Winter Tires Off and Ultra High Performance All-Season Tires On?

Thursday, April 10, 2014 by Cy Chowattukunnel

It looks like spring has actually sprung! This week we'll get more than one warm day in a row. That's great for us, especially after this winter, but consistent warm weather isn't so good for your snow tires. Their specialized rubber compound will wear prematurely in warmer temperatures. So winter tires off, summer tires on, right? Not necessarily, as you may want to consider an all-season tire. Consider the following factors on whether you should get a summer or all-season tire.

Summer tires, especially on a powerful sporty car with great innate handling, allows you to push your vehicle to its limits. In order to benefit from the higher grip and crisper steering response of summer tires, you really have to love to drive and/or your vehicle is so performance oriented that it needs summer tires to handle correctly.

Are you not as intense during your daily commute? Exact attributes will vary from tire to tire, but you might be disappointed with a summer tire's higher tread noise, harsher ride, faster wear and poor grip in colder temperatures. Maybe you'd rather emphasize a quiet, more comfortable ride, with better longevity and cold weather versatility combined with enhanced emergency handling? Then consider options in the Ultra High Performance All-Season category instead of a summer tire.

I'd take a good look at the Michelin Sport A/S 3 for its superior wet and dry grip, the Continental ExtremeContact DWS for its versatility in the face of an unexpected spring or fall snowstorm and the Kumho Ecsta 4X for its combination of decent wet grip, crisp steering response and value.

Ultra High Performance All-Season Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3
Michelin Pilot Sport
A/S 3
Ultra High Performance All-Season Continental ExtremeContact DWS
Continental ExtremeContact
DWS
Ultra High Performance All-Season Kumho Ecsta 4X
Kumho Ecsta
4X


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

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 (W- or Y-Speed Rated)

Wednesday, April 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 Pilot Sport A/S 3 (W- or Y-Speed Rated) Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.5
 
 

2013 Audi A6 Sedan 3.0T
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Miles driven on tires: 2,000
Location: Elgin, IL
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 2,000 Miles on Tires
December 05, 2013

If you live in an area where snow isn't a big issue, these are great handling A/S tires. I'm a bit disappointed in winter traction, however. Tread design or compound, not sure which, really doesn't like snow very much. I also think mpg dropped by 3 from the Eagle F1 summer tires that came on this car. If you don't care about that, live where snow is rare and want full dry weather performance in an A/S tire, this is it. Even with AWD and the best ABS system made, my A6 might need a tire change this winter. They were a little scary in the first snow of the season, which wasn't very bad.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport

Wednesday, April 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 Pilot Super Sport Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.75
 
 

2004 Saab 9-3 Aero 2.0T Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 5,000
Location: Pembroke Pines, FL
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 5,000 Miles on Tires
March 31, 2014

Comfort, Wet/Dry, and Performance these super sports are the absolute best tire I have ever owned, PERIOD! ...but tread wear is horrible! UTQG is 300 should be more like 220. You can definitely feel the "Twaron" technology at high speeds- car feels planted to the road.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin X-Ice Xi3

Thursday, April 3, 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: 8.89
 
 

2011 Volvo C70 T5
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Miles driven on tires: 200
Location: Glen Mills, PA
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 200 Miles on Tires
December 08, 2013

These tires are great in the snow. I got caught in a sudden snow storm in PA and these tires were unstoppable. I was passing cars, trucks & SUVs that were stuck without a single problem. Last year with my "all-season" tires I couldn't even make it up my driveway with a dusting of snow. Given that I bought these tire for their snow & ice handling I am very pleased.

As far as handling is concerned, I've noticed these tire feel slightly softer than my other tires but then these are on 16" wheels vs 18" wheels. I don't drive aggressively so I haven't noticed any degradation under normal driving conditions. So far there is no road noise to speak of and performance on wet roads has been excellent.

