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      11-13-2009, 04:06 PM   #1
yalag
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Learning about m3 winter tires options!

Hello all, enjoying my brand new AW M3 E92 for the past 3 weeks. So far loving it, however the inevitable is coming This is my first time owning a BMW so please bare with me. I would like to know:

1) Which setup (tire+rim) would give me the absolutely best performance on snow. (I'm asking this because I had a lot of trouble with hills with my last car at only 300HP so I might be willing to spend more money if the performance is good).

2) Which setup would give me the most bang for the bucks (the best performance/dollar spent. basically if the above option is outside my budget what should I settle for?)

And if you recommend 1 or 2, please provide where I can purchase them!

Thank you!!
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      11-13-2009, 06:48 PM   #2
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May I suggest Bridgestone LM60 (New & Improved over LM25) or Dunlop WinterSport 3D. Since you have 19" OEM for summer, I would recommend to go to 18" (just to save a bit of money for both the tire & wheel package).

Aside from buying from the dealers (listed for $4,000 18" package deal), there are:
http://www.simplytire.com/
http://www.tires23.com/pages/winter.html

Call them and check them out. Prices are reasonable, IMO.

Last edited by bobblehead; 11-14-2009 at 08:09 AM.
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      11-13-2009, 07:02 PM   #3
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Here's a page full of solid choices, and you'd likely save a ton of money by ordering from Tire Rack. They have an inexpensive 18" wheel to fit your M3 in stock and they'll ship with the tires installed and the wheels balanced.
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/TireSe...er=18&x=9&y=11
A couple of comments:
Since you have a Canadian car, you won't need TPMS sensors.
The OEM package which I have is 235/40/18 Alpins, but 245/40s are a better fit.
I'm on my third M3 in southern Ontario and I prefer Pirelli Sottozeros.

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      11-16-2009, 04:03 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info but I am a complete newbie with tires

So basically, which combination would give the best snow performance? 235/40/18 Alpins, 245/40/18 Alpins or Pirelli Sottozeros? And how much is each one respectively?
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      11-16-2009, 04:24 PM   #5
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245/40/18 is the recommended size

If you are looking for Pirelli, much pricier for the Winter 240 Sottozero ($450 each) than the Michelin Pilot Alpin 3 ($340 each) .... approx. range + installed & balanced + taxes
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      11-16-2009, 04:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobblehead View Post
245/40/18 is the recommended size

If you are looking for Pirelli, much pricier for the Sottozero - Series 2 than the Michelin Pilot Alpin 3
I hear that you are suppose to be getting thinner tires for better performance, any truth in this? Also are 18s better than 19s?
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      11-16-2009, 04:36 PM   #7
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thinner tires or low profile tire is for summer performance & handling ... for winter, you should get higher profile tire. since the oem is a 19" and if you want to spend the money to maintain the 19" winter rims & tires, then go ahead and spend. The alterative one size down from 19" to 18" would mean you will save a bit of money. Just my 2 cents.
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      11-16-2009, 04:41 PM   #8
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You need to decide if you want a more sport performance oriented tire or a full snow tire.

I only buy sport winter tires. I like dunlop wintersports, but bought the pa3's this season to give them a try. People say the sottozero is not worth the money, but is also a sporty winter tire. If you want non sporty get a blizzak, although I've had really bad luck with them saw toothing and feeling mushy/noisy.

I've used winterpsorts the last 10 years and they are a great tire. I hope the pa3 gives me a little more dry performance at the loss of some deep snow traction (ok w/me).
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      11-16-2009, 08:46 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobblehead View Post
245/40/18 is the recommended size

If you are looking for Pirelli, much pricier for the Winter 240 Sottozero ($450 each) than the Michelin Pilot Alpin 3 ($340 each) .... approx. range + installed & balanced + taxes
$239 vs. $223 at Tire Rack.
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      11-16-2009, 10:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobblehead View Post
245/40/18 is the recommended size

If you are looking for Pirelli, much pricier for the Winter 240 Sottozero ($450 each) than the Michelin Pilot Alpin 3 ($340 each) .... approx. range + installed & balanced + taxes
BMW actually recommends 235/40/R18 for their OEM winter package, unless that has changed for 2009/2010...
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      11-16-2009, 10:50 PM   #11
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Anyone else have some good recommendation for best performance winter tires? I want to be able to drive my car in the winter!!
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      11-16-2009, 11:13 PM   #12
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Since Ottawa always have a lot of snow and freeze rain, snow tires are very important to us.
I used Michelin PA3 last year, I used 2nd gear to start up hill and is OK.
I like Michelin, even reuse 2/3 year and it is OK.

