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      12-28-2011, 04:07 AM   #1
Nition
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Cannot decide which tires to get......

Hello guys, I posted a thread a few months back about which tires to get to use on a track. It will be my first time on a track and most of you have advised me to stick with the stock setup. However, I've already purchased a set of 18" wheels that I will use for the track and I will need another set of tires since my stock ones are 19". Can anyone recommend a good, cheap set of street tires that will be decent on a track? I don't think I'm ready for a set of racing tires yet, so I will stick to street tires. I need a set of tires that can perform well enough on a wet or dry track, but can take me home in comfort as well. In other words, I need a balanced set of tires. I understand I am asking for a lot but I think this is a big decision because I will be using the tires for some time. Any suggestions and opinions are greatly appreciated.
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      12-28-2011, 04:15 AM   #2
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For street tires I have always been happy with the Nitto-NT05's. They are great for the track and wear quite well. They suck in the Rain though. PS2's in the rain are great.

I just put some Hankook RS3's on my streetable track setup. Have heard great reviews and they seem pretty sticky, although I have not had them on track yet and not sure how they perform in the wet.

I know quite a few people that stick with the NT05 and if it looks like rain just run their street setup.
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      12-28-2011, 05:54 AM   #3
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I have heard good things about the RS-3s as well. I'm considering between the RS-3s, NT05s, Conti ExtremeContact DW and a few others. If budget wasn't an issue, I would probably go with Michelin PSS, but I'm not looking to spend over $1200.
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      12-28-2011, 06:48 AM   #4
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The Hankook RS3s, Nitto NT05s, Bridgestone Potenza RE11s, and Yokohama Advan AD08s seem to be the well-regarded trackable street tires. Do a google search to get an idea of which is most capable in the rain. Also keep in mind that the Michelin Super Sport likely will have significantly longer tread life than the others if its treadwear rating is accurate, so it will need to be replaced less often and in the long run might actually be cheaper than the others. Plus, it's less expensive than the PS2 that it replaces!
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      12-28-2011, 09:45 PM   #5
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I have tracked a car with NT05s.... I would personally never put it on my car

I have done a couple laps with PSS

done a couple track days with Conti DWs

A couple track days with Conti CS3s

A session with Falken Azenis (sp?)

A couple sessions with AD08s

a couple sessions with RE11s

A couple track days on RS3s.

My tire of choice? RS3s.

I also tracked in the pouring pouring rain with RS3s.
Not my choice of tire; I was scared for my life whenever I tried to push it. I ended up just taking it easy and getting a smoother line down rather than caring about a fast lap time...I also hit a puddle and yeah...

My friend put it this way:
Dry: RS3>AD08>RE11
Wet: RE11>AD08>RS3


Do note that the RS3s are loud on the street, and tend to be rough as well. But I won't mind it at all, I like it
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      12-29-2011, 12:35 AM   #6
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      12-29-2011, 01:00 AM   #7
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Just get some Vreds if they come in your size. Cheap, great street tire and work well at the track without getting greasy like PS2's.
THey're also great in the wet.
If you're just starting out, you should NOT be using a super aggressive tire.
It will only cover up bad driving .

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      12-29-2011, 01:09 AM   #8
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If you're looking for an aggressive street tire that does well on the track I can only recommend the R-S3s. I'm on my third set and they are great. I took the plunge back when they first came out. Nobody back then tried them since everyone was swearing by the Star Specs. Now everybody swears by the R-S3s! They're probably the fastest street tire.

NT05s and DWs are NOT comparable IMHO. I know, I've tracked both. They are definitely better than "street only" tires like the General UHP or V12 Evo but certainly not as good as the R-S3. THe others I can't comment as I haven't driven them.
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      12-29-2011, 02:41 AM   #9
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Thank you all for your suggestions. At the moment I am very interested in the RS-3s. However, I just realized that the treadwear on the RS-3s are rated at 140! How fast do these wear out when used aggressively? I also plan to use these tires on the street, so I really don't want something that will wear out in less than 10,000 miles. I also noticed that many of you with RS-3s are complaining about excessive noise when driving on the street. I have to take all these factors into consideration as well.