Given that these are WINTER tires and if you are buying them you are looking for winter performance I think they are fabulous. I don't know why people stopped buying winter tires.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Pilot Alpin PA3

Wednesday, April 2, 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 Alpin PA3Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.29

2010 BMW 335d Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 1,500
Location: Oakville, ON
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 1,500 Miles on Tires
January 19, 2011

The dry and wet weather performance of this tire is excellent at low temperatures in fact I would say the car handles better than it does on the OEM Continental Run-Flats. The tires are good in light snow and traction is excellent but when snow gets deeper, although the car never gets stuck,the tires do not feel as if they are gripping that well and you have to be careful not to brake too hard or they will slide. The tread pattern is not an aggressive winter tire patten. I have had no problems so far due to the fact I drive on roads that usually get ploughed soon after a snow fall but if I was diring in deeper snow more often I'd get something with a slightly more agressive winter tread and forego some of the really excellent dry and wet wether performance.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Hankook Ventus S1 noble2

Tuesday, April 1, 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.

Hankook Ventus S1 noble2 Reviewer's Overall Rating: Not Rated
 
 

2008 Scion tC
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Miles driven on tires: 100
Location: Towaco, NJ
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 100 Miles on Tires
March 04, 2014

I got these tires installed on my 2008 scion tc just a couple days ago so although I cant comment on all performance categories I will do my best now and update in the future.

These tires are fantastic so far. Low road noise if any and very smooth ride. Good Handling..

Before I had these installed I had yokohama tires on the rear which came with the car when i bought it and lasted me about 50,000 miles and still had some meat on them(but are now discontinued) and in the front I had crappy kuhmos which had treadwear that went faster then I can blink. Anyways I was hearing some noise coming from the front end after hitting a pot hole and decided to change all the tires since nobody can tell me where the noise was coming from. Luckily it was the just my old tires and nothing more serious. Now with this new set of hankooks I feel like I am driving on the clouds. Very happy so far and will buy in the future.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Blizzak WS70

Tuesday, April 1, 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 Blizzak WS70 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 7.27
 
 

2004 Ford Mustang Mach 1
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Miles driven on tires: 5,000
Location: Cohoes, NY
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 5,000 Miles on Tires
March 22, 2014

This review is of my WS70s bought this winter, but also my WS50s which I bought in 2007. Both sets of Blizzaks have been absolutely awesome and to be honest, I can't tell the difference between them. If you have never driven on proper winter tires then you will be astonished. When I bought my Mustang (305bhp/320lbft rear wheel drive) to use in upstate New York, everyone said I would need another vehicle for the winter. One lone friend told me that all I needed was good winter tires. He directed me to Tirerack. On my all-season (Ha) tires, the car was pretty much undriveable on ice and snow. With these studless ice and snow tires I have NEVER had any problem, and I'm a skier, so that means getting to the Mountains just after the storm. In six winters, I have seen at least ten accidents unfold in front of me in snowy or icy conditions and have never been concerned that I was going to become part of the accident. The car steers, accelerates, corners and brakes with great confidence. It would be a lie to say they have the ultimate grip of a summer tire, but they turn an unuseable car into a very good winter vehicle.

The only time these tires have caught me out is on wet pavement. On two occasions (in six years) they span up unexpectedly whilst accelerating pretty hard in second gear (The car is a Standard), but that was really my fault.

It is worth noting that in retrospect, I should have replaced them last year. The WS50s did about 30,000 miles and I expect the WS70s will be similar. The performance in ice was undiminished, but they started to struggle in snow because of insufficient tread-depth. I replaced them with about 3/16 of tread remaining. I'm sure this is less than Bridgestone recommend.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Tuesday, April 1, 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: 8.75
 
 

2008 Audi A4 Avant 3.2 quattro
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Miles driven on tires: 31,000
Location: Nashua, NH
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 31,000 Miles on Tires
March 23, 2014

Great tire that just works. I only use them 7-8 months/year (have separate winter tires). They are responsive, secure in the wet, perform well in dry and have great longevity. Enough tread left after 31K miles that the "S" is still visible. Should easily go 50K+. Will get a set for our other car (MINI) now.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Goodyear Ultra Grip Ice WRT

Tuesday, April 1, 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.

