Longest-Wearing Z-Rated Performance Tires

Wednesday, August 6, 2014 by Gary Stanley

What can drivers of sports cars and high performance vehicles with low profile, Z-rated Ultra High Performance All-Season tires do if they want to have longer wearing tires? In the past, the best a driver could hope for, in regards to treadwear, was an option that lasted approximately 20,000 miles. This was the case for so long that it has become a common misconception that all low profile tires or tires with a high speed rating have rapid treadwear. On the contrary, there are options available with long treadwear ratings. Three of the best to consider are the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3, Hankook Ventus S1 noble2 and Continental ExtremeContact DWS.  

 Continental Extreme Contact DWS
Continental ExtremeContact DWS
 Hankook Ventus S1 Noble2
Hankook Ventus S1
noble2
 Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3
Michelin Pilot Sport
A/S 3


The Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 has the best dry grip and quickest steering response among the three and comes with a 45,000-mile treadwear warranty. Both the Continental ExtremeContact DWS and Hankook Ventus S1 noble2 feature 50,000-mile treadwear warranties and perform a little better in light snow conditions compared to the Pilot Sport A/S 3. All three tires are made in a variety of sizes. Now, even drivers of sports cars like the Chevy Corvette and Ford Mustang can find tires with higher treadwear.  

Shop by size to view all options available for your vehicle.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the General Altimax RT

Thursday, July 31, 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.

General Altimax RT Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.25
 
 

1998 Subaru Legacy GT 2.5 Wagon
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Miles driven on tires: 2,000
Location: Glen Ellyn, IL
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 2,000 Miles on Tires
June 22, 2014

Excellent in all applicable categories, haven't had them long enough to rate them for winter performance. I will append my review next spring, but I expect performance will be extremely good. They are super quite, and have surprisingly good lateral stability for not being a low profile tire.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus ZP

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 Pilot Sport A/S Plus ZP Reviewer's Overall Rating: 6.73
 
 

2001 Chevrolet Corvette
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Miles driven on tires: 8,568
Location: Garland, TX
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 8,568 Miles on Tires
June 10, 2014

These are performance run flat extremely high quality sport tires. They are on a 350HP sport car and although it is driven with care and safety in normal city and country traffic and on hard paved roads, these tires just don't wear like fifty thousand mile tires do on large less "sportily driven" slower family sedans. That being said, I wouldn't have it any other way. These tires are great at what they have been designed to do, and no matter what I ask of them, they perform flawlessly. I trust them. I just keep buying them because they suit my style of easy and sometimes spirited driving and they are run flat. My Corvette has no room for a full size spare; don't like or trust the donut. Oh, as a note, only buy my tires from Tire Rack and am totally satisfied

Looking for a Quiet Summer Performance Tire?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014 by Gary Stanley

Summer tires like the Michelin Pilot Super Sport and Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position are the tires of choice for many enthusiasts and drivers of high performance sports cars. These two tires are great options, and you can see the differences between them by reading, "Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position vs Michelin Pilot Super Sport."

While Max Performance Summer tires offer some of the highest levels of grip and handling on the market, there are quite a few drivers who would be willing to give up a little grip for a smoother and quieter ride. If this sounds like what you're looking for, check out the Bridgestone Potenza RE760 Sport and Continental ExtremeContact DW.

Bridgestone Potenza RE760 Sport
Bridgestone Potenza RE760 Sport
Continental Extreme Contact DW
Continental ExtremeContact DW


Both options provide great wet and dry grip, while still offering good ride qualities. The Bridgestone and Continental have good road feel and steering response that you would expect from a summer performance tire. Their asymmetric tread patterns keep the noise level low and allow you to rotate the tires for even treadwear. The Potenza RE760 Sport is currently ranked second in the Ultra High Performance Summer category, while the ExtremeContact DW sits in fourth in the Max Performance Summer category.

For additional assistance choosing the right tire, take a look at our Tire Decision Guide.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Ecopia EP422

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.

Bridgestone Ecopia EP422 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 7.67
 
 

2006 Toyota Corolla XRS
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Miles driven on tires: 30,000
Location: Kingwood, TX
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 30,000 Miles on Tires
July 02, 2014

I autocross (but not in this car) so I am on the extreme end of spirited driving.

The Ecopias have great performance on dry and wet pavement and feel more like a performance summer tire. The sidewalls are extremely stiff so steering responsiveness and cornering stability is guaranteed. The con to the stiff sidewalls is that the tires are pretty noisy and can be bumpy if you drive a lot on poor roads. It iced over for a day last year and the tires did a little less than OK. The Ecopias had about 40% tread left when they were used in the icy conditions.

Traction in wet and dry conditions have stayed fairly constant throughout the tires life. I have about 1/16" to the wear bars now and the tires are just now starting to hydroplane in moderately wet conditions. These are the most consistent tires I have ever owned.

I was hoping to get 40,000 miles out of the tires, but I will be lucky to get 35,000 miles. A normal driver will be able to get much more mileage, but I think it would be tough to get the rated mileage out of them.

