Winter tyres - M Rees
Hi everyone

I recently bought a 2nd hand car from a dealer that had contintental winter contact tyres on the back wheels. I have been told these have limited grip in the wet.

I was wondering if it is common practice and OK for dealers to sell cars with tyres that are potentially dangerous on wet roads to unsuspecting members of the public like me that merely think they look a bit "chunky"


Winter tyres - RichardW
What would be the point of a winter tyre that had limited grip in the wet? I think you have been misled. A true 'ice' tyre (with studs) might well have limited grip in the wet (and the dry) - but I am not sure they are legal in the UK.

Winter tyres - Peter D
Hi, due to my ski trips up to the highlands I run Pirelli M&S's from Jan to April. Usual tyres are Goodyear NCT's on a MKIII Golf.

There are great then the conditions are bad but a little care is rewuired on smooth well used road when it is wet or greasy. People I tend to run the front (195:65:14) at onto 26 psi and the rears on 24. these balances the car well and control can be maintained should it let get, gradually. The contact footprint is less that an NCT but the compound can get get quite warm if driven at high speed for long periods. As the speed limit is 70mph this would not apply would it. My M&S's would out perofrm any budget/mid market wet tyre but when it snows its ski's on the roof and away. Yes I carry chainse as well but rarely required. Peter
Winter tyres - Dr Rubber
I believe Winter Tyres have two main differences to normal tyres. The obvious one is tread pattern, the other is the lowest temperature the rubber stays soft to.
Winter tyre tread pattern is normally optimised for grip in poor conditions (blocky, like wet F1 tyres). Normal tyres balance rolling resistance and wet grip, so you will notice more noise on winter tyres.
The temperature effect is more important in cold climates, as when the rubber becomes hard, it does not grip so well. Normal tyres harden at just above freezing. Winter tyres 10+ degrees below freezing.

Hope this helps

Winter tyres - Cyd
As I recall, when I used to use mud & snow (M+S) tyres during rallying, they tended to be made with a 'harder' compound than ordinary tyres (though they could be had in soft compounds sometimes). This was because running in mud and snow conditions is very harsh on the tread and can wear tyres out very quickly (as an example - on one winter road rally I took half the tread off a pair of new road tyres fitted to the rear of my rear drive Avenger - I had M+Ss on the front and they hardly lost any tread even though about 60% or so of the rally was on snow and ice).

It's probably true (as a result of the harder compounds used) that these tyres do not have as much grip in the wet as modern road tyres designed for wet grip (directional tread, silica compound etc). However I think it's OTT to suggest they are dangerous. I have used M+S tyres under various conditions, including wet tarmac and have never had any real problems. Of course, there are good or not-so-good ones.

Get used to your new car gently over a period of weeks, then see how you feel about how the tyres are performing. If you are still bothered then change them.

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