Goodyear Ultra Grip Ice WRT Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.73
 
 

2009 Subaru Forester 2.5 X
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Miles driven on tires: 4,000
Location: Belington, WV
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 4,000 Miles on Tires
March 03, 2014

I live on a mountaintop farm in rural West Virginia. The road into the farm is steep and 1/2 mile long. Plus they don't get around to plowing the county roads for several days after a storm. This season, 2013-14 has been a great test of these tires. My wife and I have two identical 2009 Subaru Forester vehicles. Hers has a new set of all season tires and mine has these Goodyear WRTs. I bought these tires based on the good reviews I have read about them. I am glad to say the reviews are correct. These tires are awesome! I have yet to get stuck or even slide around even in the deepest snow and on glare ice. They go in any conditions. I have to remind myself not to get carried away with driving in bad conditions because it feels like I am on dry pavement. I tackle very steep roads in 10" of fresh snow and barely have any wheelspin. On ice I have tried emergency stopping and fooling around trying to break the tires loose and they amaze me with their gripping and stopping power. Compared to the all season tires on my wife's car they are probably 3 to 4 times better. I now consider the all seasons dangerous to drive. Bottom line is that these tires have exceeded my expectations and get the highest rating from me. Going with a pure winter tire like this is the only way to go. Spring for the spare set of rims and run them just in the winter. That also lets you get pure summer tires for max performance during the rest of the year. I have bought my last set of all season tires. Congrats to Goodyear for a job well done on these tires. I hope when they finally wear out that they will still be available. No sign of wear yet but it is the first season. Surprisingly good handling on dry pavement and very acceptable noise level. They run smooth as silk. Buy these!

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

Tuesday, April 1, 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 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 6.45
 
 

2008 BMW 550i Sedan
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Miles driven on tires: 14,000
Location: Devon, PA
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 14,000 Miles on Tires
April 16, 2013

I don't want to deal with separate snow tire hassle, storage and cost, so I try compromising with high-performance A/S tires. While I will give Michelin high marks for it's Pilot A/S+ all-around strong performance, good dry and wet performance, good enough snow performance to get me home in 3 inches of snow (in a 360hp rwd 550i); I frankly expect this for $200/tire. What I don't expect is 3/32 of tread left after only 14,000 miles, consisting mainly of my boring 6 mile commute to work. This is pathetic. The 500AA treadwear rating is a joke. I rotated every 6,000 miles to keep up with warranty requirements. Oh, there is another joke, the 45,000 mile warranty. Since the middle of the tire is worn down to the wear bars, but both outside treads have plenty of tread left, this is considered 'uneven wear' and will void the warranty. This is borderline fraud. Maybe if you drive a Prius, these tires will wear evenly, but they are marketed as the ultimate in A/S high performance, and I dare Michelin to show me a real performance car where these things will wear evenly for 45,000 miles. Stay away unless you don't mind shelling out $800 every 14-16k miles for new tires. I'm certainly not going to buy another pair.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Michelin Latitude Tour

Tuesday, April 1, 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 Latitude Tour Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.44
 
 

1999 Mercedes-Benz ML320
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Miles driven on tires: 63,000
Location: St Petersburg Beach, FL
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 63,000 Miles on Tires
March 27, 2014

