: OEM PS2's vs. the Conti DW's - 1st Tire Change Feedback



EricVonHa
05-19-11, 01:13 AM
The quick and dirty? The PS2's are the best tire out there when money isn't a factor. I've had them on other cars and the side to side stability and predictability before and at the limit on the street or track is stellar. Same on the CTS-V.

The Conti's offer "similar" driving characteristics. And, they have achieved great reviews from the Tire Rack surveys. However, my experience is that they do not provide the transitional stability that the PS2's do at anything over 40mph. Don't get me wrong-- the grip is absolutely there. However, there is noticeably more wiggle in the car's mass when you give the car a twist of the steering wheel. Back to back comparisons of metered testing with the PS2's vs. the Conti's would undoubtedly leave the PS2 as the winner. Basically, the Conti's do not transfer weight side to side nearly as well as the PS2's. And, the ability to confidently transfer weight might impede high-speed slalom testing. But, this is a performance test only. Not a true "street" driving test.

Regular street driving-- I think most would find that the Conti is slightly more comfortable ride. I don't find the "snap" of expansion joints to be so intrusive on the Conti's. Though, it is important to note that the PS2's were quiet in this regard also. It's just that the Conti's seem to soak up the uneven pavement gaps a hair better.

Dry traction off the line under hard power is the same. Any slight modulation change of the clutch and it's very easy to over power either tire in the lower gears in straight out acceleration tests.

The Conti construction, by some miracle of engineering, is lighter by 1 pound per tire than the PS2's. Perhaps this is where some of the side to side stability comes into play. And, the PS2 is one of the lightest tires out there to begin with. Not that anyone is buying tires because they are "lighter". I just thought it was an interesting technical specification difference.

The bigger difference in specifications is the treadwear rating. The Conti is rated much higher than the PS2's. So, we'll see if the PS2's can easily exceed 20k miles.

At a $700 savings over the PS2's; the Conti's are amazing. It's a worthy replacement of the PS2's.

One last note on the OEM GM rims that are provided by an outside vendor (typical). They did not take into consideration the weight of the tire pressure sensor for the construction of the rim. In other words, the rim is "zero balanced" *without the tire pressure sensor being on the rim. I do all of my own work and I was meticulously able to clean the wheels of all the weights and put the wheels on the balancer. What I found had me scratching my head. GM did not knock any weight out of the rim at the stem area to compensate for the weight of the TPM sensor. In other words, the wheel is immediately out of balance as soon as the TPMS is installed. All of the OEM weights were originally at the opposite side of the wheel from the TPMS. When the TPMS is removed with no tire on the rim... wa-la.. zero balance with no weights.

In regard to balancing; I've mounted PS2's to nearly new rims in the past (without TPMS) and there wasn't any need to add weight to typically 2 wheels out of a set of four (that's how precise the tire construction of PS2 is). The Conti's are similar and I found myself putting wheel weights back on the wheels opposite of the TPMS's.

Hope this helps. The Conti's are amazing. I'll decide if I'm buying another set after another 5-10k miles.

Busabob
05-19-11, 07:40 AM
Great write up, I agree that the PS2's are the king and for the same reason(s) you state and the Hankook's seem to have the same transitional weakness compared to the PS2.

I've always found it hard to be impartial when comparing a new tire with the one I just replaced as ANY new tire would seem better 100% to a worn out PS2 (or worn out anything). I loved the PS2's, just saw better "value" in the Hankooks.

BeagleBrains
05-19-11, 10:59 AM
I am all het' up about getting new Lexani CVX-55 Chrome-on-Black Wheels (due to arrive next week!). http://lexani.com/Custom_Wheels.php
Along with this, I reviewed many tire options and concluded the Continental DWs to be a great choice. Their greater wear rating swayed my conclusion.
Your detailed information instills a little confidence in my decision.

DoingOK
05-19-11, 11:19 AM
Nice write up. I'm curious as to how the Super Sports I ordered will perform in comparison to the PS2's.

baabootoo
05-19-11, 01:51 PM
I thought that the Bridgestone RE11 were rated higher than the PS2s. Secondly, this was just a slalom type course or road race type too? I have my DWs mounted, but won't be able to try them out at Road America until mid-June.

thebigjimsho
05-19-11, 03:22 PM
People poo-poo the rounded sidewall of the PS2, lookwise. But Michelin got a lot of knowledge in F1 with tiny wheels and large sidewalls.

