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New to Soobs. What tires do you like?


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23 replies to this topic

#1 sir robin

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Posted 16 July 2005 - 09:24 AM

Greetings, all.
I just bought a 2002 Outback Sedan 3.0 VDC - 23500mi. Rear spoiler, auto tranny, black.
I'll be looking to buy a new set of tires before winter.
I'm guessing the Bridgestone Potenzas (P225/60R16 97H) are the original stock ones from the factory.
I live in NY State (Mid Hudson Valley, West Point area) so will see my fair share of wintery weather.
I'll tell you what tires I have loved in my other cars: On an '89 VW GTI-16V, I loved my Pirelli P600 tires. Good treadwear (67000mi on the first set), great on wet roads, pretty good in snow. On my '94 Ford Explorer, I loved my Michelin LTX M/S tires. Great everything. I got an unbelievable 90000miles on a set. (I used them till the tread were very low - maybe should've taken them off sooner.)
I did NOT like a set of Yokohama Geolander HT on the Explorer before the Michelins.
I will pay good money for a good set of tires - I'm not trying to save. I did that with the Yoko's and regretted it. The life I got out of the Michelins more than justified their cost.
I want a good all-weather tire. Not some Z rated high-perf tire that won't do anything on snow. I drive 30000 highway miles a year, and in the winter I have to get back and forth to work.
Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Thanks.

#2 DerFahrer

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Posted 16 July 2005 - 10:47 AM

I say stick with the Michelins. Michelin makes the best tires in the world in my opinion. I have Symmetries on my 91 Legacy, and even though that's one of their more comfort-oriented all-season tires (you can find them on new Cadillac Devilles), they still handle and grip pretty friggen good.

With your auto tranny especially though, you need to follow a strict tire rotation schedule. Plan on rotating your tires every 5,000 miles. If you don't, you will start experiencing 'torque bind' which is a bucking and jumping that occurs when you take a very tight turn at low speed. This is not only annoying, but does damage to the transmission as well.

You can always use www.tirerack.com for tire pricing and comparisons.

Good luck and welcome to the Subaru community! :)

#3 sir robin

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Posted 16 July 2005 - 01:53 PM

Thanks for the info.

I have already learned some about the binding issues and uneven tread/mismatched tires thanks to the info on this board. Very helpful. I will contribute myself as much as I can as I learn more and experience more with my new Soob.

As for Yokohamas, I am not completely ruling them out. I know that my Explorer was a different application with one specific Yoko model. If people regard them highly here, I will certainly consider them.

But Michelin is certainly a leading contender.

Any other raves about tire preferences?

Thanks again everyone.

#4 howards11

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Posted 16 July 2005 - 02:14 PM

I'm happy with my Bridgestone Turanzas on my 2000 Forester. They were good in the snow and ice last winter. A good second choice would be Firestone Affinitys.

~Howard
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#5 Strakes

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Posted 16 July 2005 - 02:45 PM

http://www.tirerack....sults/index.jsp


Check that out. Take a look at the passenger "____-touring" tire categories.

#6 carljwnc

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Posted 16 July 2005 - 05:56 PM

Just put some BF Goodrich Traction T/A's on my Forester XT, after about 400mi., so far so good. Tested thus far on dry and wet tarmac, and gravel roads, excellent all around tires. Much better than the Yokohama Geolanders G900's that the car came with stock, off-road testing (hopefully) to come soon. Price was right at $86ea., mounted and balanced.
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#7 sir robin

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 07:51 AM

I've been checking out the tires mentioned. I'm surprised that more of them don't come with raised white letters. I was hoping to keep that look. Otherwise the BFG Traction T/As look good.

I like that Tirerack survey, too.

#8 scooby dooo

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 08:01 AM

I have the BFG Traction T/A as well and the grip is excellent. They are a little noisy and I don't think they are going to last that long, but they handle snow and rain very well.

#9 howards11

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 09:41 AM

I've been checking out the tires mentioned. I'm surprised that more of them don't come with raised white letters. I was hoping to keep that look. Otherwise the BFG Traction T/As look good.

I like that Tirerack survey, too.


You can buy a pencil like item and go over the letters and paint them white.

