Solo performance street tire FAQ

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Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by JimR » Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:53 am

Novices often ask what kind of tires to get for Solo events. Similarly, autocross regulars are often interested in the latest information on "Street Touring" style tires (200 treadwear or higher).

These "Extreme Summer" 200TW performance tires have the necessary grip and tread design to work well at Solo events, but superior durability and pricing (usually) than a full race tire. You probably wouldn't want these all four seasons on your daily driver, but they work great for both Solo and the drive to the event and back.

Helpful Articles
2017 Street Tire Preview by Tracktuned:
http://www.tracktuned.com/feed/2016/12/ ... e-overview

2016 Grassroots Motorsports Street Tire Shootout by veteran autocrosser Andy Hollis
https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/artic ... -shootout/

2013 update from Andy:
Street Tire FAQ Part II: 2013
http://www.facebook.com/notes/hollis-ra ... 2972476008

2012 guide from Andy:
Street Touring and Track Day Tire FAQ - UTQG 140+
http://www.facebook.com/notes/hollis-ra ... 8598916447

(For more good info from Andy, also read his top ten autocross driving tips.)

Picking a Tire
There is no one perfect tire for every vehicle. Each model of tire has its own driving characteristics on the limit, and may behave differently based on the car's weight and suspension geometry (ex: heavy camber-limited car vs. lightweight car with upgraded suspension). It's hard to go wrong with the BFGoodrich Rival-S or Bridgestone RE-71 as of today, but a little homework might yield the best result.

To see what is available for your car, the easy button is to go to TireRack.com and plug in your tire size. From there, narrow the search results by Performance Category to Summer Passenger Tires, then further to Extreme Performance Summer. There you will probably find the usual suspects. If your car has an uncommon OE size, may also want to search a slightly different size to get more options. Owners of similar cars on forums and social media may be able to offer some tips.

Other than improving driver skill, a dedicated set of performance wheels and tires is the single biggest upgrade you can make. Before you buy, do consult the Rules under the Autocross/Solo program section at SCCA.com. Some of the lower classes do have modification limits on wheel diameter or width.
Last edited by JimR on Tue Feb 12, 2013 7:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by AutoXChris » Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:14 pm

TIRES.
I want a pro budget for tires....
Andy has some great write ups!
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Post by stanbell » Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:42 pm

thank you, Jim, for a really thoughtful post.
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Post by JimR » Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:40 am

The TireRack, one of Solo's biggest sponsors, is now selling the Toyo R1R. As mentioned in the articles, these work well on lighter cars with a good camber curve, like in the STC/STS classes.

Dunlop may be replacing the Z1 Star Spec next year with the ZII. Not a lot is known right now. If the Star Specs work well on your car, you might want to factor that into your buying.
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Post by JimR » Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:54 am

Here's some new-for-2013 information on upcoming Extreme Summer Tires that will likely be popular new choices.

Dunlop Direzza ZII - replaces old Z1 Star Spec, one of the popular choices. Out now.

Link: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp ... irezza+ZII


BF Goodrich g-Force Rival - every so often, BFG makes a concerned effort to make a leading tire in the Solo world. Early impressions say they're towards the top of the heap in this category. Just went up for pre-order on Tire Rack today. Estimated arrival is late February.

Link: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp ... orce+Rival
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Post by JimR » Tue Feb 12, 2013 7:59 am

Andy added a second part to his street tire FAQ that includes the previously mentioned Dunlop ZII, BFG Rival, etc.

I updated the original post with the link.
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Post by JimR » Wed Sep 10, 2014 9:39 am

A new wave of Extreme Summer tires is coming.

The Dunlop ZII Star Spec just came out, and several others are in the works. Toyo confirmed an updated R1R, Bridgestone is reportedly interested in making the RE-11 series competitive again, and BFG was testing updated Rival compounds on the Solo Nationals site on Saturday.

Also, remember that the minimum treadwear for Street class finally goes to 200 UTQG. This was a grace year to run 140 treadwear tires.
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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by JimR » Fri Feb 27, 2015 12:39 pm

Bridgestone just released the RE-71R for sale.
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp ... nza+RE-71R

BFGoodrich will be releasing its updated Rival-S in a limited number of sizes sometime in April, and continue to sell the standard Rival in existing sizes until they can be switched over (time table unknown).

No one has any comparisons on either tire, but Bridgestone and BFGoodrich have been solid supporters of SCCA Solo and worth your dollar.
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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by springfielddyno » Tue Mar 24, 2015 8:00 pm

This sure is starting to sound like near "r"'s.... Who could have seen this coming :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

bet these 200 rated tires are as fast or faster than the 140's... trend may continue until some tires are outlawed...

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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by JimR » Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:38 am

Add another 200 treadwear autocross/track-ready tire to the mix:

Maxxid VR-1
http://www.maxxis.com/catalog/tire-513-vr-1

If they are able to produce at least four rim diameters and six sizes by April 30 (greater than 7/32nds molded tread depth), they will be eligible for SCCA Street category use. They are starting to trickle to individuals, so they will likely be a new choice for everyone this year.
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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by SilverYota » Sat Mar 19, 2016 11:02 am

I saw these a couple of weeks ago and worry they might not be an ultimate grip/best choice tire (at least in there first generation). I did find this VERY INTERESTING, 245/40ZR15 is listed as a size and nobody else makes anything this wide in ~23" tall tire. Could the little wider section width make up for a slight lack in grip of the top tires, will this size need to be stretched onto 10-10.5" rims to be fast only helping the rather obscure Mazadaspeed Miata dominate in STU, or will any and all sizes of tire/rim be competitive? Only time and the willingness of a few top tier SOLO efforts to test this out will help answer these.

No matter how they perform in competition if you do have a car that is driven on 275/35-15 Hoosiers during events that is all flared out, it seems like the 245/40-15 on wide rims would make a great tire to run around with on the street for the occasional drive, road rally, car show, or cruise-in style gathering.

Anyone plan on buying these in any size this year?
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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by Thorox » Mon Mar 21, 2016 11:50 am

Maxxis VR-1 245/40ZR15: I was told those are not even available until Q3 or later this year...
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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by JimR » Mon Mar 28, 2016 11:31 am

The Maxxis Victra VR-1 is now available for purchase directly from Maxxis.com in five size:

http://shop.maxxis.com/c/automotive_victra-vr-1

As of today (3/28/2016), they're running a special introductory offer that includes free shipping.
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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by JimR » Tue Feb 14, 2017 1:04 pm

This month Continental Tire is coming out with a new model called the ExtremeContact Sport:

http://www.continentaltire.com/product/ ... 50zr16-84w

Andy Hollis hinted at it being a very good do-everything summer tire for an upcoming GRM article. It apparently doesn't give up a ton of dry traction from the current 200TW top dogs, but has decent streetability and rain evacuation ability. The RE-71 and Rival-S prefer temperatures above 50 degrees, which can be difficult on cooler rainy days. He didn't spill the beans on testing laptimes, but the Continental might be a good option to watch for casual autocrossers wanting a real three-season tire.

Another plus is that there are some small diameter sizes like 205/50-15 for the older Miata/Civic/MR2/Sentra/etc. fans.
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Re: Solo performance street tire FAQ

Post by JimR » Fri Feb 17, 2017 11:30 am

If you're an early adopter, the Hankook RS-4 should be at Tire Rack in early March in enough sizes and diameters to be legal for SCCA Solo this year.

Usual caveat: the tire supply chain from Korean manufacturers tends to be a gamble.
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