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Winter tyres, or all seasons?

Discussion in 'The UK and Ireland' started by NullException, Oct 2, 2016.

  1. NullException

    NullException Member

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    My 60D came with summer tyres (Michelin Primacy 3), so I'm now wondering about winter driving.

    I know winter tyres have been discussed many times in the Model S forums, but the advice there is mainly for NA drivers who get a lot of snow.

    I can't decide whether to just replace the Primacys with all-seasons or get winter tyres on separate rims.

    What are other Model S drivers in the UK doing?
     
  2. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Member

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    Can't speak for Model S, or indeed AWD, as not had it through a Winter yet. In case helpful my experience is as follows:

    Eons ago had 4WD (sports-type rather than ploughed-field type!, so I suppose what would now be called AWD) to help in Winter. Winter, for me, is mostly fairly regularly ungritted country lanes - 5 miles of my journey - some ice on other roads and occasional snow.

    Went to France skiing some years ago and, on the advice of a friend, tried Winter tires rather than chains (boring people carrier with front wheel drive). Was astonished how much more progress up the mountain (packed snow on the road all the way up from the valley floor) I could make, the level of control, and being able to stop! I find they help in rain during winter too.

    Since then have fitted Winter tires to all cars for every winter season. Looking forward to having Winter tires on an AWD vehicle this season :)
     
  3. NullException

    NullException Member

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    Thanks @WannabeOwner.
     
  4. rossfitz

    rossfitz Member

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    Look into Michelin Cross Climates. I've had winters before, but have just put these on a mini and they are very good at everything. NB, are the tyres on Model S noise reduced with some inner foam? If so normal tyres will be noisy in comparison.
     
  5. NullException

    NullException Member

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    thanks @rossfitz
    I've heard they're a great tyre, but they don't fit the model S?
    Some of the 21" tyres have foam inserts, I believe. I don't think the 19" ones do.
     
  6. JER

    JER Member

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    Michelin Crossclimate is great by most accounts, but yes, not yet available to fit anything larger than 225/40 R18. They have been slowly expanding the range, so perhaps next time? :)

    As for regular all-season tyres or winter tyres, neither of those make much sense in the UK. For most of our territory, summer tyres will outperform everything else for all but maybe 2-6 weeks in the year.

    Winter tyres are superior to summer at under 8°C and vastly superior on snow and ice, but wear excessively at higher temperatures. All-season tyres (Crossclimate excepted) are mediocre in all conditions.

    Given how little severe weather we get here, it's not surprising that when you ask for "tyres" here you get summer tyres. Unless you like burning money, your best option is probably to run summer tyres all year and just take it easy when they are suboptimal. Most roads are gritted anyway.
     
  7. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Member

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    That's not been my experience ... unless we have a cold spell earlier, or it remains mild, I put the Winter tyres on around 01-Dec and I take them off when the forecast predicts plenty of days above 10C (but I expect you are right that the switch-over is 8C). That's probably 01-Mar, so I have the Winter tyres on for 3 months.

    That said, I live in the country, so I have the very real problem that the moment I turn off a main road I am likely to be on un-gritted roads and appreciate not having a brown-trouser moment on the first patch of ice I come to! I also find that the Winter tyres perform much better on wet roads in the winter, and we usually drive to skiing and Winter tyres avoids us having to buy / take / fit chains to get up the mountain if it is snowy, so the benefits for other folk may not be as attractive.
     
  8. NullException

    NullException Member

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    Most of my driving is commuting, and therefore morning/evening, when the temps are lower. According to various sources online, minimum temps are below 7C between Oct - Apr where I live in Wiltshire, and max temps are at or below 7C between Dec to Feb.

    Also, lots of smaller country roads in my neck of the woods, that don't get gritted reliably.

    I asked the Bristol SvC about the winter tyre package at the beginning of October, but they gave the impression most of the stock goes straight to continental Europe, and they've not given me an update on availability yet. I'll call them again tomorrow, but I'm guessing I'll need to source my own tyres (and maybe rims).

    My previous cars have all be family carriers, and I've just stuck all seasons on them and been very careful in icy conditions.
     
    • Like x 1
  9. RDoc

    RDoc S85D

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    If you don't mind changing wheels/tires with the seasons, by all means go with the pure winter tires, they are really amazing. I use Michelin IceX's on my NSX which otherwise is seriously dangerous to drive in snow and ice and drive it all winter as long as I have road clearance.
     
  10. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Member

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    Ha! Takes me back to the Lotus Esprit 3 Turbo I had. On a dry, sunny, June day I spun that in central London pulling away from the lights, when the turbo cut in, and was NOT even attempting to be a jerk. Driving that in the wet, let alone Ice and Snow ... forget it!
     

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