I"ve just switched my MCS from 17" bullets with runflats to 16" winter tyres which are not runflats . I"m amazed at the difference its made to the car . The ride is hugely improved and it made me realise how stiff runflats are . The steering is much lighter which my wife loves . I really a
Starting to think that we should accept the naff looks and all Minis should run on16"'non runflats . Has anyone else had similar experiences?
It's snow that has triggered many people to fit winter tyres, but if the roads round you are wet, find a deserted bit of road and do some emergency stops (and vicious starts) on the winter tyres - their braking and traction grip on cold wet roads is just outstanding. I find they are not as good for wet cornering, though that may be because I've gone from 16" summers to 15" winters.
I notice the winter tyres when pulling out of T-junctions - in the wet I can floor it (admittedly in a JustaCooper) without having to think about spinning the tyres as I normally would. And trying to get it slipping over the white line/hatching in the middle of the road becomes a fun game.
I was amazed to see Motoring Which? saying they thought winter tyres were unnecessary - for the average, not sporty, driver I would have thought they were ideal, possibly all year round. The majority of drivers drive the same way in all road conditions - using less than 50% of the available braking grip in the dry and maybe 90% of it in the wet. For them, year-round wet weather tyres, if not actual winter tyres, would make perfect sense.
Yes i agree . Over the years weve all fallen for the sporty low profile tyres which provide great grip at the expense of ride comfort . Unless you are Jenson Button or attend regular track days then i suspect all weather tyres would suit most people in England for most of the time . It reminds we of Colin Chapmans original Lotus elan . That had outstanding ride and handling on skinny tyres . I suspect it all went wrong as cars got heavier.
I run 16" run flat summers and 16" standard winters, all on OE mini alloys, all dunlops. The difference in ride is very subtle. The only time you really notice it is on the dropped kerbs when I pull into the works car park.
If I can get a good price on run flat winter dunlops in the summer I may switch across just for piece of mind - I've been on the winter tyres for 3 years now and they're down to 4.5mm so they're just about worn out now.
I've just put winter tyres on, replacing my runflats. I'm on 17" rims and the ride and steering don't feel any different to me. The grip, however, is an entirely different thing, from slipping and sliding everywhere to composed driving and stopping.
Living where I do, just about everyone changes to winter tyres and then back again in spring. I don't think you'd want to keep them on all year though, as someone above mentioned. I believe they are most effective below about 7c, if you start using them in the summer then I reckon they are going to wear pretty quick. You'll also suffer grip wise if driving it hard in the summer with the winters on.
First posting so apologies in advance if I get it wrong.
I have just bought a used Clubman Diesel that came with 17 inch wheels R98 web-spoke (two-piece) wearing 205/45/17 Continental ContiSportContact 3 SSR which in current cold/damp/greasy conditions provide no feedback and give a very unforgiving ride.
To remedy this I bought off eBay a set of 15 inch R93 5-spoke Rocket (in very good condition) fitted with Pirelli P3000 onto which I immediately fitted Dunlop SP Winter Response 175/65/15 and had the car 4-wheel laser aligned at the same time.
Apart from total transformation (for the better) of the ride quality, how much of this is down to runflat/non-runflat and how much down to 17/15 inch I've no idea, I'm perhaps even more pleased with the feedback / grip the 'winter' tyres provide when compared to the Continentals.
So far they have only been used in cold/damp/greasy conditions ie no snow yet, but as far as I'm concerned the Continentals were lifeless giving no information whatsoever as to what was happening underneath and about as much use as a chocolate teapot whilst the Dunlops simply inspire confidence.
I appreciate that not everyone may be able to afford two sets of wheels and tyres (and it is not a legal requirement in the UK), in fact I'm not sure I can afford it really, but having now albeit briefly experienced 'winters' I'm convinced of the need of the right tyre for the right weather rather than a performance or all season tyre.
Last edited by Touring_Dave; Jan 13th, 2011 at 09:43 AM.
Reason: Corrected 17 inch wheel description
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