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Old 08-15-2004, 09:53 PM   #51
2Stroke
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 36712
Join Date: May 2003
Location: RHE, SoCal
Vehicle:
2003 WRX Wagon
WRB

Default

#1.) what tire are you offering for review (please include size)

Falken Azenis Sport RT-215 205/55-16

#2.) what is your geographic location

Southern California

#3.) what types of driving events if any (i.e. track, AutoX, RallyX)

None.

#4.) percent of highway vs. city driving

35% highway 65% city

#5.) your review and personal comments

I put these stock size tires on my stock wheels (16x 6.5) to replace the RE-92's, and used them like any other street tire for ~6000 miles.

The Good:

The grip level on dry pavement is outstanding. Even in the stock size, lateral cornering force exceeds .96g. The side bolsters in the 03 WRX seats are inadequate for these tires.

Steering response is much improved over the RE-92's, and the steering feels much more direct in mid-corner. They respond to small steering corrections quickly and predictably, whether it's a lane change or a mid-corner correction.

They slide progressively at the limit. They inspire confidence when driving quickly.

They have a reasonably comfortable ride.

They are not expensive.

They have a soft tread compound which provides good adhesion.

The Bad:

They have a soft tread compound which provides short tread life.

They are very NOISY. They are so noisy over some types of pavement that the whole dashboard vibrates.

They hydroplane fairly easily. I slow down if I see standing water.

We don't have mud in Southern California, except near the man-made lakes, but if we did, I wouldn't try to drive thru it on these tires. Ditto snow, hail, or any kind of ice.

Compared to the Toyo T1S

After 6,000 miles on the Falkens, I bought a set of 215/45-17 Toyo T1S tires on 17" P1's. Only toward the end of their life did their dry grip levels approach the stock size Falkens, and even then they never were quite as good. This in spite of the Toyo's being 215/45-17's and almost twice the price. I should note that the Toyos were equal or better in every other category of tire performance, making them better for daily use, but for sheer performance on dry pavement, the Falkens are superior by a substantial margin.

Edit: The Falkens have about 7000 miles on them now, and have about half their tread left. Because they are on the stock rims, they are now the 'spare set' of tires.

Cliff notes:

Dry performance per dollar spent is off the scale, but there are trade-offs. If you live in SoCal, you can use them as street tires.
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Last edited by 2Stroke; 09-20-2004 at 05:52 PM. Reason: Fix broken link
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