The tires feel the best with 35-37 psi cold and did have a 1.5 mpg average increase over my last set of tires (Dunlop Direzza Star Specs). These tires have pleasantly surprised me.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport

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.

Michelin Pilot Super Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.38
 
 

2012 Audi S4 Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 12,500
Location: Heidelberg, ON
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 12,500 Miles on Tires
July 03, 2014

Fantastic ... I have had many different performance tires, and the SuperSport is absolutely the tops. Fantastic grip, great road feel, and modest noise levels -- even ride comfort is very good for a 35-series tire. Conti's ExtremeContact DW is good, but this is still clearly better.

Tire wear? At this point (20,000 km/12,500 miles) I would guess that I still have half the tread left, which I am quite satisfied with. Others have had worse experience, don't know whether that's because of different driving styles or road surfaces.

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

Monday, July 7, 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: 9.64
 
 

2003 Audi A8L
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Miles driven on tires: 300
Location: West Seneca, NY
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 300 Miles on Tires
June 26, 2014

Well, I finally stepped up to the plate and and purchased the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus. Summer in WNY, so I cannot attest to the performance in the snow as yet. I usually switch to the Blizzacks once late Dec & Jan arrive. The Audi, with the Blizzacks is actually better than my LTZ Suburban (all-wheel drive)in the snow. I have to say, after reading all the comments (positive & negative), that I am SO please with them that I needed to write one of these comment things. They are so quite; the car rides so smooth and handles effortlessly; and there has been "zero" dip in gas mileage. In fact a shade better. I did run GY/Assurance tires on this previously. I really thought they were a good tire, and they were. Not necessarily a cheap tire either, but handled really good overall. I even have them on "the bride's" car. But, from the minute I put these Pirelli's on, all I can say is, "WoW". "It's a joy to open the car door knowing I have to take a drive". My driving range is mixed city/highway, with trips across the state and into the cities I travel. My Driving Habits for the most part are normal. However I do get a little spirited at times. I have my own cadence, and do enjoy downshifting through curves just because I can (not that I need to all the time). It just makes driving fun. The tires, playing an important roll in this experience are critical. Besides the comfort and quiet that I have gotten out of these tires, they perform extremely well. Cruising, Breaking, Gripping in Curves, Overall-performance,they are the best I have had at this point in my career. I am very pleased and wanted to share that with you. I will come back and enter my opinion when the snow flies. We all know "ice is ice" and unless you're in a tank doing 20 MPH, nothing else will stop you.I would highly recommend these tires to anyone, not that any one tire performs the same way on all cars. Safe Drive to all! No Texting; Pull over and rest if you're tired!

The Continental ContiForceContact Now Available in United States

Tuesday, July 1, 2014 by Marshall Wisler

This year, we've added another Streetable Track & Competition tire to our line-up and are pleased to introduce the Continental ContiForceContact. Designed to compete with popular tires such as the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup and Toyo Proxes R888, the ContiForceContact (80 treadwear) has a compound that's soft enough to be competitive in a track environment, yet suitable for light street use.

Unlike extremely soft race-only applications, such as the Hoosier R6, the ContiForceContact is less likely to pick up road debris and comes up to temperature slightly slower, allowing it to be driven to and from the track. The tire's tread void areas also allow it to be used in the wet. However, while designed to resist hydroplaning, ContiForceContact tires are not recommended for high-speed driving on extremely wet roads with standing water where there is the risk of hydroplaning. This is especially true of shaved or worn tires. Drivers should drive cautiously at reduced speeds in these conditions.

We had an opportunity to test the tire back in March and determined the tire delivers an impressive blend of dry track performance and wet traction. It can also thrill drivers during hot laps with its precise handling and confidence-inspiring demeanor. For a complete recap of our test, read "Continental ContiForceContact: Track Day Magic."

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Yokohama ADVAN Neova AD08

Thursday, June 26, 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.

Yokohama ADVAN Neova AD08 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.12
 
 

2002 Porsche Boxster S
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Miles driven on tires: 15,000
Location: Delmar, NY
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 15,000 Miles on Tires
June 08, 2014

This is the third set of Yoko AD07 or AD08 I have purchased for my Porsche. I am a "track rat", but have dedicated tires/wheels for the track. This is my daily driver, and is driven 50% city, 50% highway, including in the rain. These tires are fantastic with the best dry and wet grip available in a street tire. The turn-in is sharp, but not quite as good as Michelin PS2's, and better than Dunlop Direzza's. They are predictable at the limit, with a very correctable breakaway point. They are fantastic in the rain, and I have driven them in a downpour at Watkins Glen track, with absolute confidence. Resistance to hydroplaning is excellent. As they wear down they get VERY loud as they near the wear-bars. The wear is about average for an extreme performance summer tire. I just bought two AD08=R's for the rear after 12,000 miles. Fronts last me about 18,000. I don't care if they don't wear like iron - they are that good!

