Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Kumho Ecsta AST

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.

Kumho Ecsta AST Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.33
 
 

2000 Mazda Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 1,500
Location: Harvard, IL
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 1,500 Miles on Tires
January 08, 2013

Initially there is a tire pull or torque steer with these tires upon acceleration and deceleration. I had them rotated and most of that issue is gone. These are directional tires so it's hard to figure out which tire has the manufacturing issue causing the tire pull. The Sumitumos that were on it before dd not have this issue.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin X-Ice Xi3

Thursday, January 24, 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.


Michelin X-Ice Xi3Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.55

2001 Mazda Miata LS
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Miles driven on tires: 500
Location: Reno, NV
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 500 Miles on Tires
January 22, 2013

Wow...only had these tires for a short time but they are a great snow tire for my car.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport

Monday, January 7, 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.


Michelin Pilot Super SportReviewer's Overall Rating: 10

2010 Mazda MX-5 Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 4,000
Location: Dallas, TX
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 4,000 Miles on Tires
December 18, 2012

My daily commute is about 40 miles, all highway, in Dallas, Texas. I am also a HPDE instructor for about nine weekends a year. These tires replaced Bridgestone RE-11s after about 20,000 miles of highway and frequent track use. The RE-11s replaced the OEM Bridgestones (7,000 miles). The Michelins are my daily driver and track rain tire. I occasionally use them for dry track days if I am unable to transport my track tires to the venue. I'm impressed by the tires' exceptionally low weight compared to the RE-11, Advan Neova AD08, and Star Spec. I also appreciate their excellent combination of dry/wet handling. On the track in dry weather (TWS and MSR-Cresson) they do not overheat, and they are very progressive and predictable. They do not feel greasy when hot, like the RE-11. In the wet they are exceptional. MSR-Cresson is like ICE on the old 1.7 mile section, and on the wet line these tires maintained grip better by far than did the RE-11s. After re-aliginging my car for negative camber of 1.7 all around, max. postive caster, total front toe out of 1/16", and total rear toe in of 1/16", I found these tires to have excellent turn-in grip, and they held very well at the limit in mid-corner with no excessive slipping during mild oversteer. On rotation corners with trail braking I again found them very predictable with a good combination of slip and grip. I would definitely buy these tires again. What sold me on them was the August 2012 Car & Driver article comparing these tires to my other favorites and seeing their overall superior rating. I can now say that I completely concur with the results of the testing, as the article states.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Yokohama S.drive

Monday, December 24, 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 S.drive Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.57
 
 

2002 Mazda Miata LS
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Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location: Montgomery, AL
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
December 22, 2012

I ordered these tires on 12/12 and the were delivered to the local Goodyear dealer on 12/14, as promised (they have an excellent relationship with Tirerack). I had to have all weather tires since this is my daily driver and living in the South we get quick, short notice rain showers, especially in the warm months (10/12 months). This car weighs 2500 lbs...there in NOTHING that will keep it from hydroplaning; you just have to slow down. I looked for weeks at LOTSA tires and tire reviews. On paper, the Yokohamas were the best, by far. Well, they are better than expected. When these wear out I will buy another set! Graet tires, great service, great price ($600;
ordered/installed/lifetime B/R).

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Sumitomo HTR Z III

Friday, December 21, 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.

Sumitomo HTR Z III Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.12
 
 

2008 Mazda MX-5 Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 2,000
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 2,000 Miles on Tires
December 21, 2012

The tires are great for the price, but just not as sticky as I thought a max performance tire would be which is why I wouldn't buy them again. They are pretty predictable as far as break away, but there isn't much noise from them when you are about to break them loose. Wet traction is fine, but nothing to write home about.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the BFGoodrich g-Force Sport

Tuesday, December 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.

BFGoodrich g-Force Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 7.75
 
 

2006 Mazda MX-5 Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 21,000
Location: Santa Clara, UT
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 21,000 Miles on Tires
December 12, 2012

This is my third set of tires since new, and I replaced Hankooks with the BF Goodrich and thinking I was getting a more superior tire. In some respects they are. Handling was better with the Hankooks, especially in the spirited corners. Milage is better with Goodrich's. I have been averaging 22,000mi with the Hankook and Michellins, and I should get 28,000 mi. from the Goodrich's. Even thou the Goodrich tires make better milage, I will probably hit Hankook again for the performance feel.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Potenza RE760 Sport

Monday, December 17, 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.