P255/65R16 106T Latitude Tour on an ML320 first series SUV. The tires are holding up well with just over 63k miles over 64 months. The first 18 months (14k mi) were in New England and the tires performed well through two northern winters. Snow traction was excellent as was wet traction. The last 48k miles have been in south Florida, mostly highway miles. Treadwear is excellent with about 4 to 5/32 of depth across the widths of each tire. (Tire rotation schedule and alignment issues with the car are main culprits for the uneven tire wear). Wet weather driving at highway speed in Florida has been great with zero hydroplaning (on 255s) along with confident braking. Dry weather driving is relatively quiet as is expected from all season tires. Mileage for the ML320 at highway driving is consistently 20mpg which I attribute 1-2 miles on the tire model. The previous tires were also Michelins but were H rated, lower tread life tires. I was initially concerned with "T" (118mph) speed rating, "B" temp rating, and 106 load index (2,094lb) for Florida drivers tend to consistently speed beyond the 70 MPH law. The ML is a heavy SUV with gross weight of 6000lbs. Front and Rear GAWR are 2550 & 3550 lbs respectively. A typical workday round trip is 140 miles highway driving 3-4 times a week. Additionally, was also concerned about the Florida heat and sun as the vehicle was not parked under cover for most of the last three years. As such, there is cracking all along the circumference of the tire walls (dry rot cracking, maybe). At this point, I am pleased with the performance and longevity of these Latitude Tours and may likely keep them on until the warranty period end (or another 2k miles). As a side note, I would purchase these again for a vehicle that I expected to keep a long time. These tires were a great investment. By the way, I love Tire Rack and will continue to purchase from them. Just replaced these with Conti CrossContact LX20 due to cost and remaining life of the Benz.

Best Tires for Subaru Outback

Monday, March 31, 2014 by Gary Stanley

If the tires on your Subaru Outback are nearing replacement, be sure to check out the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus. While many drivers associate Pirelli with producing ultra high performance tires for exotic high-end sports cars like Ferrari and Lamborghini, they also make outstanding all-season touring tires. In fact, the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus is currently ranked number one by our customers in the Grand Touring All-Season performance category.  

The tire's great balance of traction, handling and ride quality to go along with a 70,000-mile treadwear warranty make the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus an ideal match for many Subaru Outback drivers.  

Take a look at what Outback owners are saying about their experience with the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus:

"So glad I did my research with Tire Rack and compared the tires side-by-side. After a full week of research, I went with the Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus and the difference is amazing. The noise level from my previous Bridgestone Potenza is a 180. The Pirelli is hands down the best tire I've owned!" -- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2003 Subaru Outback Wagon 

"This tire has amazed me since it was installed 10,000 miles ago. Immediately, I noticed a difference in decreased road noise and increased ride comfort over the O.E. Continental. It has been a great tire while driving in heavy rain and an equally as great tire when taking corners a little faster than you should." -- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2011 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited

"I bought these tires a month ago to replace tires damaged by road debris. These are by far the best tires I've had on this car, including O.E. Potenzas, Kumho Solus KH16 and two sets of General AltiMAX HPs. These Pirellis are amazing. The car is noticeably quieter and rides smoother - it's like a new car. We have had a snowy winter so far in Connecticut, so I have had many chances to test these on snow and ice. Truly impressive." -- Tire Rack Consumer Review, 2003 Subaru Outback L.L. Bean

While you're thinking about tires, check your tires' air pressure since they can lose 1 psi per month. To learn more about this important safety issue, read "Winter Air Pressure Versus Summer Air Pressure."

Max Performance Summer Tires for 2014

Friday, March 28, 2014 by Ben Rooney

Here in South Bend, Indiana we are nearly thawed out from a brutal winter and it is time to start considering what tires to run this summer. For enthusiasts with cars that are driven on the street as opposed to the track, this usually means selecting a tire from our Max Performance Summer category. Max Performance Summer tires feature advanced ultra low profile, high speed options that combine computer developed designs and unique materials with precision manufacturing techniques to provide an unsurpassed blend of dry and wet traction and handling.

If you're shopping for a set of tires from this performance category, here are your top picks:

King of the Hill: Michelin Pilot Super Sport

The Pilot Super Sport does everything well: wet traction, dry traction, steering response, braking and even treadlife is better than average for the category. This tire is designed to allow sports cars, sporty coupes, performance sedans and supercars to achieve their full potential in dry and wet conditions. Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires are competitively priced and usually cheaper than the previous generation Pilot Sport PS2.

