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Discussion Starter #1
(This is more of an argument for new tires than encouraging any specific model.)

After way too much delay, I bought four new Continental Contact Sport tires to replace my horrible OEM Dunlops. 225/45R19 tires on OEM wheels for my 2016 Mazda6 Touring stick-shift. The car is stock with 26,000 miles.

I've been a vocal critic of the overwhelming noise and complete lack of grip of the OEM garbage, and had high hopes for whatever tire I chose.

I only drive about 6,000 miles annually, mostly local suburbia. I'm in Colorado and have dedicated 18" Yokohama snow tires on Craigslist Mazdaspeed wheels, so maybe 4,000 annually on the summer tires.

I prefer local tire shops, but didn't know any, so chose Discount Tire. Talked with them: good options included Yokohama Advan Sports A/S for $164 each, Pirelli Cinturato Strada Sport for $190 each, and the Continental Control Contact Sport A/S for $185 each. The last two are exclusive to Discount Tire, whether it's a re-label or a unique tire.

There's a supposed $70 rebate on the Contis, and Discount generously gave me $25 trade-in on each of my used tires, so final cost out the door, with tax, balancing, etc., was $780. Considering my original estimates were nearly $1,000, this is great. And, since all are 40-50K mile tires, they were all pretty good value.

Just about 150 local miles on the tires, but so far I love them. Even in some pretty heavy rain. First off, they are so much quieter than the OEM tires that the engine sound is completely different. Engine is still quiet, but it's now audible. Thrilled. On the highway, accelerating, I can hear the engine and not just road noise from the rear wheels. At cruising speed, I can reduce radio volume 3-4 bars.

Grip seems great. These aren't super highperformance tires, but neither is the Mazda6. Haven't done any zoomy on or off ramps, but suburban corners that used to squeal and get tire spin from the Dunlops are now smoothly accelerating non-events. Much more confidence and grip, so less understeer.

If you're got the OEM Dumlumps, replace them now with any quality tire and you'll be much, much happier every time you drive. Best of all, I love walking into the garage and getting that new tire bouquet!
 

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(This is more of an argument for new tires than encouraging any specific model.)

After way too much delay, I bought four new Continental Contact Sport tires to replace my horrible OEM Dunlops. 225/45R19 tires on OEM wheels for my 2016 Mazda6 Touring stick-shift. The car is stock with 26,000 miles.

I've been a vocal critic of the overwhelming noise and complete lack of grip of the OEM garbage, and had high hopes for whatever tire I chose.

I only drive about 6,000 miles annually, mostly local suburbia. I'm in Colorado and have dedicated 18" Yokohama snow tires on Craigslist Mazdaspeed wheels, so maybe 4,000 annually on the summer tires.

I prefer local tire shops, but didn't know any, so chose Discount Tire. Talked with them: good options included Yokohama Advan Sports A/S for $164 each, Pirelli Cinturato Strada Sport for $190 each, and the Continental Control Contact Sport A/S for $185 each. The last two are exclusive to Discount Tire, whether it's a re-label or a unique tire.

There's a supposed $70 rebate on the Contis, and Discount generously gave me $25 trade-in on each of my used tires, so final cost out the door, with tax, balancing, etc., was $780. Considering my original estimates were nearly $1,000, this is great. And, since all are 40-50K mile tires, they were all pretty good value.

Just about 150 local miles on the tires, but so far I love them. Even in some pretty heavy rain. First off, they are so much quieter than the OEM tires that the engine sound is completely different. Engine is still quiet, but it's now audible. Thrilled. On the highway, accelerating, I can hear the engine and not just road noise from the rear wheels. At cruising speed, I can reduce radio volume 3-4 bars.

Grip seems great. These aren't super highperformance tires, but neither is the Mazda6. Haven't done any zoomy on or off ramps, but suburban corners that used to squeal and get tire spin from the Dunlops are now smoothly accelerating non-events. Much more confidence and grip, so less understeer.

