Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport

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.

Michelin Pilot Super Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.12
 
 

2005 Mercedes-Benz CL55
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Miles driven on tires: 5,000
Location: Loudon, NH
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 5,000 Miles on Tires
June 10, 2014

Tires transform the car. It feels like it is all wheel drive. Steering with the throttle is a snap. The limits of the car on the street with these tires have not even be tickled by me; I would need a track for that. The stock Bridgestones are unacceptable and wore quickly. I thought the Hankook V-12s were good until I tried these PSS. I have a set of Pilot Alpin PA-4s on separate AMG wheels for winter use. I do not believe in all-seasons. Frankly, there is no other choice than the PSS unless you want a DOT approved race tire which has its compromises in the wet. The PSS do not.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

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 ExtremeContact DWSReviewer's Overall Rating: 9.88

2011 Subaru Impreza WRX 4-Door
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Miles driven on tires: 1,500
Location: Milwaukee, Wi
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 1,500 Miles on Tires
January 15, 2011

I've seen a decent amount of snow in milwaukee this year and these tires are just outstanding. With the power of the STI I have broken them loose but they were still gripping the entire time, and the wheel spin was due to the amount of salt the city is dumping this year. I thought they might be a little squishy in a hard cornering situation but wow was I wrong, stiff and responsive through hard braking and acceleration. Deep snow traction is well above average for a long lasting all-season tire like these, if your not sure if this is the tire for you in a snowy type environment then go buy snow tires and waste your money every winter replacing them. I do plan on taking these to the track in spring, will update on that when the time comes. The big thing about these tires are the price, for $600 I'll gladly buy these again considering what was on the car when I bought it from the dealership...245/40R18 Dunlop SP Sport 600 which run about $220 a piece if I'm not mistaken and only last for 20000 miles.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental PureContact 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 PureContact with EcoPlus Technology Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.78
 
 

2008 Subaru Legacy
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Miles driven on tires: 5,000
Location: Winston Salem, NC
Driving Condition: Easy Going
 

Initial Review, 5,000 Miles on Tires
May 17, 2014

Bought these tires and am extremely pleased with the responsiveness. I was thinking my car need suspension work but once these tires were installed, I felt as if I had a brand new car. My ride was oh so comfortable. We had an interesting winter in NC, so I have gotten to try out these tires in the rain, snow and a few ice storms. Now granted my Subaru is excellent with it's all wheel drive, but in the last ice storm, I was driving with no problem and passed up the snow plow AND the police car!, I only have 5k on them and hoping they last as long as stated but so far they are Excellent. Am so happy I went with the Purecontact.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin X-Ice Xi3

Monday, July 21, 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.

Michelin X-Ice Xi3 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.27
 
 

1996 Buick Regal
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Miles driven on tires: 4,000
Location: Ithaca, NY
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 4,000 Miles on Tires
May 02, 2014

You dont usually mount a set of snow tires in search of a quieter ride, but that is just what happened with the Old Buick that came my way last year. it was riding on cooper lifeliner all season tires and we were approaching the winter season. I like to ski and wanted tires that would ensure good roadholding in snowy upstate NY winter conditions. the X-ice XI3s were available in the stock tire size for the Buick. I mounted them on the stock wheels and instantly found the car to be quieter and with a better more poised ride than the coopers provided. Once snows came, the car was very well behaved. several trips into the adirondacks were uneventful. a trip from Albany ny in nighttime blizzard conditions along I-90w and I-81s with road crews unable to keep lanes cleared convinced me these were a spectacular choice for winter driving. predictable, confidence inspiring behavior. car is equipped with ABS, and the system did engage a few times in this winter season, so these are not the "ultimate" for grip, but with the slightest amount of caution/awareness of road conditions, you should have no problems when using these tires in the cold/snow/ice.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the BFGoodrich g-Force Sport COMP-2

Monday, July 21, 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.

