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  #1  
Old 11-25-2010, 06:17 PM
pureinstinct93 pureinstinct93 is offline
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Michelin vs. Continental vs. Yokohama All-Season Tires

I am looking for high performance, non-run flat all-season tires for my 2007 Mini Cooper S with 17" (205/45-17) Web Spoke wheels. I live in the mid-Atlantic region and will not be driving the Mini if it can't clear the snow.

That said, from the Tire Rack website, it appears that I only have three viable choices: Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus, Yokohama AVID ENVigor, and Continental ExtremeContact DWS tires. When reading the reviews for Minis, BMWs, and Volkswagens for a "Spirited" driving style, it appears that the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus' have both the most reviews and the fewest negative reviews.

If anyone has compared any of these tires, I would love to hear about your experiences. I just bought the Mini and have Hankook summer tires on it now, so I have no experience with run flat tires at all.
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  #2  
Old 11-25-2010, 06:53 PM
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On tirerack, more reviews can be due to tire being available longer. The Michelins are an excellent tire, though expensive. I run them on our family truckster (Mazda5) and can't complain.

I run the Conti DWS on my car, but in a 215/45 size. They fill out the rim a little better and correct some of the speedo error. I like them a lot. I am getting close to 30k on these and only the S has disappeared. They worked well in the snow last year (up to about 8" and a couple of deeper drifts with momentum). They are still quiet and very smooth, though probably losing a little wet traction, but still working very well. Can't beat the price.
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Old 11-25-2010, 07:00 PM
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I too am about to buy my first non-runflats for my 2007. I am leaning toward the Yokohama's based on what a few people I know who have them on MINIs have said about them but looking forward to seeing the responses here. The Michelin's are not an option for me since I have 16's. At least they don't have any 16's that match my rim size exactly and I don't really know how much you can go over/under sizes without causing a problem.
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Old 11-25-2010, 07:17 PM
Jim Michaels Jim Michaels is offline
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I think you're down to the best three high performance A/S. I recently reviewed the TR info on all 3 of those (plus a few more) in a slightly different size. My guess for the best tire for our usage was the Yoko, but in snow the Conti wins by a mile (TR has a head-to-head snow test of the Conti and Michelin). The Yoko tied for first in another TR test, but the other two weren't involved in that one.

When available, I trust TR's own head-to-head tests a bit more than the user reviews, but consider both. With the three good ones you're down to, it may come down to choosing the compromise that best suits your own preferences. Michelins make great tires, but I don't see how they can be $320 better per set than the other two.
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Old 11-25-2010, 07:49 PM
ufomini ufomini is offline
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I agree. I am sure the Michelin tires are excellent, however, you can almost buy two sets of the Conti's or Yoko's for the price of the Michelins. I personally have been driving on the Conti DWS's for about 8 months. I live in the mid-west and we have our share of bad weather. The DWS's are Quiet, Comfortable and superb in inclement weather. They are not a summer tire, therefore they do not handle corners like one. If you get no snow, look at the Yoko's, if you get lots of rain and any snow, get the Conti's.
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Old 11-25-2010, 08:36 PM
djdraddy djdraddy is offline
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This is really a very simple choice. If price is your determining factor, go with the Yoko's. If you are looking for a great all around tire where you will be driving alot in snow then go with the Conti's. If you want the absolute best dry performance A/S tire...the Michelins are flat out the best.

The Conti's are a great tire but they have two drawbacks that in my case were the deal breaker. They have a rather soft feeling sidewall that translates into a vageness on turn in. They tend to feel a little slow or sloppy in the "spirted" handling area. They always feel like they are low on air or something. I also didn't like the breaking performance, I swear they felt "wiggley"

This is why I bought the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S+'s. Like you, I didn't really care so much about maximum performance in the snow so the Conti DWS's superiority in this area was meaningless to me. But the lack of presicion in the dry handling area was HUGE. the MPSA/S's are some of the grippy-ist tires I have ever driven. I love these tires.

I actually drove MINI's with both tires before I bought my tires. I never considered the Yoko's and I didn't do alot of research on them but I think they are rated lower in almost all areas than the other two.

I noticed that someone mentioned price difference of like $320 on a set, this is not necessarlly the case. I don't know what size tires you are looking for but if you are running 205/45 17's then you can do what I and many other people have done... move up to 215/45 17. This saves you about $30 a tire($154 per tire vs $185) and then Michelin offers a $70 rebate on a set of 4. The net difference is less than $150 on the set vs. the Yoko's...and you have Michelins not Yoko's.

