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Discussion Starter #1
Happy New Year, all! I bought my Spyder 18 months ago from the original owner w/only 13,000 miles; but b/c of the age of the tires, they've worn badly over the past 8,000 miles. Since I live the metro DC area and I drive the car year round, I want to put all season tires on it.

I've read quite a few posts here, spoken to reps @ TireRack, and looked at lots of websites. The tires I want are too large in diameter [Conti Extreme Contact DWS], even if I change wheels, so it looks like my choices are the Falken ZIEX ZE-912 or the Toyo Proxes 4, neither of which I had considered until I found them mentioned here on SpyderChat. Both offer 195.50.15 [front] & 205.50.15 [rear].

At this point, I'm not ready to do any serious mods beyond what I've already done [new sound system & having gone 'stealth']; [pictures to come later].

I'd appreciate any thoughts, comments and/or recommendations anyone has to offer based on their past experience.

Thanks much! Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #6
But the Bridgestone RE11s are summer tires--not what I'm wanting. I looked at various all-season Yokohoma tires including the Advans, but again, couldn't find one that would fit the stock wheels that had an overall diameter of close to 23".

It seems that as I've read, my choices are limited until I get new wheels & increase the size of the wheel wells to accommodate larger tires.
 

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But the Bridgestone RE11s are summer tires--not what I'm wanting. I looked at various all-season Yokohoma tires including the Advans, but again, couldn't find one that would fit the stock wheels that had an overall diameter of close to 23".

It seems that as I've read, my choices are limited until I get new wheels & increase the size of the wheel wells to accommodate larger tires.
Do you feel going with larger tires that are substandard to what came with the car from the factory is a good thing. Do you feel you may have made a mistake and bought the wrong car, maybe a major gripe that it's a sports car and you were looking for a commuter that looks sporty.
 

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I had the Falken ZIEX ZE-912 on my car when I bought it and had no complaints about them. For a DD i think they would be fine.
 

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I found the sidewalls to be unsupportive, especially on the highway. Can you concur? Or am I just picky?
are you slaloming on the highway? :lol: No, I never noticed anything outside the norm regarding the sidewall feel. If you compare them to a top tier street tire then yes the sidewalls feel much mushier but this is for a DD car.
 

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But the Bridgestone RE11s are summer tires--not what I'm wanting.
Are you planning on driving in snow / freezing conditions? In my experience (in California, mind you), summer tires provide superior grip in both wet (severe rainstorms) and dry conditions. The difference is that all-seasons include snow tread (for the occasional snow day), but summer tires do not.

In terms of longevity, all-season tires will generally (but not always) outlast summer tires. All-seasons also cost a little bit less. This makes them convenient for the average person driving an average car.

That said, I would not pick all season tires for an MR2. The MR2 is very capable in cornering and acceleration (especially both at the same time), and I recommend selecting tires that can handle what the MR2 can dish out. Maybe if you drive it like an old granny drives her cadillac to church on Sunday, you'd be fine, but is that what you bought your MR2 for? In the end, it's all about what you want to do with the car.

I personally have a stack of spare wheels in the garage. It doesn't snow in my area (1 day/year average), but if it did I would keep true snow/winter tires on hand, and swap wheels as necessary.

I actually found an article that backed up my personal experiences:
http://www.insideline.com/features/tire-test-all-season-vs-snow-vs-summer.html

As for recommendations, I like Yokohama S.Drives, Dunlop Direzza Z1 Star Spec (not the DZ101's), and BFGoodrich KDW2 (g-force sport t/a bla bla bla), but I don't know about availablility in stock 00-02 sizes.

I aim for 205/50-15 in front and 225/45-16 in back. I'm running 245/45-16 in the back right now, but it's a little too much width for a stock mr2.

People here will tell you to run the same tires front and back. I will recommend matched tires too, but I usually run Star Spec in front and KDW2 in the back. Star Specs are VERY grippy, and I enjoy the improved front-end feel, but it's easier for me to spin my car out now that I've shifted the balance of grip towards the front.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Do you feel going with larger tires that are substandard to what came with the car from the factory is a good thing. Do you feel you may have made a mistake and bought the wrong car, maybe a major gripe that it's a sports car and you were looking for a commuter that looks sporty.
Sounds like a test question! :lol: I work at home, but do drive the car every day year-round; just simply gathering facts & opinions to make the best decision for me & the Spyder. For the record, it is the most fun car I've ever owned, even more than the '87 Supra I drove for 10 years. [As long as it's above 40 degrees & not raining, the top is down!]

I know I'll be sacrificing some of what makes the Spyder special, but I don't have the luxury of owning 2 cars yet. I've not ruled out going back to summer tires come spring either.
 

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I ran the 912's on my spyder and loved them. they weren't as grippy as my star specs, but still did well.

I also bought them cheaper at vulcantire.com I love tire rack, but i love saving money more.. lol
 

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Sounds like a test question! :lol: I work at home, but do drive the car every day year-round; just simply gathering facts & opinions to make the best decision for me & the Spyder. For the record, it is the most fun car I've ever owned, even more than the '87 Supra I drove for 10 years. [As long as it's above 40 degrees & not raining, the top is down!]