I also agree that a newbie like me probably wouldn't need the absolute best. My second choice at the moment seems to be the Conti DWs because the reviews say that it performs alright in the wet and dry, and is comfortable as well.

Once again, I really appreciate all your inputs.
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      12-29-2011, 02:47 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paradocs98 View Post
The Hankook RS3s, Nitto NT05s, Bridgestone Potenza RE11s, and Yokohama Advan AD08s seem to be the well-regarded trackable street tires. Do a google search to get an idea of which is most capable in the rain. Also keep in mind that the Michelin Super Sport likely will have significantly longer tread life than the others if its treadwear rating is accurate, so it will need to be replaced less often and in the long run might actually be cheaper than the others. Plus, it's less expensive than the PS2 that it replaces!
You're right! But my friends have advised me against trusting the treadwear ratings so I'm pretty confused here. My first set of PS2's wore out in 12,000 miles and I don't consider myself a very aggressive driver (Note: the PS2 had a treadwear rating of 220).
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      12-29-2011, 11:27 AM   #11
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The RS-3s actually hold up pretty good to track abuse. I've got 4 track weekends (1 was in the rain) and about 8k miles total of them so far. I will probably get one more weekend out them.

Here is my long review of the RS3s on my E46...

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=869823

If you want a better all around tire, the Dunlop Star Specs win. They do better in wet/rain and cold. They still grip well down into the 30's as long as the daytime temps get into the 40's consistently. They even did well when it rained with high 30 degree temps. Even when worn down, they do well in the rain.

The RS3s??? Not so good. They get noticably BAD when it dips down into the 40s. Throw in rain? Forget about it...make sure you have collision and comprehensive on your insurance policy. These tramline like crazy...like make your car turn right crazy.

I would say the cold/wet traction is a deal breaker for a tire that you want to use everyday/all year long (I think is possible in your climate for a summer tire). If you are willing to switch wheels/tires...then RS3 for the dry track, Star Specs for street/wet.
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      12-29-2011, 09:02 PM   #12
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Jumping on the discussion. I used Yokohama AD08, and in mixed city + track use they lasted more than PS2s. I liked the tires in all conditions except standing water. The only thing I did not like was ride harshness not only on the street but even on track (on 19" rims). They would probably be perfect on 18" wheels.

What tire can be similar to AD08 but with just a bit softer ride and has 19" version?
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      12-29-2011, 10:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nition View Post
Thank you all for your suggestions. At the moment I am very interested in the RS-3s. However, I just realized that the treadwear on the RS-3s are rated at 140! How fast do these wear out when used aggressively? I also plan to use these tires on the street, so I really don't want something that will wear out in less than 10,000 miles.
One thing i've learned when tracking is that wear ratings mean absolutely nothing for tires used on the track. You should think more about how many track days you can get out of a tire vs. absolute mileage. I got about 5 track days out of a set of PS2, and with my current set of NT05, I'll probably get about 7 after rotating them.

I ran NT05 for 4 track days with pretty good results. They were quite predictable at the limit, and had much better turn in than the PS2 I used before. A lot of guys up here in Toronto use the NT05 on their M3, and I think we've all found that they're a pretty decent tire for the money. Here's and old review I posted on the NT05 and a bunch of people giving their feedback as well http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...highlight=nt05.

That being said, next year, I'm going to be running a square set up for the first time, and I'm either going to run The Hankook RS-3 or the Dunlop Star Specs in 275/35/18. I've read a ton of good things about both tires.

Last edited by sawzall; 12-29-2011 at 10:25 PM.
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      12-29-2011, 10:22 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
The RS-3s actually hold up pretty good to track abuse. I've got 4 track weekends (1 was in the rain) and about 8k miles total of them so far. I will probably get one more weekend out them.

