-end Porsche.

Wheels will begin to arrive towards the end of October, but with orders already being placed, the limited inventory will not last long. So please visit our website and place your order today!

How to improve your ride quality. Lexus IS250 and OE tires.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010 by Brandon Lorenc
Tires are designed for different uses and with different features and benefits. Occasionally, I will talk to a customer with a brand new vehicle, who after driving it for a while realizes he/she isn't thrilled with the ride quality of the O.E. tires. Usually the complaint is that the ride is too harsh, especially when going over bumps.

There is a post right now in the Club Lexus forum that is a good example of this common complaint. The owner of a 2007 Lexus IS250 with the optional 18-inch performance tires and wheels soon realized that the ride was too harsh. Why was it so harsh? The large performance tires and wheels gave the car a stiffer ride quality because of the lower profile. If keeping the wheels is preferred, I would recommend selecting a tire that is more ride-oriented. But the surest way to solve the problem is to downsize to a 17-inch Tire & Wheel Package AND pick a nice riding tire. This would increase the profile of the tires, and with more profile, the end result is a better ride.

And besides, this person likes her car. It would be a shame to get rid of such a nice automobile when there is a relatively simple solution to the problem.

Street Survival needs your help!

Monday, June 14, 2010 by Tire Rack Team
Street Survival Teen Driving SchoolTire Rack Street Survival is up for a significant grant from the Pepsi Foundation as part of the Pepsi Refresh Project! Your vote puts Street Survival in the running for one of ten grants worth $25,000—so please click here to help support this wonderful program.

Tire Rack and BMW CCA Foundation, a non-profit organization, joined forces to create the Tire Rack Street Survival teen driving program. And this summer, over 85 events will bring together volunteer instructors and teens in a controlled environment to gain invaluable driving experience that aims to prevent automobile accidents involving teen drivers—but we need your help! Every vote puts the program closer to the prize.

Click here to read more, and to vote for the Tire Rack Street Survival teen driving program.