Need tire advice for Houston - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
 
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-10-2014, 05:04 PM Thread Starter
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Need tire advice for Houston

Just got an Elise last week, after saving and slowly searching for the past few years. So excited! However, I do need some new tires since the rears are pretty much bald and the fronts are getting there. I have the sport pack, so LSS wheels.

Any advice on a good set of tires? Only really plan to drive it on weekends, and track maybe once or twice a year. Would like to stick with original sizes. Kind of put off by the original A048s because of the wear rate, and I'm also hoping to save some money.

So far, it seems like Toyo R888s are a good choice. Also looking at the Dunlop Direzza DZ102s as a budget option. Being a newbie, I doubt I'd notice much difference. What do you think? Any others I should consider?

Thanks!
Paul
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-10-2014, 09:08 PM
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I am contemplating much the same, I will need all new tires soon. Brakes too.

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is. - Yogi Berra -

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-10-2014, 09:36 PM
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The R888's are a good choice, but I hear the Dunlop Z1 Star Specs are a beast of a street tire so that may be a good compromise between performance and longevity...

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-10-2014, 10:36 PM
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Why did you buy the Lotus? If it was to drive it aggressively then the Toyo R888s are the only choice of the two you mention. If not all bets are off.

I've always run the A048s, despite the fact that they evaporate when exposed to air. I can't imagine running anything but an R compound on anything I drive, with the exception of rental cars.

When I start being practical please put a bullet in my head.

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-11-2014, 03:42 AM
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I just went thru the long process of researching to buy new tires for my 2007 Elise. I looked at all the threads, everywhere. The Star Specs got a lot of praise. What I found, when I looked at Tire Rack, was that there are exactly TWO sizes available in that tire - 185/60R14's and 245/45ZR18's. Not a fit on my 16"/17" LSS wheels. All I can think is, they must be phasing out that tires, if that's the only sizes they have.

Complicating things further, my 2007 has the narrower front LSS wheels than was on the 2005 Elise, so even a 205 tire might rub the fender liners.

I certainly don't want to dull down the handling excessively (though I did trade the original Yoko A048's for AD07's when I bought the car new). The first rear AD07's lasted almost 18,000 miles, but the second set got less than 10K miles. I finally opted for the Dunlop DZ101's, since they were the only non-all-season tire I could get (apart from the A048's) in the correct, OEM sizes, 195/50R16 and 225/45R17.

If I had my wish, I'd have been able to get the proper size for the car (and the 'LTS' version) in the Yokohama AD07's, or maybe in the AD08's. I sent an email to Yokohama's site, and never got a response. I'm afraid that it will become more and more difficult to get the sizes and types of tires we want as time goes on. One big negative to having a fairly rare car. (I'm very happy with all the positives, though!)


I don't track the car, but autocross once a year. I understand that I am trading some traction for a bit more tread life. The original A048's wear rating is 60, my AD07's was 180. The Star Specs (if I could find one that fits) are 200 - 220. My DZ101's are 300. I could have just gone with the Yoko AD07's again - I do like them. However, the compromise was that AD07's only come in a 175 for the fronts, so I am giving up two tires sizes from OEM. Also, the DZ101's are not much more than half the cost of the Yoko's. If it turns out I don't like them, it will be less painful to switch later. I barely have 35 miles on the new Dunlops, so no opinion on them yet.

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Last edited by rcollum; 03-11-2014 at 03:47 AM.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-11-2014, 05:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcollum View Post
I looked at all the threads, everywhere. The Star Specs got a lot of praise. What I found, when I looked at Tire Rack, was that there are exactly TWO sizes available in that tire - 185/60R14's and 245/45ZR18's. Not a fit on my 16"/17" LSS wheels. All I can think is, they must be phasing out that tires, if that's the only sizes they have.
Yup, they discontinued the Star Specs and replaced them with the Direzza ZII. After having run both, the newer Direzza ZII grips even better on the roads I drive, haven't tried them on a track yet.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 06:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the input. I had a look through tirerack to find all the tires mentioned, and unfortunately couldn't find them in the OE size. I think I've decided on the DZ101s and maybe get another set of wheels if I want something with more grip for the track.

