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View Poll Results: Which snow tires should I get for 330i (Boston now/maybe Denver later)?
Bridgestone Blizzak WS-50 7 21.88%
Bridgestone Blizzak LM-22 11 34.38%
Dunlop Winter Sport M3 7 21.88%
Nokkian Hakkapeliitta 2 (studded) 2 6.25%
Nokian Hakkapeliitta 1 (non-studded) 1 3.13%
Nokian Hakkapeliitta Q (non-studded) 2 6.25%
Nokian WR (all-season) 0 0%
Get AWD 2 6.25%
Voters: 32. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 01-22-2004, 08:43 PM
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SizzlerMA SizzlerMA is offline
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Question Which snow tires should I get?

Hey guys,

Does anyone have any advice as to which snow tires to get? I primarily use the car on plowed streets in Boston, but I do go skiing 8-10 times per year.

Also, I'm thinking of moving to Denver for some serious ski lifestyle . . .

My ride:

2004 330i
ZPP
ZSP
ZCW

I assume all these tires would be roughly 205/55/R16, probably Q or H speed-rated.

Thanks!
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Old 01-23-2004, 07:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlerMA
Hey guys,

Does anyone have any advice as to which snow tires to get? I primarily use the car on plowed streets in Boston, but I do go skiing 8-10 times per year.

Also, I'm thinking of moving to Denver for some serious ski lifestyle . . .

My ride:

2004 330i
ZPP
ZSP
ZCW

I assume all these tires would be roughly 205/55/R16, probably Q or H speed-rated.

Thanks!
If not, you could just get 205/50-17.. The Dunlops are a good deal in that price range. If you want V-rated tires, get the Goodyear Eagle Ultra-Grip GW-3. I have no opinion if you go with 16". I couldn't bear to take the 17" wheels off my car for 3 months.
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Old 01-23-2004, 09:54 AM
PhilH PhilH is offline
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I love my Dunlop M2s, but I think they're biased towards dry road handling at the expense of some snow grip. You might want to consider something more serious like the Blizzak LM-22, especially if you're serious about moving to Denver.
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Old 01-23-2004, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilH
I love my Dunlop M2s, but I think they're biased towards dry road handling at the expense of some snow grip. You might want to consider something more serious like the Blizzak LM-22, especially if you're serious about moving to Denver.
I agree that a more agressive tire might benefit, especially with the ski trips. Best to prepare for your worst conditions in my opinion. I'd suggest the WS-50 for max snow capability, just be aware you'll give up some dry road handling versus a high performance snow tire.

You may be extremely limited in your options this late in the season though.

You can check current pricing and availability at :

Winter http://www.tirerack.com/a.jsp?a=AB2&...nter/index.jsp
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Old 01-25-2004, 08:49 AM
mowgli mowgli is offline
 
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I llive in Long Island in a very hilly area. My vote is definitly the WS-50's...so what you give up a bit of handeling...you buy snows to get around safely in horrible conditions and in the weather we are having this year I am glad I have these. Prior to this car I had a Audi S-4 and I believe that with this tires, my BMW is at least as good as the all wheel Audi!
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Old 01-25-2004, 09:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mowgli
I llive in Long Island in a very hilly area. My vote is definitly the WS-50's...so what you give up a bit of handeling...you buy snows to get around safely in horrible conditions and in the weather we are having this year I am glad I have these. Prior to this car I had a Audi S-4 and I believe that with this tires, my BMW is at least as good as the all wheel Audi!
If your doing hills Dunlop M2/M3 are NOT the way to go. They are deffinetly "winter" tires not "snow" tires. I did a bit of backwards sliding down hills last weekend in 4-6inches of slop.

I typically don't do a lot of hills and hate giving up dry weather performance so the M2's are perfect for me.
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Old 01-25-2004, 07:26 PM
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OK, I'll probably go for the WS-50's.

But I never know what "give up a bit of dry road performance compared to . . ." means? Will it be better than Accord with A/S?

