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Hi playmates,

I bought my latest Focus back in mid October 09. It came shod with four [url=""]Marangoni Verso's[/url] 3.75 mm tread on the fronts and 6mm tread on the rear tyres. Obviously a four tyre replacement at some time. Now with my mileage I reckon I will be looking to replace the fronts mid May @ 2mm and possibly March the following year for the rears.

Now in my cash strapped youth [I've owned various vehicles over a period of 45 years] I have been known to buy "remoulds" But in them days an Austin A35 Van was hardly a powerful machine. But if there is one thing everybody should learn sooner rather than later. It is your life and the ones you love could depend on the four bits of rubber making contact with the road at any given time and in any given weather conditions.

Obviously, while I want a good tyre for the job, I don't want to pay through the nose. And buying expensive does not always mean buying a better tyre. And buying cheap is not always the cost effective option some believe it to be. And lets be fair most people will purchase summer tyres for all year use. So my aim was to source a summer tyre that was also good in winter conditions. As these Marangoni Verso's are crap in snow.

Now the consensus of professional opinion is, if your replacing tyres in pairs, the new tyres should go on the back axle. As the fronts wear more than the rears, this will mean getting the garage to swap them around. The thought behind that advice is, your more likely to have a blow out on old tyres than new tyres. And though you may well sh@t yourself at the time, authoritative organisations including the police state that your more likely to stay in control of the car with a rear axle blow out, than a front axle blow out.

Anyway anybody wanting to argue the point about which axle new tyres should go on. Please open another thread for that discussion. As I have already been down that road on the Volvo forum, pages and pages of heated debate, I made my decision [I'm going with the pro advice]

Back to the tyres

I based my research on pro tyre reviews like [url=""]Auto Express yearly tyre review[/url]
And the user scoring on [url=""]Tyre Test. com[/url]
I found [url=""]Mytyres[/url] was a good data base for tyres, and it links to the TyreTest website.

I looked at the scoring on loads of tyres, premiums, mid range and some budget with good followings. All in there like, Falken and Toyo's even Nokian the Nordic engineered tyre having a small but loyal following, but now being manufactured in China.

My main priorities, were grip in dry, wet, and snow. Along with grip when braking under dry, and wet conditions. Comfort, noise and tyre wear were also taken into consideration, but to a lesser degree.

Anyway my short list came down to the following. The short list is not in a best is first type listing, its just the list I came up with from which I would make my choice. However the first four listed are the Auto Express 1st , 2nd, 3rd and 4th placed tyres in their 2009 test.

Remember in the Tyretest reviews, the lower the score the better the tyre is considered to be in the area under consideration.

[url=""]Goodyear HydraGrip [/url] 81 reviews 458

[url=""]Verdestien Sportrac 3 [/url] 77 reviews 529

[url=""]Continental Premium Contact 2 [/url] 80 reviews 1124

[url=""]Michelin Primacy HP [/url] 93 reviews 374

[url=""]Michelin Energy Saver [/url] 90 reviews 653

[url=""]Dunlop SP Sport Fast Response [/url] 78 reviews 1246

[b]And the one I settled on for my next purchase [/b]
[url=""]Goodyear OptiGrip [/url] 79 reviews 290. The Michelin Energy Saver would be my second choice

As you can see when compared to a [url=""]Good Winter Tyre [/url] 102 reviews 208 it scores well for grip in snow. Leaving aside the winter tyre which was not under consideration. All the other tyres came in a tight price band.

Some what I consider to be "second string" but non the less popular tyre brands like Falkens fall short in my eyes where it matters. For instance take the[url=""]Falken FK-452[/url] 72 with 1907 user reviews scored.

Again the Toyo's seem to be another tyre name with a "following" when discussing new tyres. In so far as you see posts like " I've heard Toyo's are good, I might give them a try"

Well again like the Falkens, I did look at the reviews on Toyo's [url=""]Toyo Proxes CF 1[/url] 75 with 330 user reviews. Again it scored well below the short list offerings, especially in grip and braking grip in the wet, and grip in snow.