Good Luck to you with whatever you choose!
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Old 11-25-2010, 09:59 PM
pureinstinct93 pureinstinct93 is offline
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djdraddy, I completely agree with your assessment. My value is on the best tire performance possible when it is not snowing. Therefore, it looks like the Michelin will work best with that goal. My one concern is with 215's in light snow and ice vs. 205's. If I drive carefully, will there really be any difference in handling?
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Old 11-26-2010, 10:21 AM
Jim Michaels Jim Michaels is offline
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I'm not dj, but my guess is that such small increases in tire diameter and tread width would not yield noticeable differences in handling, in light snow or otherwise. Tire diameter goes up .3" (about 7 mm), while tread width goes up .2" (about 5 mm).

Maximum load capacity also goes up on the Michelin; from 1279# (89Y SL) to 1356# (91W XL). I don't know what that does to handling, but probably not much.

Where's our Tire Rack guy when we need him?
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Old 11-26-2010, 10:51 AM
Jim Michaels Jim Michaels is offline
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Ke4sfq: The 205/50/16 size offers a wider selection of tires, and seems to be a popular switch for those with OEM 6.5X16 wheels. The Michelin Pilot Exalto (not Sport) A/S comes in that size, and so do the Yokos and Contis we've been talking about here. That switch results in a .3" decrease in tire diameter; your car will look much better lowered by .15".
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Old 11-26-2010, 03:03 PM
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Guys


I think youre missing the point getting all weather tyres on your standard rims is still a compromise at the very best

if you want winter tyres get smaller rims max 15" and get them shod with winter tyres narrow as possible you cant beat them in real snow

i have gone past so many cars struggling with normal rims its untrue with a set of narrow 15" rims

plus it saves your alloys from all the salt residue
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Old 11-26-2010, 03:27 PM
Jim Michaels Jim Michaels is offline
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KJT: How are we missing the point? OP said he is looking for high performance, non-run flat all season tires, so that's what we've been talking about.
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Old 11-26-2010, 03:38 PM
KJT2004 KJT2004 is offline
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My point simple

No such thing IMHO if you want the best of both worlds you need winter tyres and rims for true winter conditions and then your standard rubber for summer anything else will be a compromise

I probably didnt convey myself that well

I have tried the alps in winter on 17" rims an got passed by all sorts running skinnys the only way to deal with real winter conditions

i am now a convert
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:02 PM
pureinstinct93 pureinstinct93 is offline
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Hi KJT, I won't be driving in any amount of snow that the Mini can't clear, and I will only be driving home, until the streets have been cleared. Clearly, the term "high performance" is relative, and this discussion is about how good a level of performance you can get in an all-season tire with little to no driving in snow, despite the fact that it's a compromise.
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  #14  
Old 11-26-2010, 04:04 PM
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I would hate to run ugly steel rims and skinnies all winter for a half-dozen snow days. Living in TN, I have never owned a set of winter/snow tires but have negotiated near-blizzards and snow as deep as 14" with A/S tires on various cars. It does help to be able to drive in snow.

215 vs 205 makes very little noticeable difference in most driving conditions... maybe on a skid pad but not on the street. The 215 is only 10mm (0.4") wider at the sidewalls. The tread width would increase approximately the same 10mm, assuming the same shoulder shape. The rolling radius would only increase about 5mm (0.45x10mm) on a 45 series tire. Overall diameter would increase by 9mm. You can barely see it on the car, though it is noticeable next to a MINI with the stock size.

Added pic of 215/45 Conti DWS on my car. They do a good job... deep stuff would be a challenge just due to the MINI clearance.
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:10 PM
Jim Michaels Jim Michaels is offline
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KJT: Yes, but all tires are compromises when driven in different weather conditions. Ideally, we'd have R-compounds for dry track and autocross, extreme performance summer tires for spirited dry road driving in the summer, ultra high performance A/S for cooler and damper weather, and winter/snow tires for driving in snow.

Like the OP, I also live in the mid-Atlantic region. We have 4 cars, without a snow tire anywhere in sight. We do have A/S tires on three of the cars though. We don't drive in snow though; it either melts or gets plowed before we need to get out.
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ke4sfq View Post
........The Michelin's are not an option for me since I have 16's. .........
Not true - See my sig for the Michilin upsize that fits no issues - many NAM peeps running that size.

Handy dandy tire size camparer here:

http://www.rimsntires.com/rt_specs.jsp


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Old 11-26-2010, 05:13 PM
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There is no argument that skinny winter tires/rims are the best for snow and for people who live in places that get lots of snow in the winter. Summer tires are definitely better than an all-season when conditions are warm and sunny. If I lived in the snow-belt and could not move away from there, I would enlist these options. Better yet, I would drive my Jeep.