Or maybe I'm nuts for not getting the Xi if Denver looks more certain? I just feel like it's a loss in performance relative to the 330i, and performance is the whole reason I'm trading in the Accord. Any ideas?
Thanks for all the responses.
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Old 01-25-2004, 07:44 PM
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by mowgli
I llive in Long Island in a very hilly area. My vote is definitly the WS-50's...so what you give up a bit of handeling...you buy snows to get around safely in horrible conditions and in the weather we are having this year I am glad I have these. Prior to this car I had a Audi S-4 and I believe that with this tires, my BMW is at least as good as the all wheel Audi!
What kind of tires did you have on the S4?
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Old 01-26-2004, 10:36 AM
PhilH PhilH is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlerMA
But I never know what "give up a bit of dry road performance compared to . . ." means? Will it be better than Accord with A/S?
As the owner of a 330i with Dunlop M2s and a FWD Passat with relatively cheap Pirelli all seasons, my answer is "yes". The 330i with M2s is more sure footed than the Passat in almost all aspects. It accelerates just about the same, but handles and stops much better.

Here's a great Car & Drive article on snow tires vs AWD if you haven't read it before. For your purposes, you might want to look at the graphs to compare the RWD E320 on snows versus the FWD A6 on all seasons.

http://www.caranddriver.com/article....&page_number=1

I'm going to quote the entire article here in case the C&D website ever decides to get rid of it...

Quote:
WINTER-TRACTION TEST: What Price Traction?
Snowbelt commuters are spending big for four-wheel drive in the name of improved traction. Is there a better way?
BY FRANK MARKUS
AARON KILEY
May 1999

It was our young, naive, lovable online services editor, Brad Nevin, who posed the question one day at lunch: "This may sound stupid, but which gives better traction, four-wheel drive, or two-wheel drive with snow tires?" The respondents spluttered something like, "Bradley, Bradley, all sage and seasoned automotive journalists know that, um, well, depending on the situation, uh, and accounting for El Nino, er ... Check please!"


This emblem will be phased in over the next two years to identify tires suitable for severe snow duty. The Rubber Manufacturers Association will award this marking based on tests of traction performance on packed snow, unlike the M+S (mud and snow) rating, which is awarded solely on the physical characteristics of the tread design.
It's a good question, and one that perhaps far too few folks are asking before they plunk down thousands of dollars for four-wheel-drive hardware that adds power-robbing weight and friction and complicates maintenance and repair. Knowing that the C/D faithful would never encumber a vehicle with such ballast if there were a better way, we set up a test to see if snow tires and two-wheel drive could match the sure-footedness of all-wheel drive using stock tires in wintry conditions.

The first thing we learned was not to call them snow tires. Snow tires were the low-tech, knobby-looking things your dad mounted on the back of the family wagon in the good old days. These new ones feature space-age rubber compounds and computer-designed tread patterns, and they're to be fitted in sets of four. All the big tiremakers offer them, and they cost between $35 and $150 a tire. Many companies offer free mounting and dismounting on your stock rims for three winters (that's the approximate life expectancy of these soft tires). Or for a little more, catalog houses like The Tire Rack (888-370-8473) and Discount Tire Direct (800-739-8999) will sell a set of four winter tires mounted and balanced on new steel or alloy rims. These packages run from $300 to $1200 -- still well under the price of acquiring all-wheel drive.

Michelin Energy MXV4

There's more to modern winter-tire design than an aggressive tread pattern. Hundreds of tiny zigzag cuts and grooves draw water away from the contact patch as pressure melts the snow or ice. Even at the microscopic level, tiny tubes and pores wick water up into the tire and then sling it off. Advanced rubber compounds allow these tires to retain their soft, pliable, grippy nature at very low temperatures.

Bridgestone Blizzak WS-15

To answer Nevin's question thoroughly, we rounded up two Audi A6s, one of which was front-wheel drive (fwd) and the other four-wheel drive (4wd). We also got a pair of Mercedes-Benz E320s in rear-wheel drive (rwd) and 4wd. The folks at The Tire Rack, who test and sell all major brands, recommended Bridgestone Blizzak tires for the two German sedans. Our Audi's 195/65QR-15s mounted on steel rims with wheel covers cost $506, including shipping; the 215/55QR-16s on faux Benz alloys cost $928 delivered. (Steel and alloy options are available for both.) By way of comparison, Audi's Quattro 4wd system sells for $1650, and Mercedes-Benz's 4MATIC option runs $2790 (before luxury tax). Each system adds roughly 200 pounds.

