Looking for Lightweight Wheels?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Looking for lightweight wheels? Tire Rack can help shed the pounds! Shop by vehicle. Then you can filter search results by brand, diameter, finish and weight.

Enkei Racing Series RPF1
Enkei Racing Series RPF1 (Black Painted) on 2009 Subaru Imperza WRX - 17x7.5 15.2 lbs.
Kosei K1 TS
Kosei K1 TS (Silver Painted) on 2006 Mazda MX-5 Miata - 17x9 16 lbs.
Take a look to see which wheel fits your vehicle!

Goodyear Fortera HL Edition

Monday, February 7, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Goodyear TiresOn a trip to northern Michigan this past weekend, I had the opportunity to drive a new AWD SUV with Goodyear Fortera HL Edition tires. This was my chance to test the tires for an extended period of time, as I covered over 500 miles of interstate, state and local roads.

Goodyear Fortera HL EditionAs I learned this weekend and as our tire survey results indicate, the Goodyear Fortera HL Edition is a great all-season tire.

From my experience, I would give the tire a higher grade on hydroplaning resistance and a lower mark on ice traction. Driving on dry, wet, slushy and icy conditions, I was able to "Get there" as Goodyear likes to say. Take a look at which Goodyear tires will help you "Get there!"

Performance All-Season Eagle GT (V) by Goodyear

Monday, February 7, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Goodyear Eagle GT (V)The Goodyear Eagle GT (V) is designed for drivers of sports cars, coupes and performance sedans looking for style, handling and all-season capabilities. The Eagle GT (V) features a performance tread design that delivers all-season versatility in dry and wet conditions, even in light snow.

The large outboard performance zone (towards the outside of the vehicle) features independent shoulder tread blocks that enhance dry road steering response and handling, while intermediate tread blocks increase wet traction.

The inboard all-season zone (towards the middle of the vehicle) features a continuous rib flanked by dual circumferential grooves that help evacuate water and inboard shoulder blocks that blend stability in the dry with traction in wet and wintry weather.

Shop by vehicle to see which tire works best for your vehicle.

Refresh Your Ride With New Shocks

Friday, February 4, 2011 by Chad Hocker
If you notice you are bouncing up and down more compared to other cars going over bumps in the road, you may want to consider new dampers (shocks or struts.)  Here are a few options to replace your Original Equipment shocks:

I would recommend the KYB GR-2 or the KONI Special (KONI Reds) to recoup that O.E. feel.
KYB GR-2 Shocks and StrutsKoni Special Shock
Take a look to see which suspension products work best for your vehicle.

LED Tail Light Kits for Pickup Trucks

Tuesday, February 1, 2011 by Chad Hocker
In addition to carrying Hella light bulbs, Tire Rack offers LED tail light kits for select pickup truck models. If you do not find your model listed below, take a look at our other options.

F-150 LED Tail Light/Third Brake Light Kit 
F-150 LED Tail Light Kit

2003-2006 Chevy Silverado

2003-2006 Silverado LED Tail Light Kit

2007+ Silverado LED Tail Light Kit

2007+ Silverado LED Light Kit

2007-2008 Ram LED Tail Light Kit

2007-2008 Ram LED Tail Light Kit

2007+ Toyota Tundra

2007+ Tundra LED Tail Light Kit

Chevy Volt's Tires

Tuesday, February 1, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Goodyear Assurance Fuel MaxLooking to get the same low rolling resistance tires as the Chevy Volt? Then take a look at the Assurance Fuel Max from Goodyear. By optimizing the tire's weight, internal structure, tread design and tread compound, low rolling resistance tires help reduce the vehicle's fuel consumption and consequently lower greenhouse gas emissions.

You may only be able to improve your gas mileage by a small margin, but every little bit helps! The Goodyear Assurance Fuel Max is a great low rolling resistance tire option, that is available in 42 sizes from 14" up to 17". 

Take a look to see which low rolling resistance tires are available for your vehicle.

Michelin Pilot Super Sport Video

Tuesday, February 1, 2011 by Chad Hocker
After the wildly successful Pilot Sport PS2 debuted in 2004, Michelin improved their designs and created the Pilot Super Sport. This new tire will offer the good road manners and fuel efficiency of the Pilot Sport PS2, but shows improvements in handling and braking during dry and wet conditions. Michelin Pilot Super Sport

With Ferrari equipping the 599 GTO from the factory with Pilot Super Sports, Michelin has a winner on their hands. We are looking forward to evaluating the Michelin Pilot Super Sport this testing season back home in South Bend, Indiana (once all the snow melts, of course). Which is about the time the Pilot Super Sport is estimated to be available in main stream sizing.

