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Old 11-16-2004, 03:28 PM   #1
Topshelf
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Default Can the P-Zero's really get through the snow???

I'm in dire need of a new set of tires on my '02 TS. I'd really like to pick up a set of the Pirelli P-Zero's, but I'm extremely concerned about snow traction. And before anyone says it...I'm not doing deicated snows. So does anyone have actual snow time with these tires yet? All the reviews seem good on them, but from looking at the pics, I just can't believe they can get through much, if any snow. This is going to be the car my wife drives when it's snowing out, so I really need something that will do a decent job, but still be fun in the dry for me. If not the P-Zero's, then I'm seriously considering the Conti EtremeContacts. I know there's threads out there already, but I just can't decide what to do. As much as I hate it, snow traction IS important to me. Any thoughts?
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Old 11-16-2004, 06:25 PM   #2
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If you see significant snow, I would go with the continentals.
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Old 11-16-2004, 06:31 PM   #3
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Hopefully I'll find out in the next few months
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Old 11-16-2004, 07:18 PM   #4
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Thanks, but a few months is too late. I guess anything, including the Conti's, will be a giant step up from the unmatched 15" jobbies on there right now. And those Conti's look like they have a pretty serious winter tread going on. Most likely my best bet, but dam I want those P-Zero's.
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Old 11-16-2004, 08:08 PM   #5
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They make a "mud & snow" version of the PZero. There has been lots of discussion about it on this board, and tire rack has reviews of it.

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires....ero+Nero+M%26S

The review says for "occasional light snow". Maybe this is the one you were actually talking about in the original post.

Last edited by 2Stroke; 11-16-2004 at 08:13 PM.
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Old 11-16-2004, 08:20 PM   #6
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I'm pretty sure that's what he's talking about. While I have no experience with ultra high performance all seasons, it really doesn't look very good for snow traction. I see no sipes, which I believe are crucial for ice traction and the treads aren't very chunky or deep. I have a feeling this is more of a summer tire that can function in cold climates and shallow snow.

Where will you be driving? That should be the biggest influence.
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Old 11-16-2004, 09:58 PM   #7
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Yeah, whtlegacy is correct. That is the one I was referring to. And yes, there has been alot of discussion about it, but not one person has any real snow experience with it. I feel the same way, the tread pattern just does not scream capable in the snow. I'm in Philly, PA. And the white stuff is supposed to be here next week. I was nervous about the Conti's because of some reviews on here. But the more I think about it, it might be my best choice.
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Old 11-16-2004, 10:10 PM   #8
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There is no doubt in my mind that they will get you around but it just might not be the safest choice. Philly isn't too snowy usually if i remember correctly so if I were in your position and was deadset on all seasons, I'd probably give them a try. Take it easy in the snow until you see what they're capable of. The price certainly isn't too bad at all, and if you think about it, you'll probably spend 98%+ of your total yearly driving time on clear roads.
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Old 11-16-2004, 11:01 PM   #9
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Tread design isn't nearly as important as the rubber compound. That's why dedicated winter tires do well when its cold - they're nice and soft. Its also why they don't last too long if left on year round. Don't let the tread design be the deciding factor.
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Old 11-17-2004, 09:23 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Topshelf
I'm in dire need of a new set of tires on my '02 TS. I'd really like to pick up a set of the Pirelli P-Zero's, but I'm extremely concerned about snow traction. And before anyone says it...I'm not doing deicated snows. So does anyone have actual snow time with these tires yet? All the reviews seem good on them, but from looking at the pics, I just can't believe they can get through much, if any snow. This is going to be the car my wife drives when it's snowing out, so I really need something that will do a decent job, but still be fun in the dry for me. If not the P-Zero's, then I'm seriously considering the Conti EtremeContacts. I know there's threads out there already, but I just can't decide what to do. As much as I hate it, snow traction IS important to me. Any thoughts?