We then set off for the Continental Teves Brimley Development Center in Michigan's frigid Upper Peninsula. There we evaluated the hill-climbing traction, straight-line performance, and handling characteristics of every possible tire and driveline combination, from two-wheel drive on stock tires to four-wheel drive on winter tires. Nevin, here's the answer to your question:


Hill-Climbing Traction
We started in the predawn chill by trying to climb Brimley's snow-covered traction grades measuring 10, 15, and 30 percent, or 6, 9, and 17 degrees. Each ascent was launched from a level standstill just below the grade.

Four-wheel drive won this first round of testing. Both four-wheel-drivers, even shod with stock all-season tires, were able to ascend the 30-percent grade, whereas the 2wd cars could only conquer the 10- and 15-percent grades.

As our braking tests would later confirm, winter tires can improve straight-line grip by as much as a third relative to all-season tires. But four-wheel drive doubles the grip of a stock two-wheel-drive car when accelerating or climbing a grade.




Straight-Line Performance
After our hill-climb event and a photo session, the sun was well up, and we headed for the snow and ice fields, which were each 400 by 1400 feet. The sun is generally not the winter tester's friend, as it can alter the condition of the test surface. To monitor surface conditions, we ran "control tests" -- periodic retests of the same vehicle, the results of which can be used to correct the data to uniform test conditions. Fortunately, the snow field was well groomed, and it was wide enough to allow nearly every test to be run on untrampled snow. That surface remained quite consistent all day. But afternoon sun and the ministrations of an ersatz Zamboni on the ice field caused that surface's coefficient of friction to drop too quickly for our control tests to account for. Therefore, we've eliminated the objective results of the ice tests.

On snow, we accelerated to 50 mph as quickly as possible, and we conducted panic stops from 50 mph. Top speed on ice was 30 mph. The Audi and Benz traction- and stability-control systems varied widely in their strategies, so we switched these systems off to eliminate this variable from our testing. Anti-lock systems were used for all brake tests.




Acceleration: As with our experience on the traction grades, we found that having twice the number of all-season tires pulling together improves acceleration more than does adding the latest traction technology to a 2wd car. In the snow, winter tires allowed our fwd Audi to reach 50 mph in 9.7 seconds (30 percent quicker than the same car on all-season tires), but the A6 Quattro managed the trick in 7.6 seconds on stock tires (a 45-percent improvement over the stock front-driver). Similar results were observed on the Benz, with winter tires boosting snow performance by 36 percent over the stock rwd Mercedes E320 (to 10.5 seconds) and the 4MATIC yielding a 51-percent improvement over the stock rwd E320 (to 8.1 seconds). Winter tires shaved another 0.7 second off the E320 4MATIC's 0-to-50-mph time. Score one more for 4wd.

On ice, with the traction-control system switched on, the rwd Benz could barely move on stock tires, but it launched easily on winter tires (we still managed our best times with the traction-control systems off). The Audi's fwd traction advantage made this phenomenon less noticeable.

Braking: The picture changes when you stand on the whoa pedal, because with four-wheel anti-lock braking, all four contact patches are working regardless of the driveline setup. Better-biting tires generate more stopping force, and the weight of a 4wd system simply adds to the momentum that has to be stopped. So it comes as no surprise that 4wd tended to lengthen stops from 50 mph (by as much as 12 feet on the Audi and 18 feet on the Benz relative to the stock 2wd setup). Fitting winter tires shaved stopping distances substantially (by 44 to 64 feet in the case of the A6s, and by 22 to 37 feet on the E320s). Winter tires win this one handily.


Handling
To measure which setup offered the best handling, we first used a snow-packed 425-foot-diameter skidpad to measure steady-state lateral acceleration. We moved on to an increasing-and-decreasing slalom maneuver on the snow field to assess dynamic behavior. (All timed handling maneuvers were conducted with the traction and stability systems switched off.) The Brimley Development Center has a snow handling course, but a recent spate of warm weather left parts of the track ice-covered and also robbed the snow banks lining the course of their cushioning fluffiness.

