Javelin
Javelin SuperDork
3/3/11 12:22 p.m.

It was pointed out to me on one of the Porsche forums that Toyo makes the RA-1 in 225/50/15, and that they are only about $5 more per tire in that size than the BFG G-Force Sport (a 300 treadwear tire). The 100 treadwear on the RA-1 doesn't bother me as I won't be racing SCCA anymore and they are legal for PCA. I do remember noticing a lot of local PCA guys using them. How do they compare to an r-comp? To a typical ST tire? Are they a happy go-between? Can I get 10 autocrosses and the associated street driving out of them?

ZOO
ZOO SuperDork
3/3/11 12:26 p.m.

I love RA1s -- I used them to and from lapping and autox events on my Miata for years. They won't be as fast as Hoosiers or Kumhos, but they were faster than Azenis and the lot when I ran them. I prefer the RA1 to its R888 replacement.

A fabulous tire that wears well, and gets stickier and stickier.

Cone_Junky
Cone_Junky HalfDork
3/3/11 12:27 p.m.

I loved my RA-1s. As you thought, they are a great tire between a full r-comp and a street tire. Plenty sticky for good autocross laps and the durability to drive them to the track and/or do full track days on. I got a full season plus a track day out of mine and they still had plenty of tread when I sold them off.

This was on a lighter FWD chassis, so you may have a little shorter life than mine.

ReverendDexter
ReverendDexter SuperDork
3/3/11 12:27 p.m.

I have 2 years on my RA1s, and at my last track day they still had way more grip than I know what to do with.

I don't think they're that great of an AX tire, as they really need more heat to get sticky than an AX run will generate, and the 100 treadware puts you in a race tire class without the real benefits of a true AX slick.

LOVE them as a track tire, though.

EDIT: Have run these tires on both my '98 Cobra and 5.0 'vert. Plenty of weight to abuse the crap out of tires.

Duke
Duke SuperDork
3/3/11 12:29 p.m.

Are the RA-1s the same as Proxes RA-1s? I have Proxes RA-1s on the supernaturally aspirated Miata and they are OK for street use but a little ungrippy for autocross work in my car. I really had to stay out of the throttle to avoid getting the tail too far out. Nothing like the grip of 888s, though they did feel pretty progressive. I don't really know the age (came on the car) but they don't seem overworn. I wouldn't see a problem getting your expected life out of them.

[edit] Judging from the responses above, I'm guessing that the "Proxes" means it's a different tire.

ReverendDexter
ReverendDexter SuperDork
3/3/11 12:32 p.m.

Duke - Toyo RA1s are the Proxes RA1s. Same tire.

And weird that you say the 888s are grippier... NASA spec classes that had gone from the RA1 to the 888 went back to the RA1 because racers were complaining they got no more grip from the 888 yet were seeing half the life.

Did Toyo do a revision to the 888 in the past year or so that I'm not aware of?

jstein77
jstein77 Dork
3/3/11 12:34 p.m.

No, same tire.

http://toyotires.com/tire/pattern/proxes-ra1

Brotus7
Brotus7 Reader
3/3/11 1:41 p.m.

I ran a set of second hand ra1s for 2 track days and about 30 autox's. My car grew from a stock mr2 to csp then xp. They would have lasted longer except at my first track day I didn't have enough camber or roll stiffness and destroyed the outsides of the tires.

doc_speeder
doc_speeder Reader
3/3/11 1:53 p.m.

I have the Nitto NT-01's which rumor has it are the same tread compound as RA-1's. They're an OK autocross tire, for fun, but as mentioned they really aren't able to make enough heat to be competitive. They will last far, far longer than the actual hard-core autocross tires though, and they're a blast on the street.

Keith
Keith SuperDork
3/3/11 2:59 p.m.

I think the NT-01 is the R888 compound, not the RA1.

The RA1 is faster on the autocross course than a street tire, but it's not a fast R-compound. Unless you're concerned with classification, go for it. Awesome tire because you can just abuse it and it keeps giving.

As for the "Proxies" - every tire manufacturer has their own performance subbrand. For Kumho, it's Ecsta. Dunlop, Direzza. For Goodyear, it was Eagle but I think that got watered down too far. Yokohama, Advan. Michelin, Pilot. BFG, gForce. Toyo, Proxies. Many people don't bother with the subbrand because it's useless - and who wants to work their way through Dunlop Direzza Sport Z1 Star Spec?

ReverendDexter
ReverendDexter SuperDork
3/3/11 3:13 p.m.

If you're interested in the RA1 but want to stay in a street tire class, look at the R1R. Same compound, same constuction, different tread pattern, and thick enough tread blocks to get a 140 treadwear rating.

Hal
Hal Dork
3/3/11 3:27 p.m.

WE used RA-1's on a Ford Focus endurance race car for 3 years. Shaved for dry track and full depth for wet.

Could usually get about 3 to 4 races per set. Not bad when you are talking 2 to 4 hour races.

Strike_Zero
Strike_Zero HalfDork
3/3/11 3:37 p.m.

I got my former set as take offs from a BMWCCA racer. I used em for 1.5 AutoX seasons and 2 track days. They definitely took the abuse.