Conclusion: For an extra 4 to 7 a corner, I'm opting for a Premium Brand product with far superior scoring where it matters, over wannabe pretenders why? ............Because I reckon my family and I are worth it. :rolleyes:

I hope my research may be of some use to those contemplating purchasing new tyres

Edit: Coincidently my present crappy Verso's cost out at 70 a corner on the Mytyres website.
you`d have to go along way to beat a yokohama PARADA 2 or A539 as an alrounder for the road about 50 a corner if you look in the right places.
Using the a`s for track as a stop gap did me for a while,held the mk6 RS2K like XXXX on a blanket,now destined for wet weather use only and have Toyo 888`s for dry on the way.

Well I looked at the [url=""]A539[/url] couldn't find the Parada 2 user scoring, but found [url=""]Parada[/url] and both are a long way short of the best out there. Grip in Wet, Braking in Wet especially, and a joke in "Grip in Snow" And the [url=""]Toyo Proxes R888's[/url] well with them scores, I'd be wetting myself when it rained ;)

Now whilst I appreciate others may have tried out different and cheaper tyres and been happy with them. I personally would rather pay circa £100 in total to put four tyres on my car that come highly rated by a consensus of opinion by a large body of reviewers.

Besides being what one could term a bog standard driver, who albeit likes to use the accelerator where he can, I'm looking for a "summer season" tyre for all round all conditions use. Not into all this changing tyres mularky :P
Left click, left hand side of this page to see extensive Tests & Results for the [url=""]Goodyear OptiGrip[/url]

I must say I have not used these tyres before, so not going from personal experience. But as I expect to need to replace the tyres now on my front axle around beginning of June [dependent on their wear, currently 3.00mm of tread on fronts] I'll be putting the new tyres on the rear axle as per expert and industry advice. With the existing rears going on the front as they currently have 2.25mm more tread on them than the fronts.

Now my present MK2 Focus like my previous MK1 is a good ride and holds the road well. But not having the benefit of traction control, I'm looking for a "dogs bollocks" sort of tyre. That maintains its qualities through out its lifespan, compared to it's closest competitors, and I reckon this could be it. Not shown or stated in the above linked to tests, but of the [url=""]Best Rated Tyre Test Results[/url] for summer tyres, the Goodyear OptiGrip blows the competition away in the "Grip in Snow" results
Well the Jedamotorsport Evo 5 I sponser uses Toyo tripple 8`s in all weather,including a monsoon Silverstone Sumo sprint session 2009.Once warm no problem.
All I can say is don`t read into all the jargon you may read.Its bullshit most of it.Hype
You want proof of wet weather use go here
Used as wet weather tyres...header pic was taken at 9.00am after torrential rain from 5 am,Not too bad eh?
Pic taken on a left hander at 75mph + on the Sprint Stowe circuit with mass standing water.No problem.I took the pic and the driver wasn`t pooing himself what so ever.Although the car is well setup.

Been racing and ralling for close on 34 years now.
pretty well clued up on tyre compounds.
Been using 888 myself for years,track use.Feel safe in all diciplines of sport.

[quote name='jedamotorsport' date='24 February 2010 - 12:01 AM' timestamp='1266969118' post='66795']
Been racing and ralling for close on 34 years now.
pretty well clued up on tyre compounds.
Been using 888 myself for years,track use.Feel safe in all diciplines of sport.


jedamotorsport, with two posts in reply, I fear you may have miss interpreted my last post as a slight against your knowledge in regards to tyres. Not so mate, and I'm sorry if you read it as such. I was just posting links to user reviews in regards to tyres under discussion. Tyre choice is a very subjective purchase, with people basing their choices and recommendations often on personal experiences [like yourself]

As to your comment about the sales pitch manufactures make, [url=""]check this out[/url]. It's the sales blurb on the tyres I'm currently on [they came with the car] It's just total nonesence, telling you absolutely nothing about the tyre.

