Tire Rack Consumer Review of the General Altimax Arctic

Thursday, February 20, 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 Arctic Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.56
 
 

2011 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen SE
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Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location:  
Driving Condition: Easy Going

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
January 02, 2014

I have only had these tires a short time, but we got hit with about 8 inches of snow so far this storm. With OEM Continental All Season tires I was skating around in my Jetta Sportwagen in any amount of snow. After the first storm this season I ordered a set of the Altimax Arctic snow tires mounted on new rims. Boy am I glad I did, today's storm was a few inches of fresh powder that turned into hard pack during the morning rush hour. I was able to maintain grip on everything from the hard pack through the six inches of untouched snow in my driveway when I got home. I tested them out on the hill up my street and I was able to make it up without any trouble. I saw the video test for these tires here on tire rack where they put them up against 2 other brands and I am not disappointed in my choice.

I have run them for 2 weeks on cold but clear pavement and was pleased with the tire noise and feel. The road noise from the tires is no more than the OEM tires, likewise I have not had any reason to not be confident in the Altimax Arctic grip on dry surfaces. I no longer drive my cars "like I stole them" so I haven't come near finding the limits on these tires and I don't plan to. Really the only difference I feel with them is on a higher speed tighter curve, like a highway entrance/exit ramp. In that situation I can feel a slight rumble when the deep tread is under lateral stress.

If it wasn't for the holiday shipping crush, I would have had these mounted and balanced and on my doorstep the next day after ordering. The UPS driver was nice enough to disguise the stack of tires with my garbage can.

I am very happy with Tire Rack, their customer service and my new snow tires.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the General Altimax Arctic

Friday, February 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.

General Altimax Arctic Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.64
 
 

2002 Volvo V70 2.4
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Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
December 26, 2013

Have owned this car for about 7 years and this vehicle has always been terrible in the snow even with brand new all seasons. Various tire shops had tried to convince me to install a set of winter tires and I always thought they were just trying to sell me something I didn't need. Well this Fall in Minnesota the snow came earlier than normal and finally decided to try winter tires. Purchased 4 used rims from a Volvo salvage yard in Wisconsin and bought a set of 4 General Altimax Arctic tires and Wow! the difference is like night and day!! This FWD car just goes through the snow as if it were an All Wheel Drive vehicle. Easily plowed through 5-6 inches of snow without any difficulty. As an experiment stopped on my uphill driveway with about 4 inches of fresh snow on it. Then started again the tires didn't even spin they just grabbed and off it went. Even with new all seasons there is no way this car would have done that. It would have sat there and spun and the only way I might have made it up the hill would have been to back down and make several runs at it. Great tires for winter, worth every penny, totally satisfied!!

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1

Friday, February 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.

Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.33
 
 

2013 Toyota Highlander
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Miles driven on tires: 1,500
Location: West Harrison, NY
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 1,500 Miles on Tires
January 09, 2014

Early review, but as usual Blizzak's always deliver!! Always had them on my BMW's, first time putting snow tires on an SUV. What a difference especially with 19 inch rims. Drove comfortably as I need to be at the hospital everyday. I was rolling through the fast lane with Rovers trying to follow and they eventually bailed when the roads became unplowed. These tires were able to cruise right along comfortably passing all the stopped traffic. Invest the $$$ your safety is worth it!

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25 RFT

Friday, February 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.

Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25 RFT Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.1
 
 

2013 BMW 335i Cabriolet
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Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location: West Harrison, NY
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
January 09, 2014

second pair of these tires originally ran on a 2011 335xdrive coupe. The tires were great especially in snow, I used last set for approximately 26k miles, they were still good and had plenty of treadwear left. Just put these on a RWD convertible with an M sport package. Bought the 17 inch wheels to replace the staggered 19 inch summer rims. Couldn't feel safer with my wife driving it in her commute over the Tappan Zee Bridge in the snow. If you live in a cold weather area, snow tires definitely stop quicker in cold weather!

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Dunlop SP Sport Signature (H- or V-Speed Rated)

Friday, February 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.

