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Thread: What Tires To Buy - S03's discontinued

  1. #1
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    What Tires To Buy - S03's discontinued

    I've been using the Bridgestone Potenza S03 tires for a long time and I love the feeling of these on the Z8. It's time to replace the pair of rear tires as the tread has worn down. The front tires have plenty of tread left.

    I've been told the S03's are discontinued. So I would like to hear recommendations of tires people have liked.

  2. #2
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    The S03s have been replaced by the RE050 Pole Positions. You can now get the Michelin PS2s in the OE sizes as well.
    thegunguy

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    Replacing just the rear tires might be acceptable if the SO-3s were still available but since they aren't, you must replace all 4 tires with the same model tire to insure balanced and safe handling on your Z8. The REO50A (make sure it is an "A") is the best Bridgestone has to offer for the Z8 and they are excellent tires. They are also available in a new generation run-flat version which might be of interest depending on your driving habits. Continental makes a very high performance tire in the appropriate sizes called the Contisport Contact 2 and the European tuners are very big on them. Of course, Michelin now offers the PS2 in sizes to fit the Z8 and everyone who has them seems very happy with their performance. They are OE fitment on the best Porsches. Another option, particularly if you want better steering response and high speed stability is the Yokohama Advan Sport, a tire I really like. Hope this helps.

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    Whew - now I am really confused

    I really have liked the feel of the Bridgestone Potenza S-03's. At the time I purchased them lots of Z8 board members had them and liked them. What has now been recommended are the:
    - Bridgestone RE05A which has replaced them (but are they as good?)
    - Contisport Contact 2
    - Michelin PS2
    - Yokohama Advan Sport
    I had looked at the Yokohama when I bought the S-03's but was told that the sidewall are not stiff like the S-03's and the car would not feel stable when making turns.

    So how do I choose among this diverse list of tires. I am noe looking at replacing all 4 since I can't use the 2 good S-03's anymore.

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    I think you'll find the REO50As are better than the SO3s and the PS2s are a particular favorite among Z8 owners. You can't go wrong with either choice. I disagree with whoever told you that the sidewalls on the Advan Sports are not stiff enough: on the contrary, it is precisely because of their very stiff sidewalls that I liked them better than the other tires I've had on my Z8, including SO3s and PS2s. All great tires so don't worry, just choose!

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    Thank you GM. I read good things about how the RE050A Pole Positions have improved upon the S03's I already enjoyed. I am going to put 4 of them on the car even though my front S-03's have lots of tread left.

    Between these new tires and the Eisenmann Sports Muffler I just installed on the car, driving is going to be even more fun - as if that is even possible.

    Jay

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    Yesterday - I put the PS2's on my Z and I must say that the car drives more like my track car (BMW M Coupe). I miss the Cadillac ride with the Potenza that came with the car. I just was not comfortable with the history of the car. I made the change on the recomendation of this board in conjunction with the addition of the PP which I have not yet installed. Some people like red some like blue. I also have the Contisports on my M coupe and like them just as well.

    Like someone said earlier, you can't go wrong!

  8. #8
    Team Z8 RRZ8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2001bmwz8 View Post
    Yesterday - I put the PS2's on my Z and I must say that the car drives more like my track car (BMW M Coupe). I miss the Cadillac ride with the Potenza that came with the car. I just was not comfortable with the history of the car. I made the change on the recomendation of this board in conjunction with the addition of the PP which I have not yet installed. Some people like red some like blue. I also have the Contisports on my M coupe and like them just as well.

    Like someone said earlier, you can't go wrong!

    Congratulations with your new set ! When I need new tires, I will put on the PS2's on too, I only hear very positive opinions on these tires.
    Is there a specific reason you didn't install the PP ?

  9. #9
    Z8Mania
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    I wouldn't doubt GM's advice. I have the RE050As- they should also read "pole position" on them. I am pleased with the tires but I do not drive the car that hard. GM, I will probably change my tires at some point, what would you think the pros and cons are to the Yokohamas?

