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2000 528iT Wagon - Tire Recommendation?

Discussion in 'Wheels & Tires' started by Texas Shark, Apr 12, 2010.

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    Texas Shark

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    Need to replace my 225/55/R16 95W tires. Is it required that I purchase tires with a W Speed rating as is indicated on the door? Will V or H rating work or will I be compromising safety or performance. Discount Tire is saying H will be fine, I'm not sure.

    Looking for all season tires. Any recommendations? Thanks
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    I think the speed rating is a guideline

    For safety reasons, I would probably not go below it. You can go above it for an extra margin of performance and safety, but I think it would be best to replace your tire with a tire similarly rated.

    Just my $.02

    You can visit http://www.tirerack.com to compare tires.
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    Never go below the rated spec. Always go the same or higher. I would recommend higher, but then again, I'm a track junkie. :)

    For your use (which I assume is daily driver - non performance) then get the same speed rating to save a little cash.
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    Well, yes, but...ensure that rule applies to the correct spec.

    To Texas Shark:
    A tire with a W speed rating can withstand speeds to 168mph--way, way above the 128mph top speed of a stock 528iT. Looking solely at the speed rating (which you must not), an H-rated tire would technically be the bare minimum that exceeds the car's capability, with a V rating providing a comfortable margin. But there's more to it.

    You also need to look at the load index portion of the service descriptor--in this case, the 95 in the 95W suffix. This gives the load-carrying capacity of the tire, which in broad terms roughly equates to its sidewall strength. You should only fit tires that (1) have a speed rating that equals or exceeds the top speed of the vehicle, and (2) have an equal or greater load index. (Also pay attention to whether the tire spec calls for standard (SL) or extra load (XL) and match that.)

    I can tell you from bitter experience that besides defining maximum load capacity, the load index correlates well--all other things being equal--with resistance to impact damage. Tires with a load index below that of the OE requirement are at risk of being destroyed by a pothole impact that the correct tire would absorb.

    The challenge here might be to find an H- or V-rated tire that also meets or exceeds the 95 load index. If you can do that, you would not be compromising the top-speed or load-carrying safety of your car. However, you will find that H- and V-rated tires in general have lower all-around performance characteristics than their super-zooty ultra-speed-rated brethren. So, even though you wouldn't be at risk of exploding a tire due to excessive speed, you would probably find the car did not handle as well on "bargain" tires. That's what you might consider a safety compromise here, not top speed.

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