BFGoodrich g-Force Sport COMP-2 Reviewer's Overall Rating: Not Rated
 
 

1998 BMW 528i
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Miles driven on tires: 2,500
Location: Oceanside, CA
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 2,500 Miles on Tires
May 14, 2014

98 BMW 528i w/factory sport package - 16" wheels, tire: 225/55/16
Previously had the earlier version of this BFG tire on my smaller 15" wheels and they proved all-round very good. The "Comp 2's" are being removed after 2,500 miles. These tires stick like glue and have a very stiff sidewall - from a performance standpoint they're excellent - however, there ride quality is quite harsh - considerably more so that will work for daily driving and frequent roadtrips. Noise is prevalant but as the rires a basically new it's not an issue...but I bet as they wear they'd get LOUD. Conclusion: good value for a true performance tire but think hard on this tire if your car has a sport/firm suspension as you'll definitely feel every pebble you come across, just too connected to the pavment for my liking.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Premier A/S

Tuesday, July 15, 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.

Michelin Premier A/S Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.86
 
 

2014 Mazda Mazda6
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Miles driven on tires: 800
Location: Madison, CT
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 800 Miles on Tires
May 19, 2014

Replaced the 19 inch dunlop low profile (5000 sport) that came with car with 17 inch allow wheels and the new michelin premeier. Could not take the road noise and harsh ride from the oem dunlop sport 5000. Ride is much better, quieter and far smoother. Road noise is lowered and the harsh, bone jarring ride, on highways with potholes or all types, is vastly improved. Interesting to note that the steering response is somewhat firmer, with more resistance, and that is also improved over the stock tires, because it is more natural, with better road feel. All in all a great choice for highway cruisers like me.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport

Tuesday, July 15, 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.

Michelin Pilot Super Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.88
 
 

2009 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S
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Miles driven on tires: 500
Location:  
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 500 Miles on Tires
June 22, 2014

Believe it or not I drive my 911 year round. The factory Dunlop tires performed well in the dry, decently in the rain, but wear very quickly and were quite noisy. I had the Michelins installed on an aftermarket set of forged wheels lighter than stock. Right away the noise level was drastically reduced. Also, I could get the Dunlop tires to break away if I tried, the Michelins stick like glue. Handling confidence is up there with an r compound street/track tire. The sidewalls are stiff, but quite frankly I'd prefer that with low profile tires. The ride isn't busy by any means, but you can feel the stiffness of the tires over larger road imperfections. Knowing that my expensive wheels are protected improves driving confidence rather than a softer ride. I run dedicated winter tires on the stock wheels during the colder months, and while they ride much better the 'grip threshold is much lower as to be expected. Running tires without the Porsche "N" designation doesn't worry me in this case as I trust the Michelin brand. I have run Michelin tires on other vehicles with equally great results. The price/performance/wear expectancy of these tires made them an easy choice. I haven't driven enough to gauge wear, but the factory rear Dunlops lasted about 18 months and 7,500 miles before needing replacement. While this is understandable given the performance envelope the car is capable of, the noise level alone turned me off to getting another set. The front tires seem to last twice as long, but for a few bucks more I got a whole set of Michelins as opposed to just replacing the factory rear rubber. If the rear tires last 15,000 miles I will definitely be sticking with them.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus

Tuesday, July 15, 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.

Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.25
 
 

2005 Mercury Grand Marquis
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Miles driven on tires: 1,500
Location:  
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 1,500 Miles on Tires
April 23, 2014

I purchased these for my '05 Grand Marquis which has been tweaked a bit and is a bit of a sleeper. It's not your grandpa's Grand Marquis. I've always owned full sized, rear wheel drive, V8 cars because I drive about 30K-50K a year in S. Florida about 75% of it up and down the turnpike and I-95 usually at 80-90mph and so I favor highway cars. Biggest weather concern is rain and lots of it all of a sudden in the summer so I look for tires that can scavage the water out of the tread efficiently and hold the road. And on dry roads I want handling, cornering and stopping traction. Quiet is nice, too. I've had Michelins, Goodyear Eagle RS but generally favored BFGoodrich TAs over the years for their wide squared off footprint and deep 4-row tread. I was wary of Pirellis because I once drove a car with loud, hard as concrete Pirellis and developed a bias.