Top Tier Value: Bridgestone S-04 Pole Position

The Bridgestone S-04 Pole Position is a leading member of the most recent generation of Max Performance Summer tires. While their raw grip is not quite equal to the Michelin Pilot Super Sport, they have excellent traction in wet and dry conditions, are extremely stable and provide confident handling. Bridgestone has been pricing them very aggressively, and in some sizes, you'd almost be crazy not to buy a tire this good at such a low price.

Lots of Grip, Not Yet Hyped: Yokohama ADVAN Sport V105

If you're the type of enthusiast who likes to do things a little differently from the rest, this may be the tire for you. The Yokohama ADVAN Sport V105 has not yet made a big splash in the marketplace, but it has exceptional grip. I'm also a fan of the responsive handling that its stiff sidewalls provide. To see how the tire performed during our in-house test, read "New Yokohama ADVAN Sport V105 Tested."

View all Max Performance Summer tires we offer and find the one that will make your summer driving a blast!

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the General G-MAX AS-03

Wednesday, March 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.

General G-MAX AS-03 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 7
 
 

2013 Ford Mustang GT Coupe
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Miles driven on tires: 10,000
Location: Harleysville, PA
Driving Condition: Spirited
 

Initial Review, 10,000 Miles on Tires
March 19, 2014

I have these mounted on a 2013 Mustang GT, with 245front, 275 rear. For the most part, I am very pleased with the tire. My only concern is in wet weather, during spirited acceleration, these will break loose pretty quickly. Not just during active rain, just on wet roads, these will start spinning if I am not careful. Wet braking is very good, and if I had to choose, I would much rather have the tires hold during braking. Having the back tires break loose when you hit third gear on wet roads reduces trust in the tire. I have had other high performance cars and tire, but never one with 420 hp, so that could be part of the problem(?) Tires look great, would buy them again.

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

Wednesday, March 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.

Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.2
 
 

2012 Dodge Charger RT Road&Track
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Miles driven on tires: 650
Location: Alexandria, VA
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 650 Miles on Tires
March 23, 2014

I previously owned two sets of 245/45ZR-20 Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar tires on this car so my review will be these 245/45R-20 Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus. F1 tires are very responsive and grippy on dry surface, but were very noisy, tread life is only lasts 17K miles, and have zero traction on light snow or ice. i was skeptical of P7s when doing search because they are fairly new and didnt have a lot of long-term reviews. Also, ratings seemed too good to be true, price is fairly high and treadlife was rated high. P7s make the car feel little heavy, little less responsive and not as grippy during dry high speed cornering, but P7s still perform incredibly considering they are all season tires. P7s are super quite and super comfortable for tires of this size. I was fortunate enough to test them in all conditions including deep snow, ice and slushy snow. i'm amazed how well these performed in 6 inches of snow, 4 inches of slushy snow, as well as ice. they did not hesitate when starting or stopping in deep snow and had great stopping power on ice. there are not a lot of great options for all season tires in this size, but these are absolutely the best all season tires i've owned on any car with great handling on dry roads. also, i saw some discussions about MPG ratings for these tires and i can confirm they are almost as good as any summer tires. Highway MPGs are virtually the same as my old F1s. Trips from Alexandria VA to Hartford CT only used 3/4 tank of midgrade gas on F1s depsite my HEMI. i just did the same trip on P7s and still only used 3/4 tank of midgrade gas. however, P7s are little less efficient around town. tank of gas lasted me 6 days on F1s, but only 4-5 days on P7s. overall, highly recommend P7 tires especially if you live in NE and have to do deal with deep snow, but dont want to sacrifice dry traction, MPGs or looks. they are super comfortable, handle well in dry and will out-grip your neighbors SUV in snow & ice.will post later about treadlife