I'm no tyre expert hence the research. It's just me I research everything [ obviously not tyres in the past] prior to purchase, be it a TV, an ISP, or a holiday destination. Obviously in regards to tyres, I just relied on the guy who serviced my car. Not until a car failed to stick to it's side of the road on a bend [ young guy in a BMW Mini Cooper ] hitting the wife and her mother head on in our car, did I take much notice of tyres [ not implying there was a tyre problem with the min, it was a driver problem] But since then if the wife feels any twitching by the car like on ice or going over pot holed roads, you can see the fear on her face. She never experienced it in the car that got wrote off [mk 1 Focus 1.8 ] nor the Volvo S40 2.0D SE that replaced it. So that's why I'm doing what I'm doing, it's part of a reassuring her process. It totally ruins my driving pleasure, when I have a nervous wreck sat next to me. Stiffening up as she hits those imaginary brake pedals in the passenger foot well. Yorkshire to Devon on the motorway network as a passenger to her is akin to being rendered by the CIA in Morocco.
Havnt used these myself but been reading up on Uniroyal Rainsport 2 tyres and they seem to be excellent in the dry and fantastic in the wet/snow. Since i see you are in england and its always wet here i recommend you look them up, 65 each from Kwik Fit.
[quote name='Flakes' timestamp='1294836009' post='109633']
Havnt used these myself but been reading up on Uniroyal Rainsport 2 tyres and they seem to be excellent in the dry and fantastic in the wet/snow. Since i see you are in england and its always wet here i recommend you look them up, £65 each from Kwik Fit.

Yes a very good tyre, I believe Uniroyal are owned by Continental, and the tyres manufactured in Germany.

I have tried to upload a spreadsheet I've made with sixteen popular tyres on it. It has all the latest scoring reviews side by side. That way it makes it easy to make a comparison between the scores of all the tyre's featured. But unfortunately this website will not allow me to up load it, I've tried it in [url=""]Open Office[/url] format [an excellent free Office suite of programs] and Microsoft Excel. :angry:

I'm currently running on Marangoni Verso's on the front axle, with new Goodyear Optigrips [manufacured in Germany] on the rear axle. I bought them mid October 2010 so to early to do an honest review on them. I put them on the back because the pros recommend that's were new tyres should go. Besides I want to get onto Optigrips all round ASP,thus leaving the Verso's on the front axle will wear them out quicker.

I did read one review that the user was concerned the Optigrips were wearing quicker than the tyres that they replaced. Now it is reasonable to assume that the more grip a tyre exerts the more contact it has with the road, hence more wear. But at the end of the day there is more to a tyre than just grip, it's how it dispersers water.

Anyway looking at the scoring for tyre wear on the Optigrip compared with the other fifteen tyres on the spreadsheet. Only one tyre beat it for wear [ Michelin Energy Saver] and two others scored equal to the Optigrip [ Goodyear Efficient grip and the Michelin Primacy HP] So all in all I decided to give them a go.

I paid £73 each for the two tyres at a HiQ depo, and first impressions are good regards grip and noise. Only feeling the Verso's scrabbling a bit when setting of in snow and ice, but to be fair they are on the drive wheels and down to 3mm tread. There were times last year I could not get up the road I live on when it was not gritted. But this year I managed it, there again it was colder this year so maybe that made it easier to grip in the snow...who knows?
think I've managed to up load it as a PDF file, it's better to view as a spreadsheet as it's in two rows of tyres. Making easier to compare products, but beggars cannot be choosers

Good post mate, I have just spent the last few weeks looking at tyre reviews etc and going round tyre shops asking for quotes and I have decided to go for the Uniroyal Rain Expert, managed to get all 4 tyres off the net for 205, then I got all of them put on the car for 30, So in total spent 235, in respect of the money saved the cheapest place local to me was to supply and fit 4 of the same tyres for 286 and Kwit Fit wanted 360 to supply and fit the exact same tyres!! Definitely pays to shop around. Im not sure what to expect from these tyres, but I have had them fitted for 5 days now, and they are much better than the Bridgestone Potenzas that were on it before.
Catch, how are those Optigrips doing now..?

