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Old 02-07-2011, 12:56 PM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Delta Charlie
Posts: 41
Snow tires etc report

This is regarding my police-auction, $9k, confiscated, 7-owner 99 tip.
Of course, it's white.

I'm a total rookie to all this so please bear with.

Following the generous guidance provided by members of this board, I located and installed a set of clean, used 17"s with Dunlop snow tires fitted. Good shape, six bills.

Wheels are OEM, and replaced OEM 18"s. Everything fit, no hassles

The wheels were balanced, the car aligned, (more to come on that later) and the car thoroughly gone over.

Firstly, it is no longer a paintshaker. Smooth all the way. Had it up to 90 and it feels great. Suspension seems to be having an easier time of it. Why is that? Don't taller tires have less rolling resistance and therefore less force driven into them by road imperfections?

Having said this, the steering feels twitchier, faster, dartier. Much. Why is that?
It also feels like the nose is sitting a little higher, which seems impossible, but there it is.

Traction is good in the cold damp, though I did force massive understeer
this am in a damp, cobbly, slow corner that had to be taken off-throttle.
Interesting. Have to slow down there in the future.

The 18's with Yokos absolutely feel harder, more planted, grippier...and I was getting four wheel slides in a few selected spots since the temps dropped.

So far this seems like a good move.

Had the gearbox serviced as it was leaking, though it was working perfectly.
Now it's working...more perfectly! Actually, I don't like autos so I mainly use the Tip.
Since the service I've tried the auto just to see how it behaves, and it's good, fine, better than I thought, and definitely better than before the service.

Changed the oil after only a few hundred miles. The first change went dark immediately. My hope is that I removed some gunk by doing so.

Car is running like a champ. My wife described it as 'buttery'.
And it's stalling at lights. Can't have it all, can we?

Since the wheels were off, I had the shop slam in the fresh set of plugs I had in the trunk. Now I have an 02 light. See above paragraph.

Good buy, good learning experience.

Ivan at IMA did the work, drove the car some, pronounced it 'pretty cherry'.

Given that I bought the MFer sight unseen, that's not bad.

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Old 02-08-2011, 07:05 AM   #2
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Location: Hot Springs Village, Arkansas
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On the question of the smaller wheels, you'd have to weigh them to be sure but most of the time smaller wheel/tires are lighter, which would be less unsprung weight and a better ride. Also they would likely have less rotational inertia and would improve straight line performance.

Glad your car is working out for you. I bought a 2000 S tiptronic just before Christmas and I'm kind of surprised how nice the whole package is. My car has 18" wheels and personally I'd prefer 17" with a higher profile tire.
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Old 02-08-2011, 06:59 PM   #3
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Charlotte, NC
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Originally Posted by Dale_K
My car has 18" wheels and personally I'd prefer 17" with a higher profile tire.
Dale, trade ya, mine are the 17s
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Old 02-09-2011, 07:32 AM   #4
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Maybe. Let me think it over.

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