  10. #10
    Oddly enough I use the Yokohama A048 as the track tire on my Lotus, and it is simply fantastic. I didn't even know it came in sizes big enough for the Z8.

    I can tell you a bit about the nature of the tire in track use. It is a very soft compound tire that works best around 200-220?f and grips likes crazy. On the track a set lasts about 700 miles, which is 3 track days for me. On the road folks have seen them last as long as 10,000 miles, but they do get 'hard' quite quickly, so if you keep them for more than 18 months you'll notice a loss in performance as they dry out. Overall an amazing performance tire, but not one to put on a car that does fairly few miles a year. The other tire that is becoming very popular in Lotus-land is the Toyo R888, but I haven't tried it, so can't say much about it.
    Andrew Macpherson

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    The Yokohama AO48s are street legal race tires but they do not come in sizes to fit the Z8. As far as I know, no one makes a DOT approved race tire that will properly fit on the Z8, no matter what wheels you are running. The Yokohamas I am using are the Advan Sport which is a max performance street tire. Yokohama makes an even higher performance street tire called the Advan Neova but again, not in sizes to fit a Z8. Steve Dinan recommended the Advan Sports over the PS2s (previous tires on my car) and the Pirelli P-Zero Corsa System tires I was planning on using. He feels they offer better turn in response, better stability at high speeds, and better traction while accelerating, particularly in wider sizes. I really liked the PS2s on my Z8 and was a bit skeptical about the Advan Sports but as usual, Steve was absolutely right about them. I think the PS2s have a slightly higher ultimate grip level during cornering but the Advan Sports are very close and much more predictable as they approach the limits. The Yokohamas have a significantly stiffer sidewall than the PS2s and this provides crisper turn in response and improved high speed handling. Please keep in mind that I am running wider tires than the OE fitment (265/35ZR19 up front and 285/35ZR19 in back) so my experience is colored by that fact. For most street use, in the OE sizes, I think the PS2s are probably the best choice since they provide excellent handling, have a forgiving sidewall, and are lighter in weight than most other tires.

  12. #12
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I'm in love with the R888s on the Lotus, but I wouldn't want them on the Z8. Just different animals. I'm not looking to maximize grip and response in the Z8. Rather, a tire fitting the nature of the car is enough for me. For now, I'm pleased with the S03s, but if I were to buy today, I'd probably do the MPS2.
    Last edited by thegunguy; March 1st 2008 at 02:47.
    thegunguy

  13. #13
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    I am going with the Mich PS2's. If you replace your Bridgestones with a non run flat tire. Don't forget to get an M Mobility kit. Remember, you have no jack in the car.

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    Tire Update needed

    I have been reading several posts on tire preferences but wanted to check if there is any new information available. Has anyone tried Toyo, Hankook, Goodyear F1, or any other?

  15. #15
    I've been using Pirelli P-Zero on my 20" rims, and love them, really a great tire.
    Andrew Macpherson

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    Just purchased Hankook Ventus V12 evo set for stock wheels. 500 miles or so on them. Mostly around town and highway miles...no track time. First impressions are very quiet tire, smooth ride, nice looking. Relatively speaking, the price is good. Did have some flat spotting after sitting for a while early on, but it fairly quickly smoothed out and has not recurred. This is a new car for me, so I have nothing to really compare except the hardened 71/2 year old Pilot Sports which were on when purchased.

    Mark

  17. #17
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I'd still like to see someone try the new Dunlops that are crushing every review I read.
    thegunguy

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    Not sure the new Dunlops are available in OEM fitment.
    Mark

  19. #19
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    I love the Michelin PS2s on my Z8. Quiet, responsive, sticky.
    2002 Silver/Black
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by macfly View Post
    I've been using Pirelli P-Zero on my 20" rims, and love them, really a great tire.

