Perfomance Winter / Snow Tires: Strong Snow Traction with Acceptable Dry Handling and Response

If you live in an area that experiences very harsh winter conditions and consistently sees large snowfalls, you may be best served with a traditional Studless Ice & Snow tire. These tires feature the most aggressive tread patterns, highest amount of siping, softest compounds and are the most dedicated tool for the job when it comes to mastering the worst...  Read More

Wheel Spotlight: ALUTEC Pearl

The ALUTEC brand is one of the newer additions to our lineup. They are headquartered in Germany, with manufacturing facilities in several different countries. Coming from their Poland factory, the Pearl is, in my opinion, one of the nicest-looking wheels they offer. It features a seven-spoke design with a light grey painted finish. The edges of the spokes...  Read More

All-New Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V2 vs Blizzak DM-V1

Bridgestone winter / snow tires are renowned for their outstanding winter traction. For many years, the Blizzak DM-V1 topped the list of best Studless Ice & Snow tires for light trucks, SUVs and crossover vehicles. Its combination of great snow traction, ice traction, wet grip and durability made it the most recommended tire in the category since its...  Read More

Hub Centric vs. Lug Centric Wheel Fitments

"What are these plastic (or metal) rings that came with my wheels?" "Why didn't my wheels come with hub centric centering rings?" The terms "hub centric" and "lug centric" describe the method used to center a wheel on a vehicle's hub to prevent vibration. Most Original Equipment wheels are built with the same centerbore diameter as the hub diameter on the...  Read More

Winter is Coming Part 2: Performance Winter / Snow Tires

Performance Winter / Snow tire consumers generally live in areas that receive little or no snow accumulation, but experience freezing or near-freezing temperatures. The benefits using these tires are twofold. First, drivers get an increase in snow and ice traction, but unlike a Studless Ice & Snow tire, where you are keenly aware you are driving on a winter...  Read More

Introducing Bridgestone's Blizzak DM-V2: The Tire to Beat for Winter 2015?

For the past several years the Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V1 has been our highest consumer rated tire among a strong field of competitors in the Studless Ice & Snow (Light Truck) market. While it seems illogical to discontinue such a well liked product, history has proved that the Blizzak line of tires seem to evolve and rarely, if ever, take a step back....  Read More

Are All Dunlop Direzza Tires Created Equal?

The Dunlop Direzza family of tires is focused on performance and handling. Models have included the Direzza Z1, Direzza ZII, Direzza DZ101 and Direzza DZ102. All of these featured summer compounds and directional tread patterns. Despite these similarities, there are some very distinct differences between them. There are two primary branches of the Direzza...  Read More

Best Tires for the Mazda CX-5 and CX-9

The Mazda CX-9 and CX-5 are Mazda's mid-sized and full-sized crossover SUVs for the North American market. Despite their roomy interiors, these stylish crossovers have surprisingly nimble handling which makes them fun to drive. When the time comes to choose replacement all-season tires, consider the top tires from the Grand Touring All-Season and Crossover/SU...  Read More

Best Tire Recommendations for the Toyota Camry

In the early 1980s, the Camry was introduced into the North American market as Toyota's mid-sized sedan. Many iterations of the car have been produced, including coupes, wagons and convertible versions of the car. While body styles have come and gone, the Toyota Camry has always been known as a reliable vehicle with very broad appeal. It's often one of the...  Read More

The Extreme Performance Summer Category Has Gotten More. . .Extreme!

With August upon on us, it won't be too long before the 2015 Tire Rack Solo National Championships arrive. If you're heading to Lincoln in September then you've most likely already made your tire choice. Wondering whether you picked the right tire? Want to know what else is out there? We've recently posted the official results of our latest Extreme...  Read More

SPC Control Arms For Jeep JK: Part Two

Now that the old damaged upper control arms are removed, it's time to set the length, install them, adjust them, put the wheels back on and then tighten them. In part 1, the instructions said to screw in the rod end and adjust the sleeve out to the length of the stock UCAs (upper control arms) as a starting point for installation. My stock UCAs were 17 7/16"...  Read More

Winter is Coming: What Winter Tire is Best For You? Part 1

While you're enjoying your time out on the beach, playing golf and taking rides with the top down, this is probably not the best time to remind you that winter really isn't that far away. If you live in an area that gets any real accumulation of snow, a set of dedicated winter/snow tires is highly recommended. Many of us will hope for a reasonably mild...  Read More

The Best Extreme Performance Summer Tires Tested on the Track

Back in 2011, we discussed Extreme Performance Summer tires in "What are Extreme Performance Summer Tires?" Though the category itself is still the same, the players have changed. When it comes to Extreme Performance Summer tires, the tires have the following benefits and compromises: Benefits Very fast steering response with lots of steering wheel feedback Sup...  Read More

Track and Autocross Tire Choices for Your Lotus Elise

Quite a few years ago, a friend of mine used to store his red Lotus Elan in our family's pole barn. He didn't drive it as much as he wanted, but when he did, it put a huge grin on his face. Lotus Elans are a rare sight these days, however many of us were fortunate when a Lotus Elise visited Tire Rack for an autocross event. Just like my friend's ride, this...  Read More

SPC Control Arms for Jeep JK: Part One

I made the mistake of off-roading and not checking the torque on my suspension components afterward, which over time wallowed out the threads on my adjustable rear upper control arms and caused a host of issues with my Jeep. With a lifted Jeep you have to make sure to check the torque on everything after abusing it. With the adjustment threads all wallowed...  Read More

What Tires are Best for Your Audi Q7?

First available for the 2007 model year, the Audi Q7 has been a popular choice in the full-size luxury SUV/CUV market. Drivers love the vehicle's style, comfort and overall luxurious performance. And you can't forget about the quattro all-wheel drive system. When it comes to replacing tires, there are four popular sizes offered by Audi. Below are some of the...  Read More

Continental ExtremeContact DWS 06 Test Video and Summary

In a recent post, "Continental ExtremeContact DWS Replaced by ExtremeContact DWS 06", we compared and contrasted the older Continental ExtremeContact DWS against the replacement version, the Continental ExtremeContact DWS 06. To summarize, the new ExtremeContact DWS 06 addressed a common complaint of the older version of the tire feeling slow to respond to...  Read More

Switching to Non-Run-Flat Tires? Don't Have A Spare? Consider the Continental ContiComfortKit

Due to cost saving and weight saving measures taken by many auto manufacturers, an increasing number of cars today are sold without a compact or full size spare. Rather than be reliant on roadside assistance, many customers call in looking for ways to remedy the problem. While full size spare wheel and tire assemblies can be sold, they likely will not fit in...  Read More

Autocross Tire Test Results

Test results are in for some of the top autocross tires for this season. The test featured the BFGoodrich g-Force Rival S, Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R, the Hankook Ventus R-S3 Version 2 (some of my early picks for this year's top contenders), as well as the Kumho Ecsta V720, which was a late addition to the field of SCCA eligible competitors.  Some of my...  Read More

My #FirstCarMoment with a 1978 Honda Accord

By the time it got to me, Uncle George's 1978 Honda Accord had plenty of miles on the speedometer. No worries, it was my first car and a well maintained Honda is solid as oak, regardless of the mileage. It was burgundy red, with red velour cloth seats and manual transmission. I loved that car! It never let me down. Not surprisingly I've had eight different...  Read More