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Lets talk snow tires (2012 edition) - Page 5

post #121 of 272

Hell, I've driven my Audi all the way up the 30 miles of dirt road to Polebridge, "plowing" the road with the undercarriage the whole way. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toecutter View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman View Post

I have an 2011 Phantom Black Pearl Effect S4 Premium Plus with the Sport Diff. & Titanium Package and many other options! (Well below $60K)

 

The thing is unreal. The new Quattro system is 40%F 60% rear wheel bias (no understeer!) and then the dash controlled Sport Diff and Audi Drive select (minus the suspension) is just unreal!

 

Not to mention the Supercharged Direct Injected Twin intercooled V-6 yahoo.gif

 



Heck yeah!  The ground clearance is the limiting factor on though.

 

There were days last winter when it dumped snow all day and I was worried I wouldn't be able to get my Audi out of the parking lot (never actually got stuck though).



 

post #122 of 272



NO question about the ground clearance, but hell, I figure I can outrun most storms in this thing!wink.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Hell, I've driven my Audi all the way up the 30 miles of dirt road to Polebridge, "plowing" the road with the undercarriage the whole way.  

 



 


Edited by Atomicman - 10/10/11 at 9:20am
post #123 of 272

One more vote for the Michelin X-Ice XI2's.  I put them on a 5-Series RWD  BMW last winter and it turned the car into a tank in the snow, and the control and stopping performance was amazing.  On top of that, they felt like a summer tire on the road, and were actually quieter than my summer Bridgestones.  I can't recommend them highly enough.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post

Not really. They test in a controlled environment, an ice rink. We get very little ice here. I am looking to for a tire that is better in snow than ice. TireRack and DiscountTire are two of the best, I have bought at least 4 sets of tires from each of them, from snows to summers to r-compounds when I was racing solo-2. 

 

Not true.  Although 'one' of the tire rack tests was conducted on an ice rink, they have done others, such as snow and ice covered track testing to test all-round winter performance (not just snow or ice).  The Michelins are always at, or near, the top.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Walt View Post

Legit.

 

Any real snow tire will wear faster than a conventional tire.  Most of the extra grip you get from a winter tire is due to it being made out of softer rubber which inevitably means faster wear.

 

 

That's not quite correct.  A winter tire driven in the winter will wear at about the same rate as a summer tire driven in the summer.  Winter compounds are designed for cold temps and have similar wear ratings to summer tires when driven in their recommended temperature range (the Michelin X-Ices have a 60,000 km tread wear warranty).  I get about five years of use from a set of winter tires, and I have them on for about 6 months of the year.  If you use them in warm temps, however (above +5C), exactly what you described will happen.... they will wear very quickly.

 

Also, although a softer compound does indeed contribute to winter performance, the extra grip is mostly due to the tread design in combination with the siping you don't get with summer tires.  The softer compound helps the winter tread pattern and siping to work better in the cold.
 

 


Edited by exracer - 10/10/11 at 7:22am
post #124 of 272

TireRack has the Conti ExtremeWinterContact rated better than the X-Ice Xi2 in head-to-head overall.

 

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tests/testDisplay.jsp?ttid=135

 

The price on the Xi2 is unreal here for an SUV size tire.  I think I'll go with the Contis and save several hundred $$$.

post #125 of 272

you live in a cold climate. coastal mountain dumps are warmer, heavier, and there is no plowing it when it's deep (18" or more) and wet.

 

real world personal experience in Tahoe: the Blizzaks rip. you can go with the experience of any high end big european or scandinavian tire company, IMO, and I was skeptical but have to say that studs are not necessary for any conditions I have faced. Owned the winter force with studs, really a crappy, cheap, old tech tire.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Hell, I've driven my Audi all the way up the 30 miles of dirt road to Polebridge, "plowing" the road with the undercarriage the whole way.  

 



 

post #126 of 272

Well, I live at the top of a hill, reached by a dirt road that is steep and icy because a deliberate layer of such is allowed to form so that the plow isn't removing the road all winter.  Even my studs have on occasion allowed a 180 if the driver is not running the door along the berm to prevent the car from turning.  Delivery trucks refuse to deliver and the trash truck makes us take our trash down the hill.  Always an adventure in the AM as I head to the ski hill.  And I'll be damned if I'm putting chains on every day for that hill.  Mysteriously, people leave their cars at the intersection at the bottom, right in what I call the "target zone".  SHEESH.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

you live in a cold climate. coastal mountain dumps are warmer, heavier, and there is no plowing it when it's deep (18" or more) and wet.

 

real world personal experience in Tahoe: the Blizzaks rip. you can go with the experience of any high end big european or scandinavian tire company, IMO, and I was skeptical but have to say that studs are not necessary for any conditions I have faced. Owned the winter force with studs, really a crappy, cheap, old tech tire.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Hell, I've driven my Audi all the way up the 30 miles of dirt road to Polebridge, "plowing" the road with the undercarriage the whole way.  