~Howard
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#10 Lawsonmh15

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 01:58 PM

If money is no object, you may consider the Michelins. (F-1 Racing endorsed. LOL). But if you want killer performance in all conditions at a SWEET price, I highly recommend the BF Goodrich Traction T/A's. Slapped a set on 7,000 miles ago and couldn't be happier. They stick in a couple of inches of standing water, haven't noticed treadwear, and anyone who lives in CO and knows what T-Rex looks like (grooved Pavement) knows it gets a little louder, but not on these. Moreover, I have gone through the Cuchara mountains and Wolf Creek pass 6 times on these. Again, those who know Wolf Creek knows how tight it gets and I felt completely comfortable maintaining 20-30MPH over the "recommended" speed. You wouldn't be unhappy.

http://www.tirerack....at=All&x=73&y=9

My 2 cents.

#11 Commuter

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 11:48 AM

I just put a third set of tires on my 97 Outback. I'm in S. Ontario. I was doing about 60,000 km/yr. Now around 45k km/yr. Mostly highway driving.

First set was Michelin X-Ones. Very good all around.
Second set was Toyo 800 Ultra. Good, very similar to the X-One, even better in the winter, but fussy on balance.

I was really tempted by the HydroEdge tire, but was not keen on a directional tire. The reviews on Tirerack were a bit mixed too. The local tire dealer indicated that the response from customers has been pretty much a 50/50 mix regarding winter performance. I was also told that they would probably ride even harder than the Toyos. I wanted something a bit more compliant.

I opted for the Michelin Harmony tire. I've only had them on for 2000 km, so I can't tell you much. Ride and 'feel' is much like the prior tires. They are a touch softer riding then the Toyos, but not a lot. (Which makes me think I did the right thing not buying the HydroEdge.)

I've probably had the best luck with Michelin over the years. It's the one I've run on the most. I've had some great Yokohama tires (more recently with winter tires, not on the Sube tho'), but then I've had a couple of defective ones too. The Toyo was my first experience with them. No experience with Bridgestone really except for some crappy OEM tires on a Civic almost 20 years ago. Oh, and one set of mediocure winter tires. I had one set of Goodyear tires years ago (Vector?), so can't comment there. Never had Dunlop or Pirelli.

If you liked Michelin in the past, it is probably your best bet. It's just a matter of which model to pick. I've seen the Symmetry tire, but it strikes me that it wouldn't be very good in the winter. Not much void area to the tread.

Take a look at the Michelin Harmony. My 2 cents.

Commuter

#12 BigMattyD

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 12:25 PM

I tried Yokohama Avid Touring on my car. I got them in 2001, and just replaced them a month ago. I was looking for a good quality for a good value.


The Avid tourings held up well over 55000 miles. I had good traction and handling. For the price, I think they were excellent. I run on the stock 14 inch wheels. I am not a racer, but I have been known to exceed the speed limit once or twice.

My latest tire purchase was the Kumho All season 795. They have been excellent so far, but only a few thousand miles on them. Again, I was looking for a cheap tire that wasn't a piece of crap.

I like the fact that on tirerack.com you can compare ratings and read reviews of all the different tires. It really gives you some perspective on the tire industry. You can see that having a big-name tire is not always the best choice.

P.S. For winter tires I've been using Kumho I'zen Stud (without studs) for two winters. They provide excellent snow traction. I can drive at almost normal speeds on 6inch snowfalls. Braking and accelerating are no problem. I bought these for a low price on tire rack.com, and I got my wife the more expensive Blizzaks for her front wheel drive car. I found the Kumho's to work extremely well.


Matt

#13 cannonball

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 12:34 PM

I have the BFG Traction T/A as well and the grip is excellent. They are a little noisy and I don't think they are going to last that long, but they handle snow and rain very well.


I have to agree with this post. I'm on my second set. Traction is excellent, but they are a little noisy. I guess that's what you get in this style of tire. The longevity is questionable. I replaced my first set after about 27,000 miles. I'm not sure if this is tire related or spirited driver related. Toward the end of the life I had some balancing issues that the shop couldn't work out. I've had my new set for a couple of months so we'll see how long this set last compared to the first.

