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Check your Touring Tires?

16433 Views 51 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  slls
I've never been very happy that mine came with Firestone tires. After purchase I noticed which model, FR710. This vehicle supposedly went through a total redesign maybe a year earlier. Did they design it around a 10 year old tire was my thought.
Just past breakin, 500 miles, I traveled about 130 miles on I-95 and became quite unhappy with handling. Major point is play in steering, still unresolved, but feel a better tire would help overall with handling, ride, and noise. I've voiced that opinion to dealer as well. I've even checked on some new tires, but also had nagging feeling that I've finally figured out.
My window sticker, just below the wheels on vehicle, clearly states "touring tires". Firestone FR710 are NOT "Touring Tires".

I've checked the Firestone/Bridgestone website and other sellers of this tire and it shows up as "passenger tire, all-season". It is definitely not listed as a touring tire of any type.
I also learned that in the size needed there are few touring tires available.
One of the few available unless you wish to go to a much higher speed rating is the Michelin Primacy MXV4, grand touring all season.

Did GM think no one would notice that the tires they installed did not meet the window sticker?
I suspect GM owes many of us a new set of tires.
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The Hankooks on my 2009 Malibu (company) car are noticeably better than the Firerocks that were on a rental Malibu I had for a time. However, if the car were mine and I wanted a really nice tire, I wouldn't hesitate to put the Michelin Pilot Sport A/S on it. I have them on my other car and simply love the smooth quiet ride with amazing traction and long life. I have 60,000 miles on a set right now, and they're just beginning to show signs of not being as sticky as new. Of course, the car itself also has 60,000 more miles on it so that is a factor in the decreased ride quality too.
This is not the point of the thread.
That GM substituted a poorer quality tire, passenger tire for what the window sticker clearly states should have been a touring tire.
My OE size is 215-55R17 with a 93S rating. Tires available in that size are rare even allowing for a higher speed rating such as H. I have moved from S or T to H without negative impact or even went up a little on weight rating.

To expand tire availability, even the one you mention, I'd have to move to 225-50R17.
"A touring tire is one built to offer a comfortable ride, like a regular passenger tire, but also offer some high-performance features too.
Touring tires are designed to provide a smoother ride than standard tires on the open road, and provide better control and handling. "

Maybe this car is aimed at those who don't know the difference between a YUGO and a Chevy, or touring tire and passenger tire.
I bet GM got a good deal on them tires, my Hankook retail for $118 each, good tire.
What Hankook shows as OE on Malibu is Optimo H725A, P225/50R17S. It was either a special production or no longer available and maybe replaced by H727, but is not available in that size or even 215/55R17.

Michelin that were used as OE are over $200 each locally. So GM probably shorted me between $400 and $600.
So a passenger tire cant be a touring tire but a touring tire can be a passenger tire?

Regardless, tires are tires. Unless you are buying summer only or winter tires they are all pretty much just all season. There really is no touring, passenger and the like anymore with car tires. Our LTZ has CRAPPY Goodyear LS2 tires on it and they arent considered a good tire by many yet they are on the LTZ, the top tier model.

Want good tires then spend the cash to get them. Most cars these days come with substandard stock tires.

EDIT: Also if you never go away from the OE tires then you will never have a car on good tires. Very, very, very few cars come with good tires stock. The only one that comes to mind is the new Camaro with its Bridgestone tires.
I'm sure that by now you got my point that the sticker said the vehicle was equipped with touring tires and that is a lie because it is not!

You talk as if parafin based, petroleum based, synthetic, and remanufactured motor oils are all the same.

I and probably many others, after reading many of your posts, now suspect you are a GM Trojan or whatever the proper terminology is. Hopefully everyone takes the word in forums with as much caution as I do.:D

Im saying that even though you say the Firestones are passenger tires that they could be in fact be classified as touring tires because there is no quantifiable way to classify all season tires. Thats it.

Just so you want to know, our sticker says it comes with performance tires. Goodyear LS2s are anything BUT performance tires.

People complaining about the Camry stock crappy tires. Bridgestone turanza el400

On the Fusion they majority of the cars come with Goodyear LSAs which are just as bad.