Michelin Pilot Super Sport Introductory Track Drive VideoCheck out video from the hot laps in Dubai.

Aftermarket Wheels and O.E. Center Caps

Friday, January 28, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Aftermarket wheels designed to use the Original Equipment center cap are available at Tire Rack. Let the wheels from Bremmer Kraft, Breyton, ASA, Elbrus and O.Z. Racing give your vehicle that custom look while maintaining the factory edge. Take a look at a few options that will set your car apart from the rest:

Bremmer Kraft BR05 Black PaintedBreyton Race GTS-R Matte Grey w/Red StripeASA Type 8 Chrome Plated
Bremmer Kraft BR05Breyton Race GTS-RASA Type 8

O.Z. Racing Alleggerita HLT Blue PaintedElbrus I02 Silver PaintedO.Z. Racing Ultraleggera HLT Bright Silver Paint
O.Z. Racing Alleggerita HLTElbrus I02O.Z. Racing Ultraleggera HLT
PorscheBMW and Mercedes-BenzPorsche

Use our website to view exact fitment and availability as some wheels may not be compatible with certain makes and models.

Click the "Product Description" tab on the rim summary page to see if the wheel will accept the O.E. center cap. If available for the wheel selected, the O.E. center cap can be purchased from the "Optional Hardware" tab.
BMW Center CapPorsche Center CapMercedes Center Cap

Mercedes-Benz Rims

Friday, January 28, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Aftermarket wheels designed to use the O.E. Mercedes-Benz center cap are available at Tire Rack. We offer Mercedes wheels from Bremmer Kraft, BE by Breyton, and ASA for your model.

Bremmer Kraft BR05 Black PaintedBE By Breyton GTS-AW Hyper SilverASA Type 8 Chrome Plated
Bremmer Kraft BR05BE by Breyton GTS-AVASA Type 8

Use our website to match exact fitment, as some wheels may not be compatible with certain Mercedes-Benz models.

Optional Mercedes Center Cap

Click the "Product Description" tab on the summary page to see if the wheel will accept the O.E. center cap.

Tools at Tire Rack

Thursday, January 27, 2011 by Chad Hocker
To avoid damage during installation of your aftermarket wheels, it is best to consider thin wall sockets. Using your old tire iron can cause damage to your wheel when removing the newer lugs. Consider the following options to make certain there will be no harm to your wheels.

Gorilla Extendable Power Wrench
  • 1/2" drive
  • Compact storage with telescoping handle from 14" - 22" for additional power to remove stubborn lugs
  • Great replacement for O.E. lug wrenches
  • Hardened steel
  • Available as a set (1334) with 3" extension and 19mm & 21mm thin wall sockets. The 3" extension allows for use on deep dish wheels and recessed lug holes
  • Available as a set (1721) with two dual drive sockets that fits 17mm, 19mm (3/4"), 21mm (13/16") and 23mm (7/8") bolt heads
Gorilla Thin Wall Sockets 1/2" DriveGorilla Thin Wall Sockets
  • 17mm
  • 19mm (3/4")
  • 21mm (13/16")
  • 23mm (7/8")
Tire Rack Adjustable Torque Wrench
  • Designed for home use
  • 1/2" drive
  • Wrench clicks when selected torque is reached up to 150ft./lbs of torque
Tire Rack Adjustable Torque Wrench Gorilla Extendable Power Wrench
Take a look at all Gorilla Automotive Products available at Tire Rack.

Winter Tires Worth Their Weight in Gold

Thursday, January 27, 2011 by Chad Hocker
With winter only halfway over and another record-breaking snowfall on the way, winter tires have made my daily commute safer and more enjoyable. They have paid for themselves a few times this year, as I am able to navigate icy roads in my Impala with no problem. Wishing you would have purchased a set before winter started? Tire Rack has many options available that can be delivered in one to three business days.

For consumers who need maximum snow traction, consider tires from the Studless Ice and Snow category. These tires provide supreme snow and ice traction without using winter tire studs.

Are you willing to trade some snow and ice traction to get enhanced dry road handling from your winter tires? Then contemplate options from the Performance Winter / Snow category, as many special offers are now available.

If you desire the traditional security of winter studs view our Studdable Winter tires. Be sure to check with local authorities as studded tires are prohibited in certain areas.

Winter is not over yet; contact a sales specialist or shop by vehicle for more information and to hear about our special offers.

Best Fuel Economy for SUV Tires Tested

Wednesday, January 26, 2011 by Chad Hocker
With data collected from last season's test results let's look at fuel economy information from our SUV test vehicles.

