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      10-29-2020, 12:27 PM   #1
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Do you guys switch to winter tires / own the winter tire + wheel set from Bmw?

I was looking to get some winter tires. I'm not sure what kind of tires I have currently, I think they're all-season run-flats, I'd need to double check on the size.

I saw that BMW offers like a total winter tire + wheel package, so you can just swap the entire wheel out (I can do this myself) instead of having to have the tires removed and set (can't do this without machine or being a redneck) when summer rolls around.

However, they're pretty overpriced, well more-so BMW priced. I'm curious if you guys have a preferred WINTER tire, and what TIRE sizes / offset you run on front/back for winter tires. I live in MA for reference, it doesn't get too bad here, but I also go to Michigan from time to time where it's worse. I'm thinking winter tires are probably worth it over the all seasons, because I would like to run summer/winter tires going forward.
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      10-29-2020, 01:03 PM   #2
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If you're going to have separate winters and summers then you want winter wheels. You've probably got 18s now, you should get 17s with 225-55 17 winters, as the smaller rims and higher sidewalls are more resistant to pothole damage. BMW wheels are seriously over-priced, but you can get re-furbished used at reasonable prices, from places like https://www.autorimshop.com/wheel/bm...0350&hsa_ver=3

Remember to get TPMS sensors. As for tires Bridgestone Blizzaks are well reviewed.
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      10-29-2020, 01:43 PM   #3
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I used to swap winter tires on my '06 TL as even with FWD it was NOT very good in snow. I use a local guy even though I have an impact gun as changing 4 tires is a pain unless you have a lift IMO. With the GT's AWD I decided to try a winter with just the All Season run flats. Last winter was super mild (I even played golf!), but we did have snow in December so I took it out just to see and it got up our steep driveway better than my wife's '15 MDX. I still thought about Blizzaks (they were great on TL), but I now have a job where I can work from home when I want so if it's coming down then I'm staying in.
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      10-29-2020, 02:05 PM   #4
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As far as AS and xDrive are concerned I have far better results in snow with the stock Conti AS than I ever did with FWD cars and winters all around. My first day driving the GT in snow was with four inches of fresh un-plowed on the roads, which I went through like it wasn't even there.
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      10-29-2020, 05:06 PM   #5
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If you consider the three things a car can do, getting moving is a very nice convenience, but stopping and turning are the two that can save life, limb, and the car itself. For some reason, most winter tire conversations seem to focus on the least critical aspect of the three. For stopping and turning, there is no question about the superiority of dedicated winter tires, manufactured with unique hydrophilic chemistry rubber compound as well as tread pattern. There are many comparison videos online to demonstrate the point.

To make this as easy and economical as possible, just visit tirerack.com and go through their tool to select the right winter package for you. Blizzak WS90 and Michelin XIcexi3 are great choices. Nokian is extremely good as well, but more expensive and more difficult to service locally if a quick replacement is needed. You can choose wheels, add TPMS, and have the balanced units arrive on your doorstep or sent to a local installer if you ever decide to go that route.
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      10-29-2020, 05:37 PM   #6
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(In the UK) I've got 19" 403M summer wheels and staggered 225/40 255/35 tyres which were on the car when I got my car at 3 years old AUC/CPO.

I got the dealer to throw in one of the genuine BMW winter wheel sets at a significant discount... 18" 397s with Continental TS830P winter tyres, square 225/45s.

I have the space in the garage to store them, and find it far easier to have a complete set that I can switch over myself. Also means I can swap them as necessary and still get around for example if I need to replace my tyres (I usually buy online for home delivery and take the loose wheels and new tyres to a garage), or if I want to get my wheels refurbed during their "on season".

