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Old 03-24-2012, 05:24 AM   #11
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

Prediction: The Michelin Defender will not deliver as good of fuel economy as the Sumitomo HTR, but the OP will be pleased with the overall traction/ treadwear.
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Old 03-25-2012, 07:34 AM   #12
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

I don't mean to overstate my displeasure with the Sumitomo's traction. It's more of an annoyance than anything else. I just thought if I could have an equally LRR tire with better traction, I would be willing to pay the extra money. With the Sumitomos, I'm just extra careful driving in wet, snowy or icy conditions.

CapriRacer, what makes you say the Michelin Defender will not deliver as good of fuel economy as the Sumitomo HTR? It sounds like the Michelin X Radial/Harmony/Destiny are all LRR tires, even if they aren't labeled as such. So if Michelin is specifying the Defender as an LRR tire, it must be better than the X Radial/Harmony/Destiny.
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Old 03-26-2012, 05:01 AM   #13
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

Quote:
Originally Posted by cems70 View Post
.........CapriRacer, what makes you say the Michelin Defender will not deliver as good of fuel economy as the Sumitomo HTR? It sounds like the Michelin X Radial/Harmony/Destiny are all LRR tires, even if they aren't labeled as such. So if Michelin is specifying the Defender as an LRR tire, it must be better than the X Radial/Harmony/Destiny.
Let me start with your second statement: LRR is a relative term used by tire manufacturers to distinguish tires that have better RR compared to COMPARABLE tires. It is NOT an absolute.

The second part of this is that there is a technology triangle between Rolling Resistance, Traction (especially wet traction), and Treadwear. In order to get good values in one area, one or both of the other areas have to be sacrificed.

A Sumitomo HTR has a UTQG Treadwear rating of 560 and has some traction deficiencies, while the Michelin Defender has an 820 (260 points more!).

Hence my prediction!
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Old 03-26-2012, 09:02 AM   #14
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

I didn't think the numbers were comparable between manufacturers.
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Treadwear Grades

UTQG Treadwear Grades are based on actual road use in which the test tire is run in a vehicle convoy along with standardized Course Monitoring Tires. The vehicle repeatedly runs a prescribed 400-mile test loop in West Texas for a total of 7,200 miles. The vehicle can have its alignment set, air pressure checked and tires rotated every 800 miles. The test tire's and the Monitoring Tire's wear are measured during and at the conclusion of the test. The tire manufacturers then assign a Treadwear Grade based on the observed wear rates. The Course Monitoring Tire is assigned a grade and the test tire receives a grade indicating its relative treadwear. A grade of 100 would indicate that the tire tread would last as long as the test tire, 200 would indicate the tread would last twice as long, 300 would indicate three times as long, etc.

The problem with UTQG Treadwear Grades is that they are open to some interpretation on the part of the tire manufacturer because they are assigned after the tire has only experienced a little treadwear as it runs the 7,200 miles. This means that the tire manufacturers need to extrapolate their raw wear data when they are assigning Treadwear Grades, and that their grades can to some extent reflect how conservative or optimistic their marketing department is. Typically, comparing the Treadwear Grades of tire lines within a single brand is somewhat helpful, while attempting to compare the grades between different brands is not as helpful.
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tirete....jsp?techid=48
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:38 PM   #15
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

I'm so torn about which tires to purchase. I was itching to try another tire, but I would be really disappointed if the Michelin was not as LRR as the Sumitomo. And it wouldn't be the end of the world to have the Sumitomo again because I know it's LRR, and I can buy the correct 165/70/13 size. This will be the last set of tires I'll purchase for this car since it has 172,000 miles on it and either tire will last 80k + miles. Decisions, decisions......
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Old 03-27-2012, 12:30 AM   #16
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

IMO, if you want to go all out LRR, get aftermarket wheels that can take a sporty tire that's popular like some form of a Kumho Ecsta, lol.
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Old 03-27-2012, 03:41 AM   #17
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

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Originally Posted by trollbait View Post
I didn't think the numbers were comparable between manufacturers.

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tirete....jsp?techid=48
Notice that the test is a comparison against a "course monitoring tire". In an ideal situation, the course monitoring tire is the SRTT - Standard Reference Test Tire. However, because the test doesn't always allow the use of the SRTT, a tire whose value can be traced to the SRTT is used. In theory, all tests are a comparison against the SRTT regardless of the manufacturer.

There is some variability in the test. In other words, the test could be run repeatedly and slightly different values result. The operative words here are "slightly different".

Plus, there are differences in the way each tire manufacturer views how to rate their tires. Some, like Michelin, tend to be conservative in their ratings, while others (and I can't cite an example) tend to be the other extreme.

So you CAN compare different brands, but you have to be aware that this value has some built-in variability and the ratings should be taken with a grain of salt. But clearly, a 260 point point difference is significantly different and certainly indicative.

Some time back NHTSA (National Higway and Traffic Safety Administration) conducted RR tests on a number of tires to see if they could confirm what the tire manufacturers (and conventional wisdom) said about RR vs Traction and Treadwear. Because RR tests are fairly inexpensive to run - and since they needed that data anyway to try to write a RR regulation - they took those RR values and compared them to the UTQG traction and treadwear ratings. What they found was that tires with high traction ratings (or high treadwear ratings) never had low RR values - and tires with low RR values never had high traction or treadwear ratings - which is about a good of a confirrmation of the principle as one could get without actually conducting the traction and treadwear tests - which are pretty expensive to run.

I think you can rely on the UTQG treadwear ratings, but you shouldn't make too much of small differences.
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:54 AM   #18
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Re: LRR tire advice: Michelin Defender or Sumitomo HTR T4

I just bought some Hankooks in 14 inch (OEM) for my Mazda Protege. Good reviews at tirerack.com and the tires ride nice.

Price is very reasonable.

I have Hankooks on other vehicles and they have done well.

The tires that were on the Mazda were Michelin Destiny. Very loud and uncomfortable ride. I'm glad they are gone.
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