Dunlop SP Sport Signature (H- or V-Speed Rated) Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.9
 
 

2005 Honda Accord Sedan EX V6
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Miles driven on tires: 15,000
Location: West Islip, NY
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 15,000 Miles on Tires
December 31, 2013

These tires respond 100% better than stock tires. Turning is insanely sensitive and grip is always there. Tires don't really have much tread noise however due to the tires being so stiff (helps with the responsiveness) you do hear and feel bumps and road imperfections more than with another tire but this is just helping to "feel the road." Again due to stiff sidewalls the ride comfort suffers but I love the way they perform and consider it just a tradeoff that is well worth it. If you want a tire that handles well and is responsive with a good price and don't mind a little road noise then get these. As for the tread, I have had them for a year so far and about 15000 miles and the tires still look new.

Just a side note, the tires sidewalls are noticeably thicker than other tires and do cover more of the rim edge than a normal tire which is cool because if you happen to hit a curb(happened 1 time) you might get scared you damaged the rim but the tire protected it.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Pirelli Winter Carving Edge

Monday, February 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.


Pirelli Winter Carving EdgeReviewer's Overall Rating: 9.36

2012 Fiat 500
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Miles driven on tires: 2,700
Location: Shrewsbury, MA
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 2,700 Miles on Tires
January 04, 2014

Great purchase in terms of total cost (tires and rims). I drive 110 miles round trip per day (mixed highway & street) to work. These tires are the difference between being off the road in a ditch (calling AAA for roadside assistance) and motoring down the highway while others sturggle to make progress in poor conditions. As for the last 6 weeks we have had 60 to minus 5 degree weather and two significant snow storms. The first snow storm I took to the the road with these tires and was impressed with my ability to climb hills, corner, stop and plow through drifts. The best part was when I came home to a 20 plus inch snowbank at the end of the driveway and hit it at a reasonable speed breaking through without even slowing down (snow fying cover the hood, windshield and roof). The wife commented "please do not hit the garage door", and we came to a dead stop 6 feet away like we were on dry pavement in 10 inches of snow. I knew then and there these tires were excellent. My other car is an Audi A4 with winter Nokians, and these Pirelli's are on par in terms of performance (except for slight increasee in road noise, and this very likely a funnction of the sound dampening material betweeen a Fiat & an Audi, along with the size of the vehicles). Overall, great tires, I feel safe and in control when I hit the street, and look forward to taking on the winter conditions without a worry.

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D

Monday, February 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.

Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.18
 
 

2000 Audi TT Coupe
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Miles driven on tires: 35,575
Location: Santa Fe, NM
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 35,575 Miles on Tires
November 30, 2013

I drive larger rim summer tires but for winter now on my 4th of the Dunlop so I am a believer. Get about 35,000 per set. The perfect compromise: excellent in snow, slush, very very good on dry highway, good on ice. Great price. However, I have Blizzak on my wife's SUV since most of her driving is local and my primary concern would be stopping at icy intersections. Both seem the equal in snow, hwy handling easily goes to the Dunlop, ice capability to the Blizzak

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1

Monday, February 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.

Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 8.36
 
 

2007 Acura RDX
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Miles driven on tires: 3,000
Location: Florissant, MO
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 3,000 Miles on Tires
January 09, 2014

Going through 3rd winter with these tires on OEM rims (only used during winter months). Just traveled through the middle of winter blast 4 days ago (had total of 10+ inches of snow by end) with no problems (slower driving of course) compared to all seasons. Confidence increased when traveling during snow and ice with these tires. Great tire!

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the General Altimax Arctic

Monday, January 27, 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 Arctic Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.73
 
 

2008 Honda CRV LX
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Miles driven on tires: 500
Location: Towaco, NJ
Driving Condition: Average

Initial Review, 500 Miles on Tires
January 23, 2014

The perfect winter tire. I replaced my all-seasons with a set of these and now I can drive with confidence in the snow. I researched snow tires to death before I decided on these and it was a great decision. When I'm buying tires I spend almost too much time researching online because of the high expense and I want the best for my money. You cant beat the price for the performance. I priced out local shops for 17" tires for my CRV and I ended up saving money by downsizing the wheel to a 16"and going with a rim/wheel combo from tire rack. So far the performance is perfect given the limits of my FWD car. Driving up steep hills with these in FWD will still spin your tires but I can at least pass people that don't obviously have winter tires. My biggest concern with snow and ice driving is cornering and BRAKING! Last week I had to brake hard at a stop light on snow and the ABS didnt even activate. The tires did their job. On the cornering, I still use great caution but I have not had any problems with these so far. If your trying to decide on which snow tire is better than the other and are stuck on a few different brands, stop wasting your time and but the Arctic's!.

