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I've always wondered about this...

If Lotus worked with Yokohama to specifically produce a LTS version of the tires then why would you choose not to use the AD07's or A048's.

Or is a tire really just a tire...
 

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I've always wondered about this...

If Lotus worked with Yokohama to specifically produce a LTS version of the tires then why would you choose not to use the AD07's or A048's.

Or is a tire really just a tire...
You might want a larger size than the spec tire. Also, tire development continues, you might want the latest technology. Conversely, you might be cheap and not need the best tire.
 

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There are a wide variety of reasons. A few of them:

The 048 for track duty, they tend to heat cycle out and lose grip before your wear them out.

AD07 it's a pretty narrow front tire, some will change it go with a wider tire.

Cost is a big one for many. There are cheaper, longer wearing tires that are close to the OEM ones. It also depends on the level of performance your after. If it's more of a DD with a few spirited back road drivers, highest performance levels aren't at the top of the list.
 

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I use the A048 LTS tires. Everyone tells me to get R888s. I'm happy with the tires I'm using and I'm used to them, and I don't like change. :p
 

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I ended up with a brand new set of 048 just before the R888 came out. So I only recently made the switch to them. I will say this about the 048, for the street or on the track, when they were in there sweet spot, loved the feedback and grip they gave. Then again they heat cycled out the last 1.5 track days I did... not so happy then.

Based on the few hundred miles I've put on the R888, find them to be a better ride on the street. Did one autocross on them so far, happy with the grip levels. My real test / comparison will come when I get them on track and how they hold up over there life .
 

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Because there are many other tires that are just as good or better (and likely cheaper) for each persons intended application. There is no special lotus magic in these tires. The yokos are great tires but are overpriced imho. The touring (waits for slap) sized front tires are just too small. Why pay a fortune for 175 frons when most decent 205s will grip better. I am not sure how the LTS is different from the regular yokos but I suspect it is a slightly thinner sidewall. In theory the lotus optimized tires should be the best, in reality there are better choices for many.
 

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The touring (waits for slap) sized front tires are just too small. Why pay a fortune for 175 frons when most decent 205s will grip better.
Recalling the Top Gear episode where Clarkson complains of understeer on the stock Elise, till the Lotus company driver shows him how it's done – the Lotus driver basically said Lotus supplied small front tires so the average driver would not as easily get oversteer. He suggested that larger front tires could be supplied and would be appropriate for highly-skilled drivers.
 

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I am not sure how the LTS is different from the regular yokos but I suspect it is a slightly thinner sidewall. In theory the lotus optimized tires should be the best, in reality there are better choices for many.
I was curious about the same thing, and gave yokohama a call last week. The tech that I spoke with told me that although they appear the same visually, the are constructed differently. The LTS is constructed with 1 ply rayon and 2 ply of nylon, to disipate heat better, and the standard tire is made with 2 ply polyester, 1 steel, 1 nylon. It is also lighter by about .44 lbs. After talking to him, I feel better knowing I am not paying a bunch of extra money just to have LTS on the sidewall. At least there is some difference between the tires.
 

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Since I track my lotus a lot I decided to go with Toyo RA1's since I can get 16 track days out of a set vs about 6 on a set of A048's or R888's.
 

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The A048 LTS is slow to heat up also; not so great for autox. Barely get them warmed up by the time your run is over.

xtn
 

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Trackside (Yoko motorsport rep in US) said Yoko will have a replacment for A048 next year to try to be competitive with other tires like RA1. In my experience, A048 is inferior to RA1 and R888 in every regard. Don't even try using a A048 in the rain on track.
R888 isn't a real rain tire but usable.

But I think all treaded tire suck on track, except in the rain.
I love the Yoko slicks (Lotus compound and softer compounds for racier / cooler occasions) on my Exige S. Unfortunely, currently no Yoko slick that fits my S1, so I run Hankook slick, which I don't like as much as the Yoko. Also like the Yoko on the Russell formula cars - preferred the radial to the bias ply.
 

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my yoko rears heat cycled out right when it hit the wear bars. the rear was just so alive from losing grip. i couldn't put power down and it was scary in long fast sweepers. when i changed to new rear tires, i found again the grip i was missing. 2 trackdays later, the front now has no grip. and it's not a gradual loss of grip. once it heat cycles out, the tires are simply greasy. the fronts are washing away now and it cannot handle hard braking from 100+mph.

so now i have a dilema, should i buy a048 fronts again for about $420++ considering my rear have only done about 500miles including 2 trackdays. or should i buy a new set of R888 for $740++??? what do you think is the most cost effective way?
 

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Cost effective? Put new R888 on the front only, and keep your new A048 on the rear until you get your money's worth out of them, or until they heat cycle out themselves, whichever comes first (they heat cycle themselves out way before you ever get your money's worth out of them). Then put R888 on the back next time too.

xtn
 

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i was thinking of that actually. you think that would be all right and not mess up handling as the characteristics of the tires are different? anybody here who has tried this kind of setup?
 

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From all apparent evidence, based upon the cars they ship over, it NEVER RAINS IN ENGLAND. Tires supplied as OEM do not work in rain, tops don't seal, and the a/c...Oh the humanity!

Toyo tires DO work well in rain, and I did not need the extra understeer frm the street tires.
 

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Mess up the handling? Well, you might feel a slight difference if you look for it.

R888 do stick better in the rain. But I want to be very clear what I'm saying with that statement. The compound seems to have a bit more grip on cool, damp pavement. But they are NOT more hydroplane resistant than the A048. If the water is anything more than a skim coat on the surface, you should be very very careful with either of these tires. Let's be honest, they're basically a slick with a few diagonal grooves cut in them to make them street legal. Neither one of them will evacuate standing water very well. Combine that with a very light weight car and they're going to act like water skis when you run over a puddle.

xtn
 

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If I lived somewhere warmer ... I would still have the ad07's on the car. My problem is that for maybe two months I would get optimum performance. (at night it still gets cools and outside of July/August its just too cold for the ad07's).

I am not tracking the car or doing any events, so wet traction and traction on imperfect roads is more important. I put on some ultra-high performance all season's on the rear (Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus) and will do so with the front as soon as they wear out! No regrets so far.

In the dry they are 95% of the ad07's
In the wet they are stable and an incredible improvement over the ad07's
In the cold (anything under 50'f) they are essential. The ad07's were at best scary in cold weather.

For me the difference is that I can actually take the car out when its wet or cold and it extends my enjoyment of the car for several months!!!
 

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I found the last post most interesting as I have had the same experience with the AD07's. They are wonderful warm weather tires and I know that Lotus and Yokohama spent considerable time and effort to optimize them for the Elise. That said, They are horrible in cold rainy conditions, especially when worn. the fronts are narrower than necessary to reduce front grip and lessen the chance of lift off oversteer for the inexperienced. I have just put my third set of AD07's on the rear and am about to replace the fronts. I'd be very interested to hear how the Pilot Sports work out with some wear...Dave
 
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