It'll take me less than an hour to get everything out the garage, jack up each corner, swap them all over and put everything away again. Quicker than driving somewhere to get tyres swapped onto rims. And I'm always somewhat wary of regularly removing and refitting tyres too much. Don't know how well a tyre would handle being taken off and refitted lots of times. (Far different stresses I know, but Pirelli shredded all the tyres from the cancelled Australia 2020 GP because they cannot be re-mounted a second time)
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      10-29-2020, 07:37 PM   #7
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I just buy one size smaller wheels and snow tires and tpms from tire rack. I wish i had a lift but i have two jacks so i just do two at a time. An impact wrench makes things go fast.
I just got a set for my daughter’s new car (subaru). So in a couple of weeks i will be swapping my car over, her car and my exwife’s car.
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      10-29-2020, 07:45 PM   #8
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I have a dedicated winter season wheel and tire set for my F31. I selected it myself, using recommendations here and sites like Tire Rack. For my X5 and many previous BMWs I've purchased the OEM BMW winter wheel set. They are quite expensive, but nice. You can definitely do fine with non-OEM. If you live anywhere with a real winter (your signature indicates Boston), I'd recommended a real winter wheel set. If mild winters, all-season are fine.
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      10-29-2020, 10:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBri89 View Post
(In the UK)
Winter tires in West Sussex? Do you winter in Scotland?

(For those unfamiliar with the UK winters in West Sussex are similar to those coastal northern California or Delaware.)
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      10-30-2020, 04:35 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billfitz View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by BBri89 View Post
(In the UK)
Winter tires in West Sussex? Do you winter in Scotland?

(For those unfamiliar with the UK winters in West Sussex are similar to those coastal northern California or Delaware.)
I grew up on the edge of the Peak District so go back to visit family regularly, and my wife has family up in Campbeltown too which we drive up to over winter as well.
Both those places the snow can be pretty bad there, and as late as the end of April too.

Winter tyres are not just for snow though, far more effective than summer tyres in the cold and wet. And it still gets very wet, and is around 5*C or below for a good 4-5 months often.

Just because it doesn't snow regularly here, doesn't mean winter tyres are not a good idea.


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      10-30-2020, 07:59 AM   #11
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I'd say all seasons are what you should be running, they're expressly made for the wide range of conditions you describe. They work fine for me. I typically see 200cm of snow every winter, with average daytime high temperatures of -2C in February.
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      10-30-2020, 09:31 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billfitz View Post
I'd say all seasons are what you should be running, they're expressly made for the wide range of conditions you describe. They work fine for me. I typically see 200cm of snow every winter, with average daytime high temperatures of -2C in February.
All seasons are not as good in summer and not as good in winter.

I have Michelin Pilot Sport 4S on my summer wheels.
Not because I need an extreme-performance road tyre that can handle the occasional track days, but because I want the best I can get as far as practical.
I sometimes drive my car pretty hard and like to know my tyres can take it.

Same with winter. I don't drive the car hard then, but I want to know they're as good as can be. The separate wheels also protects my nicer and more expensive wheels from corrosion from salt and grit, and the increased risk of kerbing them or pothole damage.


Since I'm going to have 2 sets of wheels regardless, I might as well have one with summer and one with winter, rather than all-season tyres.


If I lived in an apartment or condo and didn't have the space to store them or the equipment to change them, then yeah maybe all seasons would be the way to go. But I do, and I don't mind. It also means tyres need replacing less often as the wear is spread over 2 sets.
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      10-30-2020, 10:26 AM   #13
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I run dedicated Winter and Summer. Keep an eye out on the local Craigs list. I found a good set of 17" wheels, had them powder coated and check with Discount Tire for Nokian.
Tire Rack is a great source also. Do your research over the summer and be ready when you find something that works for you. It might take a few months to put it all together but it will save you in the long run. Also be aware the size tires you want might already be out of stock. They tend to go fast and early. Then you are only left with the really cheap or really expensive. Don't compromise.

Oh ya, dedicated Winter set is amazing. You will look for reasons to go out and drive when it snows.
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      10-30-2020, 03:39 PM   #14
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Dedicated winter with blizzaks. Fwd with snow tires will outperform AWD with regular tires always IMO.

I ran winter tires on my 05 Acura TL and it was amazing. I would see Audi's get stuck whereas I drove thru like a champ.

