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All wheel drive and Tires

Discussion in 'Model S' started by kuttakamina, May 9, 2015.

  1. kuttakamina

    kuttakamina Member

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    The new D's look awesome.

    I've been reading on forums that Tesla Model S's seem to eat tires for breakfast, lunch and dinner - especially with the 21" wheels.
    I was wondering if the "D" models will be any better or worse at it, considering all 4 wheels are being subjected to torque?
    Also, if tire rotation could be done less frequently?

    I've never owned a 4wd/awd, I know its a dumb question :confused:
     
  2. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    Tire wear, for any given tire, mainly depends on alignment, pressure maintenance, and the amount of lead in your foot. Tesla's tire wear problems are amplified because of the large amount of negative camber which makes any minor alignment issue into a major one. The only sure-cure is to get one of the adjustable links so that the camber can be set to a reasonable value.

    If the AWD had the same amount of power that the RWD has, only distributed over both axles, it would help tire wear on rocket launches, but since it has more...
    That said, for sane, rather than insane, starts and stops there isn't likely to be much difference, although the wear should be spread out over all four tires rather than just two (particularly for regen) reducing the need for frequent rotation.
     
  3. kuttakamina

    kuttakamina Member

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    Thanks Jerry. I am not a mechanic nor do I play one on TV, but I was researching other EVs. Nissan Leaf for instance is a front wheel drive, and it also eats tires for breakfast. Although, Tesla's issues as you point out are greatly accentuated by the negative 2 degree camber. Per my research, even if you are not a lead foot, the 21" wheels last around 13K miles max, and 19" last around 25-30K. If you are a leadfoot, make that 7K and 20K. The p85d grins, I think they would not be happy to see their tires if they do that on a regular basis.

    Anyway, based on the leaf EV tire woes, it appears that the instant torque at 0rpm is also a contributing factor to tire wear.

    In that sense, the 70D has a weaker engine! than S85 (or 85D). I am hoping this less torquiness(!) spread over 4 wheels instead of two, will further help tire life.

    So, 70d tire life should be > S85.

    Of course time will tell, but am I completely off base in my reasoning here?

    PS: Leaf tire "woes" - woes is a strong word. Leaf's tires last around 40K if you do rotate. But if you don't, the fronts get significant more wear. I realize even in ICE cars the fronts get more wear, but they also carry more weight (engine and turning). Leaf's weight is more equally distributed. So the EV instant torque must be a contributing factor to tire wear.
     
  4. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    It's also possible that Tesla has made suspension changes in the D series to help this. (Don't know, just say'n.)

    My S85 looks like it will get 40-50 k miles on the current set of tires (about 50% worn at 28 k now). The first set did wear out quickly, but that was due to the alignment being out badly. I've put on 33 k since then but 5 k were on winter tires.

    As far as the weaker motor goes, that's a "Well, yes and no". The "yes" is for rocket launches and max regen. The "no" is for normal starts and less than max regen. Given a start with Y seconds from 0->Z or Z->0, the same amount of power will be used in either configuration. In the 70D it will be spread out over four tires so the wear will be less for each tire, but the total wear over the four tires will be similar--it should just look better.

    In some cases it could actually be better because the heat is generated over four tires rather than two. How much this will actually affect the wear isn't known (hot tires always wear faster than cold tires, how much faster depends on a number of variables) and may only be applicable to those cars that do a lot of rocket launching.
     
  5. yobigd20

    yobigd20 Well-Known Member

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    Considering my first set lasted 48k miles and still had 4/32" tread left and my second set already has 20k miles on it and looks like it'll also reach 45k-50k miles that statement is inaccurate.

    First rotation at 6k miles then every 12-15k after that.

    You just need to make sure your alignment is good and be VERY vigilant about keeping the psi on your tires up. I generally top mine off every other week.

    I'm on 19s by the way. 21s should last about half or less than half of the 19s just due to the much smaller tread depth.
     
  6. kuttakamina

    kuttakamina Member

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    This is very reassuring. My 8 year old car is still on it's origina tires. I am a very not lead foot. I almost never use brakes and coast to stop. I think I'll be very happy with a Tesla. I just need to hit my personal fitness goal (4 more lbs to go), and then I'll actively start pursuing specific Tesla's to buy. Still confused between 70d/inventory/cpo, but the more I think about it, I think I'll go for some sort of d (inventory or new).
     
  7. linkster

    linkster Member

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    #7 linkster, May 9, 2015
    Last edited: May 9, 2015
    yobig

    Please edumacate :mad: kutta about the MULTIPLE failings (as you usually and accurately do) of the 21 wheel/tire combo. In addition, they will positively not survive the DC roads.
     
  8. yobigd20

    yobigd20 Well-Known Member

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    I didn't feel like going into that but yes if you are ok with a harsher ride, frequent flats , blowouts, rim damage, hours of wasted inconvenience waiting to get towed, extremely expensive repairs and multiple thousand dollar replacements, then by all means go ahead and get the 21s :)
     
  9. kuttakamina

    kuttakamina Member

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    So, getting 21" wheels will require me to do weird jobs on the streets raising cash trying to pay for the repairs while I am stranded, with the added bonus of meeting interesting folks, who might be harsh-ride toughned up fellow 21" Tesla owners.

    Got it!
     
  10. JER

    JER Member

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    I strongly urge you to change those tyres. The recommended maximum life of a tyre is 5-6 years from manufacturing.

    Rubber slowly perishes due to oxidation in the atmosphere. As well as reducing grip, this can allow water into the ply through cracks. The steel ply can rust and weaken if exposed to water, causing the tyre to disintegrate under normal loads.