After reading the reviews here I took a chance on these. I'm very glad I did. They are without a doubt the best in all categories I've ever owned. They seem to roll with almost no resistance, corner and handle well, stop on a dime, keep a firm grip in the rain and are blessedly quiet. Once my car is up to speed it just rolls with these tires and I doubt she's over 1900rpms at 80mph. I can take the 270° exit ramps at 70mph. I love them and would definitely buy them again.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Dunlop Direzza ZII

Friday, July 11, 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.

Dunlop Direzza ZII Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.5
 
 

1994 Mazda Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location: Saint Louis, MO
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
June 22, 2014

I have these on my supercharged and coilover'd '94 Miata that is strictly a nice-weather car, thus why I can't rate wet characteristics. I have had Potenza RE750s and the set before buying the ZIIs were Potenza RE-11s. The RE-11s were way above the RE750s, and I wore the RE-11s clear down to the rears being completely smooth and looking like go-cart tires... I don't put many miles on this car and those tires lasted 5 years, and due to lack of a garage at the time, they were subjected to very low temps, so the compound was not the best - I decided to destroy them at a local drift event to give me a reason to buy new tires.

That said, I mainly use my Miata as a driver but also I do a lot of very spirited backroading, tarmac rally stages, if you will. I was going to just throw another set of RE-11s on it, but a few friends that autocross suggested I take a look at the ZIIs. After reading reviews, I chose them. Got them from TireRack within 24 hours of ordering!

Now that they're worn in a bit, I'll say, THESE TIRES ARE GREAT! The grip... all the grip. Taking clover-leaf exit ramps with only scrubbing off a few MPH is fantastic! On the backroads, they do work and instill confidence. Very predictable tire. Ride quality is great, very smooth. There is a bit of a howl from these, not sure if it'll worsen or get better as my Miata has some camber from being lowered... but at the end of the day, it's a sports car, sacrifices have to be made. These do feel a bit squishy at times compared to the RE-11s, and I miss the RE-11s appearance - those are much wider tires and the sidewall with a 205/50 on a 6" wide wheel looked awesome... the ZIIs look like a 'normal' tire in comparison, but this also explains the ride quality improvement over bumps.

I'd definitely buy these again. I'm going to take care of these as far as temperature goes and I expect many years out of them. -MazKid

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Dunlop SP Sport 7000 A/S

Tuesday, July 8, 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.

Dunlop SP Sport 7000 A/S Reviewer's Overall Rating: 6.22
 
 

2013 Nissan Altima Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 2,300
Location: Newport News, VA
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 2,300 Miles on Tires
March 17, 2014

These tires are OEM, so I have nothing to compare to. So far the worst performance was in the light snow and ice we've had this winter, where I'm driving about 10-15 mph and the car going virtually straight ahead when I turn the wheel. Keep in mind this car has stability control, ABS and is FWD. I can't say I've been impressed with that. Nevertheless they've performed well in dry and wet conditions so far. I feel they've handled well given the cars handling ability. It would be easier to provide a better review if I had other tires on the car to compare to, so some of my ratings are guesses. If I can I will update this review after a while.

Love is...Autocrossing. And Tire Rack.

Monday, June 16, 2014 by Tire Rack Team

A happy couple, fun with cars and Tire Rack. A perfect marriage in our book.

Angie and Woody Rogers, both Tire Rack employees, placed their first Tire Rack orders back in 1990 before even knowing each other.

Later they met and the rest is (autocross) history.

Woody, who began autocrossing in 1989, convinced Angie to come to an event for their first date. It wasn't long before Angie got behind the wheel and gave it a try herself. The motoring couple continued to compete in local, regional and national level autocross competitions around the country. And many sets of tires later, Angie eventually went on to win two SCCA National Autocross Championships!


Both joined the Tire Rack team on the same day in the summer of 1999. Woody has turned his love of tires and ample time behind the wheel into his role as one of Tire Rack's product information specialists and tire test program coordinator, while Angie has blended her graphic design training and management skills into her current role as print media buyer.

This time of year, you'll find them prepping their 2002 S2000 for yet another season of competition in the SCCA's STR class.


What's Installed? Woody Comments.

Dunlop245/40R17 Dunlop Direzza ZII Tires

"Chosen because it's an all-around performance leader. This tire is well suited to the task, and inspires confidence to push hard and place the car very exactly, both of which are critical to going fast."

