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4 New Tires-Practical with Good Performance

Discussion in 'Wheels & Tires' started by auto_x_addict, Sep 8, 2009.

    auto_x_addict guest

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    I need 4 new tires for my 2000 528i with the M sport package.

    I am going to Oktoberfest for my first time and participating in driving school and the auto cross event (never did these before).
    I use this car for every day driving so I want to buy tires that will perform reasonably well on the track, but will be suitable for regular driving as well. In addition, they need to be all-weather tires since I live in NY.

    I am considering the following:
    Bridgestone Potenza RE 030 235/45 R17 93W
    Dunlop SP Sport Signature 235/45 R17 97W

    Does anyone have any feedback on these brands or suggestions on others? I would like to keep the price under $140 per tire.
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    az3579

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    I highly recommend you look up these tires on www.tirerack.com
    Many of the tires have user reviews, and what people are best to ask than those who actually use them?

    Tire rack also has excellent pricing, and they test the tires so you can see how they stack up to other tires in their class.


    The people there are extremely knowledgeable and know their stuff. They are always willing to help, so if in doubt, give them a call, even if it's about a specific tire!

    auto_x_addict guest

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    Thanks. I got these tires off of the Tire Rack website and they were both rated better than others and fairly comparable to each other. The reviews were confusing though. They seemed to be posted from car owners of cars that were much smaller than the 5 series. I will take your advice though and give them a call.
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    az3579

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    It never hurts to give them a call because some of them may have expert opinions on certain tires. I'm not saying depend on the user reviews because sometimes they can be wonky, or they rate tires bad for reasons that aren't valid, but you'll get a general idea of what you would possibly be purchasing.
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    conechaser

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    I second the info available on the TireRack site.

    I do have one suggestion... think about getting a second set of wheels/tires for winter use. That way you can look at higher performance tires for 3 seasons (and get better results while on the track or dodging cones) I really like the Dunlop Direzza Z1 Star Spec. It is quiet on the street, does well in rain, and for a street tire is amazing for autoX and track duty.
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    CRKrieger

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    X2! Take it from a couple of veteran autocross and track guys: 'All-season' tires suck at everything.

    They're not really good enough for winter and they're not really good enough for the other 3 seasons. They are a compromise for people too lazy to change, or too cheap to buy, a second set of wheels/tires. Do not treat your car this way. You only need to save your deductible once to pay for the wheels, and good winter tires can do that.

    A good set of used wheels can be had for under $400 for your car. You can do even better with some that have been visibly 'curbed', which isn't really critical for winter use since they'll be covered with salty crud half the time anyway. Throw on a good set of real winter tires (I currently like the Dunlop Winter M3) and be amazed at how much better your car is in snow. Then, you can get yourself a set of real performance tires for the other 3 seasons. ;)

    auto_x_addict guest

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    4 tires -practical with good performance

    Thanks.

    Really good feedback. It looks like the overall opinion about All-Season Tires is that they are a jack of all trades and a master of none.

    Also good feedback on getting extra set of wheels for winter driving. Much appreciated.

    With a good set of performance tires, I will see you at the track, which I hope to stay on.

    Thanks again.
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    Brian A

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    I disagree with this assessment. While All-Season tires don't have the grip of Hoosiers or Hakkapilitta, they have good rain traction, long tread life and stable predictable handling performance. Just because they aren't "the best" at anything, doesn't mean they "suck at everything".

    If you're only going to the track or autocross a couple of times, All-Season tires are just fine. Just show up with what ya got. In fact, in some ways, there is kind of a sick pleasure in autocrossing with harder compound tires. If you go into a corner hot and greedy, hard compound tires will plow; if you get on the gas too quick at track-out the back end wiggles and wobbles. Good fun and good training on vehicle finesse. You don't need fancy grippier tires to be safe or have fun on the track or autocross.

