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Old 01-14-2006, 01:57 AM   #1
airprakken
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Member#: 103186
Join Date: Dec 2005
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Oregon
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08 FXT, RS
dark, very dark

Default Great water tires

I just put Nokian WR's on my new WRX after 2500 miles on the RE92's. Stayed at 215/45R17 in case of warranty issues.

I am very pleased with them, but for complex reasons:

1 - They have noticably more tread squirm, so many here would not like them for top hard surface performance. Not enough dry pavement the last two weeks here to be certain what I think.

2 - The water-filled ruts on I-5 are not noticable. The RE92's skated/hydroplaned quite a lot. The difference is huge.

3 - Wet surface cornering (tight 90's) is amazing. I can corner at the same speed wet as I did on RE-92's dry. Some of this is the wet traction and some is the much better feeling. I can tell what's going to happen next -- just an easily controllable full power drift.

Dry? I won't know what to do until maybe June. I may put the original RE92's back on (left them on the original wheels) or might get summer tires.

But what about off-pavement? I hate the 45 profiles for gravel (which I try to do every week). Seems like I have to get Enkei 15's and use 195/60R15's for gravel, dirt, rally-cross, etc. But three sets of wheels and tires seems a little excessive.
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Old 01-14-2006, 02:05 AM   #2
waktasz
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What do you mean you stayed with that size for warranty issues?
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Old 01-14-2006, 02:14 AM   #3
airprakken
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waktasz
What do you mean you stayed with that size for warranty issues?
Sorry. I mean I didn't want to change the outside diameter of the tires at all in case I had some warranty issue. I have never had a Subaru before and don't know if SOA would use that change as an excuse to get out of a problem.
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Old 01-14-2006, 09:02 AM   #4
Howl
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1999 OBS

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Quote:
Originally Posted by airprakken
But what about off-pavement? I hate the 45 profiles for gravel (which I try to do every week). Seems like I have to get Enkei 15's and use 195/60R15's for gravel, dirt, rally-cross, etc. But three sets of wheels and tires seems a little excessive.
Finding a good gravel tire that is also good on pavement is tough, I've been pondering this issue for some time know. The WR is probably one of the tires that can do both well, but as you say, 45-series on gravel is NOT what you want. I've seen a Legacy GT (17" rims) with winter tires wreck a tire on a bumpy back road where no other car in the group had difficulty.

I've also been looking at the BFGoodrich Traction T/A, which has a relatively blocky tread pattern and reports of good gravel characteristics, but it's dry performance leave a little to be desired. So I may go with the Falken Azenis ST-115 (205/55r16) and get the great pavement perfomance and suffer a little on the back roads.

Another alternative might be to look for a set of used 16" Hakka1's or 2's, on steelies just for Rally-X.

Last edited by Howl; 01-15-2006 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 01-14-2006, 04:37 PM   #5
Back Road Runner
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The WRs are nice tires. For squirm, just make sure you have the psi up some. standard 35psi is just a little low, low to mid 40s is best(for my car - Forester 205/55/VR16). You can run upto 51psi if you want, but the tires started to get bouncy above low 40s, not bad, but you can feel the tires hopping a little over bumps in the road. The ride is still good otherwise, and for my soft Forester, squirm is unnoticable from low 40s on up.

I agree for the gravel comment, not the greatest. The Firestone Indy 500s I had on my previous cars were awesome on gravel and quite sticky on asphalt. Their only weakness was icy surfaces and not many sizes are made above a 15" rim not ratioed for trucks. You really need a rib or square-blocked design to provide fast response and solid side bite on gravel. The V tread just doesn't cut it response-wise. However, the WRs are not bad on gravel overall. They aren't the most resposive, but they do bite harder after you increase the slip angle a bit.

The Nokains are awesome in the rain, but most winter tires will do tremendously well in rain from the spaced tread pattern and tons of siping. The drop between dry and rain is almost none, 5-10%, very little.
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