    I am with Andrew; I really like Pirelli Tires. OK, they are not really 'long lasting' but traction is excellent. Having said that; almost everyone over here changed to the Michelins PS2, so that is what I am going to do (although Pirelli also has the 18 inch Z8 size)

  21. #21
    Z8 Addict Z8doc's Avatar
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    I had the S03s non-run flat tires and found them an excellent tire but wore out fast on the rear (no... no excessive burn outs, just routine driving) but needed replaced at 20K miles while the fronts had plenty of tread left. Also, significant tire noise from the beginning which worsened as the tire wore out and were singing pretty loudly at at the time of replacement. The current tire is MPS2s and find them very compliant and low noise with reasonable wear so far (10K miles on them) and would recommend them to anyone. The only criticism is with the 20x10 rears, they do not fill out the wheel enough and seem undersized visually, even though the size I have is the same as that which was OEM for the 20" Alpina wheels on the rear (285/35R20).

    Andrew put the Pirellis but upsized to 295/30R20 and they really visually look much better. Given the great handling of the Pirellis (comparable to the PS2s) but enhanced visual appearance, I will switch to the Pirelli as my next tire for the 20" rims I have.
    Best Regards,

    Jeff
    61995 Silver /// Rot - Original Owner
    Z8 Club of Germany e.V. #102

  22. #22
    The Pirelli's do wear out pretty quick, my fronts are toast after just 18 months, or around three thousand miles, but that includes around 100 miles at Willow Springs this Feb, and many fast twisty road runs. I will replace them this year before the big drive from Portland, and also try to figure out a way to increase the negative camber a bit, because they are worn down on the outside, but not the inside.
    Here is a quick visual comparison between the MPS2 & the Pirelli rears on my car.
    Andrew Macpherson

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  23. #23
    Team Z8 RRZ8's Avatar
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    Andrew, when you say outside, do you mean the outside's' of the tire (and not the center) or only the (one) outside per tire? Isn't BMW always perhaps a bit more than other manufacturers tending to negative camber? Or do you have another wheel setup?
    What I noticed last month on my daily driver (5 series) is that all 4 (Bridgestone 050 Potenza RFT) tires had worn out only on the outsides. The tire specialist told me that my pressure must have been too low for quite some time, however I check the pressure regularly ?nd the 5 series has a (although not as good as the previous system) tire pressure checking system (RDC), so I found that hard to belief.
    My guess is that RFT tires, because the sidewall is re?nforced, tend to wear out on the sides (more pressure during driving).
    I guess that the Pirelli's you use are non RFT's?

  24. #24
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Andrew: Have you tried altering the Dinan plates? They are "Camber/caster" plates, if I recall. I'm pretty certain it would be only one or the other though. (rotate them 90 degrees?)

    RRZ8: The 5er is a heavy car. If you drive it hard with the typical stock set up, I would expect to see wear to the outside of the tires...especially the fronts, even at proper inflation. Not sure if RFTs are any different in that respect. You might try running slightly more pressure, or see if you can add any negative camber (I don't think you can). You may also be able to get some Dinan Camber/caster plates, as mentioned above, if they are offered for your car.

    (Copied from a post on "m5board.com" Just search there for info on the Dinan Camber Plates. The installation sounds a bit daunting...some cutting involved.

    Alignment settings:
    Dinan recommends Caster 8 +/- 0.5 degree, Front Camber -1.8 +/- 0.3 , Front Total Toe 0.07 +/- 0.07, Rear Camber -1.7 +/- 0.3, Rear Total Toe 0.17 +/- 0.008
    The Front caster on our car is not adjustable so you get what you get.
    The camber plate adds more caster and more negative camber to the front.
    I choose to max out the camber so my car is running:
    Caster 8.5 right/8.75 left (non-adjustable)
    Front Camber -2.3 right/ -2.2 left
    Front Toes 0.02 right/ 0.02 left
    Rear Camber -2.3 right/-2.3 left
    Rear Toes 0.05 right/0.05 left


    Let us know what you find out.

