I realise there has been quite a bit of discussion of late about the pros and cons of the so called ‘budget’ accelera tyres so i thought i’d share my views for those who are hesitant about not paying the plainly ridiculous prices of the £250+ a tyre for ‘premium’ brands.
My conti’s fell foul of the dreaded inner edge wear and were gone really at 7K miles which after discussion with ARUK it was agreed they would replace one tyre and myself the other. I guess this was a fair enough outcome although a more determined person might have argued the case for both been replaced f.o.c.. Picadilly in Knaresbrough are my local dealer and they quoted me to replace with another conti – I declined and advised them i would be supplying my own Accelera and asked them to source another one.
I paid £90 for the tyre delivered and they charged me a tenner to fit it at the dealership. They also adjusted the alignment on the fronts and set them to have a slight toe in (these settings have been used recently on other Ti’s at Picadilly and have apparently resolved the uneven wear – time will tell!)
So onto the tyres – well today was about as horrendous driving conditions as you can get in the UK, torrential driving rain, flooded roads and sodden leaves everywhere. I drove back from the dealership expecting the car to be sliding all over the place based on the scaremongering from some, to my suprise there was nothing just grip, i started pushing the car on roundabouts and corners and nothing it just held the road. I was determined to get the grip to go and really started pushing it with some very spirited driving (far more than normal for me) yet still nothing it just held. I even tried a couple of very dramtic stop from 50-60ish and the car stopped pretty instantly. My final test was a steep hill i often drive up that’s horrendous in the wet for torque steer and grip with wet leaves all over it , if anything was going to find these cheap and nasty tyres out this was it...i was astounded as the car sailed up it not losing grip once, the final part of my journey took my through some very deep puddles so naturally i expected to end upside down in a field as the car aquaplaned but again nothing it flew through them at considerable speed. I was totally amazed at this especially as the new tyres tend to have a hard coating on them that normally takes a few hundred miles to wear off.
So as i see it 2 things could explain the above :-
1) The Acceleras are actually very good tyres only branded ‘budget’ by cost
2) The car isn’t set up properly by Alfa Romeo by default and the better geometry settings and new tyres vastly improve things.
In reality it’s probably a combination of the both i’d imagine.
So there you have it a real world test on some challenging Yorkshire roads on one of the filthiest days I can remember for some time and I’m still here to give you the feedback.
Moreover speaking to the dealer he informed me they are now going to start offering Accelras to customers as a value for money alternative to the high end brands having found other dealers are doing the same...Would Alfa really take this risk if they hadn’t checked them out fully ?
I guess you could argue that i did still have 2 contis on the back but this wouldn’t have addressed the previous torque steer and inability to grip properly up that greasy hill.
I’ll feedback further after a few weeks and some dry weather driving but for me I’m more than satisfied with my decision