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post #1 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 02:56 PM Thread Starter
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2014 Autox "Street" Tires

Have you decided which tires you're running for 2014? If so, what led to that decision?

Anyone running in the new "Street" classes, or "Street Touring" classes can still run tires with a 140 utqg rating for 2014. So the list of competitive tire options should look something like this:

- BFGoodrich Rival
- Dunlop ZII
- Toyo R1R
- Hankook RS3
- Yokohama AD08R
- Bridgestone RE11A
- Kumho XS
- Falken RT615K

Let me know if I missed any.

Also, to qualify my thoughts on tires... I should mention that I've worked in different areas of the tire industry for 8 years, and have owned my own competition wheel and tire business for the last 2.5 years. I sell, mount, balance, and shave tires, and have been competing in autocross since 2005. I'm in regular communication with most of my local customers. So I've received a lot of thoughts/opinions of the various tires on the market.

That said, I've narrowed down the list of tires that interest me for my STF car. My top choices are:

1. Toyo R1R
2. Dunlop ZII
3. BFG Rival

The Toyo's can be pretty amazing if they work for your application. I'm not sure if they'll work for me or not, but my experience so far leads me to believe they're worth a try. The Dunlops have been very popular with heavier cars, and those that run them claim they offer great "feel." I also like the fact that they're 2 pounds lighter per tire in the same size as the Toyo. The BFG Rival is the tire I ran last year on my RTF Scion TC. I think they lack "feel," but the grip is impressive on most surfaces. They also have a nice contingency program.
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post #2 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 04:58 PM
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Thanks for the thread re-direct.

My thoughts on tires...

For me I don't think I can make the Toyo work as we discussed...but I have the BFG on there since I have learned how it works as far as feedback goes.

(data from the STF Mini coming now)
I tried 205s and 225s on the 15x7.5" wheels. The 205s were more precise on turn in. However they were less forgiving at the limit. When you went over the limit (usually understeer) they would do that godawful vibration chatter understeer. The 225s would just sort of howl a bit. The 225s also seemed more resistant to overheating. On the 225s I would still run into issues with them being too hot on 90+ degree days.

The RS3 was awesome in a few ways I liked. It took heat and abuse very well and lasted a long time. However in temps below 55 degrees they were almost frightening. They also worked on a bigger slip angle than the BFG. The hankook setup was just plain pushy with BFGs. The BFG setup was nearly undrivable with the RS3's on because the back end had to be so stiff.

Personally I would love to try the 225/45-16 Z2 out as an intermediate tire.


I tested the speed in 2nd gear on my 08 today. With the 25" tall tire 2nd gear rev limiter is 65mph. I have hit the limiter on one of the last 2 local courses I've done here with only an AEM intake. I suspect with the tune and full exhaust I'll be on it a lot more. So this has me debating the 23" tall 15s and even the 24" tall Zii in a 16".

The 23" tall tire should drop roughly 5mph off 2nd gear. So 60. That's not enough IMO for the big nationals courses. Do we need to bring both sets of wheels now to events? We shall see

David Hedderick
08 Mazda 3s Sport - new STF car (sponsored by BC Racing NA and BFG)
2013 MS3
92 Miata - SSM light project
(formerly 2011 STF Mini Cooper)
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post #3 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 06:38 PM Thread Starter
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60 mph in 2nd doesn't sound so bad. You guys must have fast courses. In my Scion TC, 2nd gear topped out at 54 mph. The acceleration was great, but if there was a fast section, it was almost certain I would have to shift to 3rd. I rarely had that problem locally. Lincoln was a different story. East course at Nats... I was in 3rd pretty early before the big, right-hand sweeper on the Southeast end of the course. The rear of the car stepped out a bit mid-sweeper. That was interesting.

I like the 15" wheels for weight savings and gearing. My 15x7.5's are 13 pounds, so I'll end up at 31-33 pounds per corner with tires. If I were to go with 16" or 17" wheels, it would be an additional 5-7 pounds per corner. To me that's a big deal, because it's unsprung weight, and because when you multiply it by 4, that's another 20-28 pounds of overall weight. As for gearing, I like being able to accelerate quickly out of corners, even if it means I may have to make more 3rd gear shifts.

I admit that I might be overthinking all of this.
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post #4 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 07:29 PM
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How fast can you shift? If you have some acceleration data from your car it's a fairly straightforward calculation to show you whether the shift is worth it or not.

How well you trail brake while heel-toeing is the other consideration for me, though I suspect you're probably past that noob phase by several years.

Is the Toyo that heavy? The ZII is still heavier than an RE-11 by a pound in the sizes I was looking at.


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post #5 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 07:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by miata_racer View Post
The 23" tall tire should drop roughly 5mph off 2nd gear. So 60. That's not enough IMO for the big nationals courses.
It will be enough with a 7,500 rev limit
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post #6 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 08:47 PM
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It's still my daily...so unless I see the power not dropping off on the dyno at 7000 I'm sticking with the stock rev limiter

As for courses...the texas tour I was all over the rev limiter in the mini (like 55 or something mph) 3-4 times day 1 and a few times day 2 and in 3rd as well. At blytheville I was in between gears. At nationals I was on the rev limiter 4 times on the right course and 3 times on the left and in 3rd before the chute heading downhill.

And the 3 will have a lot more power and accelerate quicker So 17s may be what I need.

However, I may still get some 15s to do some testing on.

As far as weight goes...ehhh...I'm not going to fret over 12-15lbs of unsprung weight

David Hedderick
08 Mazda 3s Sport - new STF car (sponsored by BC Racing NA and BFG)
2013 MS3
92 Miata - SSM light project
(formerly 2011 STF Mini Cooper)
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post #7 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-29-2014, 10:29 PM
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Originally Posted by miata_racer View Post
It's still my daily...so unless I see the power not dropping off on the dyno at 7000 I'm sticking with the stock rev limiter
I can't say I blame ya if it's your daily. I may end up blowing this engine, it has 170K + miles on it . I doubt the car will make more power from 7,000-7,500, but that's ok. It's simply a way to use the 23" tires without hitting a bunch of limiter on the big courses, and avoid the 2-3/3-2 shift.

For "most" local level courses/medium sized courses the 7,000 rev limit and 23" tires work out nicely.
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post #8 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 10:46 AM
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I'll be running z2 most likely, 225/45 17.

I have ms3 brakes so I'd be worried about clearance with 15s and my 3 is still my daily... for now.


miata purchase in the coming weeks???


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post #9 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 12:09 PM
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FWIW 16" wheels WILL clear MS3 brakes. I ran some 07 16x6.5 MX5 wheels on my 2012 MS3. They are VERY close but clear. So you could run the 225/45-16 Z2

David Hedderick
08 Mazda 3s Sport - new STF car (sponsored by BC Racing NA and BFG)
2013 MS3
92 Miata - SSM light project
(formerly 2011 STF Mini Cooper)
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post #10 of 101 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 12:24 PM
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you make a good point. I wonder if I can find some decent light-ish wheels now.

edit: why does enkei not make a 16x7.5. why.


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Last edited by dgross7; 01-30-2014 at 12:27 PM.
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