#14 jib

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 12:36 PM

It all depends on what you want to do with the car. I’ve run Yokohama AVS sports on my Legacy GT. They are an awesome, sticky tire and a great wet tire too, but absolutely worthless in the snow. I have a set of dedicated snow tires, on separate rims for snow tires (Nokian Hakka 2’s). I am currently running Yokohama EB100’s, which are 2/3 the cost of the AVS sports. They are not quite as sticky, or tight for handling, but since I am not Auto crossing the car, they are fine for normal driving. The EB100 is a high performance tire that is very good in damp weather too, but again, not for snow.



For me, my tires are the lifeline between the road and the car. We ski and get in the snow regularly, so I run dedicated snow tires in the winter. This leaves me free to choose a high performance, no compromise, three season tire for the rest of the year. I lean towards performance driving (hence the GT not an Outback) almost as much for safety, as fun.



Just remember, that long tire life and high traction do not go together. In general, a softer tire will handle (turn and stop) better, but will not last as long. No one, at least not yet, manufactures a very high mileage tire that handles as well as a softer (performance) tire. We all need to make the choice as to what we are looking for out of a tire. For me, however, replacing tires every 35-50k miles is better than replacing bumpers or fenders and it’s more fun along the way too.


Jack

#15 maximumBRAT

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 01:39 PM

I tried Yokohama Avid Touring on my car. I got them in 2001, and just replaced them a month ago. I was looking for a good quality for a good value.


The Avid tourings held up well over 55000 miles. I had good traction and handling. For the price, I think they were excellent. I run on the stock 14 inch wheels. I am not a racer, but I have been known to exceed the speed limit once or twice.

Matt


That's what i was going to say- the Yoko-touring are soft compound (like most touring) so they're extremely grippy to about 60k in my experience. I rather liked them on my lowmileage brat. after the brat died they went on ex-boyfriend's '80 320i, and there they stay, and are rather effective on a RWD vehicle too.

Word on the street/dealership is that the Blizzaks are really the way to go for subes, but like all tires, you have to rotate them good to be effective.

I put michellin on my brother's ride, '92 Legacy. They are awesome in most ways, but i wouldn't do them again because we live in a town w/ crappy roads so one is blown atleast every 10k, no matter what you buy. so cheap tires are kind of the way to go here.

Also: I am a strong propnent of 5-tire rotation- 2 advantages-
1. Full size spare (no damage to AWD if you do blow a tire and need a spare)
2. w/ 3-5k rotation schedule, makes tires last longer.

#16 sir robin

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 10:07 PM

Just remember, that long tire life and high traction do not go together. In general, a softer tire will handle (turn and stop) better, but will not last as long. No one, at least not yet, manufactures a very high mileage tire that handles as well as a softer (performance) tire. We all need to make the choice as to what we are looking for out of a tire. For me, however, replacing tires every 35-50k miles is better than replacing bumpers or fenders and it’s more fun along the way too.


Jack


You know, now that you mention it, I never drove that Explorer (or my VWs) like I am driving my OB 3.0 VDC sedan. (Hehe - I've only had it a week and I've set new personal speed records on some of the highway exit/entrance ramps around here.) And that's a great point about tires being cheaper than bumpers/fenders. So I won't be expecting ultra long life from a set of tires on my Soob, then.
BTW - tonight it was pretty wet on the roads and the Potenzas actually seemed to be doing OK.

#17 Scottbaru

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Posted 19 July 2005 - 07:51 AM

One of my jobs requires me to drive from Michigan to O’Hare frequently. Most of my driving is on dry highways, with the occasional very nasty winter storm. I need an excellent snow tire that doesn’t squirm or wear excessively, so I want an all-season tire with the best snow characteristics possible.



It’s a bit complicated, but you can sort the tires at Tire Rack for individual characteristics: List all tires that fit your car, select the check box on each one, and select compare. That brings up a comparison chart of all tires that fit your car, and on the left you can pick a characteristic you want to sort for. The Goodyear Tripledge is the current leader in the snow traction category among all-season tires carried by Tire Rack. It’s expensive, but very much worth it to me, I’ll be buying a set this Fall. The Firestone Indy500 tires also rate well in snow for a little less $, I’ve had them on my Quattro for a year, excellent tire.

