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      11-10-2008, 08:16 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben@tirerack View Post
I have been receiving a lot of questions about this, and the website has not gotten the winter packages up for the M3, so I am putting winter package info out here for everyone.

BMW Recommended winter setup is 235/40R18 with 18x8 wheels all around. This will fit, although it does not fill the fender well in the rear. The narrower tires are better in snow and ice.

The best winter wheel is the Sport Edition A7


They have a silver painted and clearcoat finish, and are a direct fit with no spacer. They will even use the original bolts. I have used this style for 3 winters. They will not win any car show trophies, but they have held up well, and they look fine on a BMW .

18x8 is $129. 18x9 is $134 for those who want to keep the staggered setup.

If you want a staggered setup, use 255/40R18 for the Rear. The only snow tire in 265/40 is a Pirelli that will not be here until late October/early November. A little narrower will help in snow anyway. Front can be 245 or 235/40R18.

Tires are pretty much all good. Most popular are the Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25's and Dunlop Wintersport 3D's. The new Pilot Alpin PA3's look very good as well. The Pirellis and Continentals are the sportiest handling, but the least focused on snow, more of a cold-weather performance tire, but still much better than all-season tires in snow.

An example cost for a package would be around $1400 with non-staggered Blizzak LM-25's delivered. Add $200 to any package to have BMW original Tire Pressure Monitoring Sensors (TPMS) installed. That will prevent the annoying "low tire pressure" light from coming on. (Unless you really have a flat)

The website does not show the wheels yet, but I am always in the office Monday-Friday 10AM-6PM Eastern. 800.428.8355 x660
Our website should have most of this info up soon.

Please visit: http://www.tirerack.com/a.jsp?a=AW8&...nter/index.jsp

a few years back I purchased this same wheel (however 17x7) for my 06 330i, I'm considering trading my 06 for and 04 M3 Vert. Would the orginal 17x7 inch winter set up you sold me fit the m3? Or would it look stupid? I have spacers that might help on it fitting into the wheel well, however I'm not sure that would work either. any advice would we great. Thanks
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      11-12-2008, 09:20 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trfortin View Post
a few years back I purchased this same wheel (however 17x7) for my 06 330i, I'm considering trading my 06 for and 04 M3 Vert. Would the orginal 17x7 inch winter set up you sold me fit the m3? Or would it look stupid? I have spacers that might help on it fitting into the wheel well, however I'm not sure that would work either. any advice would we great. Thanks

Tire Diameter would be 1" short (E46 M3n uses 26" overall diameter wheel/tire combo). Bolt pattern is correct, but offset is probably not. On the E46 M3 those wheels used a 20mm offset on the back and 40mm on the front. They still may fit, though they probably would not look quite right. If you have your old invoice # or anything, email me to ben@tirerack.com and I can look at exactly which part # you have.
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      11-19-2008, 09:07 PM   #47
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Ben (or anyone else with an opinion on this),

What else (other than PA3s) would you recommend as great gripping winter tire? I'm less concerned with a 'sporty' winter tire and more concerned with something that will get me around in Toronto winters and further north of here on ski trips. OK, with that said, so I'm fully informed, how much of a trade-off will there be in terms of performance suffering (I guess I do care about performance, too)?
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      11-23-2008, 10:49 PM   #48
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Ben - what is the recommended tire pressures to use on the Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25s? I got the tire/wheel package from you guys with 235/40R18 fronts and 255/40R18 rears. The BMW recommended pressures for the stock 245/40R18 and 265/40R18 on the E90 sedan is 35/35. Should I use the same with the winter setup?
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      11-25-2008, 02:28 PM   #49
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35 psi shounds like a good recommendation. I have found that if you increase the pressure too much they may wear too much in the middle and not enough on the sides, so I'd say 35psi +/- 2psi should be a good guideline.
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      11-26-2008, 05:17 AM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucid View Post
What do you consider to be significant offset change?

