New Summer Performance Tires on the Market

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Jun 15, 2003
Silver Spring, MD (USA)
Here's a list of some of the prime Performance street tires that have come out this year. If you are worried about longevity, ride comfort, or ride noise, skip this post. If your concerned with maximum braking performance, maximum agility, and maximum wet and dry grip, keep reading.

Just recently, the Toyo T1-R which replaces the T1-S in toyo's lineup.

Fantastic wet traction (T1-S was in the top 3 tires), and hydroplane resistance, now with a quieter ride, better lateral support, and supposedly better dry traction.

Average longevity for the T1-S is about 20k miles.

Toyo T1-R

Falken has also released their RT-615 Azenis this year. The RT-215 was one of the most competitive street tires on the market, with incredible (almost Racing compound) dry grip, and extremely stiff sidewalls and excellent lateral support. Average longevity of this tire was 10-15k miles.

The new RT-615 Azenis Sport has increased wet traction, hydroplane resistance, reduce road noise, and a better supposedly no cost to dry traction.

Falken Azenis RT-615

Last in this list is the new Hankook R212's. A relatively new tire/compound, this guy is turning heats. Good wet traction, good lateral support, decent ride noise and comfort. The autox and track guys are raving about the dry traction, as it seemingly is much better then the old RT-215 Azenis's, but with far better wet traction, and a fantastically low price.

Hankook R-S2 Z212

Just thought I'd drop these off in a thread, in case anyone was looking for a tire that was primarily concerned about performance over other aspects of driving.
The Falken Azenis RT-615 looks good and is my choice. My car pulled .88g's on its stock OEM tires (according to Car and Driver). I had some long discontinued Yokohamo A-520's on it that have steel inserts in the tire sidewall, along with a 160 treadwear rating. They had very nice stiff sidewalls and excellent steering response with very good grip. People dont realize what there missing until they drive a car that can actually handle with a set of real (not BF goodrich traction ta) tires on it.
how does that new kumho stack up? I'm running MX's right now and they seem fine, if not quite as quick to steer as my Advan's.

Any ideas on the pricing of the new azenis & toyo's?

I'm pretty set on KDW/2's since it's always so rainy up here, but i'm always looking for new ideas.
The SPT is below the MX in the pecking order. Only tire I'd pick over the MX would be the Goodyear F1 GS-D3. I'd be hard pressed to spend that money on tires though, unless I had already finished upgrading the hard parts...
Another thing to keep in mind is who is raving about the tires. A good AutoX tire does not always mean a good HPDE tire and vice versa. Some of the best bang for the buck AutoX tires turn into half day wonders at the local HPDE as they turn into slick masses of goo due to the continual heating of the tires. And some good HPDE tires don't do well in AutoX b/c they never warm up fully.
Latest issue of Grass Sports Mag put the RT-615 Azenis above the Yok and Hankooks and the old RT-215's. Don't know if it was that exact tire or not though.

They also didn't run the toyos, and were running the RT-615's at 50psi!

I find this a bit odd as many of the SCCA guys seem disatistifed with the performance of the 615's vs the old 215's. Maybe its a difference between autox grip and road course grip.

I'm running the new Toyo T1-R's myself right now, and their a bit less grippy then my nearly bald T1-S's (obviously), but have significantly better turn in, and better road noise (less). They seem to give feedback pretty quickly, which is most likely due to the full tread vs 50% shaved.


245/40/17 on 17x8 SSR Comps
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