 



 



 

post #127 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post

TireRack has the Conti ExtremeWinterContact rated better than the X-Ice Xi2 in head-to-head overall.

 

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tests/testDisplay.jsp?ttid=135

 

The price on the Xi2 is unreal here for an SUV size tire.  I think I'll go with the Contis and save several hundred $$$.


The difference is so small, they tie for all intents & purposes.  The key deciding factors for me were the following.

 

Tread Warranty:  Michelin: 60,000 km tread warranty.   Dunlop: NO tread warranty

 

Noise & Comfort:  Michelin:  Rated quieter and more comfortable on the road.  Having driven on them, I can say they are, indeed, extremely quiet and comfortable to drive on; quieter than my summer tires, in fact.

 

Price:  Your numbers are the opposite of mine.  I got my my Michelins for about 40% less than the price it would have cost me to get the Continentals.  The only place I could get the Continentals was at a specialty tire shop.  I was able to get the Michelins at Costco for a far better regular price than from a tire shop, plus they had an additional special (buy 3 get 1 free), plus the cost of mounting and balancing was half what the tire shops charge and it includes nitrogen fill and free lifetime rotations.  It was a no-brainer.

 

post #128 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mom View Post

sorry if this is a hijack, but...

 

The tires on my Jeep are going to go pretty soon and I'm not all that sure I will want to keep it long enough to recoup cost of 2 sets of new tires.

 

(sorry in advance if this is really stupid question; i'm no car geek)

 

What is the problem with using snow tires all year 'round? I'm not into high performance, just getting from point a to point b and really don't want to buy two sets of tires for an old truck. But i live at the bottom of a very, very steep north facing slope that melts and re-freezes, so good traction on ice and snow going downhill is important. Figuring not sliding into the ravine is more important than road noise, etc., would it be OK to buy only snow tires and use them for a year or so before selling the car?



 

Fwiw Mom, might wanna check out Maxxis Bighorns =  would be a great tire to put and leave on...  About as good an all-season MT as you can get..(imho).  The diagonal inner tread with space to sipe is, imho, what it's all about.  Pro Comp's AT is another excellent one...maybe a few mpg better, pretty darn good offroad, surprisingly, but probably not quite as good as the Bighorn offroad....  Pro Comps = great in rain....Bighorns look great as well.

 

$.01

Steve

 

post #129 of 272

Thanks

post #130 of 272

roll a big snowball down the road to show them the fall line that leads to the "target zone". we have a trap like that at the bottom of our road with a guardrail blocking you from sliding onto the highway. that guard rail get repaired every single year.  note to visitors: once your car is at a certain speed on a steep, icy road, you can maintain that speed but you can not reduce that speed, generally. you have to slow to the speed you need for the difficult section before you get to the difficult section.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Well, I live at the top of a hill, reached by a dirt road that is steep and icy because a deliberate layer of such is allowed to form so that the plow isn't removing the road all winter.  Even my studs have on occasion allowed a 180 if the driver is not running the door along the berm to prevent the car from turning.  Delivery trucks refuse to deliver and the trash truck makes us take our trash down the hill.  Always an adventure in the AM as I head to the ski hill.  And I'll be damned if I'm putting chains on every day for that hill.  Mysteriously, people leave their cars at the intersection at the bottom, right in what I call the "target zone".  SHEESH. 

 



 

post #131 of 272

Dav,

 

You are obsessed with fall lines. 

post #132 of 272

thx, biggrin.gif, that's me for sure. I rebuilt the handrail in my house so my son and I can ride it. polished cherry wood. fast. takes real upper body position control and technique facing down the fall line. As in all of life, rotate and you're in big trouble ski.gifroflmao.gif

post #133 of 272


Some cars (one of ours actually) has DSR., Downhill Speed Regulation. a wonderful technology. You set the speed and the vehicle won't go over that speed. No braking nor accelerator required by driver. Just steer and creep down the hill!icon14.gif.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

roll a big snowball down the road to show them the fall line that leads to the "target zone". we have a trap like that at the bottom of our road with a guardrail blocking you from sliding onto the highway. that guard rail get repaired every single year.  note to visitors: once your car is at a certain speed on a steep, icy road, you can maintain that speed but you can not reduce that speed, generally. you have to slow to the speed you need for the difficult section before you get to the difficult section. 

 



 

post #134 of 272

Well, you can be going 3 miles an hour and go into a slide immediately as you turn out of the driveway unless you run the driver's side door along the snowbank.  Then at least when you start the toboggan run you keep facing the right way.  And once you get to the intersection (barring one of the idiots who park there) you are fine, it's flat the rest of the way for the most part and plowed and sanded by the county. 

