I know this subject has been brought up 1,000 times but I'm in a rut as to what tires I should get for my STS. Right now it has a crappy set of Uniroyals on it which are fine for a budget car but don't really help my car out much. I've narrowed it to two tires: the Michelin HydroEdge and the Cooper CS4 Touring. I've read great things about both tires but I'm not sure which is better for my car. I want a tire that is smooth, rides really well but also handles with security, has a good tread life, and is good in wet weather. The price difference between the two is $42 (the Cooper is the cheaper tire) and I'm ordering online (still cheaper to order online and have them installed at dealer than getting them from a dealer). The Michelin tire does offer a $70 rebate card if that makes it any better.
So, which is the better tire? Please let me know! Thanks.
Automobile(s): 2002.5 F55 STS/64500mi, 2004 Ford F150 SuperCab4x4
MD Eastern Shore - Kent Island
Re: Michelin or Cooper?
You know that I run the Coopers, and run them hard. No complaints, and the things are magical in wet weather - don't know about snow more that 3", but they're OK there, too. (The 4X4 is for snow...........)
I put Hydroedges on my '95 when I first bought it years ago and had CS4's on an '89 Eldorado. I felt that the Hydroedges were much quieter than the CS4's. Dry and wet weather performance was really similar but snow set them apart. The Hydroedges are worthless in the snow. Coopers perform much better in this respect if you live in snow country.
Now, after the Hydroedges were done on my '95, I moved to Michelin Symmetry's, and I couldn't be happier. Very balanced performing tire...does quite well in all conditions and is the quietest tire I've ridden on.
My Dad has HydroEdges on his 300M and they've always been really good for wet weather, but don't know how they are in the snow.
I've never had any Cooper Tires. I've had Kellys before and liked them OK, as well as BF Goodrich. I'm sure Coopers are just as good as those 2nd tier brands.
I put Symmetrys on my Riviera, which is now my Dad's. I also have them on my Concours. For me, I would think they are a little too soft for an STS -- IF you're going to drive the STS like an STS. They are smooth, quiet, long treadlife, good in wet weather....but I didn't put them on my ETC when I needed new tires. I would buy them again for the Concours, or if they made them in the Roadmasters' size.
I sell Michelin and Mastercraft (as well as all the major brand) tires. The Mastercrafts are built by Cooper and pretty much mirror their line. Their 80K tire is the Avenger Touring LSR and is similar to the CS4. That is what I run on my car.
After I made this thread I came across a really good deal on Tire Rack on a set of HydroEdge's for $486 shipped with a $70 mail in rebate, so I jumped on them immediately. I had them installed yesterday and the car feels so much better and it drives like a touring sedan now. Handling is greatly improved, and they stick to the pavement really well. I still have a slight vibration between 68-75MPH, but my car needs a CV joint and new rotors front and rear and I'm pretty sure all of those combined would cause some vibrations. Once I get those taken care of I'm going to take the wheels off and clean the hubs and behind the wheels and re-install them myself. Did that once with my previous set of Michelin Symmetry's 2 years ago and the difference was phenomenal.
When I bought the car it had Symmetry's on it... a tire that is more suited for an SLS in my opinion. They are smooth tires but I feel that on the STS the handling is a little more compromised compared to the HydroEdge. Also the previous Symmetry's I had on the car didn't wear very well... I believe they only had 30k miles before they were wore slam out which didn't impress me. As for snow, that's something we rarely deal with around here in Eastern NC. I'm sure any tire would have better traction than the Uniroyal's I just took off. Terrible tire for this car (they were cheap though). The car's weight overwhelms them and it handles like a fat pig and squeals through every corner I pushed through. Overall i'm satisfied with my purchase and if they wear through well I will purchase Michelin in the future. Going to give them 500 miles to break in and then start getting some suspension/brake work done to optimize performance on my STS. Closing in on 100k miles and it's still a damn good car.