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JtspellS HalfDork
5/30/12 7:34 p.m.

After a very successful track day in my RX-8 my OE Bridgestone Potenza RE 050a's were a bit past their comfort zone but the car still had a LOT left in it.

Now i know the big names are

RE-11's Ecsta XS R1R's Direzza Z1 star spec NEVOA AD08's

But what is the readers bias toward? Any other suggestions?

BTW 225/40-45/18 is not cheap so that plays a big factor as well and im looking to stay in ST class.

What say you GRM?

mad_machine MegaDork
5/30/12 7:35 p.m.

been running the star specs on my 318ti for over 10000 miles now.. actually too good a tyre for the street. The road has to be cold and/or greasy to get any tyre spin

robertcope New Reader
5/30/12 7:56 p.m.



Hasbro Dork
5/30/12 8:09 p.m.

Do you not subscribe to GRM? You get at least 1 or 2 tire tests a year in the mag.


irish44j SuperDork
5/30/12 8:10 p.m.

star specs. Even in little 195/14 sizing they grip like a mofo and are still a pleasant street ride.

Will Dork
5/30/12 8:29 p.m.

Star Specs get a lot of love. Some guys with heavier cars (Mustangs, etc) really seem to like the RS3s.

DaveEstey Dork
5/30/12 8:31 p.m.

I'm running the R1Rs and have run two autox events and one hillclimb. They've been fantastic but, in hot weather you HAVE to cool them between auto runs.

JtspellS HalfDork
5/30/12 8:33 p.m.
Hasbro wrote: Do you not subscribe to GRM? You get at least 1 or 2 tire tests a year in the mag. http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/articles/category/wheels-tires/

Had a gift subscription going to my parents in Maine, but have been living in Maryland for a little while now.... Have to get that updated lol

Hasbro Dork
5/30/12 9:41 p.m.

I love my Kumho XSs but I'm in the desert where there is no rain of any import and they have never gotten greasey in the heat. My size is very light and well priced.

EdenPrime Reader
5/30/12 9:45 p.m.

I work at Discount Tire-- i suggest Direzza Star Spec. And that is in fact the tire i'm going to get once i get more money.

Ian F
Ian F UberDork
5/30/12 10:16 p.m.

It seems to depend a bit on the car and where you live. I can say one of the local hot-shoes with a STX-prepped RX8 is doing well on R-S3's. Some of the really competitive folks have a set of Star Specs as well to run when temps are cooler or damp and getting heat into the Hankooks may be tough (they like - love - heat). But like I said: competitive types.

Josh SuperDork
5/30/12 10:28 p.m.

I have Hankook RS3s on the S2000. They are a bit slow to get up to temp at an autox, but once they do they are phenomenal. They are the tire I would go for if they're going to see track use, and the GRM article seems to concur. (http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/articles/top-tires/) The Direzzas are a good tire but they are pretty quick to overheat and get sloppy (not a ton slower, but greasy and weird feeling).

Pricing is weird in your size though. The Toyo R1R is significantly cheaper than the RS3 in 225/40-18, and is often faster in autox (and a lot quicker to temp), but shorter lived and less heat tolerant. The pricing is the opposite in my size. I might go for the Toyo if it were cheaper, but you'd probably like that one a lot better at autox than on track.

Hasbro Dork
5/30/12 11:11 p.m.

While this thread is running, anyone want to list the longest lasting to least? Someone on GRM did it before but I can't find it.

Josh SuperDork
5/30/12 11:28 p.m.

My thoroughly unscientific opinion of the tread life of the tires listed in this thread (I have owned 3 of these tires so far):

LONGEST -> RE-11 -> RS-3 -> DIREZZA -> XS -> AD-08 -> R1R -> SHORTEST


FASTEST (ABOVE 80 DEG.) -> RS-3 -> AD-08 -> R1R -> XS -> RE-11 -> DIREZZA -> SLOWEST


At moderate temps you can probably call it even between the R1R/AD08/RS3, with the R1R being quicker at the start of the run group and the RS3 being quicker at the end. Among the also-rans the XS likes heat, the Direzza does not, and the RE-11 is in between.

ZOO SuperDork
5/31/12 6:39 a.m.

I just installed Star Specs on my Elise -- they were a massive improvement over the Toyo R888s. Consistent and predictable over the first day of autox (three drivers), and remarkable at a track day the next day. So far, great rain grip (it rained in the morning of the track day), and fantastic dry grip.