 

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Pirelli Scorpion Ice & Snow

Monday, January 27, 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 Scorpion Ice & Snow Reviewer's Overall Rating: 9.18
 
 

2010 Infiniti FX35 AWD
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Miles driven on tires: 500
Location: Brookfield, WI
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 500 Miles on Tires
January 19, 2014

So far the tires are great. They have excellent grip when accelerating in the snow and surprising very good on dry roads. One of the better winter tires I've driven. Stopping power on snow has been excellent and a great improvement over the Bridgestone All Season. Ride comfort is great but I'm coming from 20" all season rims. Road noise I think is normal. I typically have the stero on so I'm never to worried about noise. For those interested these are meant for winter time only. I personally will be switching back to all seasons for the spring. So far so good and Extremely pleased with my purchase. I will buy these again.

 

Introducing the New Cost-Effective BBS SR!

Thursday, December 19, 2013 by Marshall Wisler

BBS is considered one of the leaders in wheel manufacturing and engineering technology. They are dedicated to pursuing the highest level of technology possible and then applying this experience to the street.

With the release of their new SR, BBS is creating quite a buzz with this new wheel. Featuring an anthracite painted finish, the wheel looks great and is a welcomed addition to the BBS line. Also, with a price point that is lower than other BBS options, a set of SR wheels is a great way to improve the look of your vehicle at a good price. For example, an 18x8" SR wheel for a 2011 BMW 3 Series costs $265*, that's less than half the cost of BBS' popular CH-R.

The BBS SR is offered in 16", 17" and 18" rim diameters and covers many of the popular bolt patterns on the market. It also has the following features:

  • Five Y-shaped spokes
  • One-piece, cast
  • Snap-in, exposed lugs
  • Center cap at no additional charge

Shop by vehicle to see if the new BBS SR is available for your application.

* Prices subject to change

Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Bridgestone Dueler A/T Revo 2

Friday, December 6, 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.

Bridgestone Dueler A/T Revo 2 Reviewer's Overall Rating: 10
 
 

2008 Toyota FJ Cruiser
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Miles driven on tires: 1,000
Location: Barnegat, NJ
Driving Condition: Spirited

Initial Review, 1,000 Miles on Tires
November 12, 2013

I love the look of the tires and rims ! I do still have to Purchase a spare Tire from you Guys.

 

New Steel Wheels for Jeeps

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 by Steve Huffman

Since WWII, the Jeep has been an American off-road icon. In fact, it could possibly be the single most modified vehicle in the United States. Most Jeep owners want to customize their ride to their liking and needs. This almost always includes a new set of wheels. For years we have heard the demand for a basic black steel wheel. We hear you loud and clear and are now proud to offer you several options from Black Rock.

Black Rock wheels, manufactured in California, are specifically engineered for serious off-road and rock climbing applications with fitments available for Jeeps, SUVs and lifted trucks. Both affordable and durable, Black Rock's wheels feature heavy gauge steel rims that won't chip or crack, look great and provide rugged styling for tough off-road conditions. These wheels are made in 15" and 16" diameters with various widths from 7", 8" and 10" wide.


Black Rock 937 Type 8P
Steel

Black Rock 941 Dune Steel
15x7

Black Rock 950 Lobo Steel
15x7


View the complete offering from Black Rock and see if one is right for your application.

Changed My Mind and Went With the Enkei Performance Series Falcon

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 by Cy Chowattukunnel

When it came time to purchase wheels for my new vehicle, I thought I had my mind made up. After my research, I was ready to buy the 17x8" 45 ET gunmetal with machined lip Enkei Tuning Series Tenjin. It met all my requirements as far as function, style and finish. However, deep down, I knew my gut was telling me to go with a brighter finish and look for something different. While the Enkei Tenjin is a great wheel, I knew that it wasn't exactly what I was looking for. As we all know, wheels are about personal preference!

After I changed my mind, I went ahead and purchased the hyper silver with machined lip 17x7" 45 ET Enkei Performance Series Falcon (the Falcon is also available in 16", 18" and 20" rim diameters). I think they're a perfect complement to my vehicle and I like how the sharp edges of the wheel flows with the Civic Si's angular lines.