#18 rdp5008outback

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Posted 19 July 2005 - 08:49 AM

I just put some Falken Ziex ZE-512 on my 1998 OBS. Stock tire size. They seem to be really great tires so far. Good in the rain and dry. They are a million times better than the Aurora tires that were on the car when I bought it.

The Falkens are inexpensive too. I got them from Discount Tire with free shipping for $180.

Just my $0.02, good luck with the search for new tires.

#19 howards11

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Posted 19 July 2005 - 08:56 AM

Michelins are very good tires. But I feel they are way over priced and way over rated.


~Howard
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#20 rem14

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Posted 19 July 2005 - 09:29 AM

I put BF Goodrich Traction T/A's on my Outback wagon last year. I have put about 25,000 miles on them and they don't look to last much longer. They are noisy, and the traction in the snow, while better than the Potenza's, still sucks. I rotate every 6,000 miles. I would definately not buy them again. I too am looking at the Michelins. Anybody have luck with Goodyears?

#21 howards11

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Posted 19 July 2005 - 07:16 PM

I put BF Goodrich Traction T/A's on my Outback wagon last year. I have put about 25,000 miles on them and they don't look to last much longer. They are noisy, and the traction in the snow, while better than the Potenza's, still sucks. I rotate every 6,000 miles. I would definately not buy them again. I too am looking at the Michelins. Anybody have luck with Goodyears?


I had Goodyears on my old Mercury Sable.

STAY AWAY !



I had constant problems with ply separation. They closed all their company stores in the Philadelphia area. They referred me to their new stores called Just Tires. The manager there wanted to replace just the one bad tire. Both tires on the same axel should be replaced since the thread pattern was different on the new tire. After calling the main office several times I finally gave up trying to get them replaced.

~Howard
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#22 nipper

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Posted 20 July 2005 - 01:54 PM

I was using Goodyear aquatreads on my soobies. I could drive at close to triple digits in the rain and never feel insafe. Unfortunitly the nice afordable aquatreads were replaced with some tire-on-steroids version which is double the price.

I like michlins, but they always seemd to have a way of telling you it was time to replace the tires, I always had them loose chunk of tires.

nipper

#23 kevinsUBARU

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Posted 20 July 2005 - 07:10 PM

I have no experience with them, but I have heard very good things about the Goodyear Assurance tires...check them out (And the tirerack reviews on them)

Personally, and I live 30 minutes north of you, I use whatever I have kicking around in the summer, and switch to dedicated snows in the winter. The stock RE92's do well in the snow when they are not very worn, but as the miles rack up they start to get scary.

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#24 Tomiki1

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Posted 20 July 2005 - 11:13 PM

Greetings, all.
I just bought a 2002 Outback Sedan 3.0 VDC - 23500mi. Rear spoiler, auto tranny, black.
I'll be looking to buy a new set of tires before winter.
I'm guessing the Bridgestone Potenzas (P225/60R16 97H) are the original stock ones from the factory.
I live in NY State (Mid Hudson Valley, West Point area) so will see my fair share of wintery weather.
I'll tell you what tires I have loved in my other cars: On an '89 VW GTI-16V, I loved my Pirelli P600 tires. Good treadwear (67000mi on the first set), great on wet roads, pretty good in snow. On my '94 Ford Explorer, I loved my Michelin LTX M/S tires. Great everything. I got an unbelievable 90000miles on a set. (I used them till the tread were very low - maybe should've taken them off sooner.)
I did NOT like a set of Yokohama Geolander HT on the Explorer before the Michelins.
I will pay good money for a good set of tires - I'm not trying to save. I did that with the Yoko's and regretted it. The life I got out of the Michelins more than justified their cost.
I want a good all-weather tire. Not some Z rated high-perf tire that won't do anything on snow. I drive 30000 highway miles a year, and in the winter I have to get back and forth to work.
Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Thanks.


Michelin Pilots are great. Had BF Goddrich Traction T/A's but took them off. They were really bad in the snow. Love the MIchelin's and probably won't buy anything else.




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