If you're got the OEM Dumlumps, replace them now with any quality tire and you'll be much, much happier every time you drive. Best of all, I love walking into the garage and getting that new tire bouquet!
I agree, the dunlops that came OEM on the 19" wheels are truly shit. All of the 17" wheels came equipped with Yokohama Advan A83A tires, which is a truly very impressive and high performance tire especially for OEM equipment. They are not cheap either. They are noisy tires probably due to the compound these use (Silica, same as Pirelli) But the overall performance is nothing short of excellent. They feel incredibly well tuned to the Mazda 6's chassis with very precise and direct steering feel, excellent grip which is very forgiving right up to the limit, fantastic grip and feedback in the rain, overall the tire just feels really good working with the car and the steering/chassis feel is excellent. The car feels like an extension of your arms and feet on a complicated, twisty road. They are quite noisy, but treadwear has been very reasonable and they are smooth and comfortable. To anyone looking into new tires, I'd definitely give Yokohama a look. They can be a little pricey and are downright noisy, but I'd really not an issue for me because the way it feels on my Mazda is fantastic.

The Continentals seem like a popular and totally reasonable choice around here, but it makes absolutely no sense whatsoever to buy A/S tires if you already have a dedicated set of winters. You should have bought something higher performance.
 

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I had the Continental ExtremeContact DWS06 on my car for about 35,000. Vastly superior to the Dunlops. My only real disappointment was that they were down to 4/32 by the time I changed them. Now on my 3rd set, some Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+. Good tire as well, but if I end up with a 4th pair I'll likely return to the Contis.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hi Get Inline,
Thanks for the information you shared - definitely worthwhile and helpful.

I chose not to get a higher-performance tire because it didn't meet my needs. This is my eleventh Mazda, two of which saw track duty and three of which were track-only wheel-to-wheel racing cars. (Tracked and raced plenty of other cars, too.)

The Mazda6 won't go near a track, except for spectator parking. It's a pleasant four-door, but as a performance car, it's laughably incapable in most every area. Let's start with a 2.5liter, 13-1 compression engine that makes fewer than 185hp! And a 3,200 pound car with single-piston calipers?

I enjoy driving the Mazda6 locally, on trips, going to dinner with friends, etc. If I wanted a performance car, I'd modify (another) Miata, or go with another brand. So, I got the tires that made sense for my mission.

Thanks for sharing your experiences. I'm a big Yokohama fan, and glad to know Mazda is putting crappy shoes on all their cars.
 

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Hi Get Inline,
Thanks for the information you shared - definitely worthwhile and helpful.

I chose not to get a higher-performance tire because it didn't meet my needs. This is my eleventh Mazda, two of which saw track duty and three of which were track-only wheel-to-wheel racing cars. (Tracked and raced plenty of other cars, too.)

The Mazda6 won't go near a track, except for spectator parking. It's a pleasant four-door, but as a performance car, it's laughably incapable in most every area. Let's start with a 2.5liter, 13-1 compression engine that makes fewer than 185hp! And a 3,200 pound car with single-piston calipers?

I enjoy driving the Mazda6 locally, on trips, going to dinner with friends, etc. If I wanted a performance car, I'd modify (another) Miata, or go with another brand. So, I got the tires that made sense for my mission.

Thanks for sharing your experiences. I'm a big Yokohama fan, and glad to know Mazda is not putting crappy shoes on all their cars.
Fair enough, can't really argue with that. IMO the stock differential and soft suspension would need improvement first to make use of summer tires. I would say that the Mazda 6 is truly an over-achiever for being a regular family sedan, but anyone who assumes it is a high performance sports car/sedan would be mistaken no doubt about that. I think that this chassis has some serious potential as a FWD car with suspension upgrades and an ECU tune, but in stock form everything is designed to work well together with just the 185HP rating.