One change I did make was switching the center cap to one from Honda. It's not a perfect fit but my original Honda center cap can be squeezed in. In the near future, I will mill down the perimeter of the Honda caps for a better fit.

When the time comes for you to make your next wheel purchase, take a look at the wide range of styles from around the world we offer.

Black Rock Steel Wheels Now Available for Trucks

Tuesday, October 8, 2013 by Marshall Wisler

Looking for more than an aluminum alloy option for your truck? We are pleased to announce the addition of Black Rock wheels to our inventory. With Black Rock now available to customers, there are sixteen new styles to choose from for your Jeep, SUV or lifted truck.  

Steel wheels are a cost effective and popular option for consumers looking for off-road capability or winter use. Black Rock wheels are available in various spoke counts and come with a black painted finish. Options are offered for most 5-, 6- and 8-lug patterns for late-model trucks. Both affordable and durable, Black Rock wheels feature heavy gauge steel rims that won't chip or crack, look great and provide rugged styling for tough off-road conditions.

View all Black Rock wheels available and see if one is right for your application.

Best Brake Pads for Low Dust

Wednesday, October 2, 2013 by Gary Stanley

Are you tired of constantly cleaning ugly, black brake dust off of your factory or aftermarket rims? If you're willing to give up a small amount of braking capability, you can use ceramic brake pads - which will go a long way in reducing how often you need to clean your rims. These pads produce less brake dust and the dust is a lighter color that doesn't show up on wheels as badly. Ultimately, this leads to wheels maintaining a cleaner appearance.

Many vehicles come from the factory with ceramic brake pads. Most Acura, Lexus and many Honda brake pads are ceramic. Three of the best manufacturers of low dust ceramic brake pads are Akebono, Centric and Hawk.

 Akebono Euro Ceramic
Akebono Euro Ceramic
Pads
 Centric Posi Quiet Ceramic
Centric Posi Quiet Ceramic
Pads
 Hawk Performance Ceramic
Hawk Performance Ceramic
Pads


If you're looking for a little extra stopping power out of your low dust pads, I would lean toward the Hawk Performance Ceramic Pads as they are rated a bit higher for stopping power. However, all ceramic pads offer the following advantages over most of today's standard pads:

  • Very low dust
  • Improved braking over many inexpensive pads
  • Extremely quiet
  • Extended pad life
  • Increased rotor life
Shop by vehicle to find a recommended set of low dust brake pads.

Best Nissan Murano Tires for All-Season and Snow Traction.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013 by Gary Stanley

My in-laws recently purchased a 2010 Nissan Murano SL. They were looking for a crossover SUV to use for traveling and daily driving and this vehicle fit the bill perfectly. While the Murano was in excellent condition, the tires were not. The tires' remaining tread depth measured at 4/32" in the rear and closer to 2/32" in the front. With winter fast approaching, this is not an acceptable tread depth for reliable snow traction that we need in this part of the country. We recommend a minimum tread depth of 6/32" to begin a winter season. Below this depth and the tire is reduced to "nibbling" at the snow rather than biting through it to find traction. 

I prefer winter / snow tires for our area, especially due to the heavy lake effect snowstorms that frequent during the winter months. Winter tires, like the Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1, have much better winter traction than an all-season option. You can view my experience with this tire on a crossover vehicle by reading "My Story on Winter Tires."

However, my in-laws only to want purchase a single set of tires to use year-round, so I needed to find them an all-season tire with especially good snow traction. Affordable tires with great ride quality, treadwear and wet traction were also high on their priority list. Rather than purchase aftermarket rims, these were to be installed on the factory aluminum alloy wheels. Based on their situation, I recommended three tires, the Continental CrossContact LX20 with EcoPlus Technology, Bridgestone Dueler H/L 422 Ecopia and Firestone Destination LE 2

 CrossContact LX20 with EcoPlus Technology
Continental CrossContact LX20 with EcoPlus Technology
 Bridgestone Dueler H/L 422 Ecopia
Bridgestone Dueler H/L
422 Ecopia
 Firestone Destination LE 2
Firestone Destination
LE 2


Which tires did they choose? It would be hard to go wrong with any of these tires as they're all very highly ranked in our customer survey results. After looking over our data, customer reviews and tire tests, they chose the Continental Cross Contact LX20 with EcoPlus Technology for its winter traction and 70,000-mile treadwear warranty.   