Lateral Acceleration: The surface of a snow-covered skidpad is degraded as much by traffic as it is by changing weather conditions. To account for this, we ran each car around the 425-foot-diameter circle once, reversed the batting order, and ran them again. The first and second runs for each car were then averaged.

Winter tires won again at the snow circle, providing twice the improvement in lateral grip that 4wd on stock tires could offer. Predictably, winter tires improved the fwd Audi's performance most dramatically, as its front tires are burdened with the tasks of propelling and steering the car. On stock tires, terminal understeer set in at just 0.28 g. Quattro upped that figure to 0.31 g, but winter tires boosted grip to 0.34 g. The rwd Mercedes, whose rear tires assist with steering duties when urged on by the throttle, managed 0.30 g on stock tires. The 4MATIC scored 0.32 g, but rwd with Blizzaks managed 0.34 g. On winter tires, the more understeer-oriented A6 Quattro scored the same 0.34 g as its fwd counterpart, but the more neutral, tail-out E320 4MATIC on winter tires managed the top score of the day at 0.37 g.

Even without the hard data, the subjective difference in vehicle behavior is dramatic. Using winter tires, each of the four cars responded far more faithfully to the helm. The Audis would still understeer, and the Mercedes-Benzes would still oversteer if provoked, but the level of provocation required and the speed at which the tires broke away was noticeably higher.

Slalom: Here's how the increasing-and-decreasing slalom works: Running our 512-foot course in one direction, the six gates become progressively wider and spaced farther apart, so the driver is always accelerating. Running the same course in the opposite direction through ever-tightening gates requires deceleration or braking. The results in the graphic representation show an average of the increasing and decreasing slalom speeds to best capture the overall dynamic handling demeanor of each car. By setting up multiple courses on our snow field, the conditions remained quite consistent from car to car.

As we found on the skidpad, winter tires again showed roughly double the dynamic handling advantage that four-wheel drive offers. On stock tires, the Audi Quattro was just 5.5 percent quicker accelerating through the cones than the stock fwd A6, but the combination of fwd and winter tires boosted performance by 12.6 percent. Slowing through the cones, the 4wd A6 on stock tires was slower and more difficult to control than the fwd A6 on winter rubber. It was more likely to slide sideways, perhaps due to its added mass. The 4MATIC system upped the E320's average slalom speed by 2.5 percent, but mounting winter tires on the rwd E320 yielded a 4.7-percent boost over the stock rwd E320.

Again, the numbers don't begin to describe the difference felt at the helm. Our best run in the A6 Quattro on stock tires was accomplished by flicking and sawing heroically at the wheel and creating quite a spectacle. By contrast, the fwd A6 on winter rubber ran 3.5 mph faster on its very first easy-does-it run by merely steering around the cones. The E320s both tend toward throttle-on oversteer, even on winter tires, so the subjective difference the tires make is somewhat less dramatic than in the Audi. It's also interesting to note that winter tires helped the E320s slightly more in the decelerating slalom tests and they helped the Audis more in the accelerating slalom.


What About When the Snow Melts?
Most places in the U.S. that get enough snow and ice to warrant buying winter tires also experience frequent thaws. That means folks end up driving winter tires on dry or damp pavement a lot of the time. In those conditions, the winter tires provide noticeably less grip for stopping and turning than do all-season tires. Their tall, soft tread blocks feel squirmy and imprecise during transient maneuvers. They also tend to wander more in crosswinds and on crowned pavement. And most winter tires carry a speed rating of "Q" (99 mph) or lower.


So What's the Bottom Line?
Four-wheel drive helps get cars going. When it comes time to brake or change direction on low-traction surfaces, the extra mass of the driveline becomes more of a detriment. Folks who live in hilly places that get snow may need the climbing capability of four-wheel drive. If it snows a lot in those hilly places, they should probably invest in winter tires, too. Even flat-landers who happen to have steep driveways may wish to consider a four-wheel-driver.