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Thursday, June 26, 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: 6.64
 
 

2009 Hyundai Genesis Sedan 4.6
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Miles driven on tires: 28,000
Location: Little Elm, TX
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 28,000 Miles on Tires
June 11, 2014

Very good tires in wet condition. Above average in any other driving conditions. Poor treadwear. I would give up treadwear for above average wet condition performance.

Michelin Replaces Primacy MXV4 with the New Premier A/S

Wednesday, June 18, 2014 by Gary Stanley

Michelin is known in the tire industry and by drivers worldwide for their technology and innovation. In 1946, Michelin produced the first radial tire. In 1992, Michelin introduced high silica rubber compounds and Green X technology. Continuing to develop new and exciting products, this year Michelin released the first tire with Evergrip Technology, the Premier A/S.  

What is Evergrip Technology? Simply stated, it reduces the rate of decline in wet traction. The Michelin Premier A/S retains more of its outstanding wet traction as it wears down. 

There are three main components to how this helps the tire perform:

  • Sunflower oil additive in the rubber compound maintains wet traction even in lower temperatures. 
  • Extreme silica acts to further improve wet traction throughout the life of the tire.
  • Emerging Grooves widen as the tire wears, reducing hydroplaning.  
 Michelin Primacy MXV4
Michelin Primacy MXV4
 Michelin Premier A/S
Michelin Premier A/S


This technology is so effective that Michelin is choosing the Premier A/S as the replacement tire for its top-of-the-line Grand Touring All-Season option, the Primacy MXV4. Already an outstanding tire, I installed the Primacy MXV4 on one of my own vehicles. You can read about my experience with this tire in a post titled, "Best All-Weather Tires for Mazda CX-7."

Why did Michelin place such a focus on wet traction? Keep in mind that accidents are more likely to happen on wet roads compared to dry. Drivers rank the ability to stop when a tire when is worn compared to when new as a top consideration when they're purchasing a new set of tires. The Michelin Premier A/S delivers that additional margin of safety when you need it the most!  

Shop by vehicle to see if this tire is available for your application.

Top-Rated Highway All-Season Truck and SUV Tires

Friday, June 13, 2014 by Marshall Wisler

In the United States, the truck and SUV market is extremely popular with drivers. It should come as no surprise that the tire market for this growing market share has become increasingly competitive. In total, 33 tires in the Highway All-Season performance category are examined by our customers, and two of the most popular are the Michelin LTX M/S2 and Firestone Destination LE 2.

The Michelin LTX M/S2's symmetric tread design of stable independent tread blocks featuring high-density 3-D Active Sipes delivers all-season traction on dry roads and in inclement weather. Four wide circumferential channels, multiple lateral grooves and open shoulder slots promote lateral water evacuation to enhance wet traction and stopping performance.

Firestone's Destination LE 2 is designed to combine long wear, a comfortable ride and all-season traction, even in light snow. It features twin steel belts reinforced with spirally wrapped nylon to provide strength, uniformity and durability on top of a polyester cord body that helps cushion the ride for truck and sport utility vehicle drivers.


Firestone Destination LE 2

Michelin LTX M/S2


Michelin LTX M/S2:

  • Highest-rated tire in the category
  • Available in a large number of sizes
  • 70,000-mile treadlife warranty
  • Large number of D/E load range options

Firestone Destination LE 2:

  • Outstanding value
  • 60,000-mile treadlife warranty
  • Highest score in category for light snow traction
  • Outstanding ride quality

To view all options available for your truck or SUV, shop by vehicle.

Continental ExtremeContact DW vs. Michelin Pilot Super Sport

Friday, June 13, 2014 by Gary Stanley

Two of the most popular Max Performance Summer tires being discussed on automotive forums lately are the Michelin Pilot Super Sport and Continental ExtremeContact DW. Both options are highly rated and outstanding tires. In our survey results, the Pilot Super Sport is currently ranked first, while the ExtremeContact DW is fourth.

How do the two tires compare? The Michelin Pilot Super Sport offers better handling, steering response and more desirable dry and wet grip. Continental's ExtremeContact DW provides a slightly softer ride than the Michelin Pilot Super Sport and a slower steering response as a result.

Some BMW forum members state that the ExtremeContact DW has a softer sidewall compared to other tires in the category. This can be viewed either as a positive feature or a downside depending on what you're looking for in your tire. Softer sidewalls (and slower steering response) result in improved ride quality and less harshness from sharp impacts like rough roads or expansion joints on the highway. 

Michelin Pilot Super Sport
Michelin Pilot Super Sport
Continental Extreme Contact DW
Continental ExtremeContact DW


When it comes time to make a purchase, what tire is best for you? Think about your driving style and preferences for ride quality. If you want immediate response when quickly moving the steering wheel from side to side and desire the best dry and wet traction, go with the Michelin Pilot Super Sport. Are you willing to give up a little steering response for a softer ride? If so, the Continental ExtremeContact DW would be the way to go. Are you still having trouble deciding? For additional help choosing the best tire for your vehicle, visit our Tire Decision Guide.

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: 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.

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.