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Discussion Starter #1
I've had a high speed shimmy since I bought the car at 3,300 miles (and drove it 2,500 miles home). When I asked the closest Lotus shop to balance the tires, he said they had broken radial cords and should be replaced. Sure enough, there's a bulge in the front passenger tire that I never really noticed. [Because I'm not the first owner, I don't have a leg to stand on when it comes to the tire warranty.]

So today at the tire shop, I say I'm open to suggestions, especially something better in the rain than the stock Yokohamas. What I'm quoted out is the Toyo Proxes T1-S. That sounds OK; Proxes are good, but...

Didn't the T1-S get replaced by the T1-R?
I've been quoted a size of 185/50R16 even though I brought in the page from my manual which reads 175/55R16. Has anyone used that particular size? You probably know this already, but the manual also states 195/50R16 is an appropriate size for a winter tire.

For the record, I've been searching the tire threads all day (site won't accept T1S as a keyword) and have refrained from using the word "touring.";)
 

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Cawdor,
The T1-S did get replaced by the T1-R. The Toyo tire is a decent street tire however as Greg(lapthis) can tell you, their track performance is not that good. I run the Bridgestone RE01-Rs on my car and got a set in 16/17 LSS sizes for about 600 bucks. I love the tires as they are very stable in wet and cold climates and do exceptionally well on the track.
 

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First the tire warranty is on the tire not on the owner, the warranty is based on the remaining tread depth. If it is a defect it is warrantable. I would like to stress IF it is a defect. Many times an "impact break" is thought to be a defect and it is not. If a tire hits something like a pot hole or curb or an object in the road the sidewall can compress and the inner liner of the tire can hit the bead or rim and put a small cut in the liner and air will slowly leak into the plies and make a bubble on the sidewall. This is not a defect the tire stayed together and did not have a "catostrphic air loss" it is called an impact break or road hazard and that is not a warrantable condition. The only way to know is to mark the bubble and disbount the tire to look for a cut on the inner liner.
The Toyo T1S has been discontinued for a couple of years. A 185/50R16 is going to be about 1/2" smaller in diameter but more important it will be a lower weight capacity and if it is a "V" speed rated tire it will have less handling capability.
I would recommend going to the 195/50R16 instead. It has a larger footprint and will have equal or greater weight capacity. Also if you decide to put on a tire with a "V" speed rating (not recommended) it will make less of an affect. The Bridgestone or Toyo would work fine for you. If you want to stay with the original size Yokohama I believe is your only option.
Joe
TheTireShoppe.com
 

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If you are going to track your car (or auto-X) and you want all you can get from the tires, get a second set of tires/wheels. Nothing-good track wise fits the standard wheels.

I have T1R’s on my standard wheels and think there quite good for the street. But the T1R’s can’t compare to the other more aggressive, Yoko 048’s, Toyo 888’s, and similar.

Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Many thanks to all.

Bottom line, I have no interesting in tracking my car. It's a commuter when I don't drive on two wheels and only feel like it (usually rain, never snow) and also for weekend getaways on the highways. Totally looking forward to Montana this summer.

So, T1-R is current. Thanks for confirming. I would then expect an issue if I were to tell the tire shop, "sure, go ahead and order me some T1-S."

I do believe to run into an issue if I were to pursue a tire warranty claim on the Yokohamas because the previous owner could well have hit a road hazard. In fact, that would be likely given the chunk out of the front clam! If I had owned the car myself and could swear than I never hit anything, I'd feel more comfortable and it'd be a whole other story.

Now, you're saying that a 195/50 will suit me better than a 185/50. I'll take your word on that, but any further explanation would be appreciated. After all, if a 175 was good enough, why a 195 over a 185?
And what is wrong with a V speed rating? A rating of 149 mph is a hell of a lot faster than I plan on driving. My current W rating of 168 mph is much faster than the car can go. NOT CALLING YOU OUT, mind you. Just honest questions about tires.

Thanks to all once again,
Steve.
 

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Now, you're saying that a 195/50 will suit me better than a 185/50. I'll take your word on that, but any further explanation would be appreciated. After all, if a 175 was good enough, why a 195 over a 185?
And what is wrong with a V speed rating? A rating of 149 mph is a hell of a lot faster than I plan on driving. My current W rating of 168 mph is much faster than the car can go. NOT CALLING YOU OUT, mind you. Just honest questions about tires.

Thanks to all once again,
Steve.
The 185 is slightly wider but shorter that with a lower speed rating I feel the 195 would be better, it's wider and taller and it's an optional size for the Elise IMO.
A "Speed Rating" is in some ways misleading, it is a way to put a number to something. I consider it more of a performance rating. Normally a "W" or "Y" rated tire will take more cornering force than a "V" rated and so on for "H", "T", and "S". A higher speed rated tire will have more strength in the sidewall to keep from rolling over during hard cornering. In normal driving a "V" rated tire will work fine but it could make the car feel softer as the steering response will not be as crisp. Many will say they don't push the car on the highway and don't need high performance, and that's a good thing. It can come into play during an emergency situation when you need everything to work at the limit. The suspension is designed to do certain things, if the tire doesn't it can get ugly. A better tire will improve your chances, it's the only thing that makes contact with the road.

The Elise is a really fun car and the tires are a big part of that, they're not something to get in a "bargin basement." IMO
Joe
 
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