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      11-21-2012, 07:02 PM   #1
sleepless
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Track Comparison: M3 w/AD08, RE11, PSS; Cayman S w/NT01, HTRZIII

I put this here in the Track section because this is mainly a comparison of track performance, but some notes about street usage is included since all of these tires can be used as a daily driver tire.

Normally, I drive a dedicated track car with Nitto NT-01s which have been my track tire since 2006 for over 200 track days. For 2012 I had no track car so replaced our family 2008 335i with a 2011 E90 M3 with DCT. In order to force myself to not go down the oft-repeated slippery slope of turning a perfectly good daily driver into a hardcore track weapon, I decided to only use street tires on the M3 until my new track car is ready, which now will be in Spring 2013 (it's a Palatov D2; www.palatov.com).

The only actual mods on the car are camber plates (-2.2) and Cantrell cooling ducts in order to save the front tires and get the max out of the stock brakes. Pads are Pagid Yellows and wheels are Apex ARC-8 18x10 wheels. I chose a square wheel/tire setup in order to improve front end grip (reduce understeer) and to allow for tire rotation which I did after 2 track days.

During the year I've had the following tires on the M3:

- Bridgestone RE-11 265/40-18
- Yokohama AD-08 265/35-18
- Michelin Pilot Super Sports 265/35-18

Last year's track car was a 2006 Cayman S with PSS9 suspension, Guard LSD, camber plates, Pagid Yellows and NT-01s. I also drove on track with Sumitomo HTRZ-III tires for a couple of track days. I'll use this setup for some impressions compared to the other tires on the M3.

Notes:

For the M3 I selected tires that provide a good balance between dry/wet grip on and off the track and lowest possible noise on the freeway. The latter is import because some of the track are up to 1000 miles away; I've driven with NT01s on the freeway and it gets very old quickly!

RE11

Excellent tire that met all my needs. Gives up very little to the NT01 in terms of grip in the dry. They do squeal a lot on the track; I prefer less squeal. I've heard, but did not get to experience, that they get greasy on hot days and loose their grip on cold days.

AD08

Slightly better dry grip than the RE11. Superb in cold (as low as 35F!) and wet. The only "issue" I experience is some light chunking at Pacific Raceways which I attribute to the fact there is no grip in several corners so the back end wiggled a lot more than at the other tracks.

After 7 track days the AD08's probably have 2 more left in them.

PSS

My experience is that they can get greasy under hard use after about 15 minutes. At Laguna, when pushed to my best times of around 1:47, they got very slippery after 15 minutes. By slowing down to 1:50s they lasted a full 25 minute session. At Thunderhill, however, a friend had no issues when I was chasing him with the RE11s. I attribute this difference to the fact that Laguna is considerably tighter so the tires did not cool off nearly as much.

I've only done 2 days on the PSS tires but would expect them to last at least 8 days simply based on the tread wear rating; but obviously, I have not data.

NT01

Superb track tires. Good in the rain with full tread. Depending on size and wear, they can be very noisy.

HTRZII

Dry grip was good but after two days at Pacific Raceways they chunked quite badly.
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Last edited by sleepless; 11-21-2012 at 07:25 PM.
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      11-21-2012, 07:37 PM   #2
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Excellent review. I would second your comments on the RE-11. Great tire on the track, with excellent wet grip as well. Tire squeal does not bother me that much as I'm used to Micheline PS2 and Continental Sport Contact 3 which both squeal as much or more than the RE-11.

Would echo also your sentiment about them not loosing grip through the session. I generally find about 5-7 PSI pressure increase from start to end of session and tread will be happy. The only other comment that I would add is that I think the RE-11 might like a bit more camber than the other tires. I run 2.5 degrees negative and find that over the course of a few track days the little triangles on the side wall still get scrubbed off. Not an issue on the rear (1.5 neg). I run staggered set up.
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      11-21-2012, 09:37 PM   #3
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Excellent tire comparisons, thanks for sharing.

Interesting how close the 2 cars are in lap times. So, which one did you enjoy the most on the track? (really love my M3, but Cayman R is on my radar )
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      11-21-2012, 10:02 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info.
Amy experience with the NT05's in the past?
I just wish the RE11's had more sizes.
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Let me get this straight... You are swapping out parts designed by some of the top engineers in the world because some guys sponsored by a company told you it's "better??" But when you ask the same guy about tracking, "oh no, I have a kid now" or "I just detailed my car." or "i just got new tires."
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      11-21-2012, 10:57 PM   #5
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Excellent review. I just switched from RS3's to NT01's (dedicated track tire), but won't use until next HPDE in December. I use the PSS as my street tires and track tires when wet. The PSS is my choice for an all-around street/track, wet/dry tire. The RS3's would be my second choice. As you have posted the NT01's is superb in the dry which is the reason for my switch. Thanks for the good review!
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      11-22-2012, 12:21 AM   #6
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Love my AD08 tires, great tire in dry hot weather but be careful as the weather gets colder. Car feels like its on rails when tires are hot. Excellent choice for street and track.
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      11-22-2012, 09:42 AM   #7
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Good info. Thanks. That Palatov looks mental--400-700hp LS3 in a 1600lb car! Have fun!
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      11-22-2012, 09:48 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ortho281 View Post
Excellent review. I just switched from RS3's to NT01's (dedicated track tire), but won't use until next HPDE in December. I use the PSS as my street tires and track tires when wet. The PSS is my choice for an all-around street/track, wet/dry tire. The RS3's would be my second choice. As you have posted the NT01's is superb in the dry which is the reason for my switch. Thanks for the good review!
I wish I could do track days in December!

I'm just about finished with my second set of NT01s and have really liked them. They're greasy and wobbly for the first session when brand new, but then are fantastic. Have fun!
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      11-22-2012, 11:40 AM   #9
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Thanks for the data.

I would like to see a direct comparison between the NT01s vs the RE11s/AD08s on the same car. My guess is the NT01 is maybe good for 1 second a lap on average compared to the RE11s and AD08s for most drivers.

My vote is still for the RS3s. Great track tire that can also get you to the track in any weather that would be suitable for track driving. I don't feel like I am at a disadvantage against cars on slicks and R-Comps and I think I am at a significant advantage towards the end of the session when their tires start to get greasy.
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      11-22-2012, 07:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paradocs98 View Post
I wish I could do track days in December!

I'm just about finished with my second set of NT01s and have really liked them. They're greasy and wobbly for the first session when brand new, but then are fantastic. Have fun!
We are very fortunate down here in Texas. Track days all year long. Thanks for the input. I will take it easy the first session on the NT01's. Happy Holidays!
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