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Old 03-12-2008, 02:20 PM   #1
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205/55/15 vs 195/60/15

My car is currently running the svt suspension kit (soon to be upgraded with h&r sways) and the stock 15's with pirelli p3000 tires in the 195/60/15 size i'm looking at just getting another cheap set of 15's for the summer and putting some 205/55/15 bfgoodrich g-force sport tires (or the slightly lower profile 205/50/15) would the cost of doing this (100 bucks for wheels and 320 for tires) be worth the added performance? I'm looking at maybe doing 1 or 2 auto x's a year but mostly i just want cheap better handling during the summer.
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Old 03-12-2008, 04:25 PM   #2
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Yes it will make a huge improvement. The tires you have now have a treadwear of 640 which is a very hard tire so the tires dont get very sticky, where the the bfgoodrich's are a 340 which would be a much better handling tire. Make sure the goodrich's can handle a little snow just in case you put your summer tires on and Michigan decide to have a freak snow storm in April like it did last year. Lets just say the curb and my car decided to meet that day. So learn from my mistake and check that they can handle and little snow.
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Old 03-12-2008, 04:52 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nye View Post
Yes it will make a huge improvement. The tires you have now have a treadwear of 640 which is a very hard tire so the tires dont get very sticky, where the the bfgoodrich's are a 340 which would be a much better handling tire. Make sure the goodrich's can handle a little snow just in case you put your summer tires on and Michigan decide to have a freak snow storm in April like it did last year. Lets just say the curb and my car decided to meet that day. So learn from my mistake and check that they can handle and little snow.
Incorrect sir.

The tire wear rating should never factor into your decision making when comparing different brands. The rating is not set to a universal standard. So, the Pirelli rating cannot be compared to the BF Goodrich. It is a manufacturer specific rating when compared to the rest of their individual tire line.

However, you are correct in the sense that the tire will be roughly the same height, but wider. Increased surface contact translates to better handling and braking.
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Old 03-12-2008, 05:11 PM   #4
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that was my thinking but how noticeable will it be? not anywhere close to the differance switching to 17's would make right?
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Old 03-12-2008, 05:18 PM   #5
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I agree with the fact that the performance of the tire is not sololy dependent on the treadwear, but you are incorrect in the fact that it is a standard universaly number used on treadwear, the treadwear number is a refers to the hardness or durometer of the rubber which is a standard scale. So in must cases a lower treadwear rating means a softer tire, which means a sticky tire which means better performance(other things to be taken into account but for the most part this rule stands). That is why in Autocross for sts the rules state "14.3 B. Tires must have a minimum tread wear rating of 140.". How could they say that if there wasn't a standard measurement among tires and tire companies?
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Old 03-12-2008, 05:22 PM   #6
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if the tires are the same width, the only difference switching to 17's would do is potential change your gear ratios slightly and that is only because they are taller. But if your rims and tires are same height as the 17's with tires then you wont feel a difference. If your goal is to make your gear ratios better for autocross then you would want to stick with the 15's and get low profile tires.
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Old 03-12-2008, 05:26 PM   #7
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I would STRONGLY recommend you go to a 16". even on a UHP tire the sidewall rollover for anything greater than 50-series is a joke during aggressive driving. Going a step down to 205/50-15 would goof up your speedometer and odometer, plus they would look funny...

I dunno maybe im biased. The 205/50-16 g-force sports make me pop a tent EVERY time I drive.

so, to answer your question, upsizing the width of a 15" has nowhere near the effect of going to a bigger wheel and smaller sidewall, same rolling diameter (with a wider tread to boot). To get more performance out of 15" you would need a smaller rolling diameter, which is not necessarily good for a daily driver. In my opinion, 17" is too big for the Focus, it doesnt allow for enough sidewall for the tire to work well and they are way too heavy.


edit, for the record I was able to get my BFG's 205/50-16 for $65/tire shipped.
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Old 03-12-2008, 05:38 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Nye View Post
I agree with the fact that the performance of the tire is not sololy dependent on the treadwear, but you are incorrect in the fact that it is a standard universaly number used on treadwear, the treadwear number is a refers to the hardness or durometer of the rubber which is a standard scale. So in must cases a lower treadwear rating means a softer tire, which means a sticky tire which means better performance(other things to be taken into account but for the most part this rule stands). That is why in Autocross for sts the rules state "14.3 B. Tires must have a minimum tread wear rating of 140.". How could they say that if there wasn't a standard measurement among tires and tire companies?
Your still incorrect, to a point, yes a lower treadwear rating will result in a softer tire is true, HOWEVER there is no standard in how a treadwear rating is established, Each Tire Manfacture sets its own standard for treadwear and uses their own ratings. If you were to compare lets just say Goodyear and BFG lets just say a 60,000mi tire for Goodyear might have a treadwear rating of 650 and the BFG could be 620. Now idk as far as the auto-x rules are but i would think that anything below a rating of 140 as a rule of thumb might be something along a slick tire or close to it.
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Old 03-12-2008, 05:45 PM   #9
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sweet! im getting lots of good info here! keep it up guys
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Old 03-12-2008, 06:43 PM   #10
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sweet! im getting lots of good info here! keep it up guys
what else do you want to know, i sold and installed tires for about 2 years, and if i remember correctly WeeAsp worked for GY for 10 years?
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