Best 195/55-R15 Tire - Come on, car guys!

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by SkippyThorson, Apr 14, 2011.

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Which of the 4 tires would you choose?

  1. Firestone Firehawk Wide Oval Indy 500

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. Michelin Pilot Exalto PE2

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. Michelin Pilot Exalto A/S

    1 vote(s)
    50.0%
  4. Goodyear Eagle GT V

    1 vote(s)
    50.0%
  1. SkippyThorson, Apr 14, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

    SkippyThorson macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #1
    *I've added a poll with multiple choices enabled to see which tire gets the most overall votes. Feel free to pick more than one, I'd like to see which one gets the most even when others can be chosen as well.*

    I wanted to make up a list and see if anyone had opinions, good or bad, about a 195/55-R15 tire. I'm looking at four specific ones, and can't decide. On three of the four, I can get a buy 3 get 1 free deal (excluding Goodyear) - of course, I'm looking to get four new tires all around.

    1. Firestone Firehawk Wide Oval Indy 500 - Comes to about $382 total. Truly a performance tire, a lot of people have it on Corvettes. Would this be ridiculous to put on a Saturn?
      *Ultra High Performance Summer / No Warranty
      ---
    2. Michelin Pilot Exalto PE2 - Comes to about $390 total. 2 different businesses have quoted me the same price and both had great things to say. I have it on a Ford Fusion and LOVE how quiet and smooth it is.
      *Ultra High Performance Summer / Warranty
      ---
    3. Michelin Pilot Exalto A/S - Comes to about $390 total. I haven't actually found this anywhere, only on TireRack, so I'm not too positive on this one.
      *High Performance All-Season / Warranty
      ---
    4. Goodyear Eagle GT V - Comes to about $376 total. I hear both extremely bad and good comments on Goodyear tires. I've found no deals on this tire anywhere yet, and have never actually ever had Goodyears. A dry-rot issue scared me away pre-research.
      *High Performance All-Season / Warranty

    Are the any car guys out there visiting MacRumors? :cool: I figured I'd give it a shot!
     
  2. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #2
    Just as an option, check out the current offerings from Falken. I used a Ziex ZE-512 in a similar size to yours on my '99 Nissan Altima. I thought they were great tires, quiet but grippy.

    With all due respect to Saturns, I don't think an all-out performance tire is going to be necessary unless you're taking it on the track or doing solo slalom. A high-performance all-season or even a touring tire should be just fine.
     
  3. SkippyThorson, Apr 14, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2011

    SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #3
    I looked through the Falken site, and nothing stands out to me, really. I like sticking with brands I've had and proven. I think even the Goodyear one is out for me, because not one car even in my immediate family has ever ran Goodyears.

    I totally agree with you 100% about the Saturn comment. with a ~100hp I4 engine, performance of any sort is unrealistic. However, this car is my baby. :) There's so much about it I like, and I don't need much more.

    I've been advised that putting some nicer tires on my unused factory 15" Alloys would not only benefit me in the long run, I would get a much nicer riding car. The Steel rims are 14", and I would love to have a little smaller tire to get a little nicer ride. Obviously, I've planned on this for a long time, but the opportunity to upgrade has finally arrived! (Long wait.)

    Looking at decent summer tires, the best tire / best value almost always comes out to around $400 total. I could get a cheaper (materials) tire, but why, when I can get Firehawk Indy 500s at the same price? At least that's my thinking - maybe warped. :p They seem to have even better ratings than the 2 Michelins all around. Looking at a comparison, my final vote is that Goodyear is off the table, and the fight is down to 3.
     
  4. hwojtek macrumors 65816

    hwojtek

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Location:
    A small rural village in western Poland
    #4
    "Pilato". Funny, always thought Michelin calles it's tires "Pilot"... or at least that's how they call it in Europe.
    Anyway - Get the Pilot Exalto if that's the only real option. I know Americans do not care about tires anyway (I can not imagine how a tire would last 100 000 miles), but I'd suggest you'd check Pirelli Cintruato P6 and P1 models and Dunlop SP Sport.
    Also, I'd switch from 15" wheels to 16" - better choice of quality rubber in bigger sizes.
     
  5. SkippyThorson, Apr 14, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2011

    SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #5
    I actually had been calling them Pilatos since I started my search. I now wonder how I totally changed the name. :p The Italian in me is showing - that was a my bad, multiple times.

    You mention getting the Pilot Exalto - there are 2 variations, a PE2 and A/S. Which were you referring to? Can I also ask why you favor the Michelins over the Firestones?