This isn't one of those cars that is impressive on paper. It's not. But getting behind the wheel, experiencing the natural tactile feel of the steering, the way the chassis interacts with the power delivery of the 2.5L engine and the overall sense of passionate tuning and engineering makes me extremely passionate about my Mazda. It's not fast, it's not the best handling, but it really teaches you to make the most out of what you are given and gives a good lesson on how a well-tuned chassis is always more effective than sheer power. At the end of the day it is just a regular family sedan, but getting behind the wheel and experiencing the way this car maneuvers around corners gives you the sense that you are driving something built with pure passion.
 

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The Advan's that come on the 17" '15 Sports are crap. Yes, they have decent performance but they're screaming LOUD.

I tossed 'em LONG before they wore out -- I just couldn't take the noise any more.
 

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The Advan's that come on the 17" '15 Sports are crap. Yes, they have decent performance but they're screaming LOUD.

I tossed 'em LONG before they wore out -- I just couldn't take the noise any more.
If you drive a lot on the highway I can see why you would want to throw them away. They are a great tire in every other regard except for road noise though - A product of the silica compound which offers great feedback and also good grip in cold conditions.
 

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I've been a vocal critic of the overwhelming noise and complete lack of grip of the OEM garbage, and had high hopes for whatever tire I chose.



Just about 150 local miles on the tires, but so far I love them. Even in some pretty heavy rain. First off, they are so much quieter than the OEM tires that the engine sound is completely different. Engine is still quiet, but it's now audible. Thrilled. On the highway, accelerating, I can hear the engine and not just road noise from the rear wheels. At cruising speed, I can reduce radio volume 3-4 bars.

Grip seems great. These aren't super highperformance tires, but neither is the Mazda6. Haven't done any zoomy on or off ramps, but suburban corners that used to squeal and get tire spin from the Dunlops are now smoothly accelerating non-events. Much more confidence and grip, so less understeer.

If you're got the OEM Dumlumps, replace them now with any quality tire and you'll be much, much happier every time you drive.

Thanks for posting your experience with your new tires. I'm going to be needing tires soon too...so, I was interested in what you had to say. I will probably go with a set of all-season tires, due to the fact that I seem to travel all over the country at all times of the year and my needs are such that it doesn't make sense for me to invest in two sets of wheels/tires for the same vehicle.



The two tires on my short list are: the Michelin Pilot A/S3+ or the Conti ExtremeContact A/S DWS 06.



Right now, I'm leaning towards the Continentals. They are about $25 cheaper a piece and I've had pretty good luck with Conti's over the years. I do hear they are biased more towards the "touring" side of the Sport-Touring performance spectrum. I like a good responsive tire, so that has me wondering. Continentals also seem to get noisier as they wear. The Pilot A/S3+ might have the edge - performance-wise - but I don't know if that is enough to matter to me? Honestly, I've not been overwhelmed with the Michelin products I've bought in the last few years. I guess for the premium price, I'm expecting to be completely "wowed" and am not. Or, maybe its impossible for them to live up to all the hype? I don't know, but I have found them to be harsh-riding over sharp impacts and not nearly as nice as everyone says. I mean they were decent tires. However, at the price premium you pay, I was expecting to be blown away and instead found them to have some niggling little flaws that seemed inexcusable in a tire costing so much more than it's competition.
 

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It's a pleasant four-door, but as a performance car, it's laughably incapable in most every area. Let's start with a 2.5liter, 13-1 compression engine that makes fewer than 185hp! And a 3,200 pound car with single-piston calipers?
The Skyactiv 2.5L was tuned for mid-range torque at the expense of outright power. The torque peak occurs much sooner than the NA 2.4L and 2.5L engines from Nissan, Honda and Toyota.

