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Old 12-16-2005, 04:59 AM   #1
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Summer Max Performance Tires

My car came with a brand new set of Sumatumo tires. although they have been OK, I'm not happy with them and they are being ditched for the 06 year. I wanted to put PZero's on the car but I have read nothing but bad things about the wear and performance of said tires. Now I'm thinking about the Michelin Sport Cup pilots. I'm looking for feedback on which tires you run and how they are performing for you.

Last edited by Ghostrider 310; 12-16-2005 at 12:08 PM.
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Old 12-16-2005, 05:34 AM   #2
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Car & Driver has a good article.

in a recent issue that tests 10 or so brands of performance tires. They tested in dry and wet conditions; if you live in a dry climate I'd think the wet performance would be less of an issue. The winners were:

Mich PS2--terrific all around tire
BFG KD--great dry weather tire
Falken 215--great all around tire, performance wise
Goodyear f1 GC D3 (?)--great dry and wet tire

I think those were the high points.

On a personal experience level, I like

Mich MXXX3
Mich PS2
Kumho MX---to a lesser degree

Don't like:
Continentals

On the low cost side, I've heard good things about BFG Force Sport, Kumho SPT
or BFG KDW2
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Old 12-16-2005, 08:07 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikenOH

Don't like:
Continentals
Hi there. I had the Conti CSC2s on my old C43 AMG and I have them on my Boxster. I don't have any wet/dry problems with them on the street. What do you not like about them? Thanks for the info!
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Old 12-16-2005, 08:46 AM   #4
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Here is a very good tire comparo I found in C&D.
http://www.caranddriver.com/article.asp?section_id=4&article_id=10252&page_number=1

The PS2's are always a sure bet but those new Yokohama's sure are impressive as they had the best auto-x time and by far the best braking. It's sounds like Ghostrider wants a track/auto-x tire though as Pilot cups are gumballs and horrible in the wet. I recammend this article to anyone seeking new high performance tires.
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Old 12-16-2005, 09:37 AM   #5
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Continental tires

I guess my experience with a set on a E320 MB a few years ago really colored my view of the company and the products.

These tires were standard on the E320, wore quickly, had repeated belt failures and traction--dry or wet went south after about 20K miles and this was highway driving. I was mazed MB would put them on a $55K car--sort of like Ford and the tires on the Explorer, but not to that degree.

Anyway, other forums--Pete's, Renntech and the tireRack-- have lot's of comments on continental performance tires, probably the previous version, and none was good. IIRC, the consensus was not very responsive handling, average traction and loud after a they started to wear.

I understand the C2 tire is better than the one it replaced. Having said that the Tirerack comparison of Max summer tires has the C2 around 10 or worse. It may not be a bad tire but there are others out there that are better. A lot of it would depend onthe kind of driving you do; if you're just cruising, you might not notice much of a difference between the bunch except for noise and ride quality. of course, YMMV..
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Old 12-16-2005, 10:26 AM   #6
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I checked out the Michelin Pilot cups here http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Michelin&tireModel=Pilot+Sport+Cup&partnum=24YR8SPORTCUP&partnum=635YR8SPORTCUP&vehicleSearch=true&place=7&index=7
just to see what these things cost for a boxster. They are not that much more than PS2's so that got me thinking. Why not get these instead of PS2's because I do auto-x events and I rarely if ever drive in the rain. Well then I found my answer. The Cups have a wear rating of 80 and the PS2's have a wear rating of 220. Does this basically mean then that the Ps2's will last almost 3x longer than the cups? I would love to have the dry performance that the pilot cups offer but I would't shell out that kind of cash for a tire that will only last 5-10k miles tops.
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Old 12-16-2005, 11:00 AM   #7
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If you're looking for a stricly auto-x tire,

the PSC' are good, but they come shaved to 6/32 tread and are a softer compound than PS2's. You might want to get them heat cycled before hand to maximize their life.

I've heard these are a better track tire than auto-x because they take a while to heat up and are best when hot.

Victoracers are just he opposite; they get hot faster but can overheat at the track. There was a longish article on this either in Panorama or Excellence a few years back with lots of detail.

The PSC are different from a lot of other softcompund tires since they actually have tread on them, as does the Victoracer. Many R compound tires have no tread or just a groove or two around the tire.

If you're looking for a tire for both street and auto-x use, the Falken 615 has gotten some rave reviews as a good in-between tire; not R compound but better than a high [performance street tire. Also, Yokohama has new tire out which is suppose to be a s good or better than the PS2.
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Old 12-17-2005, 05:08 AM   #8
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Be carefull and consider want out of the tires. Everyone wants to jump on the PS2 bandwagon but for many, me included, they are not the proper tire for the Boxster if you want to maintain or enhance the balance of the car, especially at the limit.