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Continental ExtremeContact DWS

Wednesday, March 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: 7.18
 
 

2010 Audi A4 2.0 Quattro
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Miles driven on tires: 40,000
Location: San Francisco, CA
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 40,000 Miles on Tires
March 22, 2014

I use my car to visit customers about ~2 days a week, during those highway trips, I put on about ~200 miles total. The remainder, I have a short commute to the office or work from home. This is an AWD car with a 60/40 rear/front torque split so I kept a careful eye on rear tire wear. Tires were rotated every 10k. After the initial break-in and first 10k, I thought the Conti sidewalls were a little soft comparing to my Pirelli OEM's, but all in all, I determined the tire had a good all around rating.

I live in the Bay Area and when my friends don't feel like driving to Lake Tahoe, I volunteer, though my Audi can only hold 1~2 other schlorks including gear (hee hee hee)... Light/heavy snow performance is a 6~7 out of 10, but that's also due to poor ground clearance (and insufficient space in the wheel wells when they fill with snow). But hey, that's what you get with a good looking sedan with 18" wheels...

Last 10k miles, tire noise has increased slightly. I had a good experience with these and am now in the market for another set. Tire Rack will continue to see all my new tire business. Checking out Michelin PS3's, RE970AS's, and Eagle F1's. Will probably go with the PS3's to try something new and because they are relatively all in the same price range. Thank you Tire Rack.

Looking for Lightweight Track Wheels at a Great Price? The Enkei Racing Series RPF1 is Your Answer

Monday, March 24, 2014 by Zig Ziegler

Autocross and track season are quickly approaching and many racers have already begun to plan for upcoming races and events. As most enthusiasts know, switching out your vehicle's heavy, factory steel or alloy wheels is one of the easiest performance upgrades to your track vehicle. By switching to a lighter weight wheel, your car will instantly feel quicker and respond better compared to your stock wheels. The rotational force to get a lighter weight wheel to move and stop is less, therefore the engine and braking system of the car can respond quicker. Reducing the unsprung weight will also reap benefits when cornering, as the shocks and springs will have less weight to dampen during rebound and compression.

Typically, the answer to a lighter wheel is purchasing a fully forged alloy wheel, however, this option can become expensive for some. There are many highly engineered cast alloy options that are more affordable and provide a great bang for your buck.


Enkei Racing Series RPF1
Black Painted

Enkei Racing Series RPF1
Bright Silver Paint

Enkei Racing Series RPF1
Gold Painted

Enkei Racing Series RPF1
Special Brilliant Coating


Enkei Racing Series' RPF1 uses a revolutionary MAT Process to make lighter weight wheels. MAT is a technology for producing an aluminum wheel by combining Enkei's MAP (Most Advanced Production) and flow-forming forging technology. MAP is a highly automated system. Each process is connected in a single-piece flow system that transports wheels from the melting process, through heat treatment and on to machining. The process of spinning the rim vs. casting it to both shape and elongate it produces a finer, more even aluminum structure and ensures the wheel will remain lightweight and strong. 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.

As wheels and tires become 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' new generation of 10% - 15% lighter weight, forged MAT wheels are strong and retain optimum anti-flex properties.

The Enkei Racing Series RPF1 is offered in black painted, bright silver paint, gold painted and special brilliant coating finishes for a wide assortment of vehicles like BMW, Mazda, Subaru and Honda. Shop by vehicle to see if the Enkei Racing Series RPF1 is offered as a performance upgrade for your track car.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Goodyear Wrangler SilentArmor

Monday, March 17, 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.