I agree, the stock 19" Dunlops really aren't that great in the rain. I'm very happy with their performance on dry pavement though. 19k miles on the original tires.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
jcme0557 -
Most of my tire experience is 5-10 years old and dealt with different cars and different driving. It's important to remember that tire technology is racing forward and many things may have changed.
That said, I feel Michelin are overpriced for value/performance and you're buying a well-marketed name. Fine product, but there may be better, cheaper alternatives.

In your case, not sure what kind of driving you're doing. If it's work driving, and lots of it, how much are you zoom-zooming around? Is it highways? City? Suburbia/rural?

Personally, I am very happy to give up some high-end performance for more reassurance I won't slide off the road in heavy rain or if I get caught out in snow and ice.

Again, my personal opinion, but if I drove my new tires (barely a performance tire) at anything like their capability, I'd have the cops chasing me and neighbors throwing rocks at me. All of the street driving I've personally experienced in the last couple of years offers so few opportunities for safe high-performance driving, it's not worth it: too much traffic, inattentive traffic, crowded roads, low speed limits, bicyclists, runners, texting drivers, frequent red lights, heavy trucks, etc.

I'm willing to compromise my high-end a bunch for comfort and safety on the lower end. If I can only take a turn at 90%, that's no harm. If I screw up in bad weather or something, I want the tire to catch me so I don't damage my car, myself, or uninvolved people.
 

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Thanks for posting your experience with your new tires. I'm going to be needing tires soon too...so, I was interested in what you had to say. I will probably go with a set of all-season tires, due to the fact that I seem to travel all over the country at all times of the year and my needs are such that it doesn't make sense for me to invest in two sets of wheels/tires for the same vehicle.



The two tires on my short list are: the Michelin Pilot A/S3+ or the Conti ExtremeContact A/S DWS 06.



Right now, I'm leaning towards the Continentals. They are about $25 cheaper a piece and I've had pretty good luck with Conti's over the years. I do hear they are biased more towards the "touring" side of the Sport-Touring performance spectrum. I like a good responsive tire, so that has me wondering. Continentals also seem to get noisier as they wear. The Pilot A/S3+ might have the edge - performance-wise - but I don't know if that is enough to matter to me? Honestly, I've not been overwhelmed with the Michelin products I've bought in the last few years. I guess for the premium price, I'm expecting to be completely "wowed" and am not. Or, maybe its impossible for them to live up to all the hype? I don't know, but I have found them to be harsh-riding over sharp impacts and not nearly as nice as everyone says. I mean they were decent tires. However, at the price premium you pay, I was expecting to be blown away and instead found them to have some niggling little flaws that seemed inexcusable in a tire costing so much more than it's competition.

I've owned both the DWS06 and the A/S 3+. It's a matter of preference. The Contis definitely offer more steering feedback and are more tactile on the road. However, I can also confirm that they do get noisier with wear. You can start noticing it at about 5/32. The Michelins are very grippy and have a more compliant ride but you lose a lot of wheel feedback. Then there's the cost difference. On that end, if you watch Discount/America's Tire they have regular promotions which offer $70 off a set. You can also get additional rebates if you use their 0% financing. Having said all that, I would give the DWS06 the edge.
 

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Thanks for posting your experience with your new tires. I'm going to be needing tires soon too...so, I was interested in what you had to say. I will probably go with a set of all-season tires, due to the fact that I seem to travel all over the country at all times of the year and my needs are such that it doesn't make sense for me to invest in two sets of wheels/tires for the same vehicle.



The two tires on my short list are: the Michelin Pilot A/S3+ or the Conti ExtremeContact A/S DWS 06.



