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View Full Version : do winter tires really make a world of difference?


bender73
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:13:01 AM
curious

the M3 really sucks in the snow with mich pilot sports...i mean, REALLY sucks to the point that you can barely move and its like driving on ice with wheels made of ice!!!

will slapping blizzaks on really magically make you able to drive safely in a few inches of snow?

does it simply "improve" the ability to drive in a snow storm or actually make this car a year-round daily driver like owning a FWD car with all-season tires and 15" wheels?

Antwerp
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:15:45 AM
There is only one answer to this question... YES!

Antwerp
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:17:28 AM
They help, but you're still in a RWD car mind you. Be very worried about the other drivers though. That's my advice.

bender73
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:25:04 AM
thanks

i just can't imagine a 333HP RWD performance car suddenly being able to handle new england blizzards with ease simply by slapping on new rubber

Antwerp
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:28:39 AM
No. That'll never happen. It just like any other car with RWD and Snow tires. I don't do it, because of everyone else on the road. Get a beater for the bad winter days... :thumbsup:

MadMacs
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:30:08 AM
thanks

i just can't imagine a 333HP RWD performance car suddenly being able to handle new england blizzards with ease simply by slapping on new rubber
I can't imagine F1 drivers zinging around the tracks in the rain either, but that's what water tires do for them! :thumbsup:
edit: Yeah, I'm in Florida...WTF do I know about snow..HA!

bender73
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:32:48 AM
I can't imagine F1 drivers zinging around the tracks in the rain either, but that's what water tires do for them!

good point

Antwerp
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:37:52 AM
:haha: True enough...

ROCKV7
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:51:20 AM
Hey Chris, I have Pirelli Winter Sports on 17" and it works fine in this crazy Chicago winter.

A3r0pusH
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:55:10 AM
kinda an obvious question but yes snow tires will make your car unbelievably more stable.....

Antwerp
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 12:55:55 AM
Fo shiz. They do fine. Not like it's a Jeep or anything tho...

Midwest M3
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 02:42:22 AM
Fo shiz. They do fine. Not like it's a Jeep or anything tho...

There are the WS50's, LM22's and maybe others. The WS50 will be way too soft a ride and handling for the M3. I put the LM22's on my 540 (when I had one) and really, really liked them. Perfect in snow and ice and not too bad (for a snow tire) on clean roads..

In the future, put the snows on in November, and do not take them off till spring...Or, do like me and tuck that bad boy away till Spring (hooked to a trickle charger) and buy a winter car or SUV...

ggs
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 03:06:55 AM
I put on the Dunlop Wintersport M3s in November, and have been driving my car everyday in Chicago since then. No complaints so far :dance:

Mendoan
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 03:12:49 AM
I wouldnt buy snow tires, just drive when there is no snow on the street :)

2thdr
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 03:26:54 AM
I put on the Dunlop Wintersport M3s in November, and have been driving my car everyday in Chicago since then. No complaints so far :dance:

I run the Dunlop Wintersport M3's on my car in Canada. 18" staggered set up. Nothing stops the M3. Traction control very, very rarely is triggered and they are quiet for when the roads are cleared of snow. One time I was checking out lots for houses in a new development and there was no dedicated road, just a packed trail. There had been about 25cm of snow and the car just went through without a problem. I have been very happy with them.

The grip with winter tires is phenomenal, especially when braking on ice.

Hope that helps.

Nixlimited
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 06:07:57 AM
thanks

i just can't imagine a 333HP RWD performance car suddenly being able to handle new england blizzards with ease simply by slapping on new rubber

Take it from someone who has had two high performance RWD cars with snows on, it is night and day difference. The M3 is a very capable snow driver with good winter rubber on as long as the snow is not taller than the front air damn.

autobahncobra
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 02:43:15 PM
kinda an obvious question but yes snow tires will make your car unbelievably more stable.....

hell I thought I could drive up a brick wall. GRIP -- don't drive without it. I have driven in snow that was touching my car's underbody the entire time and I could stop and go again with no problems.

acitydweller
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 03:04:44 PM
winter tread will save you in the winter. they are worth it

333inlinesix
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 03:14:06 PM
I have the dunlops as well on 17 inchers. They are a must if you plan on driving this car year round. They are awesome when there is a few inches, though I think it will be rough when you encounter deep snow that you will plow with your bumper.

kmurph
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 04:02:01 PM
Now if you had to play football on a muddy field....what kind of shoes would you rather wear? Bowling Shoes or Cleats? Pretty simple answer...the same applies to driving in the snow....the shoes make all the difference in the world.

