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Puff Daddy
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I finally got around to replacing my original tires on my factory wheels. Since it's finally cooling down here in AZ, it's time to drive the Elise a lot more. I don't want to burn up my R888 tires so I re-coated my factory wheels and threw some new street tires on :)

I decided on the Yokohama S.Drive tires due to their price, the reviews I've seen, and the size availability.

I went with:

195/45-16 front
245/40-17 rear

I hated the weird stock size up front but I wanted to keep the same stagger so I just upped them 20 mm all round.



Front



Rear

I was a little worried about putting 195's up front a 5.5" wheel but my tire guy was able to get them on. They look a little odd as the entire tire has turned into a rim protector now rotfl (please ignore the tire lube stuff all over the rim of the wheel... they had to use it to get the bead to seal).



They also have kind of a weird tread pattern... I'm not sure I like it yet but I wanted to take a drive before I made any decision:



I've put about 100 street miles on them and hit some of my favorite twisties to scrub them in. Here are some driving impressions:

- Turn in definitely isn't as crisp as the AD07s

- They are about 100 times quieter then the worn out AD07s (this is a GOOD thing). My girlfriend made that comment that we could actually hold a conversation and hear the radio now.

- They are a little softer... bumps aren't as back breaking

- Grip level is surprisingly good. They are definitely stickier then my worn out AD07s and come very close to how the car felt when it was new(er). I had a chance to push the car in a WIDE empty area to see it's handling characteristics. It would push slightly before the back tires would come loose. It took a large amount of coaxing before it would ever do that... if that happened on the street to anyone then you're driving WAY too hard.

- Grip from a standing stop was also very surprising. I did a few launches from 3000-4000 rpm and they just hooked. At a little over 4000 rpm they spun maybe a quarter turn before grabbing and launching the car off the line. Very impressive.

All in all, I'm very happy with my purchase. I love the softer feel and the quieter ride. I give these tires a big :up: to anyone that wants a more streetable tire without sacrificing too much performance :coolnana:
 

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thanks for the review,

What tires do you think i should run if i have 15's 16's.
My first choice is R888's. But I really prefer something that has more sidewall that will fill up the gap. Any suggestions?
 

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Puff Daddy
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
If you're not going to be driving the car on the street that much or if you don't mind the low (60) treadwear rating... the R888 are tough to beat. I love mine :up:

Using a larger sidewall to fill the gap is kind of counter intuitive in my opinion. It'll raise the car up all around and make it look even more like a 4x4 since there will be more black area visible around the small wheels. If you want to reduce gap then the only option is to lower the car.
 

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More side wall = more flex = less handling. Do you want it to look better standing still or drives better moving.
Joe

Not neccessarily true.

Witness the tallish sidewall of an F1 tire... it "handles". F1 uses 13" wheels.

You really need to match tire sidewall (a spring) with suspension geometry, spring rate, damper settings and load. It's all one big system.

Cheers,
Kiyoshi
 

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Not neccessarily true.

Witness the tallish sidewall of an F1 tire... it "handles". F1 uses 13" wheels.

You really need to match tire sidewall (a spring) with suspension geometry, spring rate, damper settings and load. It's all one big system.

Cheers,
Kiyoshi
You are correct, but in F1 in particular the trend is to use very stiff suspension and make the tires absorb a lot of the irregularities, hence the tallish sidewalls.
 

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thanks for the review,

What tires do you think i should run if i have 15's 16's.
My first choice is R888's. But I really prefer something that has more sidewall that will fill up the gap. Any suggestions?

Dunlop Z1 Star Spec
 

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Puff Daddy
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Just a follow up...

I took these tires to the track and OH MAN DO THEY SUCK. They were greasy, vague feeling, and had horrible turn in. It felt like I was driving on squishy marshmallows. Putting the R888s back on was like night and day.

That being said, I drove 3 hours to and from the track on these tires and they were awesome. Quiet, absorbed bumps nicely, and have plenty of grip for street driving... especially if it's slightly damp out.

Conclusion:

- Great on the street, horrible on the track

I'm still happy I bought them :cool:
 

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Very good, I would have imagined that was going to be the outcome. Bane, have you looked in the the NT01 or the RT615's for the track?
 

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Very good, I would have imagined that was going to be the outcome. Bane, have you looked in the the NT01 or the RT615's for the track?
I looked into the Nitto's NT-01's for the track and couldn't find suitable sizing. As far as I can determine they do not make a 245/40/17 and the only 16 inch size availible is a 245/50/16. Has Nitto increasesd their size ranges for this tire recently?
 

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I'm guessing the vague feeling and bad turn-in has a lot to do with cramming the wide tires on a narrow front rim. it looks like it allows the front tires to wiggle side to side in relation to the rim way to much.
 

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Puff Daddy
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
haha yeah... it wasn't the ideal track setup I just wanted to see how it handled since we had the track all to ourselves from 9 am till dark-thirty.

I'm very happy with my Toyo R888 tires but thanks for the offer on the Nitto/Falken ones.

A Lotus doesn't come to life until you get some real R-compounds on it... the high performance street tires like the NT-01 or the Azenis are good... but they don't show you the full potential of the car.
 

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I looked into the Nitto's NT-01's for the track and couldn't find suitable sizing. As far as I can determine they do not make a 245/40/17 and the only 16 inch size availible is a 245/50/16. Has Nitto increasesd their size ranges for this tire recently?
I don't believe any new sizes have been released. Here's a link with all the available size.


NT01

haha yeah... it wasn't the ideal track setup I just wanted to see how it handled since we had the track all to ourselves from 9 am till dark-thirty.

I'm very happy with my Toyo R888 tires but thanks for the offer on the Nitto/Falken ones.

A Lotus doesn't come to life until you get some real R-compounds on it... the high performance street tires like the NT-01 or the Azenis are good... but they don't show you the full potential of the car.

The R888 is an awesome tire. Have you ever run on the NT01? It is an R-compound tire.
 

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Puff Daddy
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Interesting... I thought the NT01 was a street tire.

I may have to try that out on my 15/16" combo next time. I've been very happy with the R888 but the Nitto is considerably cheaper :eek:
 

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Interesting... I thought the NT01 was a street tire.

I may have to try that out on my 15/16" combo next time. I've been very happy with the R888 but the Nitto is considerably cheaper :eek:
You may be thinking of the new NT05 that just came out. This is a street tire designed to compete with tires like the RT615, Direzza Z1 Star Spec, and Advan Sport. The NT01 can be shaved down to 3/32nds of tread to reveal a slick with two circumferential grooves. Here's a link with additional information.

 

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NT01

For track usage, I'm using 225/45/17 NT01s in the rear, but stock A048s in the front. It seems to be working fine for me. My times on them were slightly faster, but that may be attributable to heat cycled rear A048s.
 
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