I would go with the Nokian WR tires, They are all-seasons that can run with most dedicated snow tires in the winter.

http://www.nokian.com/passengercars_...name=NOKIAN+WR
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Old 11-17-2004, 09:52 AM   #11
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Ahh, can't make up my mind on this. Wish I could pick up some decent snows cheap for the 15" steelies I have. P-Zero's might be too summer oriented and those Nokian WR's seem too winter oriented. Right now it seems like theres 3 choices...1) Conti ExtremeContacts...2) Falken Ziex Ze-512...and maybe 3) Toyo Proxes 4. Although I don't know alot about the Falkens or the Toyos, so it's hard to say. Maybe the choice should be either Conti's or Falken's? Anyone use the Falken's in real snow yet? This is the writeup form Edgeracing on those...

"We suggest this tire if you are looking for:
Good treadlife without sacrificing much performance
A set of tires to have all year round (decent snow/ice traction)
The Falken Ziex 512 received first place in a comparison test done by a leading consumer magazine. One of our best sellers due to its high treadwear (360), 30,000 mile warranty, all-season capability and great value. The Ziex 512 also helps reduce un-sprung weight due to its lightness."
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Old 11-17-2004, 10:42 AM   #12
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The pirellis have a silica enhanced compound. This should help significantly with retaining traction in the cold and wet so I wouldn't judge them on tread pattern alone. I already know from personal experience that they are much better with temperature indifference than previous tires I've had. While I haven't seen sub freezing temps with them yet, I have seen low 30s with wet roads and I seem to have just as much traction with them as I do when it's in the 60s. This is a significant improvement over the stock RE92s and the BFGoodrich KDWS that I have run.

I know other's have said the tires perform well in mud, so they appear to have good clearing ability which, combined with the low temperature wet traction, should make them an OK performer in winter weather.
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Old 11-17-2004, 10:49 AM   #13
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Hmm, isn't technology wonderful? Now you got me thinking about going back to the P-Zero's again. LOL
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Old 11-17-2004, 10:59 AM   #14
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Here's what I would do...

Put some decent snows on the stock 15" wheels. They don't have to be too expensive, probably most any snow tire > stock tires in the winter. Get a set of take off WRX wheels / tires for the summer, probably $300 or so. The WRX wheels look so much better on the TS than the stock steelies with plastic covers, plus seem to improve handling a bit due to shorter sidewall. When the stock WRX tires wear out, you can get your nice summer or "all season" tires on there, and still have the snows for the winter months. You're not compromising winter or summer performance, and it shouldn't be too costly. My $.02.

Steve
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Old 11-17-2004, 03:36 PM   #15
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Well I already have a set of WRX rims sitting in my garage waiting for rubber. I'd rather just get one set to do everything if possible though. A set of snows is gonna cost $250 minimum after mounted, and right now I'm really on a tight budget. Most likely I'm either gonna buy the Falken Ziex ZE 512's or the Conti ExtremeContacts and hope for the best. If I'm right, the Falkens should be just as good in the snow, but better in the dry, so that is what I'm leaning to right now. I guess if they don't work out as well as I'm hoping, then I'll have to find a little more $$$ for the 15" snow setup. I understand the P Zero's have technology behind them, but without some proof, I can't put out $400+ and hope for them to get me through the winter.
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Old 11-17-2004, 10:34 PM   #16
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I think I'm just talking to myself at this point. But I've been reading reviews all night and just came across this one at Tirerack. It's on the P-Zero, and might prove bull's theory....

Quote:
I bought these tires to replace the worn out stock Michelins after only 16,000 miles. I managed to get 25,000 miles on these Pirellis which I find amazing. I ran a little over 60 miles on a tight road course and the tires did not become greasy and didnt chunk like the stock Michelins (the Michelins actually looked shredded). On the road I was suprised that the noise and ride quality was as good as the stock tires. Shortly after I purchased the tires (Oct 03) Denver got hit with several inches of snow. I did not have any problems at all, not in the snow, slush or ice. I felt very sure footed even though the tires where 225mm wide. Handling comes close to my R-Compound Kuhmo Ecsta V700s, not quiet as good but VERY close, at a local auto-x event I compared the two tires and gained 0.8sec with the R-Compounds. Now for the negatives...they do become somewhat noisey when they get very well worn and the tires tramline a lot on grooved concrete. However, they give up almost no grip from the day they are bought to the day that they are used up. Would I buy the tires again? Without hesitation! -- Review Submitted 2004-08-27
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Old 11-29-2004, 04:32 PM   #17
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i live in delaware and i'm picking up a set of pZero's tomorrow. it's christmas time spend the extra bucks, a gift to yourself
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Old 11-29-2004, 04:51 PM   #18
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If the weather trends continue like they have been, I'm going to be glad I didn't opt for compromising good weather performance for snow traction.

