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      05-22-2012, 09:54 PM   #21
Lieutenant Colonel

Drives: 2008 BMW 335i sedan
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: San Francisco

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Originally Posted by SERI335 View Post


So, I went into my local Discount Tire this morning as they were giving me the Michelins for $920 (after tax, installed). I ended up letting them put the tires on, but when the car came out, it looked like a crossover on sport suspension.

I said ok, lemme give it a try. My first impression behind the wheel was the night and day difference between the heavy, precise steering feel with using the rft's (that I like), and the looser, spongy steering feel on the Michelins (which I initially don't like, but still have not made up my mind about). I said okay again. I then did some driving on some backroads, across some train crossings, and coarse asphalt. I must admit that the car is a lot more comfortable to drive. There was no more harsh jarring on road holes and the wheel noise is virtually zero at all speeds. I did notice however that all my tire pressures were showing low as much as I tried to reset it. Was ditching the runflats a good idea?? I sat and thought about it for a bit...

When I got back home, I could not help but watch the suv-looking sidewalls which I was going to live with for the next couple years. I called up Discount Tire and asked them to weigh in. The guy at the store that I dealt with were completely unhelpful at this point since my questions post-purchase didn't seem to matter to him at all. He also told me that there was absolutely nothing they had as an alternative, and taking off the tires and exchanging (next week when they get more stock) would set me back additional labor and restocking fees. I didn't understand initially, since the company prides itself on its 30-day exchange policy. Even the hold recording on their phones boasts about it. I asked him about the advertisements, but there was a lot of reluctance on his end to pursue anything further.

Fast forward this evening, I decided to call another branch close to me and they told me to bring it in and have a chat. Their alternative was the Conti DWS, which they said they would be able to put on at no cost if I wasn't happy with the Michelins. They did indicate that they would prefer that I decide on it by end of day (not sure what's with the disregard to their 30-day satisfaction guarantee again). After reading many reviews about both tires, there was nothing to lose at this point. I then told them to put on the Contis. During this time, an M3 buddy of mine rang me up and reminded me that to reset the TPMS fully, the end button on the stalk need to be depressed for a full 5 seconds until the "resetting" indicator comes up. I was doing the complete opposite earlier in the day.

After the install, did the same set of loops and even though there is no road noise difference between both brands, the Contis seemed more sure footed and less spongy. It may also be due to the extra 2-3 PSI's I told them to put in the tire, but time will tell.

So, at the end of the day I suggest that if you like the stiffer, precise feel that you get when you first drove your car - go with some good run flats (ike the PS2's). I'm sure the Michelins are also great tires, but it didn't float my boat for the 6 hours I had them on. I'm yet to try these tires in the wet and can give updates if anyone's interested. My initial view is that the Contis are an excellent alternative if you're looking for a set of tires with good tread life. I don't like that the feel and heaviness is a bit gone, but in my wife's book I'm sure it's a plus.

Sorry I didn't get pics of either for a visual comparison.
I'd bet some bucks it was the additional PSI -- I had to up the pressure in mine after changing out the runflats as well. The new ones just don't have the same stiffness in the sidewalls (Thank GOD!)

With 38 all around, they handle great.

The DWS are a good choice too, though. Some like one, some like the other. Don't run stock pressures with either one!