The PS2 is part of a new breed of tire that attempts to increase the comfort level while still maintaining reasonable directional stability and precision. This results in a tire with a hybrid sidewall construction that can work very well in some applications and horribly wrong in others. I have found that the Boxster is very sensitive to sidewall construction and doesn't really like the PS2's in the 18" configuration (you didn't mention the sizes you are shopping). Although the highway ride was very nice and the absolute grip these tires produce is excellent the loss of precision upon initial turn in and when they are subjected to varying side loads within a turn makes the driving experience less enjoyable for me. I switched back to the PS Rib (Pilot Sport N1) and although the ride is harsher the handling and feel of the car is much more to my liking. The overall grip is still very high and I find that I don't lose anything on the track or at the autoX.

You might want to consider the tried and true Bridgestone SO3's. They have been the standard bearer for many P-Car owners who track their cars regularly for the last few years.
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Old 12-17-2005, 07:29 AM   #9
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Mjw...

do you think this due to a softer sidewall? I haven't driven my car with PS2's enough to get a feel for steering response relative to the Kumho's I had on the '99' but when I went from the Michelin MXX3 to the Kumho, I immediately noticed the less immediate response to steering inputs.
The ride was softer in the Kumho's and it still had lots of grip, but the "hardwired" feel of the MXX3's was not there.

A good friend that used to be a Goodyear tire engineer explained all the compromises you have to make, depending what you want the tire to do for you. I'm wonder if the loss of turn in response is a result of getting a softer ride.
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Old 12-17-2005, 08:40 AM   #10
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I like the initial turn in on my PS1's. Are the PS2's less responsive than the originals? What do you guys think of those Yoko Advan Novus tires?
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Last edited by Adam; 12-17-2005 at 08:42 AM.
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Old 12-17-2005, 08:54 AM   #11
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Great feedback from everybody, I made a mistake in my post in identifying the Michelin tire. I'm looking for max performance street use only. I was shocked to see C&D magazine choose a Goodyear product. I have always found the Pirelli's and Michelin tires performed very well. Things have certainly changed, it sounds like that Yokohama product is a great choice now. I was surprised the Michelin pilots didn't score better in the comparison. My '98 has the optional 17' wheels, it's a non S 2.5L.
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Old 12-17-2005, 12:43 PM   #12
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I have long sweeping turns where I live that I usuall negotiate between 80 and 100. Sometimes the car wiggles under hard cornering. It almost feels like the sidewalls are rolling over. What might be causing this? I am running Bridgestone Potenza's that came with the car.
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Old 12-17-2005, 02:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghostrider 310
Great feedback from everybody, I made a mistake in my post in identifying the Michelin tire. I'm looking for max performance street use only. I was shocked to see C&D magazine choose a Goodyear product. I have always found the Pirelli's and Michelin tires performed very well. Things have certainly changed, it sounds like that Yokohama product is a great choice now. I was surprised the Michelin pilots didn't score better in the comparison. My '98 has the optional 17' wheels, it's a non S 2.5L.
Remember, C&D rated the tires in the wet and dry and then took cost into consideration. The Goodyear is not the best "dry" performance tire in that group. It just gave consistent performance in the wet and the dry at a resonable cost. The best dry tire appears to be the Yoko's.

Rail, what PSI are you running in the tires? I'm running 33 up front and 36 on the back and have been very happy with that setup for street use.
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Old 12-17-2005, 06:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikenOH
do you think this due to a softer sidewall? I haven't driven my car with PS2's enough to get a feel for steering response relative to the Kumho's I had on the '99' but when I went from the Michelin MXX3 to the Kumho, I immediately noticed the less immediate response to steering inputs.
The ride was softer in the Kumho's and it still had lots of grip, but the "hardwired" feel of the MXX3's was not there.

A good friend that used to be a Goodyear tire engineer explained all the compromises you have to make, depending what you want the tire to do for you. I'm wonder if the loss of turn in response is a result of getting a softer ride.
In a nutshell, yes. The Kuhmo's are known to be a softer tire, that's how they were engineered. The PS2 has a very soft sidewall as well but to be fair, the sidewall in the PS2 is very sophisticated, it's not simply softer. It's designed to combine the softer sidewall with an outside tread density that should allow for very precise turn in and in the proper application the PS2 is a killer tire. I run a 17" version on my V70R and it transformed that car. The ride is superb and it can generate A LOT of corning force. To be fair, the suspension on the Volvo is geared for a softer tire so it takes the PS2's very well. The 986 suspension, OTOH is designed around a tire like the Yokohama AVS Sport, Pirelli P-Zero or the Michelin Pilot Sport 1 (derived from the MXX line of tires), all of these tires have a much stiffer sidewall and less tread squirm than the PS2 and certainly more than the Kuhmo's.