Does BMW offer a winter wheel package at those specs then? If they do, how much?
Lucid, in Europe, BMW offers style 270M wheels in 18 x 8 with 235/40R-18 Michelin PA3. I was considering this setup, but prices for these wheels are quite high from what I've read. I haven't found a US source for them yet, but they can probably be ordered from any BMW dealership.
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      11-26-2008, 05:57 AM   #51
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Does anyone have experience with Continental ContiWinterContact TS810 S? Tire Rack has these at a pretty good price. User reviews on their site seem to be mixed.
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      11-26-2008, 07:48 PM   #52
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Well, not sure if anyone else is reading this thread, but I thought I'd mention that I bit the bullet and picked up some Pilot Alpin PA2s today in the stock OEM 18" sizes. I realize that the PA2s have essentially been replaced by the PA3s, but unfortunately PA3s aren't yet available in 265/40R18 (or anything close). I considered going with PA2s in back and PA3s in front but I figured that this was not ideal and could potentially make the tires less effective than if they were all just PA2s.

Anyay, I got the rears at TireRack on close-out for a good price. Unfortunately they are already sold out of the PA2s in 245/40R18 so I had to pick those up elsewhere. I plan to mount them to my factory 18" wheels. Next year I'll either pick up a second set of OEM 18s for summer duty, or just get some new aftermarket or OEM 19s for summer use instead.
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      12-01-2008, 06:40 PM   #53
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Sorry to have neglected the thread mkosel, I was gone for most of the Thanksgiving weekend. The PA2 is pretty similar to the TS810S in that both are performance oriented winter tires. I like the Michelin a little better, although as you correctly noted, they are being replaced by the PA3.
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      12-01-2008, 09:17 PM   #54
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just ordered from Ben, staggered with Wintersport and TPM

I have had Wintersports on my S2000 for 3 years and they would be hard to beat. I can not say for sure if any other winter tire is as good but just say I am a believer in the Dunlop and have them for all four of my cars now.

I was not going to get the winter tires for the M3, but seeing these wheels so darn cheap IMO hard to not get them.

Thanks to Ben for the help hope to get the wheels soon.
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      12-04-2008, 10:44 AM   #55
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Hi Ben,

Thanks for the great info - getting ready to order as we've got snowfall #2 already here. Couple of questions:

1. Would you get road hazard insurance?
2. I am debating sticking with my 18" OEMs and just getting the tires. Any advantage/disadvantage to buying a whole separate set of wheels just for winter (outside of cost)?

Thanks!
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      12-08-2008, 04:25 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plnwu View Post
Hi Ben,

Thanks for the great info - getting ready to order as we've got snowfall #2 already here. Couple of questions:

1. Would you get road hazard insurance?
2. I am debating sticking with my 18" OEMs and just getting the tires. Any advantage/disadvantage to buying a whole separate set of wheels just for winter (outside of cost)?

Thanks!
Good questions.
1. Depends. Reasons to get road hazard: A) If you have a better than a 50/50 chance of trashing a tire in the first 1.5 years. B) If the small chance of having to buy a new tire shortly after installing because of an unexpected road hazard is too painful to tolerate.
Reasons not to get a road hazard: c) You would not normally expect to have a flat within 1.5 years. d) You can live with replacing the tire if you have the misfortune to get a flat.

If either A or B applies to you, get Road Hazard. If both c and d apply to you, do not get it.

2. Yes. Buying wheels and tires is better.
A) You can change from your summer to winter whenever you want to (as long as you have a jack and a lug wrench professional install is not required).
B) You can change for free (many of the better installers charge $15-30 per tire, which adds up twice each year)
C) Whenever you mount and dismount tires on wheels, there is a chance of scratching the wheel, and the sidewall of the tire becomes a little weaker.
D) Your summer wheels will look better for longer, because they do not have to suffer through the winter.