I just bought a set of BBS 18s with blizzaks and am very excited for winter in NY this year. Last year we barely saw any snow so the all seasons were fine.
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      10-30-2020, 03:58 PM   #15
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As far as all seasons and xDrive are concerned I have far better results in snow with the stock Conti AS than I ever did with FWD cars and winters all around. My winter driving experience for 25 years was driving to and from work every day, no matter what the road conditions were. Work was running a ski shop. When it snowed was when we were busy, so taking the day off was not an option. Getting to the shop meant driving mountain roads, not necessarily plowed. Once I got home getting up my steep driveway required backing into the driveway across the street for a good head start, and even at that I'd spin the wheels like mad halfway up if there was more than an inch of snow on the driveway. With my GT I can go through four inches with ease, with no head start.
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      10-30-2020, 06:31 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billfitz View Post
As far as all seasons and xDrive are concerned I have far better results in snow with the stock Conti AS than I ever did with FWD cars and winters all around. My winter driving experience for 25 years was driving to and from work every day, no matter what the road conditions were. Work was running a ski shop. When it snowed was when we were busy, so taking the day off was not an option. Getting to the shop meant driving mountain roads, not necessarily plowed. Once I got home getting up my steep driveway required backing into the driveway across the street for a good head start, and even at that I'd spin the wheels like mad halfway up if there was more than an inch of snow on the driveway. With my GT I can go through four inches with ease, with no head start.
Again Tyre Reviews did a very interesting comparison...

AWD all season vs RWD winter tyres, same vehicle.

AWD and all seasons worked best most of the time.
But AWD and Winters would have worked even better.
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      10-31-2020, 02:26 PM   #17
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Obviously, the absolutely primary focus of winter tires is short braking distance and capability to stop the vehicle on snow and ice. It's the area where are usually the smallest differences between the tires in comparison reviews. And also the area, where AWD is totally irrelevant (except of added weight).
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      11-02-2020, 04:17 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billfitz View Post
As far as all seasons and xDrive are concerned I have far better results in snow with the stock Conti AS than I ever did with FWD cars and winters all around. My winter driving experience for 25 years was driving to and from work every day, no matter what the road conditions were. Work was running a ski shop. When it snowed was when we were busy, so taking the day off was not an option. Getting to the shop meant driving mountain roads, not necessarily plowed. Once I got home getting up my steep driveway required backing into the driveway across the street for a good head start, and even at that I'd spin the wheels like mad halfway up if there was more than an inch of snow on the driveway. With my GT I can go through four inches with ease, with no head start.
That's been my experience as well. My 06 TL struggled up my steep driveway even with the snow tires. They were great otherwise, but had a hard time as I couldn't get a running start. The GT with standard Conti A/S tires had no trouble even without a running start.
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      11-02-2020, 04:59 PM   #19
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That's exactly my experience. If I did park midway up the driveway on snow with FWD and snows I'd have to go all the way down and get a head start to get to the top of the driveway. The GT w/AS I can park midway up, then take it the rest of the way with no slipping or sliding, and do it at a crawl.
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      11-03-2020, 01:54 PM   #20
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+1 to what Bri said above “All seasons are not as good in summer and not as good in winter.” They are BY DESIGN a compromise, to do it all with one. And sometimes that’s the right answer...

But with my 435 I want a “most fun” summer setup and a “most fun” winter one too. I like to do lots of mountain driving during both seasons - and it’s better with a set of hoopties optimized for the different conditions.

So I run Michelin PS4S on Apex 19x9s for my summer canyon carving, cruising and all-weather backroad blitzing, and Michelin PA4s on 18x8s to get me to & from the slopes and enable spirited driving on the cold/wet/icy roads all winter.
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      11-04-2020, 12:40 PM   #21
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The NYC metro area has become increasingly mild over the last decade (thank you global warming) but my car came with summer tires and I've currently put on a set of 18" winters.

This is my first time really dealing with winter tires so I'm curious if you guys worry about the mild winter days where it is obviously too warm for winter tires but still is the middle of the winter season. Do you pump up the PSI to compensate for the warmer/more elastic rubber due to temp rise?
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      11-04-2020, 12:59 PM   #22
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Change winters back to summers when temperatures get above 50 on a consistent basis. A warm day here and there isn't going to bother them.
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