195/50/R15 tires?
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  1. #1
    1000+ Posts schlitzaugen's Avatar
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    Default 195/50/R15 tires?

    Dang difficult to find Peter's contributions in former threads so I need to open a new one.

    I am going to have to get some new tires for the 205 and this is the size I am looking at.

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    Any recommendations welcome.

    Forgot to say, main priority is handling both in dry and wet.

    I would also like to keep the stock size (as above) but exceptional options available a whisker outside of it might sway me.
    Last edited by schlitzaugen; 16th March 2020 at 07:05 PM.
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    1000+ Posts PeterT's Avatar
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    Nope, unless you have 6.5-6.75" wide wheels. The 195 wallows around too much on the side wall and is just a cheap alternative. 185/55/R15 is correct oem size.

    '92 205 Mi16
    '90 Mi16x4

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    I think that 195/50 would be fine (it's about 5% wider but is also 5% shorter in the sidewall compared with 185/55). Tyre type choice is going to be a more significant variable and much fine tuning of handling balance & feel can be obtained via tyre pressure changes. (The wider the rim the more pre-tensioned the sidewall is & that improves responsiveness but the legal minimum is 5.5".)

    Within 195/50, there's a short list of two. Bridgestone's Potenza Adrenalin RE003 & Michelin's PilotSport 3. Each is a good wet tyre with the RE003 being crisper in response. Bridgestone frequently do "4 for the price of 3" deals but Potenza tyres are not currently featured. I'd wait & see what happens at the end of the month if the RE003 is what you choose. (It would be my choice of the pair.)

    Within 185/55, the PS3 is again available but the RE003 is not. Apart from the PS3, the rest of the short list is from the so-called "Premium Touring" class, not the "Sports" class. Two tyres appeal. One is an old favourite of mine, Continental's PremiumContact 2. The other is Dunlop's FM800. Both are from the so-called "Premium Touring" class, not the "Sports" class of the RE003 & PS3.

    The two are each good wet tyres but the PC2 has two merits. First, it's tread is stabler when new & it operates at lower slip angles because of this (the FM800 has to distort tread a bit to take its "set" before it transmits forces properly). Second, the PC2's wet grip persists remarkably over time whereas the FM800's drops off more (a compounding thing).

    Comparing the PC2 to the PS3, wet grip will be similar but, from one interesting review on Tyre Reviews's PC2 reviews from a guy who switched from PS3 to PC2, the PC2 is crisper.

    Note that the PC2 (& FM800) in this size is an XL variant that usually means an extra sidewall ply & thus (although not its purpose) crisper handling response. The PS3 is not an XL variant.

    So the upshot of this is that I'd choose the RE003 within 195/50 & the PC2 within 185/55.

    Of the two, I'd choose the RE003 (crisper responding structure despite the PC2 being XL, similar wet grip & benign limit behaviour), wait to see what April's promotions reveal (Bob Jane & Jax would advertise relevantly) & then play with tyre pressure adjustments to get the handling profile you want.

    That said, the PC2 would also delight.

    cheers! Peter

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    1000+ Posts schlitzaugen's Avatar
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    Thank you, Peter (the second).

    What about Yokohama Advan 048, 052, Neova AD08RS, Dunlop DZ03G, what are those like?
    Last edited by schlitzaugen; 17th March 2020 at 02:33 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlitzaugen View Post
    Thank you, Peter (the second).

    What about Yokohama Advan 048, 052, Neova AD08RS, Dunlop DZ03G, what are those like?
    You're planning some competitive work???
    I have A048's on the Alpine and they are good.
    Neova AD08's are less race, more street...
    1969 Alpine A110

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    I had thought that you were after street tyres but . . .

    So-called track day tyres have two failings for the street.

    One is that the tread compound is optimised for higher operating temperatures & is not "a good thing" at low ambient temperatures unless on a track where some heat can be worked into it. So: especially in coldish damp street driving but also in cold dry conditions, one has to be rather cautious.

    The second failing is that the minimal & shallow main channels pose an elevated aquaplaning risk when conditions are more than merely damp.

    In warmer conditions, even when damp, the compounds interlock well with the micro-imperfections of the road surface.

    Unless you intend only track work, I would incline to more street-focused tyres which have compounding more suited to lower temperatures. My short list of ones available in 195/50-15 is two.

    One is the Yokohama Advan Neova AD08R mentioned by Nauli. The other is Bridgestone's Potenza RE71R. (Note that even when Potenzas are being promoted, these are not included in the offer.)