When my car was in the garage the other day they pointed out that my front tyres were wearing on the inner edges, so recommended getting the tracking done and new tyres. As all 4 tyres are down to about 3mm, I'm thinking about doing the whole set (currently Conti sport contact 2 on the rear, HyFly(?) on the front), and I was thinking about following your recommendation of the Optigrips.

Whats the wear like so far... and grip..? I think I read some review that said they were great in the wet, but not so good in the dry..?


Hi Daryll,

Grip is fine in wet and dry, though being the newer tyres they are on the rear axle as per expert and industry recommendations. Besides I'm wanting to wear down the older Verso's on the front axle. I got circa 3k per mm out of Verso tyres on the front axle, and they currently have 3.60 mm on them. So it looks like I will have those on for circa another 4,800 miles before I replace them at 2.0mm

As to wear, well I've only covered 1,300 miles on the Optigrips up to press in urban conditions, so to early to tell really. But they are reading 7.80 mm on the centre groove, with 7.60 mm on the two outer groves [three grove tread pattern] Maybe the difference is part of the curvature design of the tyres, who knows ? I got circa 5,700 per mm out of the Verso's on the rear axle, so earliest I could make an informed judgement on the Opti's would be after my early summer jollies down Dorset, will have done 3K plus on them by then.

The most hazardous driving conditions are when its wet, so I was looking for a tyre that excels in those conditions [aquaplaning] better than it's peers. Plus it scores the best I've seen in reviews for summer tyres in snow. Obviously it has to be good in the dry as well, which it is, being only 0.1 of a point behind the best in the review scores.

Obviously if the wear turns out to be excessive on the rear axle, I'll no doubt replace the tyres on the front axle [when due] with Conti Premium Contact 2's that Ford shod them with when new. I had Conti Sport Contact 3's on a Volvo S40 2.0 Turbo Diesel and found them to be a good tyre.
Many thanks Catch, although it looks like I may have to revise my plans.... rang a local tyre and exhaust place today and asked for a quote for 2x Optigrips. They rang back a few minutes later saying that the Optigrips are no longer made..!
They said they could do the GY Excellence for 67+VAT.

So do I see if one of the online places still has them in stock, or do I go for something else..? I may go for Conti Sport Contact 2, as they're on the rear and I'm guessing they were the OE tyres, or the Rainsport 2, as mentioned by Flakes.

As you said in the other post... so much choice.. :)
[quote name='Daryll' timestamp='1299869288' post='118018']
Many thanks Catch, although it looks like I may have to revise my plans.... rang a local tyre and exhaust place today and asked for a quote for 2x Optigrips. They rang back a few minutes later saying that the Optigrips are no longer made..!


I suspect they are talking bollocks, easily proved though, just ring up a HiQ tyre outlet [they fit mine] They rang the order in and they arrived the same day.They are advertising them on line [url=""]for £78.42[/url]

If it were me, seeing as you already have Conti's on the rear, I would go for a couple of the same on the front axle.As you have a few thousand miles left on them on the rear axle. And I'm getting circa 6k a millimetre out of tyres on the rear axle. That way you are not shelling out for a full set of tyres at once. Besides let me see how the Opti's do for wear.

The Excellence look a decent price from the firm who quoted you, but the accumulative review scoring looks less than good for wet and snow conditions [url=""]See here[/url]

But in the end the choice is yours to make, keep us posted what you go for.

[b]Edit:[/b] Just realised they quoted you £67+Vat so in fact unless you can claim your vat back [your vat registered] They are costing you £80.40 a corner, for a tyre that has less than perfect scoring.......

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