We also ran a set on our Chump Car -- they did admirably over the 11 hours we were on track.

Both the Chump Car and the Lotus are light and not too powerful. Like the RX8.


Sky_Render Reader
5/31/12 7:49 a.m.

It's hard to find Star Specs big enough to fit a larger land-yacht like my Mustang. I personally like Nitto's offerings (NT555, NT05, NT01).

GameboyRMH UberDork
5/31/12 9:44 a.m.

I had to make almost the exact same decision last year. Tire Rack has a review comparing the RE11, XS and Star Specs. I immediately ruled out the XS because it is basically a horrible tire until you get deep into a corner, and then it outshines the competition slightly. Might be faster but it will take all the fun out of it and be horrible on the street.

Now I had to choose between the RE11 and the Star Spec. From here it's simple: The RE11 stands up to laps better, the Star Spec heats up quickly which is great for AutoX but not so great for laps. Also the Star Spec is designed for light cars. I do a lot more AutoX than laps and my car is light so I chose the Star Spec. Also keep in mind that the RE11 has an asymmetrical tread pattern so you can't rotate it left to right.

Don't know too much about AD08s but the guy who usually takes first at the autocrosses around here runs those on his stripped-out Swift GTi.

Matthew Huizing
Matthew Huizing Reader
5/31/12 10:05 a.m.

First start with Street Touring and Track Day Tire FAQ.

There is no one best tire.

Star Specs work best on heavier cars. They also work better in cooler weather and are fairly decent in the wet.

I got a free set of used 225/50R16 Kumho XSes on my 325i, and so far I like them a lot. They certainly grip a ton better than my old 205/50R16 Kumho SPTs--I tried running a mixed set at an autocross.

carguy123 PowerDork
5/31/12 10:10 a.m.

I don't know where all the comments about the Star Specs being bad at higher temps come from because they work just fine at all autocross temps I've been able to put into them and that includes 110 degree days on asphalt with 4-5 runs back to back (we do it differently here)

I've never felt they were extreme street tires because there's no drama with them like other tires I've had. They are quiet, good in the rain and just work without any worry that you don't have the right tire pressure to the pound or it's too hot or too cold.

But on the streets in mid winter you can bust them loose more easily than in the summer.

They aren't quite as fast as the special model Potenza S02's, but they wear extremely well and you never have to worry about them.

My car is an S2000 which you could never class as a heavier car.

My next street tires will be RA-1s.

TeamEvil New Reader
5/31/12 10:25 a.m.

My car is an '08 Mustang, time to replace the tires. Would Star Specs be the choice for this car as well?

Ian F
Ian F UberDork
5/31/12 10:49 a.m.

It's not so much that Star Specs don't work when it's hot, it's just the R-S3 has tested to be better.

Personally, I disgreee about noise. The Star Specs we had on the MINI were noisy as hell, pretty much from day-one. Also, while they did ok in damp/wet conditions, we found them to not handling standing water very well vs. half worn GY F1 GS-D3's. At ~50%, they were down-right scary if it was raining.

I loved them on the MINI for auto-x and back-roads fun drives (what we used the MINI for) but I won't buy them for a car that is primarily a DD. I don't care for the Star Specs much at all on my E30, but I'm stuck with a 195/60-14 size and that just hasn't been enough tire for the car for what I've used it for.

ProDarwin SuperDork
5/31/12 10:55 a.m.

I've always had to cool Star Specs in the hot. My 2.5RS, My Saturn, and I will need to on my STR S2K as well.

I bought the Z1s because I like the price, and the ability to run them at hot and cold events. I don't feel like a set of R1Rs + wheels AND a set of RS3s + wheels.

carguy123 PowerDork
5/31/12 11:59 a.m.

Star Specs noisy? I don't think so. Look at the tread pattern, it's not chunky in any way. They are actually quite quiet. Quieter than the last 2 sets of tires I've had on the car.

Ian F
Ian F UberDork
5/31/12 12:04 p.m.

All I know is they were very noisy on the MINI - more so as they wore. The E30 has enough of its own noises and vibrations that I don't notice the tires much.

AutoXR HalfDork
5/31/12 12:11 p.m.

RS3's... I have my 2nd set (285/35/18) on the mustang... They're black GOLD!

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