  25. #25
    Team Z8 RRZ8's Avatar
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    Norcal; this pattern was seen at the front, but even more at the rear tires. Together with the negative camber (when you look from behind, it looks really negative!) it resulted in a leak (innerside rim of the tire) in the rear (OEM Dunlop......) tires.
    This was a good time to change to the Bridgestones!

  26. #26
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    I bought perhaps one of the last sets of S03s in the states a couple years ago, so have yet to switch to some of the newer alternatives. LEt us know what you find out re: camber.

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    Anyone care to help me with tire selection?

    I've got 3k miles on a my original run flats and want to replace them with a tire that will improve the ride and handling. I won't use the car a whole lot so I don't reallly car too much about longevity and I won't put the car on a track.

    Below are the non-car-specific ratings from Tire Rack and the user reviews are on a wide range of cars, many of whom are front wheel drive. Any thoughts on what is best on the Z? If there are others that are better, I'm all ears (err, I mean eyes). FWIW, Tirerack is having a pretty good sale on the Dunlops.

    8.7 Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 (Max Performance Summer)
    8.5 Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 (Extreme Performance Summer)
    8.2 Dunlop SP Sport Maxx (Max Performance Summer)
    7.4 Bridgestone Potenza RE050 (Max Performance Summer)
    7.4 Pirelli PZero System (Max Performance Summer)

  28. #28
    Everyone loves the Michelins, it is the most commonly used tire on the Z8, and with great success, so that would get my vote if you are on stock rims.
    Andrew Macpherson

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  29. #29
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    There's a reason the PS2s come standard on so many great cars. We're lucky they're finally available in the OE sizes. You won't be disappointed.

    Are the new Dunlops available yet?
    thegunguy

  30. #30
    Sport Button On - DSC Off jpklecker's Avatar
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    I've got the Bridgestone Potenza RE050 Pole Positions on my 2002 Z8 and am very happy with them. If I were to replace them I would probably go with the Michelin PS2's as I've always preferred the feel and traction of their tires. I chose the Bridgestones because at the time I heard good reviews (they are good tires) and I was able to get a good price on them. The ride and traction are both much better than the original run flats and they are much quieter.
    John Klecker - 2002 Topaz / Crema (61782)

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    Thx guys. I've ordered up the PS2s.

  32. #32
    Z8Mania
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    I had the RE050A PP non run flats which replaced my RE040A run flats and that was a big improvement. I then went to MPS2 and that was an improvement over the RE050A.

  33. #33
    Z8 Addict Z8doc's Avatar
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    I have 50K original miles and have had the original run flats (hated them), tried the Bridgestone Potenza S03 non-run flats and found them better with improved handling on stock rims but a very increasingly noisy tire as the wore out. Switched to the Michelin PS2s when I upgraded to 20" Beyern rims and love this combo. The Michelins seem to have better wear characteristics (not as fast to wear out) and not as noisy. My vote is for the Michelin although, based on Andrew having the Pirelli P Zeros and the way the fill out the rear 20" rims, thinking of switching to those when I need tires again.
    Best Regards,

    Jeff
    61995 Silver /// Rot - Original Owner
    Z8 Club of Germany e.V. #102

  34. #34
    Z8Mania
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    Right, but now Andrew reports that tire rack has the MPS2 in the correct sizes for the 20" wheels. I think its in the 20" Motorsports wheel thread.

  35. #35

    PS2's Rock

    Just upgraded my tires from the runflats to the PS2's. What a difference! Quiet, smooth and sticky. It is like riding on cushioned rails!

    Thanks for the advice!
    _________
    Andy Lytle
    2002 Z8 Silver/Black 23k
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  36. #36
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Yup!! Whole new world, isn't it?

  37. #37
    Z8Mania
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    Sure is. Highly recommended.