    The advantage of either of these over the RE003 is super-responsive control & alacrity in warm dry or merely damp conditions. So the choice issue is really whether you anticipate fanging in the wet or cold (say, under 7C). Living in Tasmania & enjoying wet roads above all, I rejected getting the RE71R at one point after some thought but YMMV.

    cheers! Peter

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4cvg View Post
    I think that 195/50 would be fine (it's about 5% wider but is also 5% shorter in the sidewall compared with 185/55). Tyre type choice is going to be a more significant variable and much fine tuning of handling balance & feel can be obtained via tyre pressure changes. (The wider the rim the more pre-tensioned the sidewall is & that improves responsiveness but the legal minimum is 5.5".)

    Within 195/50, there's a short list of two. Bridgestone's Potenza Adrenalin RE003 & Michelin's PilotSport 3. Each is a good wet tyre with the RE003 being crisper in response. Bridgestone frequently do "4 for the price of 3" deals but Potenza tyres are not currently featured. I'd wait & see what happens at the end of the month if the RE003 is what you choose. (It would be my choice of the pair.)

    Within 185/55, the PS3 is again available but the RE003 is not. Apart from the PS3, the rest of the short list is from the so-called "Premium Touring" class, not the "Sports" class. Two tyres appeal. One is an old favourite of mine, Continental's PremiumContact 2. The other is Dunlop's FM800. Both are from the so-called "Premium Touring" class, not the "Sports" class of the RE003 & PS3.

    The two are each good wet tyres but the PC2 has two merits. First, it's tread is stabler when new & it operates at lower slip angles because of this (the FM800 has to distort tread a bit to take its "set" before it transmits forces properly). Second, the PC2's wet grip persists remarkably over time whereas the FM800's drops off more (a compounding thing).

    Comparing the PC2 to the PS3, wet grip will be similar but, from one interesting review on Tyre Reviews's PC2 reviews from a guy who switched from PS3 to PC2, the PC2 is crisper.

    Note that the PC2 (& FM800) in this size is an XL variant that usually means an extra sidewall ply & thus (although not its purpose) crisper handling response. The PS3 is not an XL variant.

    So the upshot of this is that I'd choose the RE003 within 195/50 & the PC2 within 185/55.

    Of the two, I'd choose the RE003 (crisper responding structure despite the PC2 being XL, similar wet grip & benign limit behaviour), wait to see what April's promotions reveal (Bob Jane & Jax would advertise relevantly) & then play with tyre pressure adjustments to get the handling profile you want.

    That said, the PC2 would also delight.

    cheers! Peter
    Not shorter, exactly the same height, but more width.

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    In terms of half-decent, mid-range performance, brand-name street tyres in a 185/55 R15 fitment, there is the Michelin Pilot Sport 3 ($155 from Jax) or the Yokohama Advan Fleva V701 ($159 RRP).

    I note that Bridgestone does make the Potenza RE003 in a 185/55 R15 fitment, but it is not listed on their Australian website - which I take to mean that the Australian distributor does not import them.

    Meanwhile in Japan, the Potenza RE004 was released in January this year and is also made in a 185/55 R15 fitment. Not sure when they'll be released on the Australian market, but wouldn't it be nice if they brought it in a 185/55 R15 fitment as well? Here's hoping...

  9. #9
    1000+ Posts schlitzaugen's Avatar
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    .55*185=101.75

    .5*190=95

    6.75mm difference or 6.6%

    That's the theory
    ACHTUNG ALLES LOOKENPEEPERS

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    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    Not shorter, exactly the same height, but more width.
    Basis of my claim was the algorithm at:

    https://tiresize.com/comparison/

    My focus was on sidewall height as that was the context of the "bellying" sidewall objection to 195/50.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diesel_vert View Post
    In terms of half-decent, mid-range performance, brand-name street tyres in a 185/55 R15 fitment, there is the Michelin Pilot Sport 3 ($155 from Jax) or the Yokohama Advan Fleva V701 ($159 RRP).

    I note that Bridgestone does make the Potenza RE003 in a 185/55 R15 fitment, but it is not listed on their Australian website - which I take to mean that the Australian distributor does not import them.

    Meanwhile in Japan, the Potenza RE004 was released in January this year and is also made in a 185/55 R15 fitment. Not sure when they'll be released on the Australian market, but wouldn't it be nice if they brought it in a 185/55 R15 fitment as well? Here's hoping...
    The RE004 release gives grounds for some optimism for some clearance sales of RE003 stocks :-)

    I didn't short list the V701 on grounds of poor wet grip. See:

    https://www.tyrereviews.co.uk/Articl...-Tyre-Test.htm

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    1000+ Posts PeterT's Avatar
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    If I recall correctly, 195x50/15 also rub on the rear ARB plate, on either drum brakes or disc rear ends. Can't recall which.