Almost everyone else will most likely be better served by using winter tires. Acceleration takes longer, but in an emergency, the handling behavior and improved lateral grip of two-wheel drive and winter tires -- in the slippery stuff -- are the safer bets.

Winter tires boosted the rwd Benz's acceleration times more than they did the fwd Audi's, but in almost every other test, the inherently front-heavy Audis derived more benefit from the winter rubber than did the more evenly balanced Benzes. This finding certainly suggests that front-drive cars benefit from winter tires as much or more than rear-drivers do.

And finally, unless snow or ice covers your roads many times in a winter, the snow benefits of winter tires may not outweigh their drawbacks on dry pavement.

There, Nevin. And don't ask which came first, the chicken or the egg.
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Old 01-26-2004, 10:58 AM
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Braking performance on ice and snow is substantially better with the winter tires.


And that test used 8+ year old tire technology (the original WS-15 blizzak came out no later than the mid 90's.). Had the winter tires been some of the newer ones like the WS-50, the differences may have been even more dramatic. Also the WS-50, while still not a sporty tire, has better handling than the old WS-15.
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Old 01-26-2004, 12:41 PM
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I sure would like to see you guys selling Hakkas, Gary!
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Old 01-26-2004, 12:43 PM
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I sure would like to see you guys selling Hakkas, Gary!
I hear and pass that very statement along to management pretty often !
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Old 01-26-2004, 06:10 PM
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Gary, comments?

From Car and Driver:

Most places in the U.S. that get enough snow and ice to warrant buying winter tires also experience frequent thaws. That means folks end up driving winter tires on dry or damp pavement a lot of the time. In those conditions, the winter tires provide noticeably less grip for stopping and turning than do all-season tires. Their tall, soft tread blocks feel squirmy and imprecise during transient maneuvers. They also tend to wander more in crosswinds and on crowned pavement.

Any comments? Do you feel the WS-50's would be scary? Better off with the LM-22 for this reason? And "noticeably less" means?!?

I know there are no hard and fast answers, but since I've never driven on winter tires, I'm not sure what to think . . .
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Old 01-26-2004, 10:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlerMA
From Car and Driver:

Most places in the U.S. that get enough snow and ice to warrant buying winter tires also experience frequent thaws. That means folks end up driving winter tires on dry or damp pavement a lot of the time. In those conditions, the winter tires provide noticeably less grip for stopping and turning than do all-season tires. Their tall, soft tread blocks feel squirmy and imprecise during transient maneuvers. They also tend to wander more in crosswinds and on crowned pavement.

Any comments? Do you feel the WS-50's would be scary? Better off with the LM-22 for this reason? And "noticeably less" means?!?

I know there are no hard and fast answers, but since I've never driven on winter tires, I'm not sure what to think . . .
Are you planning on moving to Denver this winter? If not, I would suggest buying the LM-22 in a 16 inch tire. Since you primarily drive on Boston roads, you're probably better off with the H rated tires. I've got Dunlop M2's mounted on 17" wheels that I drove on when I lived up there, and they aren't very squirelly at all. Obviously, you're going to lose some performance if you go with the taller sidewall of the 16's. However, the trade off should be better snow performance up in the mountains for your ski trips. If you do move out to Denver and find the tires inadequate, just sell them and get the WS-50's. If it's really bad in Denver, you're probably going to need chains or a 4WD vehicle anyway, right?
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Old 01-27-2004, 09:42 AM
PhilH PhilH is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlerMA
From Car and Driver:

Most places in the U.S. that get enough snow and ice to warrant buying winter tires also experience frequent thaws. That means folks end up driving winter tires on dry or damp pavement a lot of the time. In those conditions, the winter tires provide noticeably less grip for stopping and turning than do all-season tires. Their tall, soft tread blocks feel squirmy and imprecise during transient maneuvers. They also tend to wander more in crosswinds and on crowned pavement.

Any comments? Do you feel the WS-50's would be scary? Better off with the LM-22 for this reason? And "noticeably less" means?!?

I know there are no hard and fast answers, but since I've never driven on winter tires, I'm not sure what to think . . .
That's why I suggested the LM-22s even if you're moving to Denver. Especially around Philadlelphia, 95% of the time the roads are nearly free of snow during the winter. I prefer having good dry grip so I got the Dunlop M2 snows.