I know I'll be sacrificing some of what makes the Spyder special, but I don't have the luxury of owning 2 cars yet. I've not ruled out going back to summer tires come spring either.
Tire switch back would probably be a better solution for you.
My advice is to not skimp on tires.
 

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I've been running the Falken 912's for a while and have no problems with them. Sure, they don't have quite the dry grip as a really sticky summer tire, but I drive the car anytime I can, regardless of the weather. If you push the car to it's limits, and run on the ragged edge, this may not be the tire for you. I don't do that. I have lost traction on a curve one time, and that was actually my fault (lack of driving skill) Another consideration is that I don't put it up for the winter as we still have some nice days even then. We sometimes get a lot of rain, and they have done well in the rain for me. My opinion is that on wet pavement they will outperform a sticky summer tire. Never tried them on Ice & snow, and never will. One advantage that they have is that they are asymmetrical and you can rotate the tires from side to side (not front to back since the wheels are differernt sizes) and get rid of the annoying wear patterns and noise associated with dirrectional tires.

In the end it comes down to what do you use your car for, and how do you drive it.

All tires have limitations, know what they are for whatever tire you choose.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Are you planning on driving in snow / freezing conditions? In my experience (in California, mind you), summer tires provide superior grip in both wet (severe rainstorms) and dry conditions. The difference is that all-seasons include snow tread (for the occasional snow day), but summer tires do not.

In terms of longevity, all-season tires will generally (but not always) outlast summer tires. All-seasons also cost a little bit less. This makes them convenient for the average person driving an average car.

That said, I would not pick all season tires for an MR2. The MR2 is very capable in cornering and acceleration (especially both at the same time), and I recommend selecting tires that can handle what the MR2 can dish out. Maybe if you drive it like an old granny drives her cadillac to church on Sunday, you'd be fine, but is that what you bought your MR2 for? In the end, it's all about what you want to do with the car.

I personally have a stack of spare wheels in the garage. It doesn't snow in my area (1 day/year average), but if it did I would keep true snow/winter tires on hand, and swap wheels as necessary.

I actually found an article that backed up my personal experiences:
http://www.insideline.com/features/tire-test-all-season-vs-snow-vs-summer.html

As for recommendations, I like Yokohama S.Drives, Dunlop Direzza Z1 Star Spec (not the DZ101's), and BFGoodrich KDW2 (g-force sport t/a bla bla bla), but I don't know about availablility in stock 00-02 sizes.

I aim for 205/50-15 in front and 225/45-16 in back. I'm running 245/45-16 in the back right now, but it's a little too much width for a stock mr2.

People here will tell you to run the same tires front and back. I will recommend matched tires too, but I usually run Star Spec in front and KDW2 in the back. Star Specs are VERY grippy, and I enjoy the improved front-end feel, but it's easier for me to spin my car out now that I've shifted the balance of grip towards the front.
Thanks for that article; makes sense that summer & winter tires out-perform all season tires. As Dev suggested, it probably makes sense to buy a set of winter tires now and then buy some new summer tires in the spring. This little project has been more complicated than I expected, but I've learned a lot as a result. :icon_eek:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I ran the 912's on my spyder and loved them. they weren't as grippy as my star specs, but still did well.

I also bought them cheaper at vulcantire.com I love tire rack, but i love saving money more.. lol

Thanks for the hint re vulcantire.com; didn't know about them
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I've been running the Falken 912's for a while and have no problems with them. Sure, they don't have quite the dry grip as a really sticky summer tire, but I drive the car anytime I can, regardless of the weather. If you push the car to it's limits, and run on the ragged edge, this may not be the tire for you. I don't do that. I have lost traction on a curve one time, and that was actually my fault (lack of driving skill) Another consideration is that I don't put it up for the winter as we still have some nice days even then. We sometimes get a lot of rain, and they have done well in the rain for me. My opinion is that on wet pavement they will outperform a sticky summer tire. Never tried them on Ice & snow, and never will. One advantage that they have is that they are asymmetrical and you can rotate the tires from side to side (not front to back since the wheels are differernt sizes) and get rid of the annoying wear patterns and noise associated with dirrectional tires.

In the end it comes down to what do you use your car for, and how do you drive it.

All tires have limitations, know what they are for whatever tire you choose.

Thanks for the explanation of asymmetrical tires; that's good to know.
 

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no, no slalom, but I didn't like the way they accentuated wandering at speed. Again, being picky.
I haven't had any problem with wandering at all, even in the triple digits it runs as true and straight as a large go-cart is going to. :lol:
 

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You mentioned all season tires. If you are going to drive in snow, I'd consider performance snow tires (Blizzacks for example) on dedicated wheels, and high performance tires for summer only. I use Blizzakcks on my STi and they are excellent in the rain, snow, and on cold dry pavement. All seasons are mediocre at best all year long.
 
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