Thoughts on Michelin X-Ice Xi3?

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778
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Southeast Michigan
I'm very seriously considering the Xi3 for the 3 this winter, but I wanted to get any input on how they stack up against (mostly newer) competetive tires before pulling the trigger. I'm also intrigued by the Dunlop SP Winter Sport 4D, though I've had some rather poor experiences with other Goodyear products in the past. The Nokian Hakkapeliitta R2 is also on my short list, along with the Continental ExtremeWinterContact and ContiWinterContact TS 830P. Anybody got any experience to offer?
 
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N. 'Burbs of Chicago, IL
I've run them (xi3) on 2 E-Class with 4-Matic, and they work well; huge improvement over all-season Michelin's. My wifes Audi has the Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D. But notice, that Tire Rack considers the 3D/4D, a winter/snow tire, and the xi3 a snow/ice tire. The new Blizzaks got a good preliminary review so far from Tire Rack as well. Last thing, is that I do about 15k miles a year, and havw snows on from late November to early March, and the Michelin's show very little wear.
 
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713
Location
MA, USA
Pick the winter tire type and then narrow down to the brand/model you want. You have studless: Xi3 and R2 and performance: 4D and TS830. What do you want from your winter tires? Put in order of importance: ice, snow, wet, dry, noise, slush (some test for it too) Krzys
 
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386
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Finland
If you want a real ice/snow champion, you can drop Dunlop and TS830 from your list. They probably (according test results I've been seen) have better grip on wet and dry asphalt, and higher slush resistance though. Xi3, R2 and EWC are all high quality products for winter, one wouldn't go wrong with any of them.
 

leeharvey418

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778
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Southeast Michigan
I realize that I'm shopping across marketing segments, but that's because I don't put a lot of stock in what the marketing folks say. I know that the Dunlop 3D was aimed a little more toward the winter end of the Winter Performance category... From what I remember when the 4D was introduced, Dunlop intended to maintain that placement. Conversely, the Xi3 might be marketed as a true Winter tire, but it has a tread compound that gets an H speed rating, and has a much lower void ratio in its tread pattern than most other Winter tires. So, yeah... what I'm looking for in a tire kind of straddles the line between the two segments.
 

leeharvey418

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778
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Southeast Michigan
Originally Posted By: typ901
I do about 15k miles a year, and have snows on from late November to early March, and the Michelin's show very little wear.
That's good to know. Thanks. Though, I can't help but think that the Xi4 is only a year or two off... and then I'll want the newest, shiniest toy in the toybox.
 
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713
Location
MA, USA
Originally Posted By: leeharvey418
I realize that I'm shopping across marketing segments, but that's because I don't put a lot of stock in what the marketing folks say. I know that the Dunlop 3D was aimed a little more toward the winter end of the Winter Performance category... From what I remember when the 4D was introduced, Dunlop intended to maintain that placement. Conversely, the Xi3 might be marketed as a true Winter tire, but it has a tread compound that gets an H speed rating, and has a much lower void ratio in its tread pattern than most other Winter tires. So, yeah... what I'm looking for in a tire kind of straddles the line between the two segments.
So share with us your priorities. Krzys
 
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1,410
Location
Western Canada
Originally Posted By: leeharvey418
I'm very seriously considering the Xi3 for the 3 this winter, but I wanted to get any input on how they stack up against (mostly newer) competetive tires before pulling the trigger. I'm also intrigued by the Dunlop SP Winter Sport 4D, though I've had some rather poor experiences with other Goodyear products in the past. The Nokian Hakkapeliitta R2 is also on my short list, along with the Continental ExtremeWinterContact and ContiWinterContact TS 830P. Anybody got any experience to offer?
Xi3's are excellent all round winter tires. Very good on hard pack and ice, and drive well on bare roads too. Their only weakness is performance in deep snow, where the tread pattern doesn't dig in as well as a more aggressive tread, like the General Altimax Arctic has...The Xi3 also has a shallower tread depth as compared to most other winter tires... this helps with that dry road feel, but hinders deep snow traction. I currently use TOYO GSI5's, which are excellent, and NOKIAN R SUV, which are excellent as well. As someone else hinted at, almost any brand name winter tire will work well. Just decide what your priorities are performance wise, and choose appropriately.
 