To see if your tires are appropriate for winter driving, read "Tread Depth - Why Too Little is Never Enough."

Steel Wheels for the Ford F-150

Thursday, September 19, 2013 by Hunter Leffel

We Black Rock 937 Type have recently added a winter steel wheel option for the best-selling vehicle in America, the Ford F-150. We offer the wheel for many trim levels starting with 2004. In fact, we have two options for drivers to choose from for their F-150.

The basic option is a plain steel wheel that you can pair with a wheel cover. Basic models are very limited and start at $74* per wheel. Black Rock's 937 Type 8P Steel is a two piece welded construction that comes with a center cap. It's available in a 17" rim diameter with the option to choose different center caps.

To view all wheel options for your Ford F-150, shop by vehicle

*Prices subject to change

Which Wheels are Best for Winter Use?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 by Gary Stanley

Many drivers seek plain black steel wheels (also called steel rims) for winter use due to their low cost and durability. In many cases, steel wheels aren't available for a vehicle due to brake caliper clearance or another reason, and therefore an aluminum alloy wheel must be used instead. For a comparison between the two options, read "Steel Rims vs. Alloy Wheels for Winter Use."

While many aftermarket wheels work quite well for winter use, not all wheel finishes and sizes are appropriate or ideal for driving on snow-covered roads. Here are some examples of finishes and/or fitments that you should try to avoid if possible: 

  • Lower offset wheels that will stick out. Wheel and tire combinations that stick out will throw more snow, ice, sand and other debris up against the side of the vehicle. Some aftermarket rims can stick out too far and cause this problem. When possible, try to be more conservative by selecting wheels with higher offsets to keep the wheel and tire set-up within the vehicle's fender wells.
  • Polished and chrome wheels. These types of wheel (including those with chromed lips) finishes either have no protective clearcoat or a very light clearcoat and aren't going to hold up well for winter use. The salt, ice melt chemicals and sand used on winter roads will quickly destroy the finish on these wheels.
  • Some wheels with machined faces and lips with thin, sprayed, clearcoats. Just like fully polished and chrome wheels, these types are vulnerable to salt, ice melt chemicals and sand. It's best to keep them away from these to maintain a good looking wheel finish. Remember, not all clearcoat finishes are the same.

Are you not sure which wheel to choose? Don't worry, we work closely with wheel manufactures to assure the finish of the wheels we have listed with our Winter / Snow Tire & Wheel Packages can hold up in harsh winter environments. When you shop for wheels on our site, the wheels and sizes listed are pre-filtered to avoid possible finish problems, as well as fitment issues. You can rest assured that the wheels you purchase will be great for winter use and will go well with your winter / snow tires!

I Have a Staggered Vehicle, Can I Go Back to a Square Set-Up?

Thursday, August 15, 2013 by Hunter Leffel

The industry's trend of offering vehicles with different size tires in the front and rear (staggered) continues. This can be a frustration point for some unsuspecting consumers. First, tire choices can be fewer than hoped when trying to find two different sizes that match in the same brand. Second, prices on the larger rear pair can be more than expected. Third, tire rotations are either non-existent or limited to a side-to-side scheme.

What are your options besides staying with the staggered set-up? One option is to square up the vehicle. This is very common when running a dedicated Winter / Snow Tire & Wheel Package. In most cases, this can be accomplished as the front and rear size difference lies in the width only, and not the height. Therefore, by simply using the front size on the rear, or possibly an intermediate size, you accomplish this goal.  

There are some things to watch out for before venturing down this road. You must make sure it is in fact only a difference in width. If there's a significant difference in height, you will not want to square up. This could cause the vehicle's electronic systems, such as ABS and traction control, to become confused.

The second thing to consider is the rims' widths of your wheels and whether or not the narrower tire will fit on the wider rear wheel. If not, there may be an intermediate size that will work on both the front and rear wheel widths.

You can get a tire's overall diameter and rim width ranges from our website by checking the "Specs" page for the tires you're interested in. The widths of your current wheels may require a conversation with the dealer.

For more information on properly rotating your staggered or squared set-up, read "Tire Rotation Instructions."