TRMotorsports17x9.0 TRMotorsports C3 Light Grey Wheels

"These wheels have the correct fit plus light weight and economical pricing. It costs nearly twice as much to save just two pounds per wheel."

KW KW Clubsport Coil-Over Kit

"We've used KW Coil-Overs before, and they proved to deliver excellent damping control and a wide range of adjustability."

Eibach SpringsFront Anti-Roll Bar

"The Eibach Front Anti-Roll Bar is hollow for reduced weight and the two-way adjustability on the S2000 fitment helps tune handling as needed."

Intercomp 4" Deluxe Air Pressure Gauge

"Big enough to see from the moon, and always spot on accurate."

AquapelGlass Treatment

PIAA Super Silicone Wiper Blades

"The combination of Aquapel and PIAA Super Silicone wipers makes a great pair to assure visibility during even the heaviest downpour."

Braille Auto Lightweight Racing Battery (Carbon Wrap w/Mount) 6 lbs.

"Saving weight is an important part of this project, and this should shave nearly 40 lbs. from the car while still having plenty of cranking power."

SPCSPC Adjustable Ball Joint

"Installed in the front upper control arms, the SPC ball joints add additional adjustment range to the OEM suspension so we can get sufficient negative camber to optimize tire performance."

Best Tires for Chevrolet Camaro

Thursday, June 12, 2014 by Zig Ziegler

The Chevrolet Camaro is one of my favorite American muscle cars. I think the car has a nice blend of old school style and new age design. Two of the most popular packages would be the RS and SS which provide optional 20" staggered tires and wheels. The Camaro RS and SS came from the factory with 245/45R20 in the front and 275/40R20 rear Pirelli P Zero Max Performance Summer tires.

When it comes to replacing tires on the Camaro, many drivers love the summer tires and look to go back to the equivalent level of grip and treadlife when choosing a replacement set, while others don't drive as aggressively and want a tire that provides a better ride and much longer treadlife.

Pirelli P Zero
Pirelli P Zero
 Continental Extreme Contact DW
Continental ExtremeContact DW


If you're a Camaro owner that loved how the car performed when new and are happy with the ride and treadlife of a summer tire, take a look at staying with the Original Equipment. The tire offers excellent dry road traction. If you want to try something new, consider the Continental ExtremeContact DW which provides noticeably better wet traction and lower road noise.

 Continental Extreme Contact DWS
Continental ExtremeContact DWS
 General G-Max AS-03
General G-MAX AS-03


If you're a Camaro owner who wants the best ride and longest treadlife at the expense of some grip, or would like to occasionally drive the Camaro in light snow, the Continental ExtremeContact DWS or General G-MAX AS-03 are both great options. Each tire would offer better treadlife over the Pirelli summer tire, along with the ability to drive the Camaro in freezing temperatures and light snow.

If it's time to change the tires on your RS or SS Camaro be sure to consider what you want most from your tires and choose something that best fits your everyday driving needs. For more help shopping for Camaro tires, read "Looking to Buy the Best Tire, But Not Sure Which One? Tire Rack Has the Answer!"

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DW

Monday, June 9, 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 ExtremeContact DW Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.29
 
 

2005 Cadillac STS V8
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Miles driven on tires: 500
Location:  
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 500 Miles on Tires
May 16, 2014

I've only had these tires for a week, but wow what a difference! I got this car with the OE Michelin Pilot HX MXM4 and was shocked by it's poor performance. With traction control on in the rain, it was normal to have the car hesitate as the rear tires fought for traction. With TC turned off, well, it was a wild ride indeed. Lots of fun but very dangerous for the inexperienced. Snap oversteer ruled the day. In the dry the Michelins were a little better but still very overwhelmed by the Northstar's torque. I've been itching to try a good set of Extreme Performance or Max Performance tires on this car since I got it but waited until the Michelins were used up. I can say that these DWs have transformed the car. It's rained several times in the past week so I've had several opportunities to try out the wet traction. Where normally with TC off (that's how I drive) I would get severe oversteer with normal throttle application (meaning no aggression whatsoever) on turns with very slick asphault, these Contis just bite like crazy. I have to get very aggressive to induce some slip, and when I let off, they come back into line beautifully.