    I actually had a recommendation for a Hancook Optimo tire rated at a 100,000 mile tread life, but I do doubt it would ever live that long.

    I actually couldn't go much bigger than a 15", because the tire to rim ratio would look absolutely ridiculous. The giant "gangster" wheels with a tire that has a sidewall the size of my iPhone's edge would be terrible. The biggest factory rims for the S-Series are 15", and the largest tire is a 205, before you start rubbing over bumps and hard turns. The size I'm looking at is basically the second largest practical size. :)
     
  6. RITZFit, Apr 14, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2011

    RITZFit macrumors 65816

    RITZFit

    Joined:
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    Location:
    In my Corner
    #6
    See if you can find a good set from Falken or Hankook tires. Personally I'm not a huge fan of michellin. My car came stock w/ Pilot MXM4 and I hated every mile with them. While they did last a good bit, they had horrible handling capability...for where I drive anyway :D . On top of that, a new set was gonna cost an arm and a leg. I chose a set of low end falken azenis and never looked back. I've also tried Hankook (ventus) and they seem to make good cheap tires as well.
     
  7. SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #7
    I've gotten a lot of places that tell me Hankook. Someone quoted me a tire at about $420 total that got rated at a 100,000 treadlife. I think they were Optimos. They even had some roadside coverage where if they ever Lear me stranded, I get someone that comes to pick me up. (but I do have AAA)

    Tire shopping is a pain. :p
     
  8. RITZFit macrumors 65816

    RITZFit

    Joined:
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    In my Corner
    #8
    Do you have a discount tire near you? They usually have some decent deals.
     
  9. SuperCachetes macrumors 6502a

    SuperCachetes

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    Away from you
    #9
    I have these on my Jetta in 195/65-15 and love them. They are holding up real well and are very good in the rain. I drive that car like I stole it and have had no problems whatsoever. They slide progressively rather than abruptly and they are keeping a good profile even though I mistreat them. :D

    As far as deals, I'm not sure what you mean - aren't they cheaper than Michelins regardless? Looks like $84 each for your size on TireRack. I've bought probably 6 or 7 sets of tires from them over the past 10 years, and have no complaints.

    Anyway, I know you have the Goodyears all but ruled out, but I thought I'd go ahead and stand up for them because they have been good to me. Good luck with your shopping.
     
  10. SkippyThorson, Apr 14, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2011

    SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #10
    I think I do, somewhere. :p I'll be on the hunt tomorrow for some good input. Excluding Noon, because of a possible Portal 2 announcement, or something related... Of course.

    No, see... Now I hate you.

    Maybe they aren't ruled out, then! :p Good point, that they do come out to about the same price. The only negative with those Goodyears is that I haven't found them anywhere. 2 places had both the Firehawks and the PE2s, the rest had one or the other, and no one had the Goodyears, at least in stock. I guess I wouldn't mind waiting on shipping if they were that good.

    HOLY CRAP. :rolleyes: I'll never make a purchase! Maybe I should just get 1 of each of the 4, and see which looks best after a month.

    I added a poll to maybe help out the situation!
     
  11. hwojtek macrumors 65816

    hwojtek

    Joined:
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    Location:
    A small rural village in western Poland
    #11
    Quite simply for the very same reason I prefer Apple over Dell. While I have a Bridgestone/Firestone factory located just 15 miles from over where I live, my profession gives me a slight bias to respect only top two or three Bridgestone products... The rest is very average regarding all the aspects, despite the efforts from various testing facilities and offices.

    I don't think the car using this tire size is a high-performance sports coupe, so you will be catered well enough with the A/S. The PE2 is a ultra-high-performance tire.
    And as for somebody who posted about the Michelins MXM4 - please compare apples with apples. The Pilot Exalto is a (ultra, in PE2 guise) high-performance summer tire, whereas the MXM4 is a low-budget, all-season, universal economical tire. There are virtually no aspects you could compare the two.
     
  12. KnightWRX macrumors Pentium

    KnightWRX

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    Location:
    Quebec, Canada
    #12
    As a car guy, I have to say this question is quite incomplete. What are you looking for ? I'll assume you don't really know tires that well and so your choices aren't quite a representation of your needs and just ask straight what your needs are :

    - Best Wet traction ?
    - Best Dry traction ?
    - All-season/3 season/Winter ?
    - Best Cornering ?
    - Best Fuel mileage ?
    - Best stiffness ?
    - Best rolling comfort ?
    - Best rolling noise (ie, none) ?
    - Best priced ?

