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      09-12-2013, 05:35 PM   #1
owen2001
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Winter tire size question for 135is

I'm in Denver. Sometimes we have a ton of snow on the ground, but it usually melts pretty quickly because of our sunny days. I need to put winter tires on the 135is, but doubt I will put more than 100-200 miles on it during our winter months.

If/when I do have the car out, it will be for short trips as a DD. The worst conditions will probably be more like wet/slushy roads than snow. As a matter of fact, I'm sure I'll be driving in dry conditions this winter as well.

But I'm having trouble choosing b/w the following sizes:

205/50 R17, 215/45 R17, or 225/45 R17

I'm going to buy a set of 4, so they'd all be the same. Thoughts on which size would be the best fit for my needs? Any advice is appreciated. Thanks!
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      09-12-2013, 05:40 PM   #2
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For snow tires you want the most narrow, and tallest tire in order to apply the most pressure in the tire's contact patch. That is why BMW only offers(approves) of a 205/50 R17 mounted on a 7j x17 alloy wheel. That is what you want for winter performance.

Widder rubber will give you less PSI(pressure forcing down on your tires(not inflation tire pressure) and pressing the tires into the snow or ice. That will give your tires more "bite" and grip on snow and ice.
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      09-12-2013, 06:08 PM   #3
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So what do the J stand for in 7j x 17?
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      09-12-2013, 06:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dackelone View Post
Attachment 912492

For snow tires you want the most narrow, and tallest tire in order to apply the most pressure in the tire's contact patch. That is why BMW only offers(approves) of a 205/50 R17 mounted on a 7j x17 alloy wheel. That is what you want for winter performance.
Thanks for the reply. I see a lot of people running on 225/45 square and was wondering what the performance differences would be b/w the 205/50 and the 225/45. I guess what I'm asking is, why would someone run on 225/45R17s if BMW suggests otherwise? TIA.
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      09-12-2013, 06:47 PM   #5
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For me, I just purchased winter tires,225/40/18 from Tire Rack!
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      09-13-2013, 03:08 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owen2001 View Post
Thanks for the reply. I see a lot of people running on 225/45 square and was wondering what the performance differences would be b/w the 205/50 and the 225/45. I guess what I'm asking is, why would someone run on 225/45R17s if BMW suggests otherwise? TIA.
Mainly I think its bc of looks and maybe they drive more on dry roads than on snowy wet icy roads. The 205 is the way to go for max winter performance. But on a dry road... you have less traction. But on a winter road(ice/snow) the 205 will perform better - since the weight of the car will put more pressure on the contact patch and give you better traction in the white stuff.
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      09-13-2013, 05:58 AM   #7
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From experience - I would not buy 205s again based on where I live. If you drive in the snow often, then yes, but when it's intermittent at best, the 205s just do not provide adequate grip/traction on acceleration in every other surface and condition. I've had 205s on every other car I've had, but this is the first one with actual power, and the 205s just don't cut it. Again, if I lived in Anchorage, I'd go skinny.
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      09-13-2013, 09:39 AM   #8
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Thanks for all the input. Ultimately, I think I'm going to go with the 205/50-17s. I'm willing to sacrifice looks and handling for a few months, especially since I don't plan on driving much during the winter anyway.

I'm pretty sure I'm going to get the Michelin Pilot Alpin PA3 and add the silver Sports Edition F10s.

Now, one more question. TireRack states that I need the TPSM package for an additional $230. If I don't plan on doing much winter driving, is this a necessity? Or can I skip the TPSMs entirely? Will I have to deal with a warning light all winter long? Thoughts on this? Thanks again!
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      09-13-2013, 10:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owen2001 View Post
Thanks for all the input. Ultimately, I think I'm going to go with the 205/50-17s. I'm willing to sacrifice looks and handling for a few months, especially since I don't plan on driving much during the winter anyway.

I'm pretty sure I'm going to get the Michelin Pilot Alpin PA3 and add the silver Sports Edition F10s.

Now, one more question. TireRack states that I need the TPSM package for an additional $230. If I don't plan on doing much winter driving, is this a necessity? Or can I skip the TPSMs entirely? Will I have to deal with a warning light all winter long? Thoughts on this? Thanks again!
You can skip it but you'll have a light on the dash the entire time. For what it's worth, assuming you're buying a wheel & tire package, the $230 isn't bad b/c you're getting free mounting & balance. If you changed your mind down the road, you'd have to spend an additional $150 for m&b.
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      09-13-2013, 10:11 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owen2001 View Post
Thanks for all the input. Ultimately, I think I'm going to go with the 205/50-17s. I'm willing to sacrifice looks and handling for a few months, especially since I don't plan on driving much during the winter anyway.

I'm pretty sure I'm going to get the Michelin Pilot Alpin PA3 and add the silver Sports Edition F10s.

Now, one more question. TireRack states that I need the TPSM package for an additional $230. If I don't plan on doing much winter driving, is this a necessity? Or can I skip the TPSMs entirely? Will I have to deal with a warning light all winter long? Thoughts on this? Thanks again!
i am going to be putting on winter tires in early November.....but have decided NOT to go with 205s all the way around, because i think these cars simply need more rubber in the rear.

if you live in a place that snows A LOT, then you can do 205s all around....but honestly in the DRY----if you have 205s all the way around, your rear is going to be twitchy all winter long as that's too little rubber in the wet and in the dry when it is COLD out. just my 2 cents..........

