Sunday, May 20, 2007

Cheap Tires

Remember my purchasing a pair of Nokian tires for the Turbo? I didn't want to spend the extra money to get the tires rated for 300 mph (or whatever), so I convinced the tire salesman to fit the 60,000 mile tire on the car instead of the 40,000 mile tire. The tires seemed to drive fine but then again maybe they could have been better. Check out this article at
"Why do I have to spend extra money on "V" rated tires? They are rated at 148 mph and I'm not going to drive that fast!"

No, you aren't (most likely), but, the "V" rated tires are necessary to provide the stability you need to carry a fully-loaded 4,000 pound car down the highway at a high rate of speed. Lower-rated tires have a more flexible carcass, and will tend to generate vibration and noise more readily than a "V" rated tire will, and will fail more often under similar operating conditions. Jaguar recommends a specific tire rating based on a ratio of speed and vehicle weight, and ignoring their recommendation has caused more than one Jaguar owner some discomfort.

"V" rated tires are not necessarily more expensive, either. The Pirelli P4000, which is an excellent dry-weather tire,can usually be found for $80 each. The Michelin MXV4, an excellent wet weather tire, is comparably priced. Both of these are "V" rated tires and are widely available. At $80 or so each, they are priced competitively with good-quality "S" rated tires. Our recommendation is not to be lured by lower priced tires, as the price/performance tradeoff just doesn't work.
I'll take that into consideration the next time I'm purchasing tires for one of our vehicles. It certainly makes sense now that I think about it. The 40,000 mile Kelly Chargers I bought a few years back were incredibly sticky on dry ground and even in a blizzard. Next time, my man. Next time.

1 comment:

EggsnGrits said...

They're right, you know.

I've been very pleased with my Kumho tires for the Saab, and they're rated for speed and were VERY reasonably priced. Bought 'em on for a low price and took them to Walmart for mount and balance -- $7 per tire for that service in my neck of the woods. Quick, easy, cheap!