If you plan to upgrade your summer wheels, you could use the Original Equipment wheels for winter, and then buy a new set in the spring to use for your summer tires.
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      12-21-2008, 03:36 PM   #57
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I live in Long Island, NY, where it snows only a couple times a winter, not too bad. But when it does snow, and when it's really cold, I would definitely prefer a winter tire over my summers, so from November to March or April, I'd put on winter tires.
But since it snows relatively infrequently here, I don't want a dedicated winter tire for these months. Therefore, my question is what is the sportiest winter tire that will get me around in snow as a winter tire should, but is also the best performing one in the dry?
I know that NO winter tire will feel like the stock summer tires, but as mentioned early in this thread, some winter tires are better than others.
I saw one post mention that the Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25 is the sportiest winter, is this still true and the winter tire to get for sporty driving feel?
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      12-21-2008, 04:04 PM   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quackman View Post
I live in Long Island, NY, where it snows only a couple times a winter, not too bad. But when it does snow, and when it's really cold, I would definitely prefer a winter tire over my summers, so from November to March or April, I'd put on winter tires.
But since it snows relatively infrequently here, I don't want a dedicated winter tire for these months. Therefore, my question is what is the sportiest winter tire that will get me around in snow as a winter tire should, but is also the best performing one in the dry?
I know that NO winter tire will feel like the stock summer tires, but as mentioned early in this thread, some winter tires are better than others.
I saw one post mention that the Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25 is the sportiest winter, is this still true and the winter tire to get for sporty driving feel?
I would say that the Dunlop Wintersport M3 or Michelin PA3 are the most sport-oriented (best dry performance for a snow tire). I've had the former for a few years and heard the same about the latter.
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      12-21-2008, 04:12 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by signes View Post
I would say that the Dunlop Wintersport M3 or Michelin PA3 are the most sport-oriented (best dry performance for a snow tire). I've had the former for a few years and heard the same about the latter.
Hmm ok, i had those Dunlops on my old 330i for winter, though on 17" wheels. And they were good. Though I'll probably get the recommended staggered setup for the M3 for added sportiness. Just reread the first post though, which says "The Pirellis and Continentals are the sportiest handling, but the least focused on snow, more of a cold-weather performance tire, but still much better than all-season tires in snow."

Now I've gotta get 18s for the m3 though....
Since you also recommend the Dunlops then, how come they don't appear on the tirerack website under recc winter combo?
I'm pretty much ready to order, so if I'm gonna get the Dunlops then I'd like to know how to order them, definitely through the link on these forums.

Edit:

Is this a proper, sporty setup: (2) 245/45R18 Dunlop SP Winter Sport M3
Price: $452.00 for 2 Closeout
(2) 255/40R18 Dunlop SP Winter Sport M3
Price: $414.00 for 2 Closeout

? I'm having trouble buying the wheel mentioned in this thread in this size on the site... does it not come to fit this size?
I think I want the setup this guy has: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=194243 in the first reply to the thread, but I can't seem to do it on tirerack.
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      12-22-2008, 08:05 AM   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by signes View Post
I would say that the Dunlop Wintersport M3 or Michelin PA3 are the most sport-oriented (best dry performance for a snow tire). I've had the former for a few years and heard the same about the latter.
The problem with the PA3 is you won't find them any wider than 245. Therefore, you lose a lot of contact and probably won't get performance like the summer tires which are 265s in the rear. The older PA2s come in 265 width though. I've got them on my car now and in dry conditions it does drive basically like it does on summers.
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      12-22-2008, 11:22 AM   #61
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Wink Owner of a 2008 M3 with 265/35 ZR 19 performance tires looking for a winter set

Hi,

I bought my M3 this summer. My tires are Michelin 265/35 ZR 19'' back and 245/35 ZR 19'' front. They are weighted towards performance and in the recent snow we had in NY, proved worthless in this weather.

I set up an appointment with my service advisor to get a new set for the winter. I have two questions:

Are there good winter tires available for such wheels?

BMW is advertising their new "winter set," which comes with new wheels. Is this much more expensive then just getting the tires replaced and how much better will the car fare performance wise?

Any other suggestions regarding this issue would be great. Thanks
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      12-22-2008, 11:34 AM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viracocha View Post
I bought my M3 this summer. My tires are Michelin 265/35 ZR 19'' back and 245/35 ZR 19'' front.

...

Are there good winter tires available for such wheels?
A few people here have mentioned that they are running Blizzaks on the factory 19s. Not sure if the rears are 265 or 255 or what though. Dunlops might come in 19" also but again, maybe not in 265 width.