The WS-50s might not be scary, but I bet they'll feel a bit less sporty than LM-22s. Even the Dunlop M2s will get you where you're going in heavy snow if you have some driving skill (heck, some people are comfortable driving with all seasons on their BMW in the snow, including my dad in his E39 540iA).

I had a set of the original WS-15 Blizzaks on 14" wheels on my wife's Civic about ten years ago and they really felt like snow tires. I had to seriously slow down and tiptoe around corners or I felt like I'd go out of control. I felt the squirm during turn in was a little scary and highway stability was also compromised...however, this was a Civic, so it's not like I was used to flying around corners with it anyway.

I also had Michelin Arctic Alpins on 15" wheels on my old 525i and although they were getting closer to the feel of an all season, I still didn't feel good going quickly. Now, with the 17" Dunlops on my 330i, I can go quickly, but I just have to hold myself back from really pushing maximum g-forces when hitting an offramp. As long as I stay smooth, they feel almost exactly like all seasons, with just a tiny bit more squirm than my summer tires (and I've now gotten used to it, so I don't even feel it anymore).

To help figure out which tires to choose, just ask yourself what your biggest fear is during the winter. Is it getting stuck or crashing your new BMW in the snow, or is it that your new BMW will feel like a bit like a Buick on dry roads?
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Old 01-27-2004, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilH
To help figure out which tires to choose, just ask yourself what your biggest fear is during the winter. Is it getting stuck or crashing your new BMW in the snow, or is it that your new BMW will feel like a bit like a Buick on dry roads?
Excellent point. Well, obviously "getting stuck or crashing my new BMW in the snow" is my biggest fear.

But, on the other hand, my Accord already feels like a Buick on dry roads and is paid for and insured, so the whole point of getting the bimmer is to have wicked handling and speed.

I guess I'm a little worried about "average safety" . . . are the WS-50's much worse on dry roads than the LM-22's, i.e., much longer stopping distances and much squirmier? If so, and if most of the time I'm on dry roads, then my "average risk" of an accident might be higher on the WS-50's, even though the LM-22's would have the higher "maximum risk" since they are worse on terrible snow conditions . . .

Who thinks I have OCD and should just make a decision like a man?!?
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Old 01-27-2004, 01:00 PM
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The LM22's and DSC have allowed me to go where ever I hve desired. The past 2 days here in PA have again proven to me the the combination of snow and dry capabilities of the LM22's make then my winter tire of choice
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Old 01-27-2004, 01:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlerMA
Excellent point. Well, obviously "getting stuck or crashing my new BMW in the snow" is my biggest fear.

But, on the other hand, my Accord already feels like a Buick on dry roads and is paid for and insured, so the whole point of getting the bimmer is to have wicked handling and speed.

I guess I'm a little worried about "average safety" . . . are the WS-50's much worse on dry roads than the LM-22's, i.e., much longer stopping distances and much squirmier? If so, and if most of the time I'm on dry roads, then my "average risk" of an accident might be higher on the WS-50's, even though the LM-22's would have the higher "maximum risk" since they are worse on terrible snow conditions . . .

Who thinks I have OCD and should just make a decision like a man?!?
A little perspective, I have the Dunlop M2's which by reviews are similar to the lm-22's. In the dry, they handle better then any A/S tire I've ever had, and also outperform the A/S's in the snow.

Do they make my car a snow mobile? No. But as long as I stay out of the mountains I'm in good shape. NJ has winters were it'll snow 2 times one year and 10 times the next. I've always been fine with A/S so the little added performance of the winter's are perfect, and full snows aren't neccessary.

If I lived in a hilly area, and if it snowed on a more frequent basis, I would have gotten the WS-50's

OCD is good for you.
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  #19  
Old 01-27-2004, 01:34 PM
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[email protected] Rudy@Tirerack is offline
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The WS-50 is certainly more squirmy, but is not anywhere near what I'd call dangerous on dry. The former Moderator of E46Fanatics, Eddie ran these on his 330CI, albeit in 225/45R17, but he was happy with the results. You'll get differing opinions on this depending on how much snow they encounter. I personally tend to err on the conservative side and run WS50's since much of my commute is neglected backroads.

