New job, location
but no car :(
AO Silver Member
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: United Kingdom
Tyre comparisons: Wanli, Dunlop, Pirelli and (sort of) Avon
Having read a few posts on here and elsewhere on-line about tyres, decided that I'd post an opinion based on what I've used over the last few years.
I've used Toyo in the past (because of their 3yr warranty they used to have) because I've always been hard on tyres - 12-18mths wasn't unheard of. I've seen some negatives about Avon lacking grip but when I had them on my old Laguna it had bucketloads of grip (even if a puny 97hp engine) compared to whatever other tyres I'd had - my point here is simply that even among tyres the car can make a difference as to their overall performance.
Onto the 156... The previous owner had left me with a set of Wanlis on the rear and he'd replaced the fronts with Pirelli P6000 a few months earlier. They Pirelli set lasted until around March this year (though that was pushing it) although I'd never say they were exactly confidence-building in the grip department. The Wanlis are so hard they still look like the tread is nearly as deep as when I got the car (end of '09) and in the dry aren't too bad. Show them some wet road and it's a question of whether you get very low grip at lower speeds reasonable enough for round town or no grip if you prefer spirited driving. What makes them trickiest is if you then lift off too quickly mid-corner... Suffice to say I'm able to drive reasonable freely in the dry but I'm a lot more cautious in the wet.
The fronts are Dunlop SP FASTRESPONSE (205/55/R16 91W) bought from Hi-Q (owned by Goodyear/Dunlop who are the same if I remember my info correctly) for just under £155 for the pair fitted etc. and a £10 iTunes card) and they've given me much better grip overall and are more progressive. When I get a job, worn or not, the Wanli's are being replaced by another pair of Dunlop SP.... That said, if budget is tight AND you are prepared to drive cautiously in the wet and be spirited rather than lunatic in the dry, the Wanlis will last years... just don't get over-enthusiastic when the surface is even slightly greasy.
As for other makes, I have no idea what they'd be like - I may have opinions that drew me to buying what I did, but I'll keep them to myself!
I realise I've not looked at braking that much, but based the above observations on mostly the cornering ability. If you learn your tyres and leave appropriate distances according to their performance and the car you're following (i.e. when following a rally car on the road, remember they will likely stop more sharply than a normal car!) then you should be ok... (well I have so far)