Bridgestone Potenza RE760 SportReviewer's Overall Rating: 9.25

2001 Mazda Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 3,000
Location: Selah, WA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 3,000 Miles on Tires
December 15, 2012

I drive my MX-5 Miata LS Sport at 8/10 - 10/10 all the time, as it is my weekend toy. These tires are excellent all around, with catchable, progressive grip. Plus, they ride quietly and comfortably and wear like iron (so far). Wet traction is great, and I am driving around in 28F temps without appreciable lose of traction. But forget snow/ice.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Potenza RE760 Sport

Tuesday, December 4, 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.

Bridgestone Potenza RE760 Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.25
 
 

2005 Mazda Miata Mazdaspeed
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Miles driven on tires: 12,000
Location: Springdale, AR
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 12,000 Miles on Tires
September 25, 2012

Swapped out BGF's Gforce sports for these. Potenza's MUCH smoother ride. Handles very well. My weekend at the Miatas at the Gap saw some 'spirited' drives on the Gap andsome other roads. No traction issues anywhere. At the auto-X last month, it rained. good lap times in the wet and no cones clipped or excessive slippage & no hydroplaning.

 

Lightweight, Strong and Good Looking: Enkei Racing Series PF01

Wednesday, November 28, 2012 by Marshall Wisler

Selecting wheels for a vehicle is subjective based upon one's taste and ultimately up to each individual customer. Here at Tire Rack, we offer many different brands to suit the various tastes of our customers.

While I'm frequently asked, "What wheel would look best on my car?", I must admit it's a very difficult question to answer. Even though I've been customizing cars for years and certainly have my thoughts as to how things should be done, my feelings don't always match that of the consumer. 

When I do weigh in, I try to recommend wheels that aren't overstated, of good quality and are as purposeful as possible. For customers looking for a wheel that is durable, good looking and extremely lightweight, one of my favorite choices is Enkei's PF01

Part of the Enkei Racing Series family, this product weighs as little as 10 lbs. in certain sizes and maintains a much lower price point than other high-end wheel manufacturers. The broad range of bolt patterns and sizing of this wheel allows it to be used on a wide variety of vehicles.

The 4x100 bolt pattern is a popular choice for Honda and Mazda Miata owners, while the 5x114 option has proven to be very popular on countless other makes and models. Besides the physical allure of this wheel, it's proven quite handy when trying to clear Big Brake Kits due to its large amount of spoke clearance.

When considering aftermarket wheels or aftermarket rims as they are commonly called, take a look at many of the various wheels from Enkei. With many wheels to chose from, your tastes doesn't have to exactly mirror my own.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Kumho Ecsta 4X

Tuesday, November 6, 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.


Kumho Ecsta 4XReviewer's Overall Rating: 8.33

2007 Mazda MX-5 Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location: Land O Lakes, FL
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
October 20, 2012

Decided on these based on past experience with Kumhos and price. We are just average drivers, not spirited, but we are aware of handling. We have only 1k miles but initially the tires seems kind of "floaty" to me. Steering response is not immediate but adequate. These tires are VERY QUIET to us and we are extremely satisfied so far - no experience in heavy downpours or snow/ice. Only other thing I can add is that with similar Kumhos on a 2000 Miata up north, they tended to have a SET or flat spot in cold weather that would thump-thump for a while (less than a mile), before warming up in cold weather (after sitting overnight). This is probably my fifth set of Kumhos on various cars - Mazda5, Honda Accord and Miatas - never had a problem with any of them.

Need a Separate Set of Wheels for the Track? Take a Look at TRMotorSports Wheels.

Monday, November 5, 2012 by Doc Horvath

For many enthusiasts, their car is not only a means of transportation but also a source of recreation, too. With vehicles that see double duty as a daily driver and track car, many find that a separate set of track-only wheels and tires are a great luxury to have. Sticky track tires can greatly improve handling, however they can wear quickly to the point they aren't an option for daily use. This causes many drivers to have a second set they can install separately for each dedicated use. For best results, a track wheel needs to be lightweight and strong. And if you're looking to combine these characteristics at a great price, consider the line of wheels from TRMotorsports.

Ranging from vehicles such as older BMWs to the Mazda Miata, TRMotorsports wheels reflect form and function by using race-inspired styles with a focus on maintaining minimum mass to obtain the required strength. Many of their wheels are vehicle specific.

The C1M is a 4x100 bolt pattern wheel intended for the Mazda Miata and features a lower offset than a factory wheel to allow for larger brake calipers. More importantly, this allows for the wheel and tire to be moved out to the very edge of the body for better handling. This lower offset does require that the fenders be modified to avoid rubbing, so they aren't considered to be very street car friendly. 