The FR170 has a wear rating of 560!!! If you buy them they are guareenteed to go 65k miles! That right there means they SUCK. Hard as a rock and no doubt a horrible handling tire as well.

If you want to complain, Id try the dealer and see what they say. I doubt you will get anywhere because like I said there is no real way to quantify what is actually a touring tire unless you look at the tire manufacture webpages themselves. However, then each company has a different meaning. Also, the "touring" tires that should of came on your car could of very well been back ordered and the FR170 was substituted.

FACT: Stock tires on family sedans BLOW.

Sidenote: Ive yet to see a post where you arent bitching about something. So maybe you are the GM "trojan".
If the manufacture of the tire is unable to class the tire, then who is? Certainly not GM.
I took my info from manufacturer site and tire rack. Sorry, but Bad Year says the LS2 is a "sport performance tire". Tire Rack has it as a ""Luxury Sport" Grand Touring all season".
Some tires just will not perform up to name because they are vehicle dependant. Suspension, vehicle weight, etc. make a difference.
Better high mileage tires use special compounding and tread to try to get around the rubber hardness. Unless you are a real high mileage driver I probably would not suggest buying such a tire because of the aging process. Time alone allows oxidizing of compound, greatly accelerated by sunlight. Ozone is quite rough on tires that sit because a tire that is driven is hot enough to destroy that. How much air you have to replenish regularly because of seepage is a good indication of the quality of the tire liner. And that oxygen migrating through the rubber from the inside is also not good. Part of the reasoning for using Nitrogen, which is a bigger molecule than oxygen, is that it is not damaging like oxygen.
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I have the Goodyear 18" LS tires on my 08 Ltz with 12K miles and am very happy with them, why all the negativity towards this tire ???
Quoting dealer mechanic on the LS2, "They're real bad about cupping if the pressure is not kept high enough."

Many other complaints it seems and maybe that will help someone.

I have personal experience as of yesterday. I brought an Impala home with me yesterday and it has them. I was almost home before the flat spots went away. I figured out the TPMS and saw that pressures were down to 22 warm.
I aired them up and went for a jaunt where I could get up to 70.
That tire is listed as a Sport Performance or something like that. Not the tire I'd want on an LT2. Maybe the SS if the suspension is different.
Tire is a bit harsh and does not do a good job of absorbing minor road imperfections, passing too much of it to wheel.
But, OMG, what a world of difference when it comes to steering. And having the 4 link H on the rear seems much better as well.
Down side, it has 3.9L. Sure this is a bigger car, but it does not seem a lot peppier than 2.4 with 6 speed at slower speeds. And if the DIC is dependable for MPG, this one eats too much gas. Around 55 it is not bad, or even at 60. But at 65 it was down around 24-25 and at 70 it was 21-22. Far from the rated 27 highway, unless you hold it to around 60 or less.
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I looked closer at the specs and reviews of 725A. It is at least a touring tire. Reviews range a bit wide.
The mileage number is a bit low, but I'd rather have a fantastic tire that wears out a bit early.
And a plus for me in dealing with Tire Rack is they have a warehouse about 50 miles from me so I would not have to pay shipping.
I will have to check if any local dealers carry them and have maybe a "love them or leave them policy." That is a no risk way of finding if the tire is what you want.
I really don't see why you're bitching. Should I be bitching at Dunlop because I only got 17,000 miles out of a tire with a treadwear rating greater han my GoodYear RSA's which got 30,000 miles? According to the goodyear store not all tires are made equal, and the treadwear is not an industry standard, it's standard against said manufacturer's own product line..

My point is that Firestone may say their tire is a "All Season" and GM may say it's a touring tire. Maybe GM doesn't want to have to classify each and every tire that they put on a car and just to make people who are as anal retentive as yourself happy. For all we know GM has 3 classifications Touring (cheap, low-end/low-performance), Sport (mid price, mid range/mid performance) and High Performance (expensive, high-end/high-performance).

I'm sorry but at this point, you're just looking for every little thing you can bitch about on your car.
Sorry that I've bruised your ego. Tires would not have even come up if I had not found them lacking compared to others I've owned. Manufacturers should not put cheap tires on cars. Many times I've said, "Brakes don't mean crap if the tires are not up to the job." That is only one aspect of tire quality but it at least implies that tires are the most important part of a vehicle, especially safety. Air bags and that are fine, but I certainly hope I never need them. Tires would be a big factor toward that.
As to your Dumlops, if the wear was the only complaint then you should be happy. Many really great tires do wear out early.