...and traction is only one part of the issue. The type of rubber compound used in winter tires is a lot different than the compounds found in summer tires. Winter tires will stay soft (which allows more grip) in temps below 40 degrees while high performance tires will become hard and slick.

danielacox
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 04:38:13 PM
We just got a small snow here in Kentucky about a week ago. I stayed at work really late and it was just lightly snowing. I work in a closed office building so I have no idea what the weather is doing outside. I started on my way home and was doing just fine, driving very cautiously. It really had not started accumulating on the interstate or main roads. I started down the road to my house. I turn into my driveway, which is about 200 yards long. There is a small hill. When I say small hill I mean really small. You would hardly notice on a bike. I had the pilot sports on the stock 18 inch rims. I could not get up the hill. I tried running starts and all the tricks in the book. I bet it was less than 1 inch. I looked like a total idiot. I was thinking, I couldnít believe I made it this far. I had to walk 200 yards to my house and let the pooch out and get the snow shovel. I shoveled a lane for the tires and made it up the hill with the pooch. While I was doing that a guy comes out the back of his house and says "You need some help, I have a four wheel drive". I am thinking to myself, this idiot redneck thinks he is going to pull or push my $50,000 dollar 04 Imola Red M3. I politely said, "Thanks but I think I will be just fine". Once I got parked in the garage I call the wife who is a pharmacist and told here the weather was really getting bad. She did not get off until 10:00 pm. She has about a 15-mile commute via back roads or 19-mile interstate trip. I told her to be very careful in the 2000 323i sport wagon and drive the interstate. Just to let you know we replaced a toyo 4 runner for a perfect condition 323i sport wagon and see loves it. This is the first year we both have owned BMWs and we love them. My wife thinks the 323i sport wagon is awesome with the 5 speed. This is the first 5 speed she has ever driven. I must say she can now drive a 5 speed like it should be driven. She says it has just enough power and handles great. Well to continue with the story. She has summer tires too. I had a brand new set of Michelin 225/45/17 Pilot Alpine 2 winter tires sitting in the garage ready to be mounted on her rims from Tirerack. I know not having them mounted yet was not very smart but I had only had the tires for 4 days. She ended up making it home and the next day I head to the tire place with her car and the tires in the back and had them mounted. At this point we had about 2-3 inches in various places. They load the old tires in the back, we pay and I am ready to roll. This was going to be my first test run in a nice set of snow tires and I was very anxious. The tires were phenomenal. Those that have snow tires know what I am talking about. The 323i wagon performed awesome with pilot alpine 2. The pilot alpine 2 may not be as aggressive as some snow tires but it was night and day difference from the summer tire. It was very quiet at high speeds and it made you feel very comfortable because you were not spinning on take off and you could stop. The snows were everything I had hoped for. To finish the story I called the next morning and ordered a set of 4 x 245/40VR-18 Dunlop Winter Sport M3 for the m3 from tirerack. I have a spare set of oem 18 inch rims that I bought from a person in Nashville, TN. I got screwed because he said they were in perfect condition. They had been repainted(not powerder coated so the paint is peeling in places) and the tread was not as good as described but they will make a nice set of winter rims. Iím getting the tires mounted on the used 18 inch rims this week and I will install myself. I can not wait for the next snow fall or ice so I can test these babies out on the M3.

All of those who are skeptic about how snow tires will perform then do not be. Here in KY we do not get a large amount of snowfall but we get enough to warrant a nice set of snows. If you think you can drive an 2 wheel drive e46 in snow or ice with performance summer tires then you will look like an idiot like me. If you plan to drive the e46 in snow then please make yourself and others safe and purchase a set of snow tires from tirerack.

mabbadgerbimmer
Thu, Jan-27-2005, 04:44:15 PM
The E46 doesn't come out of the garage in the winter. However the E36 is the daily driver. With Dunlop winter sports on its great in the snow. The only time I have trouble is when the snow depth is to high for the bottom of the car to clear.

JAC
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 03:16:12 AM
My M3 stays in the garage for the winter too. I drive my Tundra as my daily driver. The other night I was coming home, Lots of fresh snow had just fallen. I passed an M3, He was going about 20, I was going about 45, I could see he was on the wheel white knuckling, while I have my hands on the wheel, but no tension!

Someone I work with has to put snow tires on his g35, he says its better but would rather not drive it. So yeah I think the right tire would be helpfull but not enjoyable!





