Recom. new tires for '03 Elantra

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May 9, 2003
Fayetteville, NC
My wife got an offer from the dealer for new tires+installation for $310.00
(for her 2003 Elantra GLS). Now, I wanted to research a bit before deciding anything.

Is this a good offer?( I don't know what kind of tires the dealer puts on; I'll ask, but I think it will be Michelin MXV4 or whatever it came with...didn't that tire win the "worst tire" cup on this forum?)

should I try a different route to get new tires better AND cheaper? (like tire rack, etc)

Do the tires HAVE to be replaced by the dealer for warranty purposes? (probably not, but I want to be sure.)

IF I don't use the dealership, what are our best alternatives?
What tires (oem size) are good and economical for a 2003 Elantra? (I was thinking of Kumho, which have good reviews here)

We'd like to stay under $60.00 per tire.

Any advice would be very welcome.

Here are all tires that fit this car..:

tire rack results

[ July 14, 2006, 11:35 AM: Message edited by: 97tbird ]
too late to edit

Here's the T-rack comparision of all tires under $60.00 for this car, AND the oem Michelin Energy MXV4 compared with them:

under $60 comparision (incl. MVX4)
Tiure rack customers surveys are one of the better sopurces of tire information. Take a look at the 11 categories in the survey and buy the tire that does the best in the 2 or 3 categories that matter the most to you. Within budgetary constraints, of course.
Oh yeah, I agree with others that for popular economy tires in such typical size, you'll probably get a better price (overall) by shopping locally (Discount Tire, Walmart, etc). TireRack really starts to make sense for more exotic tire models and sizes which the local shops don't have on hand and are not willing to order them at a reasonable price.
i have the bf goodrich traction t/a H in 185/60/14 on my civic its a great tire... wears very well and lots of grip. the kumho asx wouldn't be a bad choice either at $46ea looks like it has some great reviews.

but i'd shop/call r'ound your local places first. see what they can do. but for tires, you definately get what you pay for. I like to research first online then decide on prices. I dont buy tires based on price or milage ratings, i buy based on performance and customer reviews.
Thanks for all the opinions, guys.

Discount tire has the Kumho Solus KH16 for $61.00 locally...Tire Rack has it for $43.00...but then, with tire rack there's about $40.00 shipping for the 4 tires...

The dealer told wifey that the $310.00 tire insatll package inlcludes Kumho tires...unfortunately theye didn't tell her which Kumho tire (model) it is...if it's the Solus KH16, they are only a bit more expensive than tire rack when all is done.

I'm going to research/call local places a bit more and call the dealer on Monday and verify which Kumho tire they offer..
Looks like the Elantra is using the same tire size as my company Sentra (195/60/15). I just replaced the tires on it with Yoko Avid H4S. I've only got about 1K miles on the, but so far so good. Good wet traction, lateral grip, comfort, and decent steering response (it's a relatively high profile, so I didn't expect miracles anyway). In other words, they get my nod, if we're talking about economy car applications, no high speed spirited driving and such.

With shipping and mounting/balancing, the total was around $316.

As for MXV4+, IME, they're comfy and that's about it. Wet traction is poor, lateral grip also. And all that for almost twice the price of the Yoko.

If you really want Michelin, it looks like the Exalto would be a better alternative to the MXV4+.
we have the V4S on my father's MB. They have been realy good so far (~25k miles). No significant trawear to note.

Having someone other than the dealer install tires will not void the warranty, so long as you use a tire size that the vehicle was designed for.

I'd shop around.

I also rely heavily on the comparison chart and owner reviews. I ignore reviews by people who've put less than 500 miles on the tire, because they haven't driven on the tire long enough to have an informed opinion. The more miles the reviewer has put on the tire the more I value their opinion. I buy tires primarily based on how good the traction is on all types of surfaces, how many miles they'll last, and cost. I care very little about the ride and noise factors. I somewhat go buy how aggressive the tread looks, not because I like the looks of an aggressive tread, but because I feel that tread aggressiveness is a prime factor in good traction.

I've researched various Kumho all-season and all-terrain tires over the past few years and am increasingly impressed by them. A lot of them are better than other brands that cost a lot more.
Ive heard a lot of good things aboutthe traction TA, however Ive heard a lot of claims of decreased fuel economy when the tires got put on... It seems quite balanced, praise and fuel consumption complaints...

I would look locally for tires. People are pretty happy with Kumho's. Kumho's are probably 80% of your current Michelin's. You likely will have a slight mileage drop with other tires due to your Michelin's being a very low rolling resistance tire.
My wife's old Honda had 185/65-14 BG Goodrich Traction T/A and didn't drop in economy....compaired to the factory Firestone or after market GoodYear or Kumho.

Does anybody know what brand tire (for Mid size 4 door car) offers the best fuel economy without too much road noise ??

Called the dealer today to verify the Kumho type:

Good news: it IS the Kumho Solus KH-16 that they offer..
Bad/Confusing news: They offer a 40k mile why is that? Kumho website and tire rack offer 60k mile warranty on the KH-16.

When I pointed that out, the parts-guy's reply was: "treadlife warranties stated by the manufacturer and distributors/dealers can be different..."

Any way: I'm sorta weary of tirerack/online tire purchases. TR was really good with my tires for the Tbird 3 yrs ago, but I wonder if they are the same anymore...
The dealer offeres the KH-16 with 40k warranty for $310 all 4 tires icl. installation.

should we get it or not?....that's the question. it sure is easy, and the price isn't bad, and I wonder if that thing with the difference in warranty should
turn me away from this...

Oh, and btw, I checked local places for the same tire...none of them could beat the price of the dealer for the same tires.

called Kumho customer service, and asked why/how can the dealer offer a lesser warranty than spec'd by Kumho. They don't know...I guess I'll have to talk with the dealer at length if I do get those.

[ July 18, 2006, 10:27 AM: Message edited by: 97tbird ]
Something is not right with those differing warranty claims. I mean, afterall, it's a tire manufacturer warranty, not a dealer warranty, and you should receive a Kumho warranty booklet with your new tires. And if it says 60K miles, then that's what it is. Any possible warranty claims you would take up with Kumho directly, not with the dealer.

Now, a dealer may offer its own warranty that covers free rotation/rebalancing during the first 40K miles, but that's totally separate from the tire manufacturer warranty itself.

That issue aside, the value difference between 40K and 60K miles is probably very small, because all those tread warranties are prorated, so if at 50K miles your tires are bald but they were guaranteed to last 60K miles, then the tire manufacturer will only give you a small % of the tires' value towards the purchase of a new set because at that point the tires would have already been 80-85% worn. I'm not sure if I'm explaning it clearly, maybe someone else can. You can also go to Kumho's site and read the fine print of their warranty coverage.

Thanks for your input. I was thinking of the little booklet, too. Everyone should get that, I guess, and you're right: THAT's what counts. I'm sure the dealer warranty was like you explained. I think I got the Kumho treadlife warranty and dealer's maintenence warranty of some kind mixed up (the service guy's accent was as bad as that non-understandable guy's accent from "king of the hill"; I could only understand about 30% of what he said

Thanks for the explanation. I'll update if/when I talk to the dealer and if/when we get those Kumho's...
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