Right now, I'm leaning towards the Continentals. They are about $25 cheaper a piece and I've had pretty good luck with Conti's over the years. I do hear they are biased more towards the "touring" side of the Sport-Touring performance spectrum. I like a good responsive tire, so that has me wondering. Continentals also seem to get noisier as they wear. The Pilot A/S3+ might have the edge - performance-wise - but I don't know if that is enough to matter to me? Honestly, I've not been overwhelmed with the Michelin products I've bought in the last few years. I guess for the premium price, I'm expecting to be completely "wowed" and am not. Or, maybe its impossible for them to live up to all the hype? I don't know, but I have found them to be harsh-riding over sharp impacts and not nearly as nice as everyone says. I mean they were decent tires. However, at the price premium you pay, I was expecting to be blown away and instead found them to have some niggling little flaws that seemed inexcusable in a tire costing so much more than it's competition.
I'd suggest looking into Yokohama. They pair very well to Mazda's chassis.

I've owned both the DWS06 and the A/S 3+. It's a matter of preference. The Contis definitely offer more steering feedback and are more tactile on the road. However, I can also confirm that they do get noisier with wear. You can start noticing it at about 5/32. The Michelins are very grippy and have a more compliant ride but you lose a lot of wheel feedback. Then there's the cost difference. On that end, if you watch Discount/America's Tire they have regular promotions which offer $70 off a set. You can also get additional rebates if you use their 0% financing. Having said all that, I would give the DWS06 the edge.
Totally agree with you on the comment about Michellins. They were really lacking steering feel/precision for me. I don't see them as anything special to deserve the price premium or the hype. I found them to feel particularly bland and inndifferent when paired with Mazda's chassis. I have Pilot Super Sport's on my BMW and other than the downright horrific treadwear, they are fantastic tires. The rear tires, which are 265 width (RWD car) went from 90 to 50% tread in just over 1000KM of spirited driving. Only problem is they are dangerous if pushed hard before getting some proper heat into them.
 

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BMWs are notoriously hard on tires. One of my clients has a 5 series and says despite everything he's tried, he can't get over 15K mileage out of the tires. He's not an aggressive driver either (with the Bimmer anyhow, different story on his pro-stock 68 Camaro and pro-drag 66 Chevelle)
 

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BMWs are notoriously hard on tires. One of my clients has a 5 series and says despite everything he's tried, he can't get over 15K mileage out of the tires. He's not an aggressive driver either (with the Bimmer anyhow, different story on his pro-stock 68 Camaro and pro-drag 66 Chevelle)
Front's or rears? BMW's rear tires have very aggressive rear negative camber, like -1.8 degrees. If you drive too softly or take off from lights like a madman when the inner part of the tire has the most contact with the road, they will wear unevenly. As long as you keep your driving spirited, they will wear evenly. I never had an issue with short tread wear when I was using regular all seasons.
 

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I've owned both the DWS06 and the A/S 3+. It's a matter of preference. The Contis definitely offer more steering feedback and are more tactile on the road. However, I can also confirm that they do get noisier with wear. You can start noticing it at about 5/32. The Michelins are very grippy and have a more compliant ride but you lose a lot of wheel feedback. Then there's the cost difference. On that end, if you watch Discount/America's Tire they have regular promotions which offer $70 off a set. You can also get additional rebates if you use their 0% financing. Having said all that, I would give the DWS06 the edge.
My experience with 3 sets of the Conti DWS (4th set on my 2018) have been the same. The Contis do wear faster than I like but I’ve offset their cost a little more by getting a prorated credit on them. They have never made it within 10K miles of their 50K. By that time they do get louder but no where as bad as the OEM tires. And at least they handle better worn than the Dunlop’s did new. And the price factor versus Michelin, IMO the Michelins aren’t worth the extra money for the small increase in performance or comfort. Even tho the Contis wear faster, if you get them at discount, with a promo, they’re great tires for the price.

My argument for an A/S tire even if you have separate winter rims.... Dedicated high performance summer tires don’t always like cooler weather. My experience has been that around 40C, they loose performance because the rubber isn’t as flexible. And that gets worse exponentially on wet roads. A “high performance, A/S” like the Contis will give me all the performance I need for the 6 and still perform well in colder temps. I’m in NC so 3-4 months out of the year, it’s a concern. When I was in PA, Oct thru Apr was questionable.
 