 

We had some idiot try to deliver a POOL TABLE (how many tons is that?) in a pick up with almost bald all season tires.  Spent three hours helping to dig him out just to get him headed back downhill, then had to call and pay for gravel for his next attempt three days later.  "I've NEVER needed any other tires than these!" 

post #135 of 272

I have another winter jong question for this thread. Now I'm between getting the General Altimax Arctics or the Michelin X-Ice xi2's, but probably going studless no matter what tire I get. Let's say worst comes to worst, I'm out in the middle of nowhere and I encounter a bunch of ice or snow I can't get through. Is it acceptable to use chains/cables with winter tires? Or will that ruin a winter tire, or just be pretty much ineffective?

post #136 of 272
post #137 of 272

Perhaps a nice Jeep Patriot, and don't get the 17" wheels. :) With a RRO lift kit you will have 11" clearance to the belly pan.

Wifey drives the 5th Jeep in the family.

Seriously, the selection in 17" tires is very limited, and many Jeep owners go with 16s to avoid having limited choices.

 

 

post #138 of 272

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AustinFromSA View Post

I have another winter jong question for this thread. Now I'm between getting the General Altimax Arctics or the Michelin X-Ice xi2's, but probably going studless no matter what tire I get. Let's say worst comes to worst, I'm out in the middle of nowhere and I encounter a bunch of ice or snow I can't get through. Is it acceptable to use chains/cables with winter tires? Or will that ruin a winter tire, or just be pretty much ineffective?


You can use chains/cables with any kind of tire.

 

post #139 of 272

I run the Blizzak WS70's on my 2011 Outback. I run a lot of HWY miles with them running back and forth from NJ to the Catskills. Very good wet traction. Some road noise but nothing bothersome. Excellent on ice. Excellent on packed snow. Have pulled into my drivewy a few times with 8-12" (close to 9" ground clearance) with no problems. Pushing through the plow piles at the end of the driveway gets interesting but doable. For about 90% of the driving I do in the winter the tires are very good to excellent. I do get about 1.5 MPG less with the snows on. I am assuming this is because of the stickier tread compound/sipes.

post #140 of 272

With the exception of the snow adding more resistance to your vehicle, that is most likely incorrect.  It is most likely due to the fact that you vehicle gets slightly worse gas mileage in cold weather. 

post #141 of 272

It's not all due to cold weather.  Design objectives like conforming to terrain make it harder to meet other design objectives like minimum tire distortion for low rolling resistance.  Everythings a compromize.  Best snow tires won't get best milage.

 

Here is more grist for the mill (tests from APA for 2011 2012 winter tires separated by passenger, suv, and performance.

 

http://www.apa.ca/tire_wintertireratings.asp

 

post #142 of 272

Exracer: when did you get your Michelins?  I've searched our local Costco and there's nothing.  Too early in the season perhaps yet?

 

 

brn2skifst (any anyone else running Blizzak WS70's): how is the tread wear?  I do not doubt whatsoever that they are a great tire, but I am concerned about tread life.  And the fact that the special compound is only in the upper 50% of the tread, which would seem to exasperate any tread wear even more.  And are they squirmy on dry roads?  I'll be doing a lot of highway driving, so I want something good for dry road (most tires I think?) but also good in the snow and on ice.  Basically, I want an epic tire that won't break the bank.  I know, go figure. rolleyes.gif

post #143 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post

 (any anyone else running Blizzak WS70's): how is the tread wear?  I do not doubt whatsoever that they are a great tire, but I am concerned about tread life.  And the fact that the special compound is only in the upper 50% of the tread, which would seem to exasperate any tread wear even more.  And are they squirmy on dry roads?  I'll be doing a lot of highway driving, so I want something good for dry road (most tires I think?) but also good in the snow and on ice.  Basically, I want an epic tire that won't break the bank.  I know, go figure. rolleyes.gif


I've only put a couple of thousand miles on mine, so I can't comment on wear but I expect a short lifespan in trade for the most awesome snow/ice tire I've ever owned.  They are a bit squirmy on dry roads, especially when I get up over 70mph or so (but they weren't designed for performance driving).  They feel heavy in comparison to my summer tires, meaning my car accelerates a bit more slowly with them on.

 

I wouldn't want to do a lot of dry highway miles on them.  If I had to, I'd select a winter-performance rated tire instead such as the LM-60 or similar:

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Bridgestone&tireModel=Blizzak+LM-60&partnum=245HR7LM60

 

In sports car circles the Dunlop SP Winter Sports are a common favorite:

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Dunlop&tireModel=SP+Winter+Sport

 

post #144 of 272

Ah, bugger.  I've got an SUV though, not a sports car/sedan/luxury car.  Limited sizes for performance tire.  

