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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just took advantage of the sky high trade in values and replaced my '17 Touring with a '21 Grand Touring. Biggest disappointment is with the ride and handling. It's significantly softer than my '17's. Feels bouncier, rolls more, and steering is less accurate. My question is, is it due to suspension and steering changes between those years to try to make the car more appealing to the mainstream, or is it solely due to the stock Falken tires? My '17 came with the Dunlops which I thought were pretty good and then I put on the Goodyear Eagle Exhilarate all seasons which were even better (except for straight line stability which I think suffered).

If it's been shown that it's solely due to the Falkens, I'll gladly go out and invest in some summers or UHP all seasons. But if it's due to Mazda softening the suspension to try to make the car quieter and more mainstream-friendly, then I don't want to waste money on tires and find out they don't improve things much.
 

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Tires.

I purposely wore down those Falkens as fast as I could (without doing burnouts at every intersection), because they NOT meant for a sedan, they're designed for SUV/Crossover use! They were, bar none, the WORST OEM tires I've ever experienced.

I bought a set of General G-Max AS-05s to replace them, and it's night and day! The ride is firmer, but still compliant, The handling is HUGELY improved, with excellent grip in both the dry and wet. One thing I noticed right away is that they don't squeal through corners unless I REALLY push them (unlike the Falkens), and they don't break traction from almost every stop sign or red light (also unlike the Falkens).

Invest in a good set of tires, before doing anything else!
 
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Put some Continental ExtremContact DWS06s on it.
Add the word Plus to the end of that name. The DWS06 as you know them have been replaced. I haven't seen a lot of testing/reviews on the Plus just yet, but they look promising...
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Put some Continental ExtremContact DWS06s on it.
Yeah I saw I can get a set for $580 on tirerack if I get the Conti credit card. Very tempting. Sucks I have to spend another $800-900 just to make my new car enjoyable though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Also looking at the Firehawk Indy 500s which I can get for $625 at tirerack this month.
 

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As an owner of a 2017 Touring who just replaced the OE Dunlop tires, I can say tires make a big difference.

I removed the OE Dunlop SP Sport 5000 and installed a set of Bridgestone RE980AS. The Bridgestones feel noticeably different. They are quieter, softer, better in the wet and are much "squishier" with less direct steering response, especially on-center.

The Bridgestones have definitely changed the character of the car a little. I could see with a few small suspension tweaks you could change the character even further.
 

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Tires.

I purposely wore down those Falkens as fast as I could (without doing burnouts at every intersection), because they NOT meant for a sedan, they're designed for SUV/Crossover use! They were, bar none, the WORST OEM tires I've ever experienced.

I bought a set of General G-Max AS-05s to replace them, and it's night and day! The ride is firmer, but still compliant, The handling is HUGELY improved, with excellent grip in both the dry and wet. One thing I noticed right away is that they don't squeal through corners unless I REALLY push them (unlike the Falkens), and they don't break traction from almost every stop sign or red light (also unlike the Falkens).

Invest in a good set of tires, before doing anything else!
I was surprised by the composed nature and grip of the General G-Max. Did research on Tirerack.com before purchasing they were rated very highly and after 2 years and 15K miles they feel even sharper. Turn-in is excellent. Road noise is good and the grip is surprising
 
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