Best All Season Tire?
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  1. #1
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    Best All Season Tire?

    I'm looking at getting news tires for my 2007 Passat Wagon. What are some very good mud and snow rated all season tires with extremely long tread life?

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    I got the Michelin Primacy MXV4.... really happy with them and their warranty. I still switch to Blizzaks in the winter, but I can't wait to go back to how smooth and quiet the Michelins are.

    They also do very well in rain. They hold on very well even when driving like an idiot through puddles.

    Definitely recommended.

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    Assuming you also want high levels of dry grip too, for snow there's nothing better than Conti DWS's. This is according to Tirerack's review which said they're so much better in snow than all other UHP all-season tires they've ever tested that they belong in a different class. Something between all season and actual snow tires. I have them now but unfortunately we didn't get any real snow here in NY this year.

    You can see the aggressive tread pattern on the inside half of the tire in the pic linked below, and even the outer tread has those serrated teeth inside the straight groove.


    Continental Extreme Contact Dws Tires 275/40/20 106Z BSW Image



    And they're much cheaper than other top of the line UHP all season tires. Mine were $70 cheaper per tire than the equivalent Michelin's and $50 less than Bridgestones top of the line Potenza RE-960's. The tread life is also good, comparable to the Michelin and much better than the Potenza's.

    I had the RE960's before this and they were outstanding in the rain, almost as grippy as in the dry, and the Conti's are about the same.

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    I am replacing my beloved Kumho Ecsta ASX that I have run for over 60K miles...two sets, with the new Kumho Ecsta 4X. picked up new set for $444 shipped from Treadepot. the reviews on Tirerack and other forums seem to be very positive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by UrbanLegend View Post
    Assuming you also want high levels of dry grip too, for snow there's nothing better than Conti DWS's. This is according to Tirerack's review which said they're so much better in snow than all other UHP all-season tires they've ever tested that they belong in a different class. Something between all season and actual snow tires. I have them now but unfortunately we didn't get any real snow here in NY this year.

    You can see the aggressive tread pattern on the inside half of the tire in the pic linked below, and even the outer tread has those serrated teeth inside the straight groove.


    Continental Extreme Contact Dws Tires 275/40/20 106Z BSW Image



    And they're much cheaper than other top of the line UHP all season tires. Mine were $70 cheaper per tire than the equivalent Michelin's and $50 less than Bridgestones top of the line Potenza RE-960's. The tread life is also good, comparable to the Michelin and much better than the Potenza's.

    I had the RE960's before this and they were outstanding in the rain, almost as grippy as in the dry, and the Conti's are about the same.
    I just ordered a set of these... I might run them year round... but I get a lot of snow in the winter so I might run snows again next winter. That said, even though we had a lot of snow this year, the roads have been free of snow most of the winter. decisions.

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    Super Stealth Retired Moderator JayTheSnork's Avatar
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    I have a set of the DWS on my Passat. I like 'em.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JayTheSnork View Post
    I have a set of the DWS on my Passat. I like 'em.
    Jay, you guys get a fair bit of snow in CT... do you use the DWS' year round or run dedicated snows? If you use the DWS's year 'round... how do they perform in the snow?

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    I didn't run them in the snow last winter, John - they are on my summer wheels - and it snowed like crazy all winter last year. Now that those wheels aren't quite as nice as they used to be, I left them on the car for this year...and it hasn't really snowed, so I can't provide you with that assessment. sorry...

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    Quote Originally Posted by JayTheSnork View Post
    I didn't run them in the snow last winter, John - they are on my summer wheels - and it snowed like crazy all winter last year. Now that those wheels aren't quite as nice as they used to be, I left them on the car for this year...and it hasn't really snowed, so I can't provide you with that assessment. sorry...
    Thanks anyways... Dedicated snows are a big outlay (and I'll need a new set in the fall if I go this way). That said, we've had a lot of snow this winter but in terms of driving in bad snow conditions... maybe two days this past winter. Otherwise, almost all driving on dry/wet pavement, not snow covered roads. When I had my GTI and worked in the ski biz, I drove in all types of snow storms and always on all-seasons and never got stuck and never had tracktion issues.

    I'm leaning towards using the DWS' year-round and redirect the $7-800 that new snows will cost, into something else.

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    What is the realistic tread life on the Continental Extreme Contact DWS tires? First hand knowledge would be great.

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    Super Stealth Retired Moderator JayTheSnork's Avatar
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    I have at least 40K miles on mine, with plenty tread left. the treadwear rating on these are 580, iirc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JayTheSnork View Post
    I have at least 40K miles on mine, with plenty tread left. the treadwear rating on these are 580, iirc.
    Thank you Jay. I just get a little worried when I start to hear terms like high performance and extreme grip. Normally that means low treat life.

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    Super Stealth Retired Moderator JayTheSnork's Avatar
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    I stand corrected - just looked them up, and they are 540 AA.