First Up: Crossover/SUV All-Season Tires
These tires combine a sophisticated appearance with all-season traction to upscale crossovers, sport utility vehicles and luxury pickups.

Crossover/SUV Touring All-Season Tires MPG
Kumho Solus KL21
Michelin Latitude Tour HP N1
Pirelli Scorpion Verde All Season

Next up: Street/Sport Truck All-Season Tires
These tires provide good traction and handling and improve on the look of your vehicle's Original Equipment tires. They offer an ultra low profile wth large rim diameter sizes.

Street/Sport Truck All-Season
Firestone Desination ST
Kumho Ecsta STX KL12
Pirelli Scorpion Zero

The fuel economy data was collected from our team of test drivers who completed approximately 500 miles per tire over several days on our 6.6-mile test loop. Using this fuel data as a comparison shows that there is a small difference in mileage and would result in only a few extra fill-ups a year.

MSW Rims

Wednesday, January 26, 2011 by Chad Hocker

MSW Rims are engineered and designed by O.Z. Racing to the top standards of modern production. Their wheels meet official regulations for the U.S. DOT and also the more stringent rules set by Germany's T.U.V (Technical Inspection Association).

MSW has added a new wheel to their line this year. The Type 23 is truly a unique design that puts a new spin on the line of wheels from MSW.

Take a look at the Type 23 and other options from MSW.



MSW Wheels
MSW Type 23 Machined w/Anthracite Accent MSW Type 16 Black w/Red Stripe MSW Type 12 Machined w/Black Accent MSW Type 15 Silver Painted
Type 23 Type 16 Type 12 Type 15

MSW Type 16 Showing  VW Sportwagen

See if the Type 23 or any other MSW wheel fits your vehicle.



Best All-Season Tires for Trucks

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Listed below are some of the best all-season tires Tire Rack has for light trucks and certain SUVs. With nearly 60 tires in the category and millions of miles of tire survey results collected, the following tires are currently the top-rated within the Highway All-Season category.

Highway All-Season Tires:
  • Michelin LTX M/S2
    • Consumer Buy Again Rating: 8.9 out of 10 said "yes"
    • LTX M/S2 is currently the top-ranked Highway All-Season tire
  • Goodyear Fortera TripleTred
    • Consumer Buy Again Rating: 7 out of 10 said "yes"
    • Fortera TripleTred is currently ranked 2nd within the category
  • General Grabber HTS
    • Consumer Buy Again Rating: 8 out of 10 said "yes"
Read full survey results on all Highway All-Season Tires.

Run-Flat Tires or Go-Flat Tires?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Can I put non-run-flat tires on my vehicle, even if it came with run-flat tires? Yes, you can put non-run-flats (or as some like to call them, go-flats) on your vehicle.

The main benefit of the run-flat tire is you can drive on them with no air in the tire for 50 miles at 50 MPH. However, they cannot be repaired and need to be replaced within 50 miles of the puncture.

Many times when a vehicle comes with run-flats from the factory a spare tire is not included. If you want to switch to the non-run-flat tires keep this in mind; you may not have a spare tire to switch out. So before making the switch from run-flat tires to non-run-flats, have a plan in place in case of a flat.

Some carry a full-size spare or a space saver spare and tire. Tire Rack has space saver tires. Another option is to carry a fix-a-flat product like the Continental ContiComtforKit, but it will not repair a sidewall puncture or a blow out.
Contential ContiComfortKit
Now that you know what to consider before replacing your run-flat tire, let's take a look at the options for your vehicle.

Hypertech Programmers Offer More Than Just Horsepower

Monday, January 24, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Use the Hypertech Max Energy Power Programmer for more than just more power.  

For example, if the speed shown on your vehicle's speedometer differs from the speed shown on your GPS because you have a larger size tire on your vehicle in place of the smaller O.E. tire size, you can use Hypertech's Max Energy Power Programmer to re-calibrate your factory speedometer.

The Hypertech Max Energy also offers specific features for your make, model and year to personalize your vehicle’s performance to suit specific needs or uses:

  • RPM “rev” LimiterMax Energy Power Programer
  • Top-Speed Limiter
  • 0-60 mph Electronic Throttle Restriction
  • Read & Clear Diagnostic Trouble Codes
  • Return to Stock or Change Option Settings
  • Speedometer Recalibration for large size tires
  • Update by Internet
These features are in addition to the engine tunes available to boost horsepower and torque. The additional features are vehicle-specific. Shop by vehicle to see which Hypertech product (where applicable) is right for you.

New BBS Wheels

Monday, January 24, 2011 by Chad Hocker
BBS has introduced a new wheel that's now available at Tire Rack and maintains the high quality and build processes associated with the BBS wheels line. 