Winter http://www.tirerack.com/a.jsp?a=AB2&...nter/index.jsp
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  #20  
Old 01-27-2004, 10:37 PM
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SizzlerMA SizzlerMA is offline
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Question Scenario for Gary

Hi Gary,

Hey thanks for the input! So, maybe going with 17" WS-50's would be better? For instance, which of the following cases would give the best all-around snow and dry performance:

Case1: 225/45QR17 WS-50
Case2: 205/55QR16 WS-50
Case3: 205/55HR16 LM-22

Any opinions?

For instance, would taking the WS-50's in 17" improve their dry-road handling without dramatically affecting their snow/ice handling?

Maybe the thinner sidewall would help alot with the "squirminess" without the added width hurting the snow traction too much?

Thanks guys---I am close to putting down the deposit on the car as soon as I can get my "BMW in the Snow" confidence level high enough.
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  #21  
Old 01-28-2004, 03:57 AM
AG AG is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlerMA
Thanks guys---I am close to putting down the deposit on the car as soon as I can get my "BMW in the Snow" confidence level high enough.
Are you ordering your car or buying one off the lot? If you're ordering, winter might be over by the time the car gets here.
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  #22  
Old 01-28-2004, 05:19 AM
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[email protected] Rudy@Tirerack is offline
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I would tend to agree that running the 225/45R17 WS-50's would be a good compromise in your case. THe 225/45R17 sizing will hurt deep snow traction a bit compared to 205/55R16, but will be more responsive and still outstanding on packed snow and ice.
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  #23  
Old 01-28-2004, 08:15 AM
Motown328 Motown328 is offline
 
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I don't know if you really need to be going full snows. Up in Detroit we've got up to 6 inches this year and my Sumitomo HTR+'s are doing excellent. They plow right through the snow and feel like rails. The Conti's I did have were like ice skates... And then, like the psoting from C&D, frequent thaws and dry pavement driving in the winter actually give you worse grip and stopping distance. Unless you like to change your tires every 7-10 days or live in tundra country, I would think twice about riding dedicated winters all season long...
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  #24  
Old 01-28-2004, 08:20 AM
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kyfdx kyfdx is offline
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Don't want to step on Gary's toes..

Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzlerMA
Hi Gary,

Hey thanks for the input! So, maybe going with 17" WS-50's would be better? For instance, which of the following cases would give the best all-around snow and dry performance:

Case1: 225/45QR17 WS-50
Case2: 205/55QR16 WS-50
Case3: 205/55HR16 LM-22

Any opinions?

For instance, would taking the WS-50's in 17" improve their dry-road handling without dramatically affecting their snow/ice handling?

Maybe the thinner sidewall would help alot with the "squirminess" without the added width hurting the snow traction too much?

Thanks guys---I am close to putting down the deposit on the car as soon as I can get my "BMW in the Snow" confidence level high enough.
Especially since Tirerack doesn't carry them, but if you want the best handling winter tires, get Goodyear Eagle Ultra-Grip GW-3. I have them in the 225/45VR17 size.. that's right.. V-rated. I can hardly tell the difference on dry roads from the stock Turanza ER30s. We got four inches on Sunday, with freezing rain after that, and no problems. But, I agree with a previous poster... By the time you get the car, you won't need winter tires this year.
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  #25  
Old 01-29-2004, 11:08 PM
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SizzlerMA SizzlerMA is offline
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected]
I would tend to agree that running the 225/45R17 WS-50's would be a good compromise in your case. THe 225/45R17 sizing will hurt deep snow traction a bit compared to 205/55R16, but will be more responsive and still outstanding on packed snow and ice.
Hi Gary,

Hey thanks for all the advice so far! I certainly plan on buying from Tirerack.com with such stellar customer service!

When you say "THe 225/45R17 sizing will hurt deep snow traction a bit compared to 205/55R16" how deep is the snow you mean? 4 inches? 6 inches? And do you mean hurt as in, will get stuck or hurt as in will go but not as stable or grippy or longer braking?

Thanks!
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