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Discussion Starter #1
Hi:

New to BMW. Have a 2013 335i xdrive. First winter approaching.

Spent so much time researching buying the right size rims (bought 17 inch style 161 BMW rims for winter use), but I did not pay enough attention to the winter tires that came with the rims. Tires are like new but are a budget Hercules brand and I am not sure that they are ideal. Comments?

I live near Toronto Canada and we do have long winters but not an excessive amount of snow. Roads are clear most of the winter. I drive highway a lot at 100-120 Km/hour (60-70 MPH).

I'm now looking at Blizzaks LM-32s. There are at least 3 types of LM-32 (225/50/R17). The one I am considering has a 94 H load index and speed rating. There are also Blizzaks WS 70 or 80.

Any opinions if these tires are ideal for this car? Does it matter if they are not run flats? Any opinions / suggestions are welcome.

I am not stuck on this brand but they seem to be recommended often for BMWs.

thanks
 

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Load ratings are important. I think 94 is ok but 98 is even better. It takes a lot of guts to throw out new tires so if you have driven on them, consider using them this winter.

If they are not run flats then some people risk it while others buy a spare tire. Or wash your non-winter tires, wrap it in a plastic bag and strap it in
 

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Pedant and Curmudgeon
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There are definite differences between bargain brands and the top 3 or 4 tires. There are even differences between the Blizzaks you mentioned: the LM-32 is a (so-called) Performance winter tire, while the WS80 is a full-on winter tire. The difference is that the Performance tire is speed-rated and "tuned" for better dry road performance than the WS80, which is a dedicated snow/ice tire (the WS70 is last year's model, btw.)

In perusing all the tires available, for pure winter performance, the Michelin xIce3, the WS80, and the Nokian Hakkepellita are generally acknowledged to be the highest rated, with the Continental, Dunlop, Pirelli and Goodyear offerings closely following.

Among the Performance class tires, the LM-32 (and others by Blizzak) and the Michelin Pilot Alpine the best, with the Continental, Dunlop and Pirelli following. People may have different opinions and rankings, but the top 5 or so are all pretty close. Check the ratings and tests on tirerack.com.

I run non-performance go-flats (WS80) in a slightly different-than-standard size during the winter; they're cheaper than the RFT's in the standard size, and there is more selection. Since you do a lot of road, you may get better performance and tire life from a performance winter tire like the LM-32 or Pilot Alpine.
 

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proper load rating is important because it will prevent premature tire wear.

I have not noticed a significant difference from running conti's winters, or blizzaks. go with whichever tire is cheaper of the two.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks to all three of you. That is really good advice.


BTW, I would sell the Hercules XL winter tires as they are decent basic tires and like new. If anyone has an opinion on them, let me know as there is not much info on them.

OK so I think I need good performance winter tires for my driving conditions here as I have all wheel drive and there may be only about 20 days per year of snow on the roads here. Perhaps something like the Blizzak LM-32 or Michelin Alpin would be best.

Turns out there are some Blizzak LM-32s available here at a great price with a 98V rating. They are new but have a DOT manufacture date that is three years old. Price is almost 50% off. I am tempted. I think you can get 6-10 years out of good tires that are taken care of and only driven about 6,000-7,000 Km per year.

Any issue with 3 years old new quality tires at a great price?
 

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Thanks to all three of you. That is really good advice.

BTW, I would sell the Hercules XL winter tires as they are decent basic tires and like new. If anyone has an opinion on them, let me know as there is not much info on them.

OK so I think I need good performance winter tires for my driving conditions here as I have all wheel drive and there may be only about 20 days per year of snow on the roads here. Perhaps something like the Blizzak LM-32 or Michelin Alpin would be best.

Turns out there are some Blizzak LM-32s available here at a great price with a 98V rating. They are new but have a DOT manufacture date that is three years old. Price is almost 50% off. I am tempted. I think you can get 6-10 years out of good tires that are taken care of and only driven about 6,000-7,000 Km per year.

Any issue with 3 years old new quality tires at a great price?
as a heads up, the issue is not just snow. Winter tires are designed to stay softer below temps of 45. This is why a lot of people call all-weather tires 'three season' tires because the cold of winter turns the rubber into hockey pucks.

blizzak's are solid. for a tire that has sat for 3 years I would be a little worried about dry-rot.

Personally, always stood by the saying that you should really not bargain with anything that is a buffer between you and the ground (tires, shoes, mattress, etc)
 

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I just got a set of ws-80s for 335 x. Upstate new York, lots of snow and cold (but not this year since I bought new tires). I have rune the LM 32 in the past on my front wheel drive TSX and Saab93. I am going with non run flats and I may pick up one of those tire kits (pump, sealant etc. even though the sealant may kill the TPMS) or just call AAA for a flatbed. The car has the 18 all season run flats, but I have been putting snows on all 4 corners for over 40 years. Only have blown 1 snow tier in that time. Picked up some Enkei 18 wheels and tires form Tire rack with TPMS 2 of the 4 got delivered yesterday the other 2 should be today. i will make the switch around the third week of November and late March early April. I figured H rating was enough, I don't plan on wild driving in Winter and as the more performance tires wore (3rd season) they did a lot less on the snow and ice. this is my first AWD so I am hoping that this wil be a very uneventful commute this winter
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yes. I appreciate hearing your advice and past experience.

