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Thread: E30 Street/Track Tire Recommendations?

                  
   
  1. #1
    Senior Member Scotty's Avatar
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    E30 Street/Track Tire Recommendations?

    I did a forum search and nothing jumped out at me... sorry if this subject has already been discussed.

    I need tires for an '87 E30. This is a track car that will rarely be driven for anything but fun but it will remain street legal for now. Stock "bottle caps" are on the car. I'm sticking with them until later when I can move to a lighter rim. No suspension mods.

    I'm getting ready for my first DE at Summit Point and was advised by a friend that novice drivers shouldn't worry about using race tires. The rationale is that learning on street tires leads to better driving habits and a greater appreciation of racing tires. I'll go along with that for now.

    Anyway,I did a search at TireRack.com using the "Tire Decision Guide". I placed an emphasis on handling, included all brands, and found the following matches (OE size = 195/65-14):

    BFG Traction T/A H
    Dunlop SP Sport A2 Plus
    Sumitomo HTR H4
    Yokohama AVID H4S


    A 195/65 seems like a lot of sidewall and not much tread, so I would like to go as wide and low as I can with the stock rims.

    I did a different search and specified a summer performance tire, 195/60, H rating or higher, and found one more:

    Yokohama AVS ES100

    Any opinions on these tires? Any advice on widest possible size with these rims?
    Scott Lowrey

  2. #2
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    Avid H4s were my street tire for my soon to be gone 90 E30325i. Good all round tire. A lot quieter than its predecessors. Good handling with good wet traction. Nice grip. Inexpensive tire. Radial Tire should give you a good deal on them and be cheaper than Tire Rack Me when you consider final price.

    If you are going with a 60 series go for 2056014 and not a 1956014.
    You can run 2256014. I would get about 35k miles wear out of Avids with 2.5 degrees of negative camber + front and wear. They were tolerant of track settings.

    BFG has crappy quality control. The set I had went off big time with scary oversteer on a car that was already neutral to tail happy.

    The only time I would put Dunlops on a car is if I was going to sell it or donate it to the Purple Heart.

    If you havent done schools you want to start on street tires. After a year or two move to track tires. I would keep the suspension stock for now.

    Dave Apker

  3. #3
    Senior Member SharkD's Avatar
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    I ran Yokohama AVS ES100s on my E24 as a street/track tire, before I bought my [Spec] E30 track car. They're quiet on the street, great in the rain and very grippy on the track. They also give excellent feedback (audibly and through the wheel).

    For a little more, you can get a set of Toyo RA-1s, which are street-legal and amazing in the wet (full tread) and pretty darn good in the dry (shaved or intermediate). It's the Spec tire of SpecE30. Although after about 24 heat cycles/track sessions, they're done.

    On the whole, though, I'd hold off on buying RA-1s or any other R-comp tire until you're consistently hitting the handling limit of the tire under controlled conditions. R-comp tires grip better, but at the limit, they give up traction with very little warning. They also have a tendency (much like WRX STi's and Evo VIII's) to smooth out the shortcomings of less experienced drivers, which means when you do finally get yourself into trouble, it's likely a much more serious situation than you would have faced on street tires.

  4. #4
    Senior Member BahnBaum's Avatar
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    Where's Eric? He should be able to help you.

    Alex
    Interrobanged.

    TeamWTF?!


  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scotty
    I need tires for an '87 E30. This is a track car that will rarely be driven for anything but fun

    I placed an emphasis on handling, included all brands, and found the following matches (OE size = 195/65-14):

    BFG Traction T/A H
    Dunlop SP Sport A2 Plus
    Sumitomo HTR H4
    Yokohama AVID H4S
    Please don't get any of the above for your 'track car.' They are each all season tires, and you won't be happy with them on the track.

    You have to go to the 195/60-14 size to get a better selection.

    The best you can do, in my opinion, for a track/street tire is either the Falken Azenis RT-615 ( or older RT-215) or the Hankook Ventus Z212.

    Both of these are around $65 each and will keep up with anything short of an R compound tire. They aren't the best in the rain or in ride comfort but for a track car, driven for fun, these are hard to beat.

    They will, each easily outperform a Yoko ES100.

    TireRack does not carry either of these brands. Radial Tire does carry Falkens locally. If you can't find them , try www.vulcantire.com or www.edgeracing.com

    I have bought the Azenis, from vulcan tire a couple of times w/no problems.



    Gonzalo.
    Last edited by Gonz; 08-01-2006 at 03:47 PM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Scotty's Avatar
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    'Nuff said. I ordered AVS ES100's from Tire Rack, size 205/60. I don't need all-weather performance, so this seemed the way to go.

    I might have gone with Radial Tire, but it's a long trip to Silver Spring from where I am. It's easier to have the new tires delivered, take the old wheels off, throw everything in the truck, and get them mounted by a friend who has access to a shop.

    Thanks for the advice - I'm still listening if anyone has anything to add.
    Scott Lowrey

  7. #7
    Senior Member Scotty's Avatar
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    Sorry, Gonz. Our posts crossed each other. I'll keep the Falken's and Hankook's in mind for next time. You're right, they are not offered by Tire Rack.

    Perhaps I'll give the folks at Radial a try next time around. It would help if they had a finished web site, but whatever.
    Scott Lowrey

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    No problem.

    The ES100s will not hold you back on your first few track days, and you'll have a nicer, quieter ride and good wet weather handling. Probably better for learning as well.

    Just glad you didn't get those all seasons mentioned above !

    Which Summit point event are you attending ? I may be at the NASA event in August.


    Gonz.

  9. #9
    Not to let this thread die... Anyone have much experience with the Falken's? I am considering going with them as my every day and DE tire. I am wondering how long do these babies last? With my driving I was able to get 30k out of Micheline Pilot Sports.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Scotty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gonz
    Which Summit point event are you attending ? I may be at the NASA event in August.
    I'm signed up for the August NASA event and the NCC school in September.

    The NASA date is a little iffy. I've only got two more weekends to work on the car before then and there's a lot to do. Brakes, shifter, PS pump, tach ... argh.
    Scott Lowrey

  11. #11
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    So Scotty what does your neu ride look like?

  12. #12
    Senior Member Scotty's Avatar
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    This is the only shot I have at the moment. I think the car was rolled back in the mid-90's but it seems to be straight and solid. The clock shows 188,000 but I think it's probably higher than that.

    Research proves it's a genu-wine '87 325is, which is not what I originally thought.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Scott Lowrey

  13. #13
    Senior Member SharkD's Avatar
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    Even with 188,000+ on the dial, it looks better than my 155,000 mile example did when I bought it -- see here:

    We don't need no stinkin' clearcoat!!

    Though somebody needs to give you back your iS basketweaves...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scotty
    'Nuff said. I ordered AVS ES100's from Tire Rack, size 205/60. I don't need all-weather performance, so this seemed the way to go.


    Thanks for the advice - I'm still listening if anyone has anything to add.
    You did good chosing the 205/60-14 size.
    Woody
    96 328is, 99 M Coupe, 04 330Ci

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    Very Nice. Tuck the bumpers if spec legal and you'll be happier with overall look.

    If you need hlp I'm sure one us would be glad to lend a hand also.

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