    If you're not actually driving much through snow, it's an interesting question about the value of dedicated snow tires. Take the bus on those days.
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    az3579

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    I have to sort of disagree on them "being fine" for the autocross course or at the track. That plowing you mention is a bad thing. You need grip, not massive understeer and noise. I upgraded to a set of dedicated track/auto-x tires (Kumho Ecsta XS) and not once have I heard them squeal, even at the limit (either that or I'm not pushing it hard enough :D). At the track, I guess the all-seasons are easier to deal with regarding tread life, but that ugly sound of it plowing through a corner just doesn't cut it. Traction is best on these courses, and nothing beats traction than either a good set of R-comps or extra grippy summer tires. If you have the right tires, then you'll really know what your car can do.
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    CRKrieger

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    Why would you buy a compromised tire for the street if you didn't have to? An 'all-season' tire has certain tread characteristics dedicated to being (marginally!) useful in snow! That includes larger voids between tread blocks, excessive siping, tread elements wrapped around to the sidewall, compounds developed for an unnecessarily wide temperature range and only-a-tire-engineer knows what else. None of these does you any good on the street and many of them wear excessively as a result. At the same time, even you admit the traction is worse. This is not a choice of either Hoosiers or Hakkas as you put it. There are plenty of high performance '3-season' street tires that do not compromise on any of those factors. In your area, there is virtually no need for a snow-capable tire unless you go to the mountains.
    Man, talk about parochial! :( Around here, it can and does snow in 9 months out of the year! Only in June, July, and August can you pretty much be guaranteed you won't see snow on the roads. That said, it can be weeks at a time when the roads are covered with it and, during our heavier snows, no all-season tire is going to get through. The best tire for a typical northern winter is a hydrophilic compound snow tire. A sad fact is that these compounds do not do well at high temperatures, but they are as good as studs (illegal here) on icy surfaces.

    As for buses, we do have some big ugly yellow ones the kids ride, but they only go one place and I don't work there.

    auto_x_addict guest

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    I see that there are varying opinions on my question and I do appreciate both sides. I currently have a set of Continental Contisport tires on my car and, from what I understand they are summer high performance tires. I have not had any problems with them in the rain and handling has been really strong on dry pavement. I must admit that things can get a little nerve racking in the snow but I do not go far with the car in the winter or I can use my truck.
    I have chosen the Dunlop Direeza Z1's. They were highly rated and very reasonable at $125 per tire. If I have the $ this winter I am gong to get another set of wheels and put winter tires on the car. I am also going to get my wheels reconditioned so when I put my summer tires on again, everyting will be spiffy.
    I will keep the all seasons on my Toyota Camry.
    See you at Oktoberfest.
    Alan
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    funfunfer

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    Alan,
    You made a good choice for your situation. Wisconsin is barely in the same country as NYC, SF even less. Living near the Gulf of Mexico, I can run summer tires year round. I'll be running Sumi or Hankook this year, but the DZ1s were on the short list. I only get about 12 months out of tires rated under 300 UCTQ. I have an extra set of wheels for DE work and will look for a wheel/tire combo that works on the E34 and the E28.
    Jim
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    conechaser

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    Fair warning: Star Specs have no grip in the snow.

    I'm planning on being on Star Specs as well at O'fest.
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    327350

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    As track tires I suppose that A/S tires do suck

    but I have Michelin Pilot Sport A/S tires on my 330ci which I don't track. I need this car to get me where I am going and at times, that may be in the Texas hill country where it can (and does) turn cold all of a sudden. I gave up full on summer tires when I got caught in San Marcos,Tx. during a big temperature drop in Feb.while visiting my father. The great performing Potenza RE750's that took me up there became a handful 24hrs later. I haven't regretted the switch, but then my car is just a daily street driver.

    Last winter Houston had a rare snow / ice storm and I managed to get myself caught on the top of the Fred Hartman bridge trying to get to work at the Port of Houston in La Porte. I watched several cars bite the dust during those 2 hours (and we were only managing a mile or two an hour). Those PS A/S paid for themselves that day, as I got the car off that bridge and to work without a scratch.

    All season tires have their place, it's just not at the track. As street tires though, I don't feel I have given up much - they balanced well when installed and they are smooth well up into the triple digit speeds; I just came back to Houston from San Marcos today in on/off rain with a heck of a lot drizzle and it was business as usual, driving the car over the speed limit as much as possible. It all boils down to what you are doing with the car and where and when you are doing it.

    My .02.
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    dms540i

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    I have your answer. I run Nokian WR 16s all year. And did I say it's my daily drive and it snows here? I mean it snows, snows, snows. And the drivers here on the road are insane. You need to stop, turn, and even accelerate even if you aren't on the track. These tires have grip in snow, ice, slush, and rain second only to lizards. Do yourself a favor and try a set. But if your really need that fashion statement set of staggered M type wheels I would go out and get a second set of wheels just for that purpose. The only other logical choice is to keep it in the garage and wait for spring.

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