MT1 wheels are primarily offered in a 4x120 bolt pattern aimed at BMW E46 (3 Series) applications. They run much wider than factory wheels to allow for a wider tire option. The ultra wide tire on the vehicle's front can affect directional stability, therefore they are also not considered to be appropriate for street car use.   

TRMotorSports' F1 is a Lotus Elise and Exige specific wheel that mirrors the 16" diameter front and 17" diameter rear wheel sizes used as Original Equipment with similar offsets. F1 wheels are also unique because they accept the O.E. Lotus center cap to give that factory look.

TRMotorSports C1M
TRMotorSports C1M
TRMotorSports MT1
TRMotorSports MT1
TRMotorSports F1
TRMotorSports F1


TRMotorsports wheels are also available for many Subaru, Audi and Mitsubishi applications, so be sure to shop by vehicle to see which option is a match for your car.

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

Monday, October 15, 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.


BFGoodrich g-Force Sport COMP-2Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.5

2001 Mazda Miata LS
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Miles driven on tires: 2,000
Location: RACINE, WI
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 2,000 Miles on Tires
October 13, 2012

I'm very pleased with with these tires. I like them much more than the original Stones. Rudy was right on with his description of these tires. I had them installed and did a 1800 mile weekend drive for a wedding in southern Virginia. They performed as described.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Exalto A/S

Thursday, October 11, 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.


Michelin Pilot Exalto A/SReviewer's Overall Rating: 8.5

1990 Mazda Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 20,000
Location: BORDENTOWN, NJ
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 20,000 Miles on Tires
September 26, 2012

Great all-around tire. Not the best when pushed hard in dry conditions but overall great performance for the cost

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Dunlop Direzza Sport Z1 Star Spec

Tuesday, October 9, 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 Direzza Sport Z1 Star SpecReviewer's Overall Rating: 8.25

1994 Mazda Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 4,000
Location: Franklin, TN
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 4,000 Miles on Tires
October 06, 2012

I bought these after reading many reviews. They are mounted on extremely light 15x8 rims. I was astonished with the dry grip these tires have, even when they are cold. They are good in the rain, but not as good as the Toyo T1-R were. They ride well and are surprisingly quiet, something I didn't expect. I won't be using these in the winter, so I cannot comment on their abilities in the snow. The reviews were correct. These are without a doubt the best tires I have ever had on my 1994 Supercharged Mazda Miata.

Enkei Racing Series RPF1 for Subaru, Honda, Mazda and More

Friday, September 21, 2012 by Gary Stanley
If you're an automotive enthusiast, you likely know the name Enkei for their outstanding high quality aluminum alloy wheels. Enkei has been producing lightweight, strong and reliable wheels in Japan since 1950 for everything from Original Equipment options to Formula One and WRC rally racing. The Enkei Racing Series is their highest level of aftermarket wheels and incorporates their MAT process and extensive testing that exceeds JWL and VIA strength standards.
 
MAT stands for "Most Advanced Technology" and is a process that combines Enkei's MAP (Most Advanced Production) and flow-forming forging technology. The complete MAT process has a drastic impact on the microstructure of aluminum and results in outstanding improvement of the mechanical property of the material. With wheels and tires becoming larger, use of the MAT process to manufacture wheels becomes even more important. In order to reduce weight under a vehicle's suspension, larger wheels must remain light. Enkei Racing Series' newer generation of 10% - 15% lighter weight, forged MAT wheels are stronger and retain optimum anti-flex properties.
 
One of Enkei Racing Series most popular wheels is the RPF1. The RPF1 is available in a variety of bolt patterns in diameters from 14" up to 18" to fit a large number of vehicle applications from a 1990 Mazda Miata to a 2012 Nissan 370Z. Some of the most popular vehicle applications are Mitsubishi Lancer EVO, Subaru Impreza WRX, Mazda MX-5 and Honda S2000 cars. It's also available in many different finishes including black painted and bright silver paint.
 
Check out this photo of a 2009 Subaru Impreza WRX with the Enkei Racing Series RPF1 wheels in a black painted finish.


To check to see if this wheel is available for your vehicle, shop by vehicle. Our site will show you the complete list of wheels that fit your car and let you view them on the vehicle. You can also pair up your wheels with high performance tires to create a Tire & Wheel Package that's ready to install upon arriving to your home or installer. 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Hankook Ventus R-S3

Thursday, September 6, 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.


Hankook Ventus R-S3Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.75

1994 Mazda V8 Monster Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 12,000
Location: Allentown, PA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 12,000 Miles on Tires
September 05, 2012

I just purchased my second set of these tires for my V8 Miata. The car is driven 90% of the time on the street and 10% of the time on the track. The Hankooks have served the last two years as my street tires (I use shaved RA1's on the track) as well as standing in when I need a rain tire on the track.