Quote:
BMW is advertising their new "winter set," which comes with new wheels. Is this much more expensive then just getting the tires replaced

Yes, getting a second set of wheels will definitely be a lot more expensive. But I'd still recommend doing so since you don't really want to be paying to remount and balance the same tires at the start and end of every winter season. Plus, its more likely to damage the tires over time, or scratch the rims. You should be able to pick up a set of factory 18s (for an example) for $1500 or so with tires. Then you can sell off the summer tires for $500 so and end up with $1000 wheels. Or, get some cheaper winter wheels like they offer at the tire rack.

Quote:
and how much better will the car fare performance wise?
"better" than what? Do you mean, "How much better will it perform in the snow with the BMW recommended winter tire setup than if you just put winter tires on the stock wheels?"? Or do you mean, "How much better will it peform in the snow with any winter tires vs. the stock summer tires?"? If the latter, it will be much, much better. If the former, well its hard to say. I run winter tires in stock tire sizes and its great in the snow. Would it be better with 235s or 245s all around? Probably but I doubt it will be a dramatic improvement.
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      12-22-2008, 12:24 PM   #63
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That was very helpful, thanks. What I meant by "better" is - do the winter tires that I can put on my current set of wheels perform better than a winter set? Regardless, you make some good points. It may just be less of a hassle to get a new set all together and simply change it winter to summer and so on. I have two follow up questions given what you said:

1) Why would replacing the tires every season run the risk of damaging them and the rims?
and
2) Is it preferable to get winter stock wheels that aren't as wide as my current ones, and that aren't 19'' - in other words, will I see a major difference in stability and safety on the road with such tires?

Thanks again
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      12-22-2008, 12:40 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viracocha View Post
1) Why would replacing the tires every season run the risk of damaging them and the rims?
Because every time they are removed/installed, the risk of the wheels being scratched by the machine or by a careless technician is there. Also, the rubber could fatigue after multiple times of being stretched and pulled over the tire.

Quote:
2) Is it preferable to get winter stock wheels that aren't as wide as my current ones, and that aren't 19'' - in other words, will I see a major difference in stability and safety on the road with such tires?
Common wisdom says to get the smallest diameter winter wheel you can fit, because it will offer the most sidewall and thus better cushion from potholes and other winter hazards. In addition common wisdom says that a narrow tire will do better in the winter because the tire will be more likely to cut through the snow than a wider tire instead of plowing through it.

For these reasons, BMW recommends 235/40 R18 all around in the winter, and offers an (expensive) package with those specs. 18" are the smallest wheel that will fit on an M3, BTW, due to brake clearance. That said, pretty much any winter tire setup will offer better performance than any summer tire setup. I get great results running a staggered setup in stock tires sizes on stock 18s in the winter. I use this on both the M3 and 335, and had it on the E46 M3 before that. Never a problem. You'd probably be just as good off with winter tires on the stock 19s too if you prefer. After all, an M3 on stock 19s offers more side wall than a 335i on stock 18s, due to the difference in rolling diameter designed into the cars from the factory. And, in addition, as I had mentioned in another post above, by keeping with the factory tire sizes you have the benefit of stock tire width for maximum traction when the roads are not snowy and you want to wring the car out a little bit.
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      12-22-2008, 12:47 PM   #65
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On extra bit of info:

My dealership is saying that the cost will be 787.80 per tire/wheel, so the entire winter package will cost 3151.20. This is much more expensive than the post at the top of this thread suggests. Does anyone know if this is a fare deal or if there is some better way to do this?
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      12-22-2008, 12:55 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viracocha View Post
On extra bit of info:

My dealership is saying that the cost will be 787.80 per tire/wheel, so the entire winter package will cost 3151.20. This is much more expensive than the post at the top of this thread suggests. Does anyone know if this is a fare deal or if there is some better way to do this?
Which wheels was that quote for? Either way, I would not buy from the dealership because they tend to have high prices on everything.

Tires are pretty much going to be around $200-$300 each, depending on brand and size. You might still be able to get some good deals on Tire Rack close outs. Sometimes you find a great deal - we got a full set for the 335i at about $700 installed last year.

If you want to keep the stock sizes, but don't want to buy a brand new set of stock wheels, check out the buy/sell forum on this site for low mileage take offs. Or, call up tire rack (or look at the website) and find out about getting some cheap aftermarket wheels in stock wheel sizes.
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