I think I will go with the performance Blizzak LM32s for the Toronto area as most of my driving is on a major highway and (although I am in Canada) the winters in this area are not too bad - usually. Having said that, I'm sure we'll get the worst winter in history. I drove on Michelin Alpins for years in the winter and they were pretty good.

When I get the new winter tires, I am moving from 18 inch rims for 3 seasons to 17 inch for winter and will have 225/50r17 tires on my 335i xdrive. Apparently, there will be no speedometer error with that particular tire size on the 17 inch rim. I bought a set of used BMW 17in rims for winter. I spoke to a guy from BMW and he said that it is very common to move down from 18 to 17 inches for winter.
 

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I can't recommend enough the Michelin X-Ice Xi3. The beauty of these tires is that they behave much more like a regular tire than the Blizzak ( I had them and I hated the loudness of them - and they melt quickly). They are more expensive but worth it. I had a set on rims also for our 2012 Civic. First buyer who showed bought them at my price - might be easier to resell
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hi

OK I really like Michelins too as I have them on other family cars but I thought the Blizzak LM32s are a performance tire rather than strictly a pure heavy-tread, snow tire. They are supposed to be quiet, perform well in terms of handling, speed and designed for cars like BMW sports cars. They are comparable to and maybe a bit better than the Michelin Alpins as far as my research suggests. I have not bought the Blizzaks yet but plan to do so on Saturday unless I get some big red flags from this community.

This whole post issue arose because I bought some BMW rims with a set of strictly winter tires on them - budget Hercules XL winter tires. They are 91V rated and I'm sure they would be fine for a few months per year but I am not crazy about them.

What say you? Keep the current budget winters, buy Blizzaks LM-32s (rated 98V) or other?
 

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I like the Michelins too and have them for both of my BMWs. Take a look at the information provided by TireRack at http://www.tirerack.com/tires/michelin-tires.jsp.

There are Michelin performance winter tire and you can see extensive reviews for any tire you may be interested in buying.
 

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I also run the non-runflat Blizzak WS80. For me personally, "performance" isn't a factor in the winter. On my previous e39 I had Nokians and then Michelin X-Ice. I have been running Blizzaks, which slots in between the 2 on every car since I had the e39. Literally every car. MDX w/ awd, two Honda Accords w/ fwd, two Mercedes suv's w/ awd, and my current 320 w/ rwd. Nokians would be my 1st choice but price and availability has me always coming back to the Blizzaks.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks.

So far, lots of recommendations for true winter tires with less emphasis on the performance. Michelins and Bizzaks seem to be the top choices in terms of quality and availability. If I want a simple basic winter tire and not concerned about handling and road noise, then maybe I should just keep my budget tires that were on the rims. The tread on them looks awesome actually but I guess I am a tire snob.

Any comments specifically on the Blizzak LM-32s which I am thinking of buying? I assume they still work great on winter roads especially combined with AWD and a smallish, light car (335ix).
 

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I've had Blizzaks (non run flat of course) for winters on the last 3 BMW's, including the one in my sig which displays them here. I carry one of the front summers for a get home spare. The fact that I keep buying them must mean I think they are OK.. never really did bother to research it much beyond that, but happy to hear that others think the same. :thumbup:
 

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Any comments specifically on the Blizzak LM-32s which I am thinking of buying? I assume they still work great on winter roads especially combined with AWD and a smallish, light car (335ix).
I had the previous generation LM-26 on my 335d the last 3 seasons; worked fine (until the tread wore below the micro-cell layer.) Should work just fine.
 

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I have studded pirellis, the load rating is high, but they are only speed rated to 115, instead of the 189 or so of my p-zeros. I live in Alaska tho so if I'm going more than 100 in the winter I have a death wish anyway.


They go back on tomorrow.
 

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I highly recommend the Michelin xIce3 or Blizzak WS80 as I've used both. The biggest thing you will gain on either tire is a better ability to stop in snow and/or ice VS and all season tire. IMHO all seasons terrible tires because they make compromises to be usable in all conditions. If you have the budget and you get real winters then always have a set of winter and summer performance tires. Your 335xi will come alive on some non-rft Michelin PSS tires for the spring/summer/fall months!
 

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This year consumer reports ranks the Michelin X-Ice XI3 and Nokian Hakkepelitta at the top of their list, followed by the Blizzak WS80. That said, last year I bought a set of cheap new Champiro snow tires from discount tire for my 328d, and use them all winter to go skiing in the Rockies. I love them! They're quiet, they handle well, and they ride well. And, they are excellent on snow and on ice in my subjective opinion. And, even a cheap set of snow tires provide better traction in the winter than the best all season tires.
 
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