On the highway, at speeds approaching 70 - 80 mph, there is a little vibration in the steering wheel, especially as the tire comes up to temp. They are noticably more noisy than the Michelins but that's to be expected. Ride comfort is good but the stiffer sidewalls are definitely felt. Not a bad thing in my opinion but conservative buyers should be aware. I read a recent review from a Jetta owner giving these tires a bad review stating that turn-in is poor and that he can feel the sidewalls squirming and the only thing I can think of is that his width is way off compared to his wheel width. There is no reason why the experience he describes would happen with properly matched tire widths.

I'll update later as I get more miles on these tires but so far so great!

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Defender

Monday, June 9, 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.

Michelin Defender Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.45
 
 

2009 Honda Fit Sport
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Miles driven on tires: 10,000
Location: Kansas City, MO
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 10,000 Miles on Tires
June 04, 2014

Okay, bought thise with a set of Enkie PF-01's in 15" so my wife would be happier with the ride. At first I lost about 7 mpg gas mileage. They take quite a while to break in but mileage has slowly increased back to around 42 on the highway (I got used to the 47mpg with the Continental DWS's at 70mph- calculated, not the computor). The Enkie's are a half inch wider & I've lost very little cornering power. These Defenders flat go in the snow. Having a door dent repaired I was left with Hankooks mounted on a Kia. That thing would slide completely through an intersection at less than 10 mph on packed snow. My Fit would easily stop at the same intersection from 35mph with the Defenders. i have boosted presure to 39psi trying to improve mileage but it takes away the ride characteristics. Handling is great, wear is great, steering turn-in is reasonably good, dry & wet cornering is admirable. The steering response saved me major repairs when I dodged a deer on I-49 in the middle of the night. Most other cars would have hit it for sure. Good tires, just plan on poor mileage until they're broken in. Tire Rack is the only place to go, received these tires/wheels in 48 hours from ordering.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeWinterContact

Monday, June 9, 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 ExtremeWinterContact Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.18
 
 

2012 Lexus CT 200h
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Miles driven on tires: 10,000
Location:  
Driving Condition: Easy Going
 

Initial Review, 10,000 Miles on Tires
June 04, 2014

The Lexus CT200h is the Lexus version of the Toyota Prius. The Prius has been noted as being terrible in the snow. I was concerned, but bought the car anyway, figuring that snow tires would make a difference. They have made a HUGE difference. The car has a continuously variable transmission CVT, and I don't know how that relates to Traction Control. But I can tell you my experience on the road with it.

This last winter in Chicago was difficult. LOTS of snow, wet slidey snow, packing so that it was slippery at stops. I drove early in the morning and late at night, before the plows had a chance to clear the streets. I was driving on virgin snow, deep 6" - 8" and more when it drifted. The car drove solidly all winter. I NEVER got stuck, I NEVER had trouble starting out, even if I was on a hill, NEVER had problems changing lanes at posted speeds - yes, posted speeds. I was able to easily drive through those spaces in the intersections where snow has been pushed into high drifts by the plows or passing cars. No problems. I NEVER got stuck, or had to rock my way out of a bad situation. I just drove my car. And it just took me where I wanted to go. No drama, no issues. Isn't that why you buy snow tires?

I have always been a firm believer is snow tires for winter. Spending $800 on tires and spare wheels for this car was a ---send. It drove like a tank all winter long, easily keeping up with the 4WD behemoths on the road, driving wherever I wanted. You won't be disappointed by using this tire.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DW

Monday, June 9, 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 ExtremeContact DW Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.5
 
 

2004 Audi A4 1.8T Quattro
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Miles driven on tires: 20,000
Location: Mill Creek, WA
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 20,000 Miles on Tires
June 07, 2014