Here is my long review of the RS3s on my E46...

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=869823

If you want a better all around tire, the Dunlop Star Specs win. They do better in wet/rain and cold. They still grip well down into the 30's as long as the daytime temps get into the 40's consistently. They even did well when it rained with high 30 degree temps. Even when worn down, they do well in the rain.

The RS3s??? Not so good. They get noticably BAD when it dips down into the 40s. Throw in rain? Forget about it...make sure you have collision and comprehensive on your insurance policy. These tramline like crazy...like make your car turn right crazy.

I would say the cold/wet traction is a deal breaker for a tire that you want to use everyday/all year long (I think is possible in your climate for a summer tire). If you are willing to switch wheels/tires...then RS3 for the dry track, Star Specs for street/wet.

Yeah RS3 is NOT a rain tire
Tracked in it... I was scared for my life haha

Daily driving in the rain they're fine. I was driving back in the rain, speeds of 60 were fine. You need to be careful though.
I also had full thread.
I can't imagine it if their thread sucks


10k miles on tires that will be tracked? you guys are too optimistic IMO lol

I have about 3-3500 miles on my RS3s, 1 rain track day, 1 dry track day

They're near the wear bars.... and sidewalls are probably good for one, maybe 2 more track days
This would be about 6k miles total...

I didn't get RS3s expecting the tire to last. The tire to get and expect it to last are AD08s, hands down
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      12-30-2011, 01:25 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by persian54 View Post
10k miles on tires that will be tracked? you guys are too optimistic IMO lol

I have about 3-3500 miles on my RS3s, 1 rain track day, 1 dry track day

They're near the wear bars.... and sidewalls are probably good for one, maybe 2 more track days
This would be about 6k miles total...

I didn't get RS3s expecting the tire to last. The tire to get and expect it to last are AD08s, hands down
Fully agree with your wet handling assessment. The RS3s are TERRIBLE whereas the SS Z1s are superb in the wet. In fact, I had some of my fastest lap times at Taebaek Racing Park (in Korea) on the Z1s in the rain.

I disagree about the treadwear. So far I am at about 8k miles. The middle of my RS3s have plenty of tread left. The problem I had was I kept driving on the street on my track camber setting in the front (-3.7 degrees)...too lazy to jack up the car and loosen 3 nuts x2. So the inside of my front tires are getting close to smooth. And I did two weekends in 100+ degree temps.

I think these could easily last 10k if treated well.

Versus my Star Specs which I diligently did not drive on the street on my track settings AND frequently rotated. I got 4 track days and about 6k miles on them. On all of the tires, the entire tread area almost looked like a slick.

The issue I have with the AD08s, which seem like a great tire, is they are about 50% more than an RS3 or SS Z1. I'm not sure they offer anything extra in grip, treadwear, or noise that the RS3s and the SS Z1s don't. I know, I'm a cheap SOB.

For me, my tire setup on my 330 will be SS Z1s for DD/Wet Track Days and the RS3s or R-Comps for Dry Track Days.
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      12-30-2011, 02:07 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
Fully agree with your wet handling assessment. The RS3s are TERRIBLE whereas the SS Z1s are superb in the wet. In fact, I had some of my fastest lap times at Taebaek Racing Park (in Korea) on the Z1s in the rain.

I disagree about the treadwear. So far I am at about 8k miles. The middle of my RS3s have plenty of tread left. The problem I had was I kept driving on the street on my track camber setting in the front (-3.7 degrees)...too lazy to jack up the car and loosen 3 nuts x2. So the inside of my front tires are getting close to smooth. And I did two weekends in 100+ degree temps.

I think these could easily last 10k if treated well.

Versus my Star Specs which I diligently did not drive on the street on my track settings AND frequently rotated. I got 4 track days and about 6k miles on them. On all of the tires, the entire tread area almost looked like a slick.