If you care about staying with an N-Spec 17" tire then the Michelin PS Rib (N2) seems to be the hot ticket. If you want to try something a little more geared for street/track then I would seriously consider bumping the fronts up to 225/45's and look into Bridgestone Potenza S-03 Pole Positions or the new Yokohama ADVAN Neova AD07.

With all that being said there are a lot of people quite happy running the Kuhmo MX's in 17's on their Boxsters but I doubt they are tracking the car reguarly OR they do track it and got tired of paying $200+ per tire after destroying them on the track in one season.
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Old 12-19-2005, 09:33 AM   #15
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MJW--interesting response..

Regarding dedicated DE tires, I've drive the MX on a track and it's clear the tread needed to be shaved. One magazine that tested the tire put it right up there with the BFG KD in a short auto-X course with shaved tread. When I drove it on a 90 degree day, the tread was getting greasey after several 1/2 hour sessions but when I got it home the tread wear was uprisingly minimal. I'm thinking that if the tread was shaved to 5/32 there would be more traction, less heat from squirm and less tread flaking off.

What i'm thinking about is going with 17" tires for DE's on a 987 for $ reasons and using a shaved tire like the MX or G force Sport because they do give good performance--as opposed to great--cheap to replace (Est. $120/tire) and can be flipped if one side wears. Also, since I have to drive a good ways to a track, I'll actrually have a tread pattern in case I get caught in a shower.

TR has quoted me $100 to shave a set so a delivered MX set would be around $650
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Old 12-21-2005, 05:29 AM   #16
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Just for grins I ordered a set of Falken Azenis RT-615 from Discount Tires Direct to try out on my 17" rims. These tires seem to have quite a following with the Autocross and drifter crowd and considering their price I figured they were worth trying as track/autocross tires. I went with the 225/45x17 and 255/40x17 sizes, my wheels are 7" an 9" widths so these should fit perfectly.

Once I get some track time on them I'll post some reviews.

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Old 12-21-2005, 06:08 AM   #17
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MJW--That looks like a good choice,

What year Boxster do you have and which wheels are you using?

After all the chatter recently about the larger OD on the rear wheel of the 987 and how you need to stay in a certain range of tire size ratio--front to rear--what you've got just might work on my car( using the 245/45/17 size) and be relatively inexpensive.

Let know how it works out.
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Old 12-21-2005, 06:29 PM   #18
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Mike,

It's a 2003 S, soon to have the RoW M030 suspension installed. They are going on a set of Mille Miglia turbo twist replicas, 17x7" and 17x9". I know, these are heavier than the factory wheels but they are all I have in 17's and they aren't really bad wheels. If you were to go out and buy a second set of track wheels and tires the package would be very reasonably priced, somewhere around $1800. That's for the entire set of wheels and tires OR about what I paid for the rear set of 18" wheels (minus tires) that are on the car now
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Old 12-22-2005, 05:34 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam
I checked out the Michelin Pilot cups here http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Michelin&tireModel=Pilot+Sport+Cup&partnum=24YR8SPORTCUP&partnum=635YR8SPORTCUP&vehicleSearch=true&place=7&index=7
just to see what these things cost for a boxster. They are not that much more than PS2's so that got me thinking. Why not get these instead of PS2's because I do auto-x events and I rarely if ever drive in the rain. Well then I found my answer. The Cups have a wear rating of 80 and the PS2's have a wear rating of 220. Does this basically mean then that the Ps2's will last almost 3x longer than the cups? I would love to have the dry performance that the pilot cups offer but I would't shell out that kind of cash for a tire that will only last 5-10k miles tops.

I also beleive that they have much less tread depth. That, and the quick wear will keep me away from them, although i would love to get them ($ issue is stopping me).
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Old 12-22-2005, 06:49 AM   #20
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MJW--I hear what you're saying.

After chasing after every 987 tire/wheel set on ebay that I came across, I think the best deal I've seen is a set of Mille Miglia Cup1 wheels with either MX's or G-Force Sport tires from Tire rack.
The Wheels run about 3lbs heavier per wheel than the stock 18"s but an set of 4 with the tires mentioned shaved to 5/32, balanced and delivered runs $1400-1500.
I'd like to have lighter wheels but for DE's I don't think this will make much of a difference. Plus, with a 7.5 " front, I can put up to a 245 tire on it.

Ebay just had a set of 987 17" tire/rim takeoffs that sold with shipped for about $1250. Probably not a bad price but the 6.5" rim on the front limits what kind of tire you can use on the car. Look forward to hearing about the 615's.
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