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Old 12-11-2012, 11:32 AM   #1
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Michelin X-Ice Xi3

2013 Focus SE. Got my new Michelin X-Ice Xi3 tires mounted last week. Size is 215/55R16. Have gotten in some drive-time now, so though I'd comment.

I come to these Michelins after riding Blizzaks for many years. I' am looking for a smoother and quieter and less squirmy ride when I'm on just cold pavement than the Blizzaks have been giving, and the Michilens so far seem to be a win on these points.

I also hope the Xi3s won't wear as fast as the Blizzaks. Time will tell.

Traction on hardpack seems ok. Slush-handling seems reduced from what I remember of how my Blizzaks have performed in past years. (I don't fully trust my memory in this case, and my Blizzaks on my previous Focus were narrower -- 195s versus 215s).

When the road gets rough and uneven, it almost seems like the Xi3s transmit more road shock than do my stock tires. Again, I don't fully trust my memory.

My fuel economy dropped from 43.0 mpg on the same trip two weeks ago to 36.5 mpg this week. That's going by the Sync display on the dash. (This is expected. No worries here. It is just interesting to see the numbers).

Straight-line tracking is less precise than from my stock tires, but better than I get from my Blizzaks on my old van. I am happy enough.

Edit: I found out later that I was dead wrong when I wrote--> My mechanic uses only a bubble-balancer to balance tires on rims. Not sure what effect, if any, that would have on my experience.

My mechanic stocks and sells Winterforce from his shop. Both the owner and the employee who mounted my Xi3s commented favorably on the number of sipes in the Michelins. It's a small thing, but it's always nice when one's mechanic is favorably impressed with something one is adding to one's vehicle.

Bottom-line right now is that I'm pretty doggone happy with these tires.



Last edited by JonathanGennick; 12-12-2012 at 07:53 AM. Reason: Correct factual error relating to my mechanic
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Old 12-11-2012, 03:03 PM   #2
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Wow no one uses a bubble bal method I would in my opinion get a spin bal done on them a lot more accurate
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Old 12-11-2012, 04:15 PM   #3
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Wow no one uses a bubble bal method I would in my opinion get a spin bal done on them a lot more accurate
I should double-check, but I'm pretty sure that's what he does. The guy does good work though. I've watched him grow from two bays to four bays. He's hired people, expanded and improved his building, repaved his parking area, generally seems to invest in his business. And most importantly, I've been really happy with his work on my vehicles. He's top-notch. I don't go anywhere else.
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Old 12-11-2012, 04:56 PM   #4
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I have to agree, a bubble balancer is very old school (40 years+ old technology if not older). Fine for the day, but spin balancing is far more accurate, especially if the car is driven a lot on interstates or at speed. No offence, but I'm surprised that if your mechanic is as good as you say he is, why he would still advocates this level of accuracy and charges for it. If you really want those tires to last, get it done as accurately as possible and that means spin balanced. Heck, that's considered old school now-a-days.
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Old 12-11-2012, 06:27 PM   #5
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Yeah bubble bal was top of the line then before none bias ply tires
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Old 12-12-2012, 07:52 AM   #6
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Mae Culpa. BIG FAT MAE CULPA on my part. I dropped off my van for work this morning and found out my mechanic *does* have a spin balancing machine. I've no idea how I came to have the wrong impression, but I was dead wrong about the bubble-balance thing. He is more up-to-date than that. He's got a spin-balancer tucked away in a back corner of the shop.
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Old 12-12-2012, 03:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonathanGennick View Post
Slush-handling seems reduced from what I remember of how my Blizzaks have performed in past years. (I don't fully trust my memory in this case, and my Blizzaks on my previous Focus were narrower -- 195s versus 215s).

Bottom-line right now is that I'm pretty doggone happy with these tires.
the extra width will definately impact slush performance.

glad you are happy.
I just bought some XIce 2 for my sisters car (were on clearance due to the arrival of hte Xi3) although i have gotten any seat time with them yet.
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Old 12-12-2012, 06:01 PM   #8
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JG - glad you settled on something you're happy with!

All the mental debate over which way to go seems to have paid off!
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