    There's just too many compromises in choosing a tire to simply name one tire the best. What are you looking for exactly ? Maybe your 4 choices aren't even suitable to what you want.
     
  13. SkippyThorson, Apr 15, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

    SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #13
    "I'll assume you don't really know tires" is a very brash assumption to make. Every time we've met in the forms here, you've been rude to me. I'll answer your question anyway, since you assume you're a "car guy".

    First, the question in return is, why would I NOT want any of those things? That was an odd way to state your question.In your own defense though, since I didn't clearly state my specific needs in a tire, in order my list would run as such:
    1. *TREAD LIFE*
    2. Best (not lowest) price
    3. Highest combined dry / wet performance
    4. Best fuel economy
    5. Lowest road noise.

    Furthermore, of the 4 tires I mentioned, they are all overall top rated on TireRack, and while you may disagree with a user-ratings-system, it's hard to dispute why they're at the top of those ratings. Quite simply, those are the 4 best overall tires. I don't want to sacrifice in 4 areas like my list above if I don't have to, and those 4 ~$100 tires solve the issue for me. Even if they're going on my Saturn and not the Corvette.
     
  14. Rodimus Prime, Apr 15, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

    Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #14
    hate to tell you this but item number 2 kind of goes against items 3 and 4. (hell goes against item 1 as well)
    if you want hight combined dry/ wet performance it is going to cost you in terms of money, fuel economy and road noise. Just figure I would point that out to you. I would go for fuel economy/ road noise reduction which means you want a touring tire. Those are generally harder tires. at 195 not exactly a performance tire and add in the fact that you need a 55 side wall it is not low profile either even more so adding in the fact it is on 15 in whiles.
     
  15. SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #15
    See, that's about what I figured when he asked that question, but I answered honestly - that's what I'd want, even if it isn't ideal. I figured those wanting to help out could pick apart my list of requirements regarding their own opinions.

    Knowing what I know about a performance tire, they're about grip. Getting grip means they have to be a little tacky on a dry (even better, warm) road surface to be ideal. The problem with that is that fuel economy and tread life would be best on a harder tire with less grip, because the less tacky a tire is, the less resistance there is, and the more savings you get in terms of tread wear and fuel.

    I guess I should add to that list above everything else, TREAD LIFE! I want a tire that I won't be replacing next Summer.
     
  16. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #16
    tread life is easy. Find the tire with the highest mileage warranty and call it good. Since you do not push the limits of your tires that should be what you go for..
     
  17. SkippyThorson, Apr 15, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

    SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #17
    I figured as such. :) Thanks for the advice there. Now, since I already have snows, would I really want to get a Summer tire (which are mostly performance, which isn't priority) or is an All-Season a better choice? Tread life seems to be better under the All-Seasons.

    This makes it look like the Goodyear Eagle GT V did the best under the UTQG, receiving a 440 and AA - extremely high. The Michelin Pilot Exalto A/S is not far behind, also at AA, but rated at 400.

    Theennnn..... User ratings peg tread wear at just over 7 for the Goodyear, and a little more above 8 for the Michelin A/S. Users primarily prefer the Michelin over the Goodyear.
     
  18. secondhandloser macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2011
    Location:
    Wash, DC/ HSV, AL
    #18
    No reason to run summer tires on your car unless you're driving it hard. Treadlife and gas mileage will suffer with a summer tire, and if you're caught in a freak storm with them on, you will be a hazard to everyone else on the road.


    There's no reason to be looking to a performance tire of any type with your car and your goals from the tires.
     
  19. SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    #19
    Save Summer tires for Summer-only cars is my new rule then. I have an all-season car.

    It's settled. All-seasons for me. :)
     
  20. KnightWRX, Apr 15, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

    KnightWRX macrumors Pentium

    KnightWRX

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    Location:
    Quebec, Canada
    #20
    I assumed such to save time. Without that assumption, I would have had to go to the manufacturer sites for all 4 of your choices, look up what the tires were, what were their specs and what they were competing to be "best" at.

    It was not meant as a rude comment, I meant it to explain that it would be faster to simply ask you your needs rather than look it up based on your choices, if those choices were representative of that need.

    A lot of people take my questions as rude, but in reality, they are just cold and objective. Of course, being objective these days is seen as something bad. I'll read the rest of your post and see if I can help out, but I'm more into UHP summer tires/Harsh Winters and I saw the bold "Thread life" which is never something I've actually bothered with.