When relatively new (under 2000 or so miles) I have found them to work very well on a wet track. Until they hit the 10,000 or so mark they were fairly good in the wet on the street as well. In the dry they are simply the best tire for the price you can buy. It was not until my current set literally wore down to the indicators that they started to become scary (and fun in a way) on turns. They are sensitive to outside air temperature, although the sensitivity becomes more pronounced as they age. Again, for the first 10,000 miles they were pretty stable unless the temps dropped below freezing. After that they start to get funny even at higher temps. Do not drive them in the snow.

I will keep buying them until they stop producing them or someone else manages to manufacture a better 15 inch low profile tire at this price point (unlikely) in this size (225/45-15). If they made them in a 275/35-15 I'd name my first born after them.

Good job Hankook, keep up the good work,

-Jason McCully

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Potenza RE050A

Thursday, August 16, 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.


Bridgestone Potenza RE050AReviewer's Overall Rating: 7.5

2008 Mazda MX-5 Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 7,700
Location: Urbandale, IA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 7,700 Miles on Tires
August 28, 2009

The RE050As are the o.e. tire on my '08 MX-5 Miata 6-sp Touring PRHT. These are the best o.e. supplied tires I've encountered on a new vehicle and I'm very pleased with them; both dry and wet performance. Ride quality/noise is acceptable for a max performance summer tire on a roadster. I'm not sure what I might replace them with when the time comes; marginal wear to date with 7.7k miles including one track day and autocross. On my previous '99 Miata, had o.e. Michelin's, Bridgestone RE-71's, another Bridgestone, Toyo T1-S, and 2 Yokohama tires, the last being the S Drive. I am as pleased with the RE-050A as all previous mentioned tires; they provide better wet performance than most and exceptional dry performance with good steering response. Worthy of considering replacing with with same tire.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11

Monday, August 13, 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.

Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.62
 
 

2004 Mazda Miata Mazdaspeed
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Miles driven on tires: 30,000
Location: San Ramon, CA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 30,000 Miles on Tires
August 07, 2012

Bought these tires over 2 years ago with new O.Z. wheels. Went from stock 17s to 16s to improve ride quality. Ride quality definitely improved and I lost just a bit on steering response which I attribute mostly to the taller side wall (40 to 45 profile). No degradation in grip. Breakaway is more progressive than what I had. An awesome tire that provides the grip when I decide to take the back roads home. Looking to buy them again before the rainy season since I'll be pushing about 35K miles by then.

 

Alternative Tire Size for Your Mazda Miata Mazdaspeed

Tuesday, August 7, 2012 by Hunter Leffel

In 2004 and 2005 Mazda offered a Mazdaspeed version of the Miata that featured a turbo charged motor and 17" wheels and tires. With a 0 - 60 mph time of 6.2 seconds and an upgraded suspension, this a performance machine. Unfortunately, the 205/40R17 size deployed with the car is somewhat lacking in performance tire options -- many of the top choices in the Max Performance Summer category aren't available in this size. However, we have found that 205/45R17 is also a fit for the vehicle. It is in this size that you'll find the big hitters in this particular performance category.

Michelin Pilot Super Sport
Michelin Pilot Super
Sport
Bridgestone Potenza S04 Pol Position
Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole
Position
Continental ExtremeContact DW
Continental ExtremeContact
DW


We have tested the Super Sport against the Potenza S-04 Pole Position twice, with the Continental ExtremeContact DW included in one of those comparisons. Each time the undisputed king is the Pilot Super Sport. When backed into a corner to find a needed improvement for the tire, the ride comfort is a bit harsher when encountering a large impact when compared to some other selections. The Bridgestone Potenza S-04 Pole Position's performance comes up just shy while delivering a bit less harshness. Continental's ExtremeContact DW was the leader for ride comfort, but has a little less responsiveness for those performance drivers.

To find the right tire for your application, shop by vehicle.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Firestone Precision Sport

Friday, August 3, 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.

Firestone Precision Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.14
 
 

1994 Mazda Miata
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Miles driven on tires: 2,500
Location: San Jose, CA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 2,500 Miles on Tires
July 30, 2012

The only complaint with this tire is that I bought the OEM size. I should have went with a slightly wider size for more bite. From a standing start into a sharp corner at speed the rear tires hop a bit. At higher speeds the tires slightly float in turns (now I am doing 85 in a 45 curve on the highway). Not much, but a wider tire would probably help and replacing the stock swaybars (already have koni shocks and ST springs). For the price, they are a good deal though, nice looking tread design too. I would recommend them.