BBS CF Machined with Anthracite AccentBBS CF Bright Silver Paint

Available Sizes: 17, 18, 19
Center Cap: Included at No Charge
Finish: Bright Silver or Machined with Anthracite Accent

Check to see if these new BBS wheels will fit your vehicle.

See all BBS wheels.

New Kumho Performance Tire Quieter than the Rest!

Thursday, January 20, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Check out Kumho's new Max Performance Summer Tire. Last summer, Tire Rack put the Kumho Ecsta LE Sport up against the Michelin Pilot Sport PS2, Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric and Continental ExtremeContact DW. Some pretty heavy hitters if you ask me. Even though Kumho finished fourth in our overall tire test, it was extremely comparable on ride comfort and ranked the quietest tire of the four. It was only after we pushed the tire harder did Kumho's test results begin to drop. One thing the Kumho Ecsta LE Sport offers is a capable tire at an economical price point. 

TaTire Testing Videoke a look at some of the test video footage and read the full data test if you want some more tire information. 

It is also important to remember, many of us do not push our modern sport vehicles near their performance limits and do not need a higher priced premium tire. 

I would Recommend the Kumho Ecsta LE Sport for the driver that may not be an extremely spirited driver but does drive with some spirit in dry conditions.

Stop Easier with Hawk Disc Brake Pads

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Not stopping as well as you would like? Hawk Performance Brakes has a brake pad to help improve your braking performance. Hawk makes disc brake pads for sedans, SUVs, light trucks and sports cars. Let's take a look and see which of the Hawk brakes may work best for you.
  • HPS Street Brake Pads
    • Designed for high speed driving or repetitive heavy braking, providing advanced braking characteristics to enhance the driving experience.
    • A Performance Street brake pad
  • HP Plus Race Brake Pads
    • Designed for autocross and track days providing racecar-like stopping power.
    • Will show more dust, noise and wear to achieve this additional stopping power.
    • An Autocross/Track brake pad.
  • Performance Ceramic Brake Pads
    • Designed for ultra-low dust and noise while providing high friction levels
    • A Premium brake pad.
  • LTS Truck/SUV Brake Pads
    • Designed to provide superior stopping power for full-sized light trucks, SUVs and vans while generating low noise and dust
    • A Performance Street brake pad
  • HP Super Duty Brake Pads
    • Designed for severe duty applications frequently towing max capacity loads, providing maximum stopping power and high heat dissipation.
Hawk HPS Brake PadsHawk LTS Truck/SUV Pads
Hawk brake pads are available for some race applications as well. Check to see which track pads work well on your vehicle.

Also read: All About Performance Brake Pad Categories

Which type of tire has the best fuel economy?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 by Chad Hocker
Take a look at some of the results collected from the Real World Road Rides -- a test drive on a circuit of highways and county roads near our corporate headquarters in South Bend, Indiana. Our evaluation used Linear Logic ScanGauge II automotive computers to record fuel consumption and Race Technology DL1 data loggers to record true distance traveled.

The comparisons are between tires tested last season within three of our tire categories
The tire with the best fuel economy in the Grand Touring All-Season category is the Goodyear Assurance ComforTred Touring at 28.6 mpg in our BMW 3 Series test vehicles.

Grand Touring All-Season tires focus on a smooth, comfortable, quiet ride with good handling.

Grand Touring All-Season Tires MPG
Bridgestone Turanza Serenity
Continental ContiProContact
Goodyear Assurance ComforTred Touring
Michelin Primacy MXM4 28.3

The tire with the best fuel economy for the Standard Touring All-Season tires is the General AltiMAX RT at 27.0 mpg in our BMW 3 Series test vehicles.

Standard Touring All-Season tires focus on ride comfort and long treadwear on lower speed rated tires.

Standard Touring All-Season Tires MPG
BFGoodrich Premier Touring
Firestone Precision Touring
General AltiMAX RT
Yokohama AVID TOURING-S 26.8

The Goodyear Assurance featuring Fuel Max Technology achieved the best fuel economy for the Passenger All-Season Tires at 28.2 MPG in our BMW E92 328i Coupe.

Passenger All-Season tires focus on long wear, plush ride and predictable handling, at a relatively low cost

Passenger All-Season Tires MPG
Continental ProContact with EcoPlus Technology
Goodyear Assurance featuring Fuel Max Technology
Kumho eco Solus HM KR22
Michelin HydroEdge with Green X 27.8

Of the touring tires and passenger tires, the Grand Touring All-Season tires had the best fuel economy.

To see which tire will fit your vehicle, shop by vehicle.