Overall for a performance tire at this price it is excellent with a catch. The ride characteristics are great for this category of tire in normal driving conditions, very smooth even on chewed up roads and relatively quite. Tons of traction particularly while corning, more then the Dunlop SP9090s and Goodyear F1 Asymmetrics I've had on the same car. Unlike both those this tire has very soft side walls. This is partly why the grip in the corners is so good as it holds on where the others would start to slide, however this also leads to a lot of side wall deflection - not a big deal in normal driving but if you are doing hard cornering with quick directional change it will be. In such cases there is a fair amount of 'lag' as the tires unload from one side then reload on the other - during this time car has very disconnected feel - steering wheel is turned but you aren't turning yet - depending on the severity of the situation once the tires re-engage it can unsettle the car and in extreme instances has caused the stability control on my car to engage where other tires in the same situation this didn't happen. Upping the PSI above recommended settings mitigate this some at the cost of ride/noise comfort and tread wear.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Thursday, June 5, 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 ExtremeContact DWS Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.78
 
 

2004 Mazda MAZDA3 s 4-Door
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Miles driven on tires: 5,000
Location: Blue Ash, OH
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 5,000 Miles on Tires
June 03, 2014

Did lots of reviews on TireRack before making my purchase. Bought a set of 18" RX8 wheels for my mazda3 and needed a set of tires to go with. After extensive research these are the tires I chose.

First thing to note, the tires are concave, as in the rim is 'poked' out from the tire. i absolutely LOVE this. it makes the rims stand out much more than most cars on the road. Most cars have tires that are rounded outwards, and most tires have a 'rim gaurd' that protects your rims from road rash. Yes, you are more prone to scratching your rims with these tires, but i am a very careful driver and I make a point to avoid any scratching. The effect of these 'inward' tires portray is outstanding and i love looking at these rims every day.

Tread pattern is definitely neat.. asymmetrical but it looks cool compared to other conventional designs.

Third, this is my first set of brand new tires. I went from a set of Grand Touring Toyo tires to a lower profile Continental tire. I really have not much experience with other tires to compare or base my judgement on but i will say handling is like a charm. Sharp turns get cut thru like a knife thru butter, grip is excellent, not a lot of tire screech unless youre really pushing it. keeping them clean isnt a hassle, and the wear seems pretty good and i drive somewhat harder than most people.

Overall, im VERY happy with the purchase i made even though they were expensive. Never settle for cheaper tires, you get what you pay for and it really shows (my last car had cheap tires). Save up, do your research and buy a good set. They are an investment in your fun, and your health.

How to Choose the Correct Track Tires

Thursday, June 5, 2014 by Ben Rooney

Are you heading to your first driving school or lapping day? Or are you already a track veteran who's looking to go even faster? Whenever you go to the track, having the right set of tires is essential to going fast, being safe and having fun.

What type of tires do you need to bring for a track event? Depends on the type of event, the expected conditions and the resources available to you.

Take a look at your available options:

Street Tires 

Some people run their cars on the track with the same tires they use on the street. If you're already driving high performance tires, that set may work for you on the track. This scenario works best when you're attending beginner driving schools, casual lapping days or other events where the focus is more on polishing your skills rather than setting fast lap times. Street tires are not recommended for track use, and driving them in a track environment will most likely void their warranty. Keep in mind that if you overdrive them into corners, you could easily render them useless after only one day at the track. An example of this type of tire is the Michelin Pilot Super Sport.

Pros of Running Street Tires:

  • Convenience
  • Price
  • Can drive to the track safely.
  • Most street tires perform well in the rain.

Cons of Running Street Tires:

  • Performance - These tires aren't as fast in dry conditions as track tires.
  • Longevity
  • Getting home - What happens if you lose a tire on the track? Do you have an option for getting home?

Extreme Performance Tires

These options are really a subset of street tires, but they're designed to take the abuse of occasional track days. They have more focus on dry traction and responsive handling. Extreme performance tires can be used on an enthusiast oriented daily driver, or mounted on separate wheels for track use. An example of this tire is the Yokohama ADVAN Neova AD08 R.

Pros of Extreme Performance Tires:

  • Grip - Better performance than regular street tires.
  • Durability
  • Value - Last longer at the track than normal street tires.
  • Convenience
  • Versatility

Cons of Extreme Performance Tires:

  • Competition - Drivers are at a disadvantage compared to drivers who use dedicated track tires.