Any recommendations or where to order and get them mounted in the Katy/West Houston area?
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 06:21 AM
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I have 7 inch wide front wheels, and 8 inch wide rear wheels. I like the Toyo Proxes R1r tires in 205 front width and 245 rear width. If there is any front rub, it is minor.

Storm titanium 2005 Elise with carbon fiber spoiler, BWR sway bar, BOE toe links, gPan2, LidBone, sector 111 wheel studs, Grey RAC Monolite wheels with toyo R1R, Team Dynamics 1.4 with Hoosier A6/R6s, Katana2 Supercharger, ECU with 265 flash. PPE headers w/decat, CEL angle eliminator, Silent touch catback, Rear Panel Eliminator, HKS intake, V2 fuel tank, Walbro255 fuel pump. HID lights.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 08:03 AM
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Of you change tire types in the rear then be sure to change all four. Don't mix bias!

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
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If I go with 205 section for the fronts, should I do 45 or 50 profile?
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 12:01 PM
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45 front 205 width / 40 rear if 245 width, with 7 inch front / 8 inch rear

Storm titanium 2005 Elise with carbon fiber spoiler, BWR sway bar, BOE toe links, gPan2, LidBone, sector 111 wheel studs, Grey RAC Monolite wheels with toyo R1R, Team Dynamics 1.4 with Hoosier A6/R6s, Katana2 Supercharger, ECU with 265 flash. PPE headers w/decat, CEL angle eliminator, Silent touch catback, Rear Panel Eliminator, HKS intake, V2 fuel tank, Walbro255 fuel pump. HID lights.
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 12:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I calculated the diameters. Stock front is 23.68"

With 205/45, diameter is 23.26"
With 205/50, diameter is 24.07"

Kind of worried about scraping the front lip if I go with 45 profile, but you haven't found it to be an issue?
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
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After a lot of research, I decided to go ahead with a set of Direzza DZ101 to stick with OEM sizes. Seems at least a couple people on the forum like them well enough. Thanks again for the advice!
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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-12-2014, 02:40 PM
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I have DZ101's on my 2006 with base suspension and wheels. I would say they are a nice street tire. The steering feel is nice and light and precise, and they are quiet. They don't have nearly the grip of even the S.Drives that they replaced...I've never had the stock AD07s on the car (I'm putting about 15k miles/yr mostly commuting, so it would be a waste), so I can't compare to stock. My guess is the DZ101s would be miserable on the track, probably would even be a handful with extremely aggressive street driving...but for the street and even 'spirited' driving they are fine.
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-23-2014, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by specLegacy View Post
After a lot of research, I decided to go ahead with a set of Direzza DZ101 to stick with OEM sizes. Seems at least a couple people on the forum like them well enough. Thanks again for the advice!
+1 on the Direzza DZ101, I have mine a week now.

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is. - Yogi Berra -

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post #16 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-23-2014, 02:54 PM
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Don't cheap out on tires. They are the only thing between your expensive car and the road.

For street tires, you should have gotten Toyo R1R, Bridgestone Re-11, or Dunlop Direzza II.

The DZ101 is a budget tire with lower wet traction. Can you return them?
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post #17 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-03-2014, 03:46 PM
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For street tires, R1R is awesome... putting a second rear set in. They do wear out really quick, but it's because of the soft compound.

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post #18 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-11-2014, 11:42 AM
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I've run several tires on the little cartoon car.
Dedicated track: Hoosier A6
For some track/Auto-X use: AO48, R888 (they are both great, but softer then a pencil eraser)
For mixed use: RE-11, R1R
For hard-parking: anything that fits.

For the record, I have RE-11's on my car at the moment...a great all around tire that will last a bit longer for street use.

'06 Cartoon Orange Lotus Elise - Few racy bits
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