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Sorry, but I have to ask about TIRES

LT4CE

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Feb 6, 2010
Messages
168
Location
Northern California
Corvette
1996 LT4 CE
I've had my '96 LT4 for almost 6.5 years now, and it's time for new tires. Trying to search here for info about C4 tires yields a ton of posts with the word tire in them, but looking through them has not proven to be that useful, info wise, as posts with the word tire can be about almost anything.

So, I've got to ask about tires, even though I'm sure it's a subject asked about a lot. Just in looking on the internet, it doesn't seem like there are that many tire options for a 20 year old Vette. So far, I've seen these at Tire Rack, with the prices being for an entire set:

CONTINENTAL, EXTREMECONTACT DW, $630

GOODYEAR, EAGLE F1 GS-D3, $1,137

PIRELLI, P ZERO SYSTEM, $1,743


I may be selling it within the next few months, so that factors into my decision. I can't sell it with the tires it has now, as one has developed a split in the sidewall! Nobody wants to buy a used Vette with new tires that they don't like, so I'd like to get good tires that won't hinder any future sale.

So, what has anyone purchased recently, and how do you like them?

Thanks in advance, and sorry for asking about... tires.
 

94conv.

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 16, 2003
Messages
446
Location
Indiana
Corvette
1994 red convertible
I've got the same question and am finding the same issues. I had Kumo Asx and didn't like them. The side walls are way to soft and flexible and it's made me Leary of the cheaper tires but the reviews on the continental extreme contacts read well but everyone's opinion and expectations are different so it'd be great to get some real input from people with vettes. I'm between the continental and good year. Pireli's are way to expensive which good years are to but at least they original equipment.
 
Joined
Mar 27, 2003
Messages
3,668
Location
Mustang, OK
Corvette
'13 427 60th vert - '21 Silver Flare Coupe - CTS V Wagon(4-door Vette)
It's been a while since I've owned a C4 but my last C4 had Goodyear F1 D3's and I loved them. I also used the F1 D3 on my CTS V1 and loved them.
The D3 has great dry traction and it also works very well in the rain.

If I needed new tires on my C4 and these were the options, I'd by the D3.
 

DonB

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Joined
Mar 25, 2015
Messages
339
Location
Chicago
Corvette
2019 ZO6 in Elkhart Lake Blue
I just bought a set of the B F Goodrich G-Force Sport Comp 2's Summer Ultra High Performance tires. These 275/40ZR17 tires are absolutely awesome.!!!!!! They are top rated and I can't believe how well my '90 corners and hugs the road. It's like an Indycar!!!! WHAT A HUGE DIFFERENCE!
Some reviews claim they are noisy but to me they are much quieter than my previous tires, the Kuhmo Ecsta xs. Plus they ride much better too. I'm extremely happy with these tires and I would buy them again and again and again. Plus the price is right!
 

John Mekisich

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 14, 2008
Messages
48
Location
San Mateo, Ca.
Corvette
1996 LT4 Coupe
Tires

I've had my '96 LT4 for almost 6.5 years now, and it's time for new tires. Trying to search here for info about C4 tires yields a ton of posts with the word tire in them, but looking through them has not proven to be that useful, info wise, as posts with the word tire can be about almost anything.

So, I've got to ask about tires, even though I'm sure it's a subject asked about a lot. Just in looking on the internet, it doesn't seem like there are that many tire options for a 20 year old Vette. So far, I've seen these at Tire Rack, with the prices being for an entire set:

CONTINENTAL, EXTREMECONTACT DW, $630

GOODYEAR, EAGLE F1 GS-D3, $1,137

PIRELLI, P ZERO SYSTEM, $1,743


I may be selling it within the next few months, so that factors into my decision. I can't sell it with the tires it has now, as one has developed a split in the sidewall! Nobody wants to buy a used Vette with new tires that they don't like, so I'd like to get good tires that won't hinder any future sale.

So, what has anyone purchased recently, and how do you like them?

Thanks in advance, and sorry for asking about... tires.

I went with the Conti's as the Goodyears were not available.
 

DonB

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Mar 25, 2015
Messages
339
Location
Chicago
Corvette
2019 ZO6 in Elkhart Lake Blue
I can't see why you guys are so enticed by the Conti's or the GD's? I'm looking at the ratings on tirerack.com and the BFG beats it in all the dry performance categories, like Cornering Stability, Dry traction and Steering response. I would think those are the most important factors for tires on a Vette. I try Not to drive mine in the rain so maybe if you choose to, an All-Season tire is more appropriate a choice. I did get caught in a downpour recently and the BFG's handled it flawlessly. But , "To Each their Own!"
 

94conv.

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Joined
Jun 16, 2003
Messages
446
Location
Indiana
Corvette
1994 red convertible
I can't see why you guys are so enticed by the Conti's or the GD's? I'm looking at the ratings on tirerack.com and the BFG beats it in all the dry performance categories, like Cornering Stability, Dry traction and Steering response. I would think those are the most important factors for tires on a Vette. I try Not to drive mine in the rain so maybe if you choose to, an All-Season tire is more appropriate a choice. I did get caught in a downpour recently and the BFG's handled it flawlessly. But , "To Each their Own!"


When I put in my vehicle, 94 corvette convertible. The Bfg's didn't show up and when I looked up the size which they did have. It said did not fit my car. I don't know why but that's what came up. The only three that came up were the Conti, the Good Year's and the Pirellis
 

DonB

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Messages
339
Location
Chicago
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2019 ZO6 in Elkhart Lake Blue
I see what you are talking about. Tire rack says 255/45R17 on front and 285/40R17 on the back. That eliminates rotating them. Are the wheels the same width or are they different, too? Mine are 9.5" wide all the way around and a 54mm offset.
I see your point though. Wonder why they did that for the convertible?
 