 

 

I'm definitely overthinking this now.....sigh.


Edited by Gunnerbob - 10/10/11 at 8:17pm
post #145 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post

Exracer: when did you get your Michelins?  I've searched our local Costco and there's nothing.  Too early in the season perhaps yet?

 

 

brn2skifst (any anyone else running Blizzak WS70's): how is the tread wear?  I do not doubt whatsoever that they are a great tire, but I am concerned about tread life.  And the fact that the special compound is only in the upper 50% of the tread, which would seem to exasperate any tread wear even more.  And are they squirmy on dry roads?  I'll be doing a lot of highway driving, so I want something good for dry road (most tires I think?) but also good in the snow and on ice.  Basically, I want an epic tire that won't break the bank.  I know, go figure. rolleyes.gif


I am running the ws70, and my friend is as well. I put 5k miles on them last winter -- used up about 1/4 of the useable tread. Plan on about 3-4 seasons comfortably. I do live in minnesota where it is cold, though on my way back on my road trip it got in the 80s. I wasn't too happy driving 1000+ miles in that kinda heat with those tires.

 

Overall great tire and great wear. Well worth the cash. I was able to drive through snowbanks that were over my hood -- recently plowed in a smallish 1996 honda accord. We had a snowfall of about 16" with ground clearance of 8" or so, and it just hoovered right over it and you look back and you can see your car outline in the snow. It was pretty cool.

 

 

 

post #146 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post

Exracer: when did you get your Michelins?  I've searched our local Costco and there's nothing.  Too early in the season perhaps yet?

 

 

brn2skifst (any anyone else running Blizzak WS70's): how is the tread wear?  I do not doubt whatsoever that they are a great tire, but I am concerned about tread life.  And the fact that the special compound is only in the upper 50% of the tread, which would seem to exasperate any tread wear even more.  And are they squirmy on dry roads?  I'll be doing a lot of highway driving, so I want something good for dry road.
 

 

For a snow tire that gives above average highway performance, you need to focus on the tire's speed rating such as "T" or "H" rated. I think those two rating examples are higher speed, but I'm just going by my sometimes faulty memory so check with a tire shop for actual high speed winter tire ratings.

 

post #147 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post

 

For a snow tire that gives above average highway performance, you need to focus on the tire's speed rating such as "T" or "H" rated. I think those two rating examples are higher speed, but I'm just going by my sometimes faulty memory so check with a tire shop for actual high speed winter tire ratings.

 


Most winter tires are Q rated, which means they are safe up to 90 mph.  Higher rated tires dissapate heat better, and probably run quieter and wear better because of that, but otherwise the speed rating doesn't tell you anything about how the tires behave on dry roads.  I don't drive much on interstates, so I won't compromise snow/ice traction for a better speed rating, so I generally stick with Q rated winter tires.  YMMV.

 

BK
 

 

post #148 of 272
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post

brn2skifst (any anyone else running Blizzak WS70's): how is the tread wear?  I do not doubt whatsoever that they are a great tire, but I am concerned about tread life.  And the fact that the special compound is only in the upper 50% of the tread, which would seem to exasperate any tread wear even more.  And are they squirmy on dry roads?  I'll be doing a lot of highway driving, so I want something good for dry road (most tires I think?) but also good in the snow and on ice.  Basically, I want an epic tire that won't break the bank.  I know, go figure. rolleyes.gif

 

I have a set of WS60s (the predecessor to the WS70s)  In ski season, I drive 275 miles each way every weekend, mostly on dry pavement and mostly interstate highway.  I've gotten three seasons so far, and I'm not close to exposing the "tread bar" that indicates when the tread has worn down to the non-grippy layer.  I expect I'll replace them after this season.

 

I do not find them squirmy or noisy or any other negative feature.  They're fine at highway speed (which for me is 79mph, or nine over the posted limit - here in Michigan they never pull you over unless you're more than 10mph over the posted limit so I set the cruise on 79 and blow past speed trap after speed trap).  They're fine at speeds faster than that too, but I don't think I've pushed them much past 90.

 

For my car, the Blizzaks are $91 each - amortized over four seasons, that's less than $100 a year or about $2 per ski day.
 

I'm sure there are other good winter tires out there, but I'm very very happy with the Blizzaks.

 

post #149 of 272

To all of you snow tire experts, has anyone ever gone -4 in sizing?  I have a newer Suburban which came with 20" wheels ans stupidly expensive tires.  I was thinking about switching to snow tires for the Winter.  I own a set of 16" rims from my older truck (Yukon XL) which have the same bolt pattern.  All the websites only seem to go down to a 17" as a recommended size. Using a tire size calculator the 16's would be 4% smaller. 

post #150 of 272

will 16s fit over your brakes?

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