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Ideal snow tire size for e1 wheels -- What's your opinion?

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  • Ideal snow tire size for e1 wheels -- What's your opinion?

    Heya! It's time to purchase some snow tires, and living in the U.P., so I'm committing myself to Blizzak WS70 as they'll do the best up here with iterations of lots o' ice then lots o' snow.

    I'm using my E1 wheels for the winter, and I'm stuck between two sizes available for the WS70 -- 195/55R16 and 205/65R16. The former being a little more narrow (could I even opt for 185* on a stock E1 wheel?), while the later being taller.

    What are your guys' experience / opinion between the two available sizes? Skinner AND taller is no doubt ideal, but I might have to make a compromise here -- as much of a compromise 10cm is. :)

    Thanks,
    2000 SVT Contour, '05 Sable 3.0L with SVT cams, IM & I/H/E
    1993 GT Probe, supercharged & LSD ---- 1998 SubVert Trek 2.0, stock

  • #2
    FWIW, I put General Altimax Arctic's in 215/55-16 on my stock E1 wheels, and they work great on snow and ice here in Colorado. I know, they're a little wider, and the thought is go narrower, but they're also a little taller, which helps keep the underside out of the snow. Between my wife's front drive appliance and the Contour, I've worn out several sets of Blizzaks. I have Altimax Arctic's on both cars now for the winter, and I believe they are a better tire - they do just as well on snow and ice, and they're aren't all squirmy on dry pavement like the Blizzaks. YMMV.

    We have enough dry pavement time here during winter that I appreciate a bit more tread on the road, tho I realize that's not the case in Michigan's U.P.

    The 215/55's I run are ~25.3" diameter, and I have decent, maybe 1/2" clearance to the strut perches, the 205/65 you propose is 26.5" diameter, you may not be able to run this large of a tire.

    You in Houghton?
    2019 Corvette Grand Sport, 1LT, just stupid-fast.
    1985 SVO Mustang (turbocharged track rat)
    1989 Taurus SHO (supercharged track rat)
    1999 SVT Contour (Sedanus-Grocerygetter-Rapidus)
    2008 Mercury Milan Premier (Comfy boat)

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    • #3
      I run 205/55/16's (although Winterforces) which is a pretty common size tire, they don't make the WS70 in this size?
      2009 Honda...

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      • #4
        Originally posted by gmorrell View Post
        FWIW, I put General Altimax Arctic's in 215/55-16 on my stock E1 wheels, and they work great on snow and ice here in Colorado. I know, they're a little wider, and the thought is go narrower, but they're also a little taller, which helps keep the underside out of the snow. Between my wife's front drive appliance and the Contour, I've worn out several sets of Blizzaks. I have Altimax Arctic's on both cars now for the winter, and I believe they are a better tire - they do just as well on snow and ice, and they're aren't all squirmy on dry pavement like the Blizzaks. YMMV.

        We have enough dry pavement time here during winter that I appreciate a bit more tread on the road, tho I realize that's not the case in Michigan's U.P.

        The 215/55's I run are ~25.3" diameter, and I have decent, maybe 1/2" clearance to the strut perches, the 205/65 you propose is 26.5" diameter, you may not be able to run this large of a tire.

        You in Houghton?
        I'm close to Houghton, I take it you're familiar with MTU? It's hard to know if we'll have another strangely warm winter or if it'll dump a few dozzen feet by the end of January. I was looking at tiretrack.com and 205/65 & 195/55 were the two lesser expensive options that I was presented with. They do have 205/55, but they are $125 a tire instead of $94 to $106. hmm.
        2000 SVT Contour, '05 Sable 3.0L with SVT cams, IM & I/H/E
        1993 GT Probe, supercharged & LSD ---- 1998 SubVert Trek 2.0, stock

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        • #5
          205/55 and 215/50 are the stock size's for our wheels. The 205 will be cheaper because there are more of them. As far as snow tires I don't really have an opinion because we hardly get any snow here. I wouldn't go with the 205/65 because they will rub and the 195's will be too small and put your car closer to the ground giving you less clearance. I would stick with the 205/55's.
          -99 E1 Black/MNB #1974 stock DD
          -98 E0 Black/MNB #0812 3L sold
          -98 E0 T-Red/MNB #0322 sold

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          • #6
            Nitto SN1 or SN2 tires... lower price and just as good of a tire. I ran 205's on my E0's and loved them. Running them now on the Mazda3 with 17's and they have performed well too. Keep in mind that's MN winter's too with a ton of snow and ice.
            -Mike
            If you are wondering where the avatar came from look here... Link
            98 SVT Contour - HoK TruBlue|CF roof|#49/6535 DOB 3/25/97|550whp here I come|Follow my extremely slow 3L/turbo build here Link
            85 Camaro - 1969 350ci, 503BHP

            Owner - RIES PEFORMANCE

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            • #7
              I'm running 205/55's on E1 wheels. Dunlop Graspics GS-3's. I've been very happy with them.
              2001 SVT Lightning #2839 - Stock

              2000 SVT Contour #1541 - | BAT | FSVT EAP | Hankook K110 | Y-pipe | RSTB | Energy Suspension |

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              • #8
                205/55/R16 here too, General Altimax Arctics, just got them on today for the first snow storm of the season, I live in a very hilly area with tons of turns and we got several inches that weren't even touched before I got on them 12 miles to work in a white out on all curvy backroads, performed very well, then on the way home it was all sleet, so slush, snow, and an icy covering to top it all of, still never slipped on a hill, definitely recommend them. Also, only paid $115 a tire mounted and balanced after tax, so pretty cheap.
                '99 Spruce Green SE "Sport" 'Tour, 2.5L MTX...140K and currently dead. RIP
                '98 Dark Blue SE Sport V6 MTX 123K and counting, all mods from old, plus D2's.
                '03 5dr SVTF 110K the new DD, some mods, hoping not many more.

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