leeharvey418

Thread starter
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778
Location
Southeast Michigan
Well, I'd say I'm basically looking for what I laid out. I'm looking for decent snow performance, but I'm not particularly keen on the idea of giving up a lot of clear-road performance (either wet or dry) to get it. I can manage the two or three days a winter that I'll have to be driving in fresh snow, but I want something that's going to be predictable on packed snow and the inevitable morning re-freeze. In short, the Xi3 looks like the best fit for what I want. I just wanted to get some input from folks who have actually used them before committing.
 

leeharvey418

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778
Location
Southeast Michigan
Originally Posted By: geeman789
Xi3's are excellent all round winter tires. Very good on hard pack and ice, and drive well on bare roads too. Their only weakness is performance in deep snow, where the tread pattern doesn't dig in as well as a more aggressive tread, like the General Altimax Arctic has...The Xi3 also has a shallower tread depth as compared to most other winter tires... this helps with that dry road feel, but hinders deep snow traction. I currently use TOYO GSI5's, which are excellent, and NOKIAN R SUV, which are excellent as well.
Thank you for that. I don't believe the Toyos are available on this side of the border, but it's good to know, nonetheless. Your experience reinforces the warm fuzzy feeling I get from the Michelins, so thanks again.
 
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1,410
Location
Western Canada
Originally Posted By: leeharvey418
Originally Posted By: geeman789
Xi3's are excellent all round winter tires. Very good on hard pack and ice, and drive well on bare roads too. Their only weakness is performance in deep snow, where the tread pattern doesn't dig in as well as a more aggressive tread, like the General Altimax Arctic has...The Xi3 also has a shallower tread depth as compared to most other winter tires... this helps with that dry road feel, but hinders deep snow traction. I currently use TOYO GSI5's, which are excellent, and NOKIAN R SUV, which are excellent as well.
Thank you for that. I don't believe the Toyos are available on this side of the border, but it's good to know, nonetheless. Your experience reinforces the warm fuzzy feeling I get from the Michelins, so thanks again.
Toyo's are available at treaddepot.com As for Xi3's deep snow traction, still way better than any all season I have used, just not quite as good as an ultra aggressive deep open tread winter tire. Like the mentioned General Arctic. MANY people where I live use them , they work VERY WELL for the price.
 

leeharvey418

Thread starter
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778
Location
Southeast Michigan
I have no doubt about the Altimax Arctic's ability in the snow... it the ice performance without studs (which aren't an option in Michigan) and the effects of tread squirm that took it out of consideration.
 
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10,008
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Upstate NY
The Nokian Hakka R's that I have don't give up a whole lot of dry/wet pavement performance to the all-seasons I run the other 8-9 months of the year. I'd imagine the R2's are similar, if not better.
 
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3,364
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Idaho
The only significant weakness IMO of the Xi3, compared to its peers, is resistance to slush-planing. In testing by Russian and Scandinavian enthusiast magazines, it consistently comes out last or next to last, in this performance category. The WS70 or WS80 <span style="font-style: italic">might</span> be worse, but I have never seen slush test data for those Blizzaks.
 
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15,984
Location
NE,Ohio
The xi3 is basically a tire with "standard passenger" type performance ie michelin defender that is great in the winter. And that smooshy feeling from all the siping is there but not nearly as bad as other winter tires. I dont feel the lesser deep snow traction is a minus for non-suv type vehicles. It has plenty of traction to keep you going even in snow that would rip off bumpers, pack radiators etc.
 
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leeharvey418

Thread starter
Messages
778
Location
Southeast Michigan
Thanks, everybody. Since the feedback I got pretty much reinforced the notions I already had, I went ahead with the purchase of the Xi3s. They were in stock at my closest Discount Tire, but I also got a set of wheels for winter that had to be ordered. So now I wait...
 
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1,459
Location
NY
Late to the game here but we put Xi3s on a Cruze LS last year. First experience with snow tires and first full season with the Cruze in the winter. My gf is the primary driver, commute is 50 miles (good mix of highway and local roads) each way 5 days a week. I did not hear one complaint (previous car was a Saturn S-series, in the past we've always had all seasons) and it was a big improvement over other winter experiences. She commented about getting to work super early in one bad storm and doing figure 8s in the empty parking lot to get comfortable with the tires...smirk, but no issues. I'd say you made a fine choice. I picked up a couple of sets of Arctics this year for other cars, I'm curious to see what the driving experience is like by comparison, although that will be across vechicles as well as tires.
 
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