Beginning of december and still seeing 40s and 50s with rain. Not that I'm complaining that much mind you, but I would like to go skiing sometime this year.

Snowed once so far and it didn't lay at all. No snow in sight either. It was already in the low 20s by this time last year.
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Old 11-29-2004, 05:08 PM   #19
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Yeah, I hear you guys. But I'm worried it's eventually going to snow, and it's going to be a long winter. So I already made the compromise. I picked up a set of SP5000's on Luke's advice. I have to admit, so far I'm VERY happy with them. A few hundred miles and they feel just great. I've gotten some aggressive cornering in and they stick great...better than I thought they would. And with the stock TS suspension, do I really need P-Zero's? These will be more than I need and should safely get me and more importantly, the wife, through the snow without worry. But please, post up your snow experience with the P-Zero's. I'd love to find out how they do.
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Old 11-30-2004, 12:33 AM   #20
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Looks like I came across this a touch late, but oh well.

Many people seem to find the SP 5000's to be a good tire(not refering to SP 5000 M version). I too would consider them as a possible choice for a good all-year compromize between strong summer performance and winter capability.

bull3964 gave a good point. Winter traction isn't all about tread pattern. In fact, tread pattern has little to do with winter performance other than under deeper snow conditions. For most of what you'll incounter, you won't need truck tire capability to dig through the deep stuff. On the contrary, it's more up to the compound to determine the grip you'll get.

When the temps drop down low, you want a compound that will remain supple and is able to still bend to the contours of the road. Technology has come a long way to make this possible.

As well, the tire needs to maintain a low rolling resistance to help prevent the thawing of the frozen surface. Your loss of traction on ice is just hydroplaning. Your tire melts a tiny layer of water that it "floats" on. The better a tire is at preventing this, the better it can handle icy surfaces.

Wet traction and hydroplaning resistance is also cruical. When you're working with the melted snow(the slushy stuff), it's helpful for the tire to be able to throw this stuff out of the way and actually get down to the road. If it can't, you're back towards hydroplaning. A good rain oriented tire works quite well in these situations. A tire with deep, wide tread like a truck tire can do the same.

Now when the snow does get deep, you can't rely on the other aspects. You need to be able to grab and go. Otherwise, you'll just be spinning your tires. I guess there's two aspects to this. First, when you do go over even deep snow, you pack it down and create a packed surface to drive over. This kind of follows the above rules in technology and the ability to grip a packed surface. As well, you still can only do so much with 2 feet of snow in front of you. Sometimes, you just need digging power. If you can't dig down or throw it, you might have a tough time going throw the deep stuff.

There's kind of a fine line between how all of these things mix together and how much of what parts works best. I personally like to not be limitted by what I can go through. I look for deep, spacious tread cause I know it can really work through the snow, dirt, mud, gravel, whatever I throw at it. But I also keep in mind how it chances as the temps drop. You don't want to ride on a rock hard tire when it gets to 20 below. It just doesn't help. The technology needs to be there. It really needs to provide capability for the full array of conditions that winter provides.

I know all of this doesn't really help you Topshelf as you already bought something, but I hope it helps some others during their decission process. I'm also glad Luke was here to help you and all the others on this forum. He seems to point people in the right direction. You just have to remember, it's always about trade-offs. There's no one perfect tire for everything. However, there IS a tire out there that provides the right "mix" of things you want in a tire. This "mix" is a personal thing, and for the most part, no two people share the same mix. Anyways, have fun with your new tires. I should be getting something new for my car in the near future as well.
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