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Tracking / Autocross / HPDE / Drifting What these cars were built for!


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Old 06-02-2020, 09:59 PM   #1
Randoman5
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Tires to replace Primacys

I've had my car for 3 years and put 40k of its 65k miles on it. I've driven it in Cleveland winters for three years on Nokians before my move to Northern California in February. My stock tires are done and I'm looking for suggestion for their replacements.

Car is stock save exhaust. I'm planning on getting new tires, switching pads and fluid and attending my first track day at Laguna Seca as soon as I can. I was originally planning to get stock sized Pilot 4s as they're cheaper than the stock tires. Also considering GT SX2s because they're crazy cheap. I'm also concerned that having sticky tires will prevent me from learning all I can from my track experience.

I'm 37 years old. I've spend plenty of time hooning and driving rear wheel drive cars in snow but I've never been on a racetrack before. Like I said, car is stock and probably won't see any mods but brakes and tires this year.

I can't justify spending the money on new Michelin Prius tires but I'm open to other suggestions. I'm planning on hitting up as many HPDEs as I can with the car going forward and eventually do some mods, but probably not this year.
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Old 06-03-2020, 07:25 AM   #2
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Anything other than Michelin is ok by my book. Price vs performance pretty much anything out beats it. The fan boy-ism is full retard when it comes to those pos Michelins
Guess they always get suckered by the sales rep "your car came with Michelins, you should stick to them" total bull.

GT Sx2 is a great choice. There are lots of other choices out there.


Also if you plan on doing more than one track day I would highly recommend a second set of wheels and tires. It seems pricey but in the long run it saves you a ton of money.
Unless you are doing parade laps one set of tires for "track" and daily is all you need.
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Old 06-03-2020, 09:01 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Randoman5 View Post
I'm also concerned that having sticky tires will prevent me from learning all I can from my track experience.
That argument would only be valid for autocross where it's safer and driving with a sub-par tire can teach you a lot.
However on a track you want as much confidence as possible because there is less margin for error and you will not enjoy your time if you're fighting keeping the car stable. So get the stickiest tire you can afford that suits your needs.

Also track lapping is punishing on tires, so a performance oriented tire will be more durable in that environment.
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Old 06-03-2020, 09:37 AM   #4
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Continental Extreme Contact Sport
Much less expensive than PS4S, just a hair off their wet performance according to TR tests, but I find them great. Awesome on dry road/track.
Mine have two summers with about 20,000 kilometres of DD, one HPDE and four days of Novice lapping (TMP). Loads of even tread depth remains.
My set-up: Koni Yellows, TRD springs, -2.75 front camber, -2.2 rear camber. Zero toe all around.
Happy Shopping!
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Old 06-03-2020, 11:25 AM   #5
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The SX2 is so cheap it's a great option. IMO they're so cheap you could probably avoid having a second set of wheels and tyres, because you can just replace the tyre once it's worn. Depends how far you are from the tracks you want to run I suppose.

SX2s aren't so sticky that it would inhibit you learning limit driving
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Old 06-03-2020, 03:50 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Mr.ac View Post
The fan boy-ism is full retard when it comes to those pos Michelins
Have you been on PS4S yet or are you still mad about the PSS you bought 4 years ago or whatever?




Edit; for the OP imho nothing wrong with the ps4s if you're not worried about saving money and they are a fine beginner tire. The PS4S or Continental Extreme Contact Sports or another 280-340TW Ultra High Performance Summer tire are the go-to newbie track/performance driving tires;
https://www.tirerack.com/tires/surve...y.jsp?type=UHP

Literally no reason to buy another set of primacy except if you see a lightly used set for cheap. Decide how far down the rabbit hole you want to go after a few events re: second set of wheels/tires/how sticky to go
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Old 06-03-2020, 08:42 PM   #7
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GT Radial SX2. Official tire sponsor for 86Cup.
Win free tires and cash prizes for running SX2

Contact 86Drive Challenge FB Group (Norcal region for 86Cup) and 86Cup FB Group.
They will be able to guide you on car setup for all classes.

Tires, pads, fluid, and oil cooler are the basics.

Goodluck!!
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Old 06-04-2020, 04:03 PM   #8
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I had a great experience with the Continental ExtremeContact Sport. Ran them at an autocross and two track days last summer with pretty aggressive driving and less than ideal camber, they held up great and could still run another track day or two probably. This was with daily use spring-fall as well.

This year I've added camber plates and my alignment is a lot better, running Hankook RS4s now. I actually had them keep the Contis for me to take back after they mounted the RS4s because of the amount of life left in them.

The added camber made a noticeable difference even before I mounted the new tires, I think you would be more than happy with the ECS for daily and track use with good longevity. They'll perform dramatically better than the Primacies but they aren't going to have so much grip that you need to worry about developing bad habits or anything like that.

The Firestone Firehawk Indy 500s should be somewhat comparable for a little cheaper, but I have no first hand experience with them on an 86.
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Old 06-04-2020, 07:39 PM   #9
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Have you been on PS4S yet or are you still mad about the PSS you bought 4 years ago or whatever?
I have been on a same 86 with PS4S. Still not impressed for the cost vs performance. Where as I felt almost the same with Indy Firehawks 500 for a lot cheaper. Almost the same "specs".
But my butt dyno couldn't really tell the difference. My wallet sure does.