    Seriously. Change the old tyres. Now.
     
  11. kuttakamina

    kuttakamina Member

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    I see your concern, but I've had the tires and brakes inspected by two independent mechanics, and both of them told me the tires were fine. If I don't get the Tesla (unlikely), I will change the tires in another 3-4 months (before winter sets in). But most probably I'm gonna get the Model S, and just trade in what I have.

    I am shocked though how well these tires have lasted. The brakes are probably good for another 50K miles the way I drive ..
     
  12. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    This largely depends on the conditions the tires are used in. In some cases three months is enough, in other cases ten years is fine. There's just no way to tell without inspecting the tires. If the cracks are big enough to reach any of the plies, the tires should have been replaced long ago--and you'd know this because the cracks would be quite large.

    Note that modern good quality radial tires fill the stabilizing steel plies so that water (oxygen) doesn't travel along them like water though a pipe, so deterioration is local to the injured area.

    Yes, i realize there are a lot of scare stories published by the media.
     
  13. JER

    JER Member

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    Your call.

    I personally will be following the manufacturer's recommendations over that of mechanics. Their job is fitting tyres, not understanding or designing them.
     
  14. Cyclone

    Cyclone Active Member

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    And here I am learning that our cars have just been unicorns in terms of tire/tyre usage. Our 99 Toyota Corolla went 5-6 years/60k miles before new tires. My 97 Toyota 4Runner went from years 4 (I bought it at year 3) - 9 (when I sold it) and 50k miles on one set of tires. My 06 Toyota 4Runner went 6 years/50k miles on the first set and has had 3 years/35k miles so far on the second set - which still has plenty of life left in it. Guess the Tesla is going to make me get to know my local Discount Tire better!
     
  15. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    #15 brucet999, May 10, 2015
    Last edited: May 10, 2015
    Estimated life for a non-P version 19" wheels is stated at about 30K mi.

    I have compared Tesla to Lexus models and have been told by Lexus service to expect about 30K miles for either an ES 350 or ES 300h, both shorter and much lighter cars than Model S but with about the same cabin space. They said that Lexus uses softer tire compounds than they used to in order to get better handling and ride.
     
  16. linkster

    linkster Member

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    #16 linkster, May 10, 2015
    Last edited: May 11, 2015
    Thanks yobig for your no-spin, important response to my request as I know you get tired/frustrated at repeating this similar statement over and over.and over again. Your (3) line post is the definitive answer to anyone contemplating having their S equipped with this low-performance (as compared to Todd's,champ's, arsci's lightweight 20's) 21" option. I truly believe that your past posts on this 21 *fail* have saved many new owners much hassle, money, and given them an improved ownership experience (provided they heed your advice).
     
  17. beeeerock

    beeeerock Active Member

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    It shouldn't come as a big surprise that the Leaf is relatively hard on tires, if not rotated. It's front wheel drive, so acceleration (even the lightning-quick acceleration of a Leaf... :cool: ) is going to wear the front tires. When you hit the brakes, or regen, the front tires are going to be the ones that feel most of the resulting friction against the pavement. It follows that the rear tires see wear forces when cornering and if the brakes are hit hard. But that's just a fraction of the daily abuse seen by the fronts. This would be the same with virtually all front wheel drive cars, ICE or not.

    All wheel drive is going to help to even out the tire wear by virtue of all the wheels being involved in acceleration and deceleration. That doesn't mean front and back will wear equally, but they'll be closer to equal than the Leaf example. The front tires will still see the greatest braking forces.

    Big diameter wheels are usually installed at the factory (any manufacturer) with low profile performance (soft) tires. People usually buy the bigger wheels for those low profile sticky tires, so you should expect them to wear faster than smaller diameter offerings just because that's what they were made to do. I'm not aware of a tire manufacturer boasting about the high mileage expected from a low profile performance tire!
     
  18. CalDreamin

    CalDreamin Member

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    I'm at 40k miles and have 5/32" tread left on the original Goodyear Eagles.
     
  19. yobigd20

    yobigd20 Well-Known Member

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    #19 yobigd20, May 11, 2015
    Last edited: May 11, 2015

    yeah I mean if you always top it off at 45psi you should be fine. It's worth noting that I have a P85 and drive like a maniac and silently accelerate pretty fast (slightly less than flat out gunning it) at every stop light. so i'm not easy on the tires. if anyone's known for wearing out tires fast it's me. I was shocked how far I actually got on the goodyear's.

    also since I changed last year to 255/45ZR19 Michelin PS AS3 for the last 3 weeks or so I've inflated to 48psi and I think my Wh/mi has improved but really hard to discern bc the weather is also now 70 degrees. It's actually improved A LOT say from around 400Wh/mi to 300Wh/mi but a majority of that is due to the weather. But if I recall 70 degree weather last year I was getting more like 330-340 so just maybe inflating to 48-50psi (like the new P85D specs) help with Wh/mi. worth noting that this will NOT help (but rather hurt) with traction on a P85 with 19" goodyears (they would slip all the time for me, hence the switch to Michelin P/S AS3). Fortunately since my 255's are slightly wider and definitely more stickier I still have that new awesome traction but without sacrificing range.
     
  20. breser

    breser AutoPilot Nostradamus

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    Umm you do realize the 85D and 70D are exactly in the scenario you describe. Roughly the same power just distributed over both axles. Sometimes I'm really amazed at how people still think D means P85D.

    For what it's worth, on my 85D I've had even tire wear on front and rear tires based on the tire wear they reported after rotating tires at 6k miles.
     

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