The best snow tire I ever use is Nokian Tire.
First year is perfect. Even day with heavy snow still drive like summer, as long as enough ground clearance but second year is ......
Rubber compound change very quickly.
If you can afford every year a new set of snow tire, I will choose Nokia tire.
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      11-17-2009, 08:29 AM   #13
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SubwOOer is bang on. Depends what you are going to be using the car for in the winter. Are you taking it up skiing in a snowstorm? Are you just driving the car on nice sunny Sundays in the winter, but also want a winter tire just in case you get caught in some snow?
If you dont plan to go out in any of the big snowstorms, I highly recommend the Hankook Icebear W300. It is VERY inexpensive, and it is a performance oriented snow tire so in the dry you do not give up too much performance compared to the softer Blizzaks etc. That said, I use the hankooks as my daily driver and did not get stuck in the snowstorms last year. I honestly think that with any decent winter tire, you will not have a problem with the M3...the problem is going to be when you enter an intersection that has not been fully plowed yet. If you beach the car on a pile of snow, a winter tire is not going to help you. With DSC fully activated, it is VERY hard to spin this car. You would have to enter a corner WAY too fast to get into any trouble. I have used The icebears on my previous 3series (2 winters) and on my M3 last winter and only got stuck once in the 325i when I entered an intersection with a pile of snow higher then the ground clearence and the rear tires were lifted up too much. Like I said before, even a Nokian, can not help you when the tires are off the ground. Luckily it was just down my street so I ran home, got a shovel and was out in 5min.
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      11-17-2009, 11:07 AM   #14
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Here you go...

Quote:
Originally Posted by yalag View Post
Anyone else have some good recommendation for best performance winter tires? I want to be able to drive my car in the winter!!
Pretty accurate rankings and descriptions: http://www.apa.ca/template.asp?DocID=298
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      11-17-2009, 02:57 PM   #15
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This is my only car, so basically I'm looking for a tire that allows me to go out 90% of the time when I need to, and that includes being able to go on hills (my area has quite a bit).

Looks like so far, the recommendations are between Pirelli Winter 240 Sottozero and Michelin Primacy Alpin PA3. And the size I believe is 235/40/R18? What do those numbers mean anyway? There's no such thing as the better numbers for snow right?
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      11-17-2009, 03:13 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yalag View Post
This is my only car, so basically I'm looking for a tire that allows me to go out 90% of the time when I need to, and that includes being able to go on hills (my area has quite a bit).

Looks like so far, the recommendations are between Pirelli Winter 240 Sottozero and Michelin Primacy Alpin PA3. And the size I believe is 235/40/R18? What do those numbers mean anyway? There's no such thing as the better numbers for snow right?
Mine is going into the dealers in less than an hour for it's new shoes - BMW oem wheel #270M 18" shod with the Mich Primacy Alpin PA3s. They are 235/40/R18s. It was that or the new Blizzaks LM-60s. The Pirelli should be good also. Bear in mind these are all "performance" winters, not heavy-duty pure winters. As you say, most of us can stay home/use other vehicles for those few days of really harsh winter. I have an old Honda beater to drive then, but most days I plan on using the M.
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      11-17-2009, 03:13 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yalag View Post
This is my only car, so basically I'm looking for a tire that allows me to go out 90% of the time when I need to, and that includes being able to go on hills (my area has quite a bit).

Looks like so far, the recommendations are between Pirelli Winter 240 Sottozero and Michelin Primacy Alpin PA3. And the size I believe is 235/40/R18? What do those numbers mean anyway? There's no such thing as the better numbers for snow right?
Personaly I would go 245/40 -18's as it would give you a touch more ride height which is the biggest problem with our cars in the snow.At this time of year I would not be too focused on the brand but the fact that the tire is available as supply is already quite short in the tires that work on our cars.
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      11-17-2009, 03:32 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yalag View Post
And the size I believe is 235/40/R18? What do those numbers mean anyway? There's no such thing as the better numbers for snow right?
Plug the alternative sizes in here: http://www.1010tires.com/TireSizeCal...?action=submit
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      11-17-2009, 03:45 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tuco44 View Post
Mine is going into the dealers in less than an hour for it's new shoes - BMW oem wheel #270M 18" shod with the Mich Primacy Alpin PA3s. They are 235/40/R18s. It was that or the new Blizzaks LM-60s. The Pirelli should be good also. Bear in mind these are all "performance" winters, not heavy-duty pure winters. As you say, most of us can stay home/use other vehicles for those few days of really harsh winter. I have an old Honda beater to drive then, but most days I plan on using the M.
Are you sure they are the Primacy? My OEM came with the Pilot Alpin PA3 last year. In my experience last year around the GTA these tires performed well and still gave you the feel of a more performance oriented tire. Clearance is the biggest issue with our cars as mentioned. You are more likely to get beached then stuck becuase of your winter tire selection in my opinion.
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      11-17-2009, 03:49 PM   #20
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Apparently I just called and they said if I bought tire insurance with them, I have to buy "BMW" tires. So much for asking for the best purchase....

They don't have any option either, its just the

Michelin Pilot Run flat 18'' 235/40/R18 for $3900. Are these any good for all year around snow driving?
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      11-17-2009, 03:52 PM   #21
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Quote:
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Apparently I just called and they said if I bought tire insurance with them, I have to buy "BMW" tires. So much for asking for the best purchase....

They don't have any option either, its just the

Michelin Pilot Run flat 18'' 235/40/R18 for $3900. Are these any good for all year around snow driving?
I have heard this before as well. What dealer? - you sure they said Run Flat?
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      11-17-2009, 03:53 PM   #22
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I do not understand why people are reccomending 235/40 -18's when they are already shorter than the present front tires which are are fair bit shorter than the present stock rear tires.The extra width is a non factor in the snow as all the 18" winter tires are shit in the snow anyways.The only tires in the snow that really work are tall & skinny and they will not work on our cars any how.I would more concerned how the car drives on bare roads or ice than in deep snow as it will not be that great any way that you look at it.IMO!
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