i am probably going to do 205 in the front and 225 in the rear.
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      09-13-2013, 10:12 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by mb135is View Post
From experience - I would not buy 205s again based on where I live. If you drive in the snow often, then yes, but when it's intermittent at best, the 205s just do not provide adequate grip/traction on acceleration in every other surface and condition. I've had 205s on every other car I've had, but this is the first one with actual power, and the 205s just don't cut it. Again, if I lived in Anchorage, I'd go skinny.
+1, I actually picked up a set of winter wheels and tires from a local member and he ran the oem 17" staggered setup. Not optimal but we only get snow few times a year and for the other 90 days of winter I prefer the sub-optimal winter setup of staggered. But 225 square is probably the best compromise between 205 square and staggered.
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      09-13-2013, 10:18 AM   #12
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Quote:
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+1, I actually picked up a set of winter wheels and tires from a local member and he ran the oem 17" staggered setup. Not optimal but we only get snow few times a year and for the other 90 days of winter I prefer the sub-optimal winter setup of staggered. But 225 square is probably the best compromise between 205 square and staggered.
i actually think a 205 to 225 staggered set up would be better than a 225 square setup....the skinny front tires would do a better job of cutting through snow than 225s when needed....and the wider rear tires would be better in the DRY/WET (but less optimal in the snow).
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      09-13-2013, 10:19 AM   #13
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Have been wondering about this same issue myself. I live in Ottawa, so we get real winter. Thinking 205/50/17 Hakka 7's, but may go with a 215/50/17 or 215/55/17. The taller the sidewall the better. Not sure if the larger diameter will fit though. I may just try it myself and see.
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      09-13-2013, 10:21 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dackelone View Post
[
Widder rubber will give you less PSI(pressure forcing down on your tires(not inflation tire pressure) and pressing the tires into the snow or ice. That will give your tires more "bite" and grip on snow and ice.
Actually not quite correct. The only thing that will change the PSI on the road is the PSI in the tire (or the weight on the tire) Changing the size of the tire will not. It will only change the shape of the contact patch. Running 40 PSI in the tires will have the same size of contact patch if you are running a 205 or a 255.
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      09-13-2013, 10:22 AM   #15
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Have been wondering about this same issue myself. I live in Ottawa, so we get real winter. Thinking 205/50/17 Hakka 7's, but may go with a 215/50/17 or 215/55/17. The taller the sidewall the better. Not sure if the larger diameter will fit though. I may just try it myself and see.
HAKKAS are hands down the best, I've said it before in another thread but I've done both Nokian and Blizzaks but there's no comparison. Even Nokian's all season that has snow treads will give some dedicated snows a run for their money.
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      09-13-2013, 10:23 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by owen2001 View Post
Thanks for the reply. I see a lot of people running on 225/45 square and was wondering what the performance differences would be b/w the 205/50 and the 225/45. I guess what I'm asking is, why would someone run on 225/45R17s if BMW suggests otherwise? TIA.
I've run a 245/45 R17 set of Dunlop D3s in Syracuse,NY for a few years now. I made that choice because I still want to have a bit of fun on dry winter days, even if it comes as a small sacrifice in deep snow.
Honestly, the 225 is more than good enough for the 1er. Ive never been at a loss of traction, even in fresh falls 4-5 inches deep. Ive only bit it into a snowbank once, and that was because I got cocky on a steep hill. (Syracuse has hills akin to SF's, but ours are covered in ice 8 months out of the year)
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      09-13-2013, 10:24 AM   #17
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HAKKAS are hands down the best, I've said it before in another thread but I've done both Nokian and Blizzaks but there's no comparison. Even Nokian's all season that has snow treads will give some dedicated snows a run for their money.
which hakkas in particular? any certain model?

i've previously ran dunlop winter sport 3Ds which were great on a quattro....but i think on a 1-series i need something MORE hardcore for sure...
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      09-13-2013, 10:38 AM   #18
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which hakkas in particular? any certain model?

i've previously ran dunlop winter sport 3Ds which were great on a quattro....but i think on a 1-series i need something MORE hardcore for sure...
Ive been running D3s on the 1er since '09 - theyre pretty good for us. Had a set of Pirelli 240 Sottozeros the year before, not so good there.
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      09-13-2013, 10:38 AM   #19
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which hakkas in particular? any certain model?

i've previously ran dunlop winter sport 3Ds which were great on a quattro....but i think on a 1-series i need something MORE hardcore for sure...
They've come out with so many iterations I don't recall what the latest generation is but the Nokian Hakkepelita R's are what I had. Their other version is studded which is overkill for our area -- our roads are pretty clean the day after a snow storm. I rely snow tires when I randomly get caught in a storm and have to deal with fresh powder.

My friend had Dunlops on his e46, his only complaint was they wore down pretty quick, what was your experience?
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      09-13-2013, 10:41 AM   #20
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My friend had Dunlops on his e46, his only complaint was they wore down pretty quick, what was your experience?
Im going on season 3 of my current set of D3s. They will need to be replaced after this year. So overall about average, I guess.
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      09-13-2013, 10:48 AM   #21
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They've come out with so many iterations I don't recall what the latest generation is but the Nokian Hakkepelita R's are what I had. Their other version is studded which is overkill for our area -- our roads are pretty clean the day after a snow storm. I rely snow tires when I randomly get caught in a storm and have to deal with fresh powder.

My friend had Dunlops on his e46, his only complaint was they wore down pretty quick, what was your experience?

i have done 2 full seasons on my 3Ds (at least 15k miles) and they have been great. They still have another season left!
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      09-13-2013, 11:19 AM   #22
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The current Hakka's are 7's or R2's. Have used pretty much every winter tire out there, and the Hakka are by far the best, and also last the longest. Pretty amazing combination.

For my Intermediate tires on previous cars I used the all-weather Hakka WRG2. They were still better in the snow than many cheaper "winter" tires.
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