For much of the country, dedicated winter tires are not necessary. In TN it does get cold and summer tires become very slippery. All-seasons work great then and will handle some powder or slushy stuff. In the warmer weather, good hi-perf all-seasons can hang with the summer tires in all legal highway driving and even a margin beyond legal. I've never had anyone run off and leave me in the curves just because they had summer tires. The track would be a different story but I rarely go there.
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Old 11-26-2010, 05:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Michaels View Post
Ke4sfq: The 205/50/16 size offers a wider selection of tires, and seems to be a popular switch for those with OEM 6.5X16 wheels. The Michelin Pilot Exalto (not Sport) A/S comes in that size, and so do the Yokos and Contis we've been talking about here. That switch results in a .3" decrease in tire diameter; your car will look much better lowered by .15".

Quote:
Originally Posted by MCS Fever View Post
Not true - See my sig for the Michilin upsize that fits no issues - many NAM peeps running that size.

Thanks guys. I had not ran across that on here yet. I have been considering lowering mine, thanks for the specs and info Jim. I'll be buying here in a few months so I will research the sizes more now that I know I have more options!

Kevin
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Old 11-27-2010, 02:04 PM
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Yes, for 16"s there is a wider selection in 205/50/16, and a MUCH wider selection in 205/55/16. The first will be slightly shorter than stock, the second will be slightly taller than stock (and usually slightly less expensive). Either one is well within the acceptable range.
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Old 11-27-2010, 05:53 PM
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[quote=ellcapitan;3166414]Yes, for 16"s there is a wider selection in 205/50/16, and a MUCH wider selection in 205/55/16. .....quote]


Both 205 tires will be the same 8.1" wide compared to 195 stock at 7.7" wide.

Use this link to compare:

http://www.rimsntires.com/rt_specs.jsp

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Old 11-28-2010, 01:15 PM
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[quote=MCS Fever;3166479]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ellcapitan View Post
Yes, for 16"s there is a wider selection in 205/50/16, and a MUCH wider selection in 205/55/16. .....quote]


Both 205 tires will be the same 8.1" wide compared to 195 stock at 7.7" wide.

Use this link to compare:

http://www.rimsntires.com/rt_specs.jsp

Selection...I said SELECTION! ...As in how wide of a selection you have to choose from when buying them. The stock 195/55/16s is a much less common size (giving you a "narrower" selection, irrespective of how wide the actual tires are).
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:01 PM
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Hi I am considering the same tires, no snow. Did you notice a big difference between run flats which are like rocks and the Michelin?
Are the Michelin quiet in your opinion?
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:30 PM
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I really like my DWS'. They are a bit mushy but at 5k they have got a lot better. They'll never see snow as I run Blizzaks on 16's through cold months but I'd suggest the DWS' for sure. For price and overall all season performance it seemed/seems to me to be a no brainer. All that said, if money wasn't a factor I'd do the Pilot Sport AS+ because they are going to be a more racey tire but I am happy with my set up. And yea, 215.45.17.
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:47 PM
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I wouldn't call the Michelins (PS A/S+) real quiet, although they are quieter than the Conti run flats they replaced. I don't think you are going to find an Ultra High Performance tire that is real quiet. Their rubber compound and tread design is maximized for performance not quiet. The quietest high perf tire I have ever owned were Pirelli P-Zero Nero's but I don't think they are comparable to the Michelins. I love my Michelins, best tires I've ever owned.

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Old 04-04-2011, 12:10 PM
pureinstinct93 pureinstinct93 is offline
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Update. I did eventually purchase the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus tires. I have been driving them for over 3 months. These tires are phenomenal! They are the best tires I have ever driven - better than the Bridgestone S03's on my old E36 M3. When dry, they are glued to the road and do not slip on curves and ramps at any speed. When wet, their performance is just as good. You literally cannot tell that it is raining, unless you are in a heavy downpour. Perhaps, the biggest advantage is that these tires dramatically reduced my bad torque steer that the Hankook high performance tires had. It is like night and day. The torque steer on the Hankooks made me very sad when I bought the MINI, but the Pilot Sport A/S Plus' made the sadness a distant memory.

However, they do have some drawbacks: 1.) They are very heavy which combined with their incredible grip leads to 2.) lower gas mileage. You should expect about 3MPG lower per tank, maybe a little more if you factor in your altered driving habits having such good tires. 3.) Snow performance is average. I made it home safely through a blizzard, but you have to be very easy on them, as they will spin with too much gas. 4.) They do track grooves in the road very easily.

Despite the high cost and lower gas mileage, I am extremely happy that I purchased these tires. I was looking for the best all-season performance possible and have absolutely no doubt that I have found it in these tires.
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