I sold the wheels that they were attached to and guy that bought em pounded around for a track day or two before they FINALLY gave up the ghost . . .

Duke
Duke SuperDork
3/3/11 4:12 p.m.
ReverendDexter wrote: Duke - Toyo RA1s are the Proxes RA1s. Same tire. And weird that you say the 888s are grippier... NASA spec classes that had gone from the RA1 to the 888 went back to the RA1 because racers were complaining they got no more grip from the 888 yet were seeing half the life. Did Toyo do a revision to the 888 in the past year or so that I'm not aware of?

I'll have to check the sidewall and make sure. My RA-1s seem to have that big V-sipe pattern that was popular a year or 2 ago. Fair amount of airspace in there compared to the R888s.

The first time I drove the car before buying it it had the 888s on it and seemed to grip like crazy. The second time I drove it it had the RA-1s and was quite a bit looser. It could just be that I pushed harder the second time since I had driven the car before.

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy Dork
3/3/11 4:31 p.m.

RA1=

R888=

Neither one is really an autocross tire, but they are okish unless you are trying to catch somebody on Hoosiers.

Keith
Keith SuperDork
3/3/11 4:45 p.m.
ReverendDexter wrote: If you're interested in the RA1 but want to stay in a street tire class, look at the R1R. Same compound, same constuction, different tread pattern, and thick enough tread blocks to get a 140 treadwear rating.

Where did you get that information from? I want it to be true, but Toyo lists the same tread depth for both and I've never heard that rumor before.

Duke, I suspect you're getting your tires a bit mixed up. Neither the R888 nor the RA1 have changed tread patterns. If you're seeing a "big V-sipe" pattern on an RA1, you're looking at a different tire.

dean1484
dean1484 Dork
3/3/11 5:08 p.m.

Coming from a RX (as I did way back when) 944's are alot heavier. You need a higher tread ware tire as you will put more heat in to them.

My 86 FC was about 2300lbs in race trim My 87 924s is alot closer to 3000lbs

944's like RA1's You will not be disappointed.

WE used RA-1's on a Ford Focus endurance race car for 3 years. Shaved for dry track and full depth for wet. Could usually get about 3 to 4 races per set. Not bad when you are talking 2 to 4 hour races.

My exact experence as well. We used them for 12-24 hour races and would get 4-6 hours out of a set easy on the Z car On a miata we used them for a 25 hour race in Ohio and got 12 hours out of them.

ReverendDexter
ReverendDexter SuperDork
3/3/11 5:12 p.m.
Keith wrote:
ReverendDexter wrote: If you're interested in the RA1 but want to stay in a street tire class, look at the R1R. Same compound, same constuction, different tread pattern, and thick enough tread blocks to get a 140 treadwear rating.

Where did you get that information from? I want it to be true, but Toyo lists the same tread depth for both and I've never heard that rumor before.

You know, I honestly forget where I heard that. I know when I heard it was back when the R1Rs first came out. That it was the same tire, just with thicker rubber so that they could get the magic "street" treadwear rating. Assuming that it is correct, maybe it's not the treadblocks that are thicker, but the actual meat of the tire?

Keith wrote: Duke, I suspect you're getting your tires a bit mixed up. Neither the R888 nor the RA1 have changed tread patterns. If you're seeing a "big V-sipe" pattern on an RA1, you're looking at a different tire.

The big V-sipe pattern is the R1R.

jeffp
jeffp New Reader
3/3/11 7:02 p.m.

We were both at that last PCA event of the season and I was on used RA-1s. I used them typically for track days...they seem to like that heat better. But with 2 drivers and a the many runs we get at the PCA events, they warmed up towards the end. In SCCA they put me in to CSP...instead of STS...

aussiesmg
aussiesmg SuperDork
3/3/11 7:32 p.m.

Off topic but relevant, I am after any 255/50/16 RA1 tires I can get my hands on for practice and set up purposes.

PM or email

Steve

docwyte
docwyte Reader
3/4/11 4:28 p.m.

Keith, I spoke with the Toyo rep and the Nitto NT01 has the same compound as the RA1, NOT the R888...

Good track day tires, crappy auto-x tires as they won't get hot enough, fast enough as others have pointed out.

cliff95
cliff95 New Reader
3/7/11 10:54 p.m.
docwyte wrote: crappy auto-x tires as they won't get hot enough, fast enough as others have pointed out.

They aren't fast r-comp's, but I find the RA1's don't hide your mistakes like the sticky tires can, which theoretically helps to improve the driver by requiring smooth inputs and a good line (I'm still working on that).

ReverendDexter
ReverendDexter SuperDork
3/8/11 9:12 a.m.
cliff95 wrote:
docwyte wrote: crappy auto-x tires as they won't get hot enough, fast enough as others have pointed out.
They aren't fast r-comp's, but I find the RA1's don't hide your mistakes like the sticky tires can, which theoretically helps to improve the driver by requiring smooth inputs and a good line (I'm still working on that).

I don't see that as an advantage specific to the RA1s as much as to less grippy tires in general.

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