But hey, if you can get PS4S for under $140 per tire, go for it. If not plenty of tires on the same level for cheaper.
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Old 06-04-2020, 08:27 PM   #10
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Personally I like PS4 and extreme contact. Both are great. Recently cheaped out on my 04. WRX and got general gmax RS, they cost me $370 with $70 dollar Visa card. Can’t get much cheaper. So they do not have as good turn in as the other two, but man they have great grip. Very little road noise and pretty comfortable. Let’s see how they wear. I have the PS4s on the BRZ, they are better for sure, but they were more than twice the price.
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Old 06-04-2020, 10:33 PM   #11
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However on a track you want as much confidence as possible because there is less margin for error and you will not enjoy your time if you're fighting keeping the car stable.

I'm going to disagree with that. I did my first 5 track days on the Primacy's. I'd argue it's better to start on a slow tire than a fast tire. When you make a mistake on a slow tire you're going slower, so the consequences are less. Drop the car in a fast sweeper on 140tw tires and it's a much bigger problem. The first upgrade I did was brakes (fluids, then pads). Since then I've run RE71Rs, Toyo R1Rs, then down to Michelin PS4S. The michelins sure don't have the grip of the bridgestones, but they're better on the road, fun enough on the track, and keep me competitive in a lower class for time trials. Wicked in the rain. I'm close to sorting out a trailer for dedicated track tires for next year.

Also, you shouldn't be fighting to keep the car stable on your first track day. A good instructor will keep you WELL away form that limit. You should be focusing on consistency and awareness.








So, OP, for what it's worth I'd recommend the PS4S. I also hear good things about the Continental Extreme Contact Sport. Both will be very comfortable on the street, competent on track, and durable. If you think you want more dry grip (but a lot less life) you could look at 200TW tires like the RE71R or Hankook RS4 (slower, more durable, cheaper). But look, don't stress about car set up for you first track day. JUST GO. And bleed your brakes with DOT4. Definitely do that. Then just GO.



Then let us know how awesome it was.
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Old 06-05-2020, 11:02 AM   #12
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I'm going to disagree with that. I did my first 5 track days on the Primacy's. I'd argue it's better to start on a slow tire than a fast tire. When you make a mistake on a slow tire you're going slower, so the consequences are less. Drop the car in a fast sweeper on 140tw tires and it's a much bigger problem.
You are very right in the sense that super sticky tires can be unforgiving when they break free because of their much higher limits. But I wouldn't go straight to a 140tw extreme performance tire as a first timer.

I guess I should rephrase my statement to: get a good max performance summer tire that can withstand track abuse and give you the grip and confidence to learn, but have progressive and communicative limits so you know when to back off.

Even not all Max performance summer tires can withstand lapping. Back in my Saab days, my first ever track day was with the Hankook Ventus V12 evo. The V12's could not handle the heat well and got greasy really fast. I had zero confidence on fast sweepers as the car was squirmy. When I eventually upgraded to Michelin Pilot Super Sports, that was a game changer. The increased grip, durability, and communicative limits meant I could safely push myself over long sessions.
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Old 06-05-2020, 04:40 PM   #13
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I guess I should rephrase my statement to: get a good max performance summer tire that can withstand track abuse and give you the grip and confidence to learn, but have progressive and communicative limits so you know when to back off.

Well that all seems pretty sensible.
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Old 06-05-2020, 10:22 PM   #14
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I have been on a same 86 with PS4S. Still not impressed for the cost vs performance. Where as I felt almost the same with Indy Firehawks 500 for a lot cheaper. Almost the same "specs".
But my butt dyno couldn't really tell the difference. My wallet sure does.

But hey, if you can get PS4S for under $140 per tire, go for it. If not plenty of tires on the same level for cheaper.
I agree Michelins are not great track tires (even Cup 2's) and they aren't cheap but I do think they make one of if not the best street tire. They are also the only tire manufacturer I know who actually warranties their tire and stands behind that warranty. Firehawks are great for a budget tire.

When I got my first FRS years ago I went through the Primacy stock tires in 5K miles just driving canyons. I called and filed a warranty claim through Michelin. Took the car to my local tire shop to inspect the tire wear and make sure it was fairly even on all 4 tires and not caused by abusive burnouts.

Michelin agreed to sell me a new set of tires for $100 total. I opted for the Supersports and they were fine with it. I proceeded to go through those in 5K miles and they repeatedly honored their warranty with another set for $100. After about 4 or 5 sets they cut me off.

A few years later I was running Cup 2's at the track which were great for the first few sessions, then grip fell way off. Not sure if I got a defective set but on only the 2nd track day they started to chunk away like a cheap street tire. They ended up tearing through the wheel well liner on my Camaro and destroying the wiring harness for the fuel pump. I called Michelin again and they agreed to either pay for the damage or replace the tires and this was on track. I opted for a new set of 305/35r20's instead as the fix was only $400.

So my take is they do make the best street tire if you have money to burn. They also are the only tire company I've ever come across that's so willing to stand behind their product. Needless to say I won't be buying Cup 2's again. I do think the PS4S is probably the fastest 300TW tire you could have for autoX.
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