Goodyear Wrangler SilentArmor Reviewer's Overall Rating: 7.67
 
 

2010 Ford Escape 2wd
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Miles driven on tires: 8,000
Location: Ypsilanti, MI
Driving Condition: Average
 

Initial Review, 8,000 Miles on Tires
March 13, 2014

Just moved to Michigan this year from the south... Surprise! Worst winter in 20+ years. I bought these tires as a possible alternative to dedicated winter tires due to the high mileage my car sees. A lot of other reviewers were claiming 70,000+ miles and that sounded great with a tire that could handle winter weather. (they have the mountain/snowflake on the side) I braced myself for a noisy, bumpy ride as the car came with a Michelin touring tire originally. I can honestly say, these tires are quieter and ride almost as smoothly as the Michelin's. That said, the Michelin's were worn when I replaced them so I don't hold the noise against them. These tires have never left me stuck or stranded and I didn't usually spin or slide unless I was trying to. A few times I had to disable the traction control to let them spin and clear. This was only in slow speed situations like cutting fresh tracks in 8+ inches of heavy wet snow. Not sure you can ask anymore for a longer treadlife all-terrain in my opinion. My biggest complaint in the 8,000+ miles I have had them comes from the fact that they tend to "catch" grooves or seams in the highway which can be unnerving when the road is icy. I noticed it the first day I had the tires and now I have gotten more used to it and it is less of an issue but at first it did get my attention. Overall, I would and already have recommend these tires. Not the best winter solution, not the best off-road solution, definitely not the best for mpg's or handling performance. Just a really good mix of life, traction, and so far low noise.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Hankook Ventus S1 noble2

Monday, March 17, 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.


Hankook Ventus S1 noble2Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.2

2008 Mitsubishi Galant
More Tire Reviews for This Vehicle


Buy/More Info
Miles driven on tires: 2,100
Location: Albertville, AL
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 2,100 Miles on Tires
March 12, 2014

Overall these tires have performed well above the price range. This is my 3rd set of tire on the car since purchased new. The last set was a set of Goodrich Comp 2's that where wonderful except for the road noise that got loader as the tread wore down. The Hankook S1 on the other hand are quite as a mouse but hold the road like a tiger around corners. In the rain the S1 lets you know there will be no problems if a quick response is required. I find the tires to be responsive to input and hold center well. I will say that the tires will bark but quickly regain traction off the line in hammered hard. They are, all season tire after all and these test where done in 20 degree weather. I will see how they do once we get some nice 85 degree weather and warm road surfaces I feel the take off response will improve in warmer weather. In an all season I know you can pay more, much more, and still not have better performance. Matter of fact I can't see spending more for any all season tire. I don't think you will be any happier. For most people I think these tires will save changing between summer and winter tires and they would not miss the summer performance difference. Plus, you gain longer tread life and save money to boot. That is a win, win for anyone.

Introducing Continental's New Track Tire, the ContiForceContact

Monday, March 17, 2014 by Ben Rooney

Continental has brought their Streetable Track & Competition tire, the ContiForceContact, over from Europe. Developed at the world famous Nürburgring circuit, the ContiForceContact is built to deliver extremely high levels of dry traction along with precise steering response and predictable cornering behavior. It is designed to allow driving on the street, though caution should be taken when driving in heavy rain. While it is built to resist hydroplaning, the tire is not recommended for high-speed driving on extremely wet roads/tracks with standing water where there is the risk of hydroplaning.

The ContiForceContact competes with other Streetable Track & Competition tires such as the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup and Pirelli P Zero Corsa System. It offers exceptional performance at the track while allowing drivers to drive to and from the track without changing their wheels and tires. With a treadwear rating of 80, the ContiForceContact isn't intended for long service on the road. The tire would work best on a set of wheels used for track days and performance driving events, or on a second car that is driven primarily for fun. 

ContiForceContact tires are molded with approximately 6/32" of tread depth in their grooves and are left unshaved for use on damp tracks. While the tires do not require shaving for dry track use, their durability and lap time performance will improve if shaved to approximately 4/32" deep tread to begin competitive road racing/track use in dry conditions, however this will sacrifice treadlife.

To learn more about tire shaving as an effective means of permitting more of a tire's performance capability, read "Shaving Tires for Autocross / Track Use / Competition."