The V1 came with runflats and no other tire could match directional stability to those super stiff F1s...until I got the PS2s on there. And the control the PS2 gave you mid-turn was also phenomenal. I've been eager to try the RE-11 to replace my PS2, but the Super Sports are now on my radar...

Vlakaz
05-20-11, 10:58 PM
Has anyone recieved the Super sports yet? I am also curious is they will perform and feel the same/better then the PS2s... also curious about any added road noise with them. I am going to be due for my first tire change in a few months.

baabootoo
05-21-11, 01:07 AM
I thought, by reading past threads, that these wouldn't be out for a while yet in our sizes.

EricVonHa
05-21-11, 01:21 AM
I thought, by reading past threads, that these wouldn't be out for a while yet in our sizes.

If you're referring to the Conti DW's -- they are an exact OEM fitment.

The Michelin SS's are not offered in an OEM size. Close! But, not quite the same. For an all around "extreme performance" tire; it is tough to beat the PS2's. But, they've done a lot of development of the new SS's with hyper-exotic cars-- so they must be good!

RemoWilliams
05-21-11, 01:47 AM
I got my Conti DW's about a month ago and really like them. The grip is the same or better IMHO after the break in of about 500 miles. The ride is a bit smoother as well. I would agree with the reviewer that the side wall is a tad softer. For the better tread wear, smoother ride, great cost savings, and lighter it's the DW's all day long.

Unlike the reviewer I was specifically looking at the weight of the tires when I was shopping. I was shocked to find as much as 7 pounds difference PER tire! More if your looking at getting a run flats. Thats a LOT of weight difference. You know how much it can cost to remove 7 pounds from each of your wheels! Something to think about for sure.

PhxTriode
05-21-11, 02:14 PM
I got my Conti DW's about a month ago and really like them. The grip is the same or better IMHO after the break in of about 500 miles. The ride is a bit smoother as well. I would agree with the reviewer that the side wall is a tad softer. For the better tread wear, smoother ride, great cost savings, and lighter it's the DW's all day long.

Unlike the reviewer I was specifically looking at the weight of the tires when I was shopping. I was shocked to find as much as 7 pounds difference PER tire! More if your looking at getting a run flats. Thats a LOT of weight difference. You know how much it can cost to remove 7 pounds from each of your wheels! Something to think about for sure.

Very good point and seldom talked about. Unsprung rotating weight.

baabootoo
05-21-11, 02:48 PM
No, I meant the Super Sports.

marktanner
05-21-11, 04:57 PM
I've had my Conti's for two weeks and a bit over 300 miles. I also find a slight lack of transitional stability compared to the PS2s, but I need to break them in more and play with tire pressure before making a final proclamation. The Conti's are definitely quieter, and do ride a bit better. I also notice less push (understeer) at the limit, but that may change as the release compound is worn off. They are much quieter at the limit, too.

One definite improvement is the lack of the skipping noise when reversing under lock. There have been many comments on this phenomenon in numerous threads, and the cause must be the hard sidewalls of the PS2 combined with the suspension geometry of the CTS family (my FE3 '08 CTS with PS2s did the same thing). While I know that it is a harmless phenomenon, every time it happened my heart would skip a beat, and I don't miss that part at all.

I am curious how the Super Sports will perform, how long they will last, and how much they will cost. So far, the $750 savings (with tax) and the free road hazard warranty with the Continentals, along with decreased tire wear, definitely make them a reasonable replacement choice for the PS2. BTW, Cadillac is now using Continentals for the CTS with FE3 suspension, though I'm not sure which exact tire they're supplying.

EricVonHa
05-21-11, 06:59 PM
Tons of rain here in the northeast. So the tires were cleaned all very quickly. The one thing that I found as a follow up post is that the continentals are more sensitive to tire pressure. 33-34 cold psi on the Michelins was good for spirited driving and great steering feedback. The Conti's on the other hand, require about 4 more psi to have a similar equilibrium. This was most notable for the front tires. I can appreciate gm's initiative for giving us a car with great street steering response and quick turn in. However, these cars are grossly under tire'd in the front once you're past the speed limit.

baabootoo
05-22-11, 12:49 AM
Yeah, I ran the tires at the recommended pressures, and ruined them last year. For spirited, and track, driving, I ran 43 up front and 40 back. A WORLD of difference. I found that stock pressures are good for regular driving only; maximum mileage and comfort! :)