The issue I have with the AD08s, which seem like a great tire, is they are about 50% more than an RS3 or SS Z1. I'm not sure they offer anything extra in grip, treadwear, or noise that the RS3s and the SS Z1s don't. I know, I'm a cheap SOB.

For me, my tire setup on my 330 will be SS Z1s for DD/Wet Track Days and the RS3s or R-Comps for Dry Track Days.
Tire wear is highly track and driver oriented; I mean I have heard of stories where a set of PS2s lasts someone 20-30k miles! i have never had any set of tires for longer than 8-10k miles, ever...

A really fast E92 driver (member on here) that I know pretty much went through a set of NT01s in 3 sessions!
He also completely wore the sidewalls of a RS3 down in less than one track day.


I'm not sure how the tracks are over there, but the ones here tend to wear the sidewalls down pretty bad.
For one, at Big Willow, during turn 8, I'm hitting about 130mph or so on my digitial speedo (which has been coded by EAS to show true speed), so my driver left tires get quite the work out... and it's a long turn; it feels like never ending to me lol


The thing for me, when I say a tire is "done" I don't mean the thread is gone or whatever and the tire is unusable. For me, once a tire stop performing up to par, then it's done and it's time to move on

From my experiences, AD08s handle similar but not as well as RS3s in the dry, but they last much longer (thus making the extra cost balanced out).

They are all great tires

Last edited by persian54; 12-30-2011 at 03:00 AM.
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      12-30-2011, 03:08 AM   #17
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Another tire choice is the Toyo R1R. 140 wear rating, but fairly durable, in my experience. It is one of the tires of choice for rain and cooler weather for a lot of autocrossers competing in 'non-"R"-tire' classes. I use them on my daily driver M3 in 265/35x18 and am quite happy with them. They are a summer tire, but have decent grooving and are okay in the rain if you exercise appropriate caution. They may not hold up to HPDE events as well as the ADO8 or RE11, but are $100 less per tire.
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      12-30-2011, 04:19 AM   #18
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I think I forgot to mention that I will only be tracking the car for about 3-4 times a year. Unlike most of you seasoned drivers, I don't think track performance is my main priority. I spoke to some of my friends who have been on the track and they said that RS-3's and NT05's might be a little too noisy for the street. I think my priorities are as follows:

1. Decent Dry/Wet Grip.
2. Comfort on the street.
3. Price. Preferrably under 1200 bucks.
4. Treadwear.

Please excuse me if this makes little sense. As you may have already guessed, I'm very new to this.
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      12-30-2011, 04:23 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nition View Post
I think I forgot to mention that I will only be tracking the car for about 3-4 times a year. Unlike most of you seasoned drivers, I don't think track performance is my main priority. I spoke to some of my friends who have been on the track and they said that RS-3's and NT05's might be a little too noisy for the street. I think my priorities are as follows:

1. Decent Dry/Wet Grip.
2. Comfort on the street.
3. Price. Preferrably under 1200 bucks.
4. Treadwear.

Please excuse me if this makes little sense. As you may have already guessed, I'm very new to this.
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      12-30-2011, 09:28 AM   #20
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Michelin PSS

+1

PSS is a level down from RS3, AD08, etc. as a track tire, but is far above them for comfort, tread wear, and noise.
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      12-30-2011, 09:55 PM   #21
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Michelin PSS
but doesn't it cost more than $1200? I remember they're not cheap

If anyone is interested, a friend of mine has a 255/35/19 FS!
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      12-31-2011, 04:58 AM   #22
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I've had AD08s as street/track tires and loved them. Now that I have a dedicated track wheels/tires set I may replace them w the PSS.

But I agree w others about how tracking adds a whole new dimension to ideas of tread wear. Your main track wear will be on the corners, especially as you get faster in the turns. If you find that is limiting the mileage you get, you may find a $500 investment in camber plates pays for itself pretty quickly.
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