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    Excuse me for asking, but why do you need all seasons in Burbank? Seems a bit overkill.

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    Some people actually like to drive their cars.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEWMAN'SOWN View Post
    Excuse me for asking, but why do you need all seasons in Burbank? Seems a bit overkill.
    I may be from Canada, but I'm pretty sure it snows in some parts of California. And isn't there a rainy season there too?

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    Hopefully I can shed some light on my personal experiences: I bought my Passat used in Jan 2007 (2004 model) when I lived in NJ. The car came with ContiProContact (195/65/15). We had a really good amount of snow in northern Jersey that year; I drove on more than one occassion from Parsippany to Hackettstown (near Del. Water Gap, ~30 miles) in 6-7" of snow on Rt 80 with 0 issues. Those tires weren't really what I would consider good snow tires, but the Passat is really good in the stuff, which I think more than made up for the tires. Those tires were a decent mid range all season and I put 45k miles on them before upgrading to 17" wheels. I never had slippage in the snow or rain (drive with some sense) on that first set. I've also run Yokohama s.Drives (ultra high performance summer tire) with 0 issues in the snow here in NC (couple inches worth, but again I drive conservatively in the snow). These tires actually surprised me in the snow. They aren't rated at all for it (you saw the summer tire part), but I had minimal slippage, but I think some of that is driving in tip mode on a car that likes to downshift quickly since getting APR93 program, and I live around lots of hills. The current tire I'm running is Conti DWS. I haven't driven in any snow since the install last May, but not many have here on the east coast either. Anyway, I'm sure these will be the best tires in the snow (of the ones I've had so far) based on my research before buying them, and from posts I've seen here and other sites. I think a lot depends on your driving style, car (including mods), local roads, etc. So far, I've really enjoyed the DWS' and they don't really give much less grip than the s.Drives did, wet or dry. They do flex a little more on the twisties, but that's to be expected. I just run 40PSI all around and this helps without having a deteriorated ride.

    -Mike

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    My DWS' were installed this morning. Only 5km driven on them, but wow are they quiet. Road trip this weekend... we'll see how they do.

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    Super Stealth Retired Moderator JayTheSnork's Avatar
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    you'll like 'em, John. I won't say they are the quitest tires out there, but they sure are grippy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JayTheSnork View Post
    you'll like 'em, John. I won't say they are the quitest tires out there, but they sure are grippy.
    Compared to my old snow tires... they're super quiet!

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    Since we're talking about being quiet or not, do you guys rotate same side, or what? The manual states to rotate front to back / back to front, staying on the same side. I could see how this would help with sound, but not necessarily the tire's longevity. I've been doing a modified X pattern, but was wondering if this would make them slightly noisier in the long run.

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    I've only ever rotated per the owner's manual. Can't say if there's a diff in noise per your conditions.

  24. #23
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    DWS hand's down...best tire I've ever driven on.

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    I drive a 03 passat, and wondering on stock rims can you go with a wider tire. even though they are 195/65 15's?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ATVDuB03 View Post
    I drive a 03 passat, and wondering on stock rims can you go with a wider tire. even though they are 195/65 15's?
    Yes - I ran 215/60R15's for about 5 years, then last year replaced them with 205/65R15's, either work fine. I would have bought another set of 215's last year (or even 225's), but the guy at costco couldn't get RE960s in 215's any more, and he refused to install 225's. These were installed on my stock 7" Adelaides, and right now I have 20mm spacers in the back and 8mm spacers up front.

    John

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    Quote Originally Posted by JayTheSnork View Post
    you'll like 'em, John. I won't say they are the quitest tires out there, but they sure are grippy.
    I did a 1,000km road trip this past weekend. Even got to drive through a flash blizzard on the north shore of Lake Ontario. These tires are great!

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    Quote Originally Posted by NEWMAN'SOWN View Post
    Excuse me for asking, but why do you need all seasons in Burbank? Seems a bit overkill.
    I like to drive and not worry about hydroplaning into the center divider like a lot of folks in the LA area. Plus I take a lot of trip to the high Sierras and Utah.

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    yokohama avid trz

  30. #29
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    Hell I used to drive all winter on cheapo all season tires on 1960's and 70's rear drive GM cars and only ever got stuck once that I couldn't get out of rocking it or with a push. And that time was a two foot plus blizzard where my wipers froze and I drove the car into a 5 foot high snow bank. LOL The car disappeared into the snow and I had to spend the night in a Brooklyn subway station and go dig it out the next day. Ah those were the days.
    Now as for the Passat, I would drive it anywhere anytime on DWS's.

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    I got DWS's and really tested them already. Commuting in Los Angeles, they're great. Cruising up to Yosemite with the cruise control locked at 80mph, they were excellent. Driving from Hetch Hetchy Valley back to Yosemite Valley through 2 to 4 inches of heavily falling snow they were gripping the road like champs. I would buy them again in a heartbeat.

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