94conv.

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Joined
Jun 16, 2003
Messages
446
Location
Indiana
Corvette
1994 red convertible
The convertible is 8.5 in the front and 9.5 in the rear. 255/45 17 and 285/40/17
 

94conv.

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Joined
Jun 16, 2003
Messages
446
Location
Indiana
Corvette
1994 red convertible
If I get the situation with the abs/asr and brake lights coming on and going off fixed relatively cheap I was think of doing 9.5 and 11 A mold but I'm finding an even more limited selection of tires that route
 

DonB

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Messages
339
Location
Chicago
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2019 ZO6 in Elkhart Lake Blue
Oh well. Leave it to GM to make them all a bit different. Good Luck!
 
Joined
Mar 27, 2003
Messages
3,668
Location
Mustang, OK
Corvette
'13 427 60th vert - '21 Silver Flare Coupe - CTS V Wagon(4-door Vette)
The late C4 had an odd mix of tire sizes installed from the factory.
'92 and older C4s with 17" wheels got the 275/40 tire and all 4 wheels were 9.5 - except the ZR1
The C4 ZR1 got 275/40 in front and 315/35 on the rear for all years.

In '93, the base suspension C4's got the narrower 255 in front and on 8.5" wheels and 285's on the back - this made the Vette less likely to wander on bad roads and more acceptable to the Vette owner that didn't want all the handling and response provided by the wider front tires. The ZO6 and Z51 ('96) Vettes received the 275 tire on all four corners.

The main thing is that the front and rear tires are near the same diameter to make sure the ABS and traction control programming work properly.

There was a time when I put 285 tires all around on my '92 because 275's were hard to find. If you go with 275s or 285s all around, make sure you use the 9.5 wheel.

That gives you several options for tire and wheel configurations and more options on tire brand.
 

LT4CE

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Joined
Feb 6, 2010
Messages
168
Location
Northern California
Corvette
1996 LT4 CE
Thanks to all for your comments and feedback!

If they made the BFG's in the correct size for my '96, I'd have gone with them and not posted! I've had BFG's on a few cars in the past, and have been pleased with their performance and durability. The only experience I have with Continentals is my wife's car came with them, and they seem okay, but that's not a Vette. I have had mixed results with GY's, so in a perfect world I'd prefer another option. I don't know if I want to drop the money it would take for the Pirelli's. I hope I'm not a cheapskate, but at some point I have to take cost into consideration, and quite honestly, I don't know if their quality merits the additional price.

I may just go with the GY's. I think I mentioned that I'll likely be selling it a few months from now, and I don't want a prospective buyer to have any second thoughts about the tires. I'm not trying to say anything bad about the Continentals, but if somebody didn't like them, or had no experience with them, they might ask why I didn't go with the GY's (with the obvious answer being the GY's cost more, even if that's not my answer... which might make me look cheap, which might make them think I went cheap on maintenance... my mind does tend to wander towards the negative!) With the GY's, if they don't like them, I can point out the limited availability of tires for 20+ year old Vettes, and they were the best tires available at the time of purchase, etc.
 

DonB

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Mar 25, 2015
Messages
339
Location
Chicago
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2019 ZO6 in Elkhart Lake Blue
Yea, I kinda cheated too. I put new Zo6 style 9.5x17" wheels on with the new BFG's. Love 'em! If you are considering wheels, check out OEWheels.com. Great deals, quality and fast shipping! Quality people to deal with! I rebuilt my whole car so I can relate to the difficulty in getting parts for a 26 year old car.

You wouldn't think getting tires would be a P.I.T.A. Good Luck. :happyanim:
 
Last edited:

94conv.

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Joined
Jun 16, 2003
Messages
446
Location
Indiana
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1994 red convertible
After my search and coming up with very few choices when it comes to sizes, I'm leaning towards the Good Years also. I think you're right on how people see the quality of the tires or question it when they see something other original equipment. I think I would if I was looking at a used vette. Depends on the car, mileage and if you knew the owner maybe. At least with the Gy's we have a pretty good idea of what to expect.
 

DonB

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Mar 25, 2015
Messages
339
Location
Chicago
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2019 ZO6 in Elkhart Lake Blue
Yes, if I was faced with the three choices you have I'd definitely go with the Wingfoot's. Good Luck and let us know how you like them.
 

hcbph

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Joined
Aug 30, 2013
Messages
260
Location
Minneapolis, Mn.
Corvette
86 Red Convertible
A little late to the party, but if you want another comment. I have an 86 that came with 255.50/16's from the factory. PO had put on 245.50/16 BFG Comp 2's on it. Based on the options list it has 9.5" rims just for clarification. I've driving it on wet roads and dry, I do not take it out in winter. I have no complaints about the tires, they stick and drive well. I will say you can break the rear tires loose on wet pavement if you desire but that's a matter of the driver/accelerator rather than the tires as I can do the same with my truck or other car if desired under the same conditions and I typically do not even close to breaking traction with them.

When time comes for new tires, as long as I can find the same ones that fit, I'll get them.
 

94conv.

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Joined
Jun 16, 2003
Messages
446
Location
Indiana
Corvette
1994 red convertible
I didn't start this thread but am looking for tires like the person who did start it and I for one appreciate everyone that's posted their thoughts. BfG's sound like the way to go if they have ones to fit. Or of course GY's if money's not an issue.
 

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