Streetable Track Tires 

There are some tires that are essentially track tires, but can be driven to and from the track. They would wear out very quickly if driven daily on the street. These tires will generally have enough tread pattern to handle damp pavement, but will be very prone to hydroplaning. An example of this type of tire is the Pirelli P Zero Trofeo.

Pros of Streetable Track Tires:

  • Grip - These tires will outgrip extreme performance tires.
  • Convenient - If you can swap wheels at home, but your car won't carry a second set of wheels to the track, this can be the perfect solution.
  • Versatility - Some of these tires can work as an intermediate tire for damp or drying track conditions.

Cons of Streetable Track Tires:

  • Give up a little grip compared to the most specialized options.
  • Few miles of use as a street tire.
  • Hydroplaning can be an issue if caught in the rain.

Specialized Track Tires

Track tires provide the ultimate in grip. They discard most streetability characteristics in order to deliver the very best lap times. With lots of grip and shoulders that are generally more square, these tires can be more challenging to drive at their limits. They should be mounted on separate wheels and installed at the track. An example of this type of tire is the Hoosier A7.

Pros of Track Tires:

  • Performance - If you are racing to win, track tires are the way to go.
  • Easiest way to turn faster lap times.

Cons of Track Tires:

  • Track tires won't work in the rain. You need a separate set if rain is a possibility.
  • More challenging to drive at the limit.
  • Often requires suspension modification or a specialized set-up.

Are Your Chrysler PT Cruiser Chrome Wheels Looking Bad and Struggling to Hold Air?

Thursday, June 5, 2014 by Zig Ziegler

Chrome wheels were a very popular option on the PT Cruiser and they made a nice addition to the retro looking car. However, most owners are now finding out that chrome is not a maintenance-free wheel and is never recommended for use in winter conditions.

Chrome wheels have no protective coating and if used in wintry conditions, or if not frequently washed, they can start to look oxidized or hazy and the chrome finish will begin to peel. This isn't only an esthetics problem, but many find the peeling causes problems with the tire sealing properly to the wheel which can cause a slow leak. Having the tire removed from the wheel and cleaning the bead area of the wheel can help in some cases, but the problem most often always returns.

We offer many low-cost options for replacement that provide a more durable finish. When replacing wheels on the PT Cruiser I recommend to use a painted or clearcoat finish in order to achieve a more durable finish which is more suitable for all-season use.


MSW Type 14

Sport Edition SE-17

RIAL Como


Some of the more popular replacement wheels include the MSW Type 14, Sport Edition SE-17 and RIAL Como. Each option is offered with a silver painted finish with a five-spoke design similar to a wheel that would have come on the car new.

If your chrome wheels aren't looking good or are having trouble holding air, shop by vehicle to find a new durable option for your PT Cruiser.

OG by Axis Oldskool Wheels for BMW, Honda and VW

Friday, May 30, 2014 by Gary Stanley

Are you the proud owner of a classic BMW 3 Series or Volkswagen Golf from the 1980s or early 1990s? If so, you may have found that some of the modern wheel styles do not look quite "right" on these cars. Available in a 15x8 size with a machined with black accent and gold with machined lip, the Axis OG Oldskool wheel is a great option to give your vehicle that classic look.  

 OG Old Skool by Axis Black Machined
OG by Axis Oldskool Machined with Black
Accent
 OG Old Skool by Axis Gold Machined
OG by Axis Oldskool Gold with Machined
Lip


The OG by Axis Oldskool is available in size 15x8 only, with a 25mm offset with a 4-100 bolt pattern. These wheels can fit more than just BMW and VWs, some other common vehicle fitments include:

  • Acura Integra
  • Honda Civic
  • Honda CRX
  • BMW 2002tii
  • 1977-1991 BMW 3 series
  • VW Cabriolet
  • VW Golf
  • VW Jetta
  • VW Rabbit
  • VW Scirocco 

Please note that while these wheels will bolt up to many of the vehicles listed above, some fender modification and/or suspension changes may be needed due to this wheel's width and relatively aggressive offset. Visit our Upgrade Garage to see if the OG by Axis Oldskool wheel is available for your vehicle.