    This is easy to answer, because as I said : Tires are a set of compromises. No tire can be the best at everything. Usually, dry traction (usually a result of thread compound choice, softer compounds offering better dry/warm traction) comes at the expense of thread life. Wet traction (a result of actual thread design, usually aggressively grooved to help evacuate water) comes at the expense of low road noise/dry traction. Stiffness comes at the expense of comfort. Comfort comes at the expense of stiffness and cornering ability (a more comfortable tire will usually have softer sidewalls, which in turn will tend to give earlier in a corner).

    Of course, summer tires will usually be about performance (stiffness, low thread life, good dry traction, sometimes decent wet traction) while All-season will be all-arounders or more comfort/wet traction oriented. Do I even need to explain Winter ?

    EDIT :

    Having read the rest of your responses, I'm safe to say you want something that will last a long time (high mileage tire) while not getting a suicide block. Unfortunately, forget dry traction/wet traction, just look at Threadwear stats and price based on your list. Again, not something I've shopped for nor something I have experience using on my cars in the last 12 years (H22A swapped Integra, all work done myself, Subaru Impreza WRX) so I'm hardly the good person to ask for what is the "best" in that category.

    I hope I will have at least given you information going forward. And yes, I'm wary of user reviews for a reason : A user rates stuff based on subjective opinion. Traction to a user is not an objective measure. One guy going through a corner at 30 mph might call his tires "A+ traction!" while another user will say it's "D-, piss poor, my car is better than that with XYZ tire". Same goes for thread life or any other stats really. If reading user reviews, don't just look at ratings and scores, look at what the people are actually putting these tires on and how they drive the cars (Corvettes are rarely if ever tracked/driven hard, being mostly owned by old men who like sunday drives while you'd be surprised at what the Subaru guys even using Legacies put a tire through).

    Also, beware of the manufacturer traction ratings. Read about what they actually mean. One test for this is to simply drag the tire sideways on a rig and measure the resistance it offers. These never really translate to real world examples. I've seen some of the best handling tires only having "A" traction ratings while some POS chinese crap has a "AA" and yet can't stick to the road worth a damn.
     
  21. SkippyThorson, Apr 15, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

    SkippyThorson thread starter macrumors 65816

    SkippyThorson

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    #21
    Well then, I apologize for jumping the gun this time, but yes, online where no emotions can be seen, your unbiased and cold responses can sometimes come off a little... Proper-English-Snooty. I see where you're coming from, regarding looking up all of my mentioned tires though - can't blame you a bit.

    I have to say, I think tread life is my biggest concern, because I could care less if I can't take a freeway exit at 45, or stop from 60-0 in 3 feet, but as long as the tire gets me where I want to go, that's all I can ask for - so long as it was gotten at a reasonable price, and I won't be replacing them every Summer.

    I think I was most pleased with my own comment above; "I have an all-season car", which is absolutely true. Maybe those Indy 500s belong on so many Corvettes, and are so great, because (like you said) those cars are only driven 3 months out of the year by mid-life-crisis men and Grandfathers - which I can't agree more with. I've never seen a Corvette abused, which stand to reason why no one has negatives about a tire they hardly "use".

    Those are 3 absolutely excellent summaries, which I fully agree with and have actually explained to many people in my current position. I think the issue here is, I'm a terrible shopper. I'll research these tires until Winter, where my goal will long become obsolete.

    Once more, TireRack.com reviews are exactly what you noted above. I've tried to weed out the people who review the tire after 500 / 1,000 miles, those who go on to end up reviewing an entirely different tire, and the extremist ones that rate a solid 0 or 10, based on biased love or hate. The opinions of others there are terrible.

    Here, getting someone who isn't just rating one product is a lot nicer than someone blasting or love-fest-ing on one tire.

    "One test for this is to simply drag the tire sideways on a rig and measure the resistance it offers." - That's hysterical. I've heard of some extremely non-real-world tests, and that one is right up there with the best.

    ---

    In closing, thank you again for your typical advice, and I apologize once more for taking your comments as rude, though, you do seem to have it out for me - you do find me a lot. ;) I really appreciate the help, all. I think I'll be able to make a decision sometime soon. I'll report back here with results and why I picked what I did, for those interested.

    The 1010Tires.com Reviews section was also extremely helpful as well. The number of tire reviews available seems overwhelming, but you can narrow it down so easily that you get exactly what you're looking for quickly. That made my hands-down final decision for me.
     
  22. RITZFit macrumors 65816

    RITZFit

    Joined:
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    Location:
    In my Corner
    #22
    Calm down, I'm just saying there are other good tires (brands) @ a lower price range. Not really a direct comparison.
     

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