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jcme0557 -
Most of my tire experience is 5-10 years old and dealt with different cars and different driving. It's important to remember that tire technology is racing forward and many things may have changed.
That said, I feel Michelin are overpriced for value/performance and you're buying a well-marketed name. Fine product, but there may be better, cheaper alternatives.
I have to agree with you about on this one. While still good tires, the most recent Michelins I've bought have not justified their price vs. the competition.
In your case, not sure what kind of driving you're doing. If it's work driving, and lots of it, how much are you zoom-zooming around? Is it highways? City? Suburbia/rural?
I do all sorts of driving - from twisty back roads to interstate cruising. I like a tire that responds quickly and tracks true, but I'll trade ultimate grip for decent mileage and good rain traction.


Personally, I am very happy to give up some high-end performance for more reassurance I won't slide off the road in heavy rain or if I get caught out in snow and ice.
Exactly!

I'm willing to compromise my high-end a bunch for comfort and safety on the lower end. If I can only take a turn at 90%, that's no harm. If I screw up in bad weather or something, I want the tire to catch me so I don't damage my car, myself, or uninvolved people.
90% is pretty good. I can live with that. Honestly, tire technology is SO good now, that its almost impossible to safely test the extremes of performance on anything but a race track. Unfortunately, this often means there is much less margin between traction and no-traction than there used to be. You can get in real trouble before you know it.
 

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My argument for an A/S tire even if you have separate winter rims.... Dedicated high performance summer tires don’t always like cooler weather. My experience has been that around 40C, they loose performance because the rubber isn’t as flexible. And that gets worse exponentially on wet roads. A “high performance, A/S” like the Contis will give me all the performance I need for the 6 and still perform well in colder temps. I’m in NC so 3-4 months out of the year, it’s a concern. When I was in PA, Oct thru Apr was questionable.
Completely agree. I'm in Michigan, and I always run winter tires/wheels (usually from about early December -- mid-March). I run all-seasons the rest of the time, because snow/sleet/cold rain/wet leaves are still issues Oct-Dec and March-May.
 

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Some very good points raised in this thread; thanks to all for sharing. My main takeaway from this and a few other threads is that the 19" OEM Dunlops are less-than-optimal (to be nice). I just took a road trip back and forth across the PA Turnpike: now, I don't push my car to the limit, but as far as handling in wet and dry, I didn't feel like the Dunlops let me down. Of course, I have no other tire to compare it to on this car. The Mazda6 always felt sure-footed even around some of those crazy turnpike bends at 75MPH. However, the road noise at times seems pretty harsh - and if going to a new set of Contis will reduce that noise significantly then that alone could be a good reason for me to make the swap early. I only have about 7K on the tires so far.
 

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My main takeaway from this and a few other threads is that the 19" OEM Dunlops are less-than-optimal (to be nice). I just took a road trip back and forth across the PA Turnpike: now, I don't push my car to the limit, but as far as handling in wet and dry, I didn't feel like the Dunlops let me down. Of course, I have no other tire to compare it to on this car. The Mazda6 always felt sure-footed even around some of those crazy turnpike bends at 75MPH. However, the road noise at times seems pretty harsh - and if going to a new set of Contis will reduce that noise significantly then that alone could be a good reason for me to make the swap early. I only have about 7K on the tires so far.

Honestly, I am somewhat baffled by all the negative comments the stock Dunlops get. Mine have been pretty good for OEM tires. (If you want an example of a bad OEM tire - Bridgestone. I will never buy anything with Bridgestone tires on it.) My Dunlops handle well, have worn perfectly, are not slick in the rain, or super horrible in the snow. They may be noisy, but I wouldn't be able to tell too much unless driven back to back with another tire...and, a lot of tires get louder as they wear.



I wonder if there are two different sources or manufacturing entities for this tire?
 
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