    '92 205 Mi16
    '90 Mi16x4

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterT View Post
    If I recall correctly, 195x50/15 also rub on the rear ARB plate, on either drum brakes or disc rear ends. Can't recall which.
    Hmm! A potentially significant objection. Possibly remediable by having some thin spacers made up from steel plate by an engineering works. The point is exacerbated by the RE003 being slightly oversize in its section (as are most "track-day" tyres).

    Mind you, extra fussing would then be occurring &, given the excellence of the 185/55-15 Conti PC2, it might be the minimum pain path.

    cheers! Peter

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    Wheel spacers are illegal in NSW.

    '92 205 Mi16
    '90 Mi16x4

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4cvg View Post
    Basis of my claim was the algorithm at:

    https://tiresize.com/comparison/

    My focus was on sidewall height as that was the context of the "bellying" sidewall objection to 195/50.
    The 195 bulge because they are wider.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4cvg View Post
    Hmm! A potentially significant objection. Possibly remediable by having some thin spacers made up from steel plate by an engineering works. The point is exacerbated by the RE003 being slightly oversize in its section (as are most "track-day" tyres).

    Mind you, extra fussing would then be occurring &, given the excellence of the 185/55-15 Conti PC2, it might be the minimum pain path.

    cheers! Peter
    No rubbing anywhere with current 195/50 tires and no sidewall bulging either. I'll check the size of the RE003 on the other car (they are 195 but not sure what aspect ratio) as well but they don't seem to be wider than the 205 tires.
    ACHTUNG ALLES LOOKENPEEPERS

    Das computermachine is nicht fur gefingerpoken und mittengrabben. Ist easy schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und poppencorken mit spitssparken. Ist nicht fur gewerken bei das dummkopfen. Das rubbernecken sightseeren keepen hands in das pockets-relaxen und watch das blinkenlights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by schlitzaugen View Post
    No rubbing anywhere with current 195/50 tires and no sidewall bulging either. I'll check the size of the RE003 on the other car (they are 195 but not sure what aspect ratio) as well but they don't seem to be wider than the 205 tires.
    I think that the RE003 would be closer to your conjured-with "track day" tyre options than the PC2 so, if they fit ok, then 195/50-15 RE003 seems the best option for what you're seeking.

    I have "put my money where my mouth is" on the RE003, having fitted multiple sets on my wife's & a daughter's Foresters in 215/60-16 & have no objections at all to their behaviour when fanged in dry or wet. I'll continue to use them unless something more splendid becomes available.

    cheers! Peter

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    I have them on wife's car as well, but they are 195/60/15. No complaints, but having no knowledge of other options from direct experience I have to go on others' input. On the face of it some of those tires listed on Demon tweeks look great and I sure would like to try some, but not at the risk of poor behaviour in the wet or some other shortcoming.
    ACHTUNG ALLES LOOKENPEEPERS

    Das computermachine is nicht fur gefingerpoken und mittengrabben. Ist easy schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und poppencorken mit spitssparken. Ist nicht fur gewerken bei das dummkopfen. Das rubbernecken sightseeren keepen hands in das pockets-relaxen und watch das blinkenlights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    The 195 bulge because they are wider.
    There are more operative variables than just width.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4cvg View Post
    There are more operative variables than just width.
    Have you actually driven a 205? One with 195x50 and another with 185x55?

    '92 205 Mi16
    '90 Mi16x4

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    I think the PS3s in 185/55/15 are great but I haven't compared them with other tyres on another car of similar spec.

    But if the aim is higher performance than PS3s, what are people's comments on the Neova AD08 in the correct size?

    https://www.bobjane.com.au/a/185-55r...riant_id=11098

    But if we're talking about a s2 GTI with no mods then that's not a huge amount of power. Wouldn't PS3s be more than enough tyre for that?
    Last edited by Richard W; 18th March 2020 at 09:56 PM.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterT View Post
    Have you actually driven a 205? One with 195x50 and another with 185x55?
    No but so what? A theoretical point was made & a theoretical reply was made.

    I take it that an empirical point has been made by S-H concerning his previous set of 195/50 & I have observed that the RE003 195/50 section might be larger.

    ???

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    Bummer. Bridgestone isn't doing a "4 for 3" deal this month on Potenzas.

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