John

bender73
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 03:38:31 AM
the last 2 days without winter tires...

day 1 - i asked a stranger in my apartment complex for a ride to work :D

day 2 - took my wife's car

...nuff said about 18" summers on an M3 in the winter

Knipper
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 07:05:41 AM
I definitely didn't buy mine to leave it sitting in the garage all winter. First sign of snow the hard top goes on and the winter wheels/tires go on. This car is an absolute blast to drive in any weather.

http://www.m3forum.net/gallery/data/2/8773snowplow1.jpg

STALKER
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 08:20:21 AM
I use to drive mine in winter and it was just fine, first on 17" now its sits on 18" snows during winter. I would still take it out on clear winter days. I have a Strassentech lip now, so she will never see winter snow and slush again, don't want to act as a snow plow. The only time I had trouble with the car was in really deep stuff because the car sits low, or otherwise it was great. I have a 1990 560 SEL for winter now.

jetswin
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 01:45:14 PM
perfect solution to winter driving is an X5

Rev8k
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 01:53:17 PM
Snow tires will help BUT this car starts hard, idles rough, and has rock hard steering when the temps are below freezing...

ryanK
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 04:27:38 PM
If you are going to invest in snows, I would spend a little more and get really good ones. The volvo dealership I grew up working at swears by Nokian's Hakkapeliitta series. I got a set after a "blizzak" incident, and have never looked back. I can give you specifics on tires models if you want (and no I don't sell them....)

JAC
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 08:44:05 PM
I definitely didn't buy mine to leave it sitting in the garage all winter. First sign of snow the hard top goes on and the winter wheels/tires go on. This car is an absolute blast to drive in any weather.

http://www.m3forum.net/gallery/data/2/8773snowplow1.jpg


I wait all summer to drive my tundra in the winter and then wait all winter to drive my M in the summer! Tis a good life! :dance:

And I have been suggesting my wife get an X5. After this winter and driving my truck I don't think she wants her Minivan anymore!

John

V9
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 08:52:56 PM
I have a brand new X5 4.4i but my wife never lets me set foot in it so I need snows for the M3. Anyone know where I can get dunlop wintersport M3s in oem 18" sizes at this late hour. Tirerack is sold out for the season!! I'll even buy them from canada if I can find them.

Oh I also need a used set of oem 18" if anyone got it for sale.

Thanks

chiphomme
Fri, Jan-28-2005, 09:07:30 PM
Driving with Pilots on in the winter is nuts but if you put snow tires on it's perfectly driveable.

kmurph
Sat, Jan-29-2005, 01:12:43 AM
I have a brand new X5 4.4i but my wife never lets me set foot in it so I need snows for the M3. Anyone know where I can get dunlop wintersport M3s in oem 18" sizes at this late hour. Tirerack is sold out for the season!! I'll even buy them from canada if I can find them.

Oh I also need a used set of oem 18" if anyone got it for sale.

Thanks


According to the Tire Rack website, they have 245/40/18 Wintersport M3s in stock...you can run that size on all 4 wheels. They also have Pirelli Winter 240 SnowSports in OEM 18" sizes...according to their website.

Tire Rack (http://www.tirerack.com/tires/Compare1.jsp?width=245%2F&ratio=40&diameter=18&startIndex=0&search=true&pagelen=20&pagenum=1&pagemark=1&performance=W&x=56&y=3)

M3@NYC
Sat, Jan-29-2005, 01:19:02 AM
According to the Tire Rack website, they have 245/40/18 Wintersport M3s in stock...you can run that size on all 4 wheels. They also have Pirelli Winter 240 SnowSports in OEM 18" sizes...according to their website.

Tire Rack (http://www.tirerack.com/tires/Compare1.jsp?width=245%2F&ratio=40&diameter=18&startIndex=0&search=true&pagelen=20&pagenum=1&pagemark=1&performance=W&x=56&y=3)


They work ok. But don't think it will handle like the X5 in the snow.

kmurph
Sat, Jan-29-2005, 05:36:30 PM
They work ok. But don't think it will handle like the X5 in the snow.

Of course they're not going to handle as well as a 4 wheel drive equipped with winter tires...I've driven a X3 in fairly deep snow on a Vehicle Dynamics area at a track and it was a lot of fun. The X-drive is works great. I was amazed at how the front wheels activate and start to pulling you through when drifting.

...but the M3 with Michelin Pilot Alpins is much better in the snow than my Accord with all-seasons...so performance winter tires do help a lot.

http://members.roadfly.org/kmurph/WinterStart2.jpg

drmurray
Sat, Mar-05-2005, 09:04:13 AM
If you are going to invest in snows, I would spend a little more and get really good ones. The volvo dealership I grew up working at swears by Nokian's Hakkapeliitta series. I got a set after a "blizzak" incident, and have never looked back. I can give you specifics on tires models if you want (and no I don't sell them....)

Hi...would love to get that info on the Nokian tires. Thanks.
Murray

NeVeTaS
Sat, Mar-05-2005, 09:43:33 AM
Had my STi on winter tires.

Was amazing, i was screaming past BMW's and Merc's

Normal summer tyres loose effectiveness under 7C.

In most of Europe it's LAW to have summer and winter tyres.

Remember Winter tyres are not snow tryes.

I run winter tyres all winter, even when it's a lovely sunny day but still cold they grip better, and are better in the wet. But the M3 is no match for a 4x4 (STi, Audi Quattro etc) in snowy / icy conditions.