Perhaps you'd fit better in one of those forums where all have seduced themselves into believing everything about the car is perfect and the most important thing they can do is add as much bling as possible.
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You might walk bare foot in the summer but to do it on ice and snow might be a reflection of IQ.
I did not pitch that it had touring tires as a sales point.

You say a lot of new cars have poor tires, but apparently within government standards. That is very poor thinking, to put such tires on a new car. It would be common sense to put tires on a new vehicle that make it shine.
And for that matter, this time of year maybe all dealers should emphasize an option to equip with snow and ice tires.
As to tire rack, at least you now get the idea that mine does not have Touring Tires of any type.
Maybe your dealer should have done that. Or, better yet, maybe you should have negotiated that into the price. But just because a dealer will "equip with snow and ice tires", does not mean GM will do that for all cars sold. After all, I'd be pissed if my car came with snow tires here in sunny Tampa, Fl.
Snow tires in Miami, you're too funny. LMAO
I thought everyone would understand that as an option for those who might need.
In your case you might want a summer tire. That would generally be true for me if I did not plan to drive a bit north, say to Atlanta.

Tires are so huge in determining the ride and handling of a vehicle that it would seem in building a car it would be started from the ground up, in this build it would be where the rubber meets the road.
Poor tire may be a bad choice of words. More appropriate wording would be adequeate or avereage. Again it's all subjective. I'm pretty sure your tires handle just fine in dry weather, rain, and maybe even light snow. That's what a typical tire does. Some are better than others. You push your car to the limit and take corners too fast then you're going outside the boundaries of a tire on a family sedan. They are not claiming this to be a performance car, or even a sporty car, yet that's what you're wanting them to do. I am willing to bet for everyday normal situations your tire meet or excel what they're meant for. If you start pushing them, I will say that they probably will not perform like a sportier tire.
You are starting to catch on to my point. OK, maybe poor is not correct term in general, but still poor for this car.
I do have an unusual condition for demand because of the amount of rain that accumulates on the road and that should have been met with a good Touring Tire.
Also the slight vibration that comes with very good road is very annoying and frequently painful because of a medical condition. I did not expect the Malibu to have some finely tuned suspension or lots of isolation between components, but it would have been nice. Such would include better isolation for the steering shaft and column from the body. Also the struts or shocks from the subframe. Pretty much every path of vibration and noise between the wheels and passenger compartment. That is what I'd expect in a high end luxury vehicle for starts.
My gripe is that if you read the advantages of touring tires over regular passenger tires, much of what annoys me would have been handled at the tire. And when looking at the vehicles and saw that it said Touring Tires my thought would have been, OK, one less area of concern.
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What I find funny is that you PREFER the ride of an Impala over the Malibu. A car that rides on suspension that was designed over 20 yrs ago. Yes, Ive driven an 09 Impala as well when our car was in for service and its a complete night and day difference. If you dont like the ride of the Malibu on its new Epsilon platform then I highly doubt tires will change your mind.

Regardless, if you want better tires, go purchase them. LS2 is called a "grand touring tire" and sells for $99 on tirerack. There is nothing grand or touring about it. lol You can bet that I can find WAY better tires for that price if I shopped around myself.

You need to look again. Tire Rack calls them a "Luxury Sport" Grand Touring.
Goodyear says they are a "sport performance", nothing about touring.

And my feeling of them is perhaps a bit toward the sporty side if you like to feel and hear every imperfection of road. Not Touring though.
Bigger, heavier cars do tend to right smoother if properly tuned. The one I drove had 3.9L and think that the LS2 "might" be a proper fitment for the still heavier SS with its huge engine and beefier tranny and different suspension.

There are a lot of complaints of clunks developing in Malibu sometime past 5,000. It sounds if the rubber isolators in suspension parts start to loose resiliency and become hard. So those parts could be of poor rubber and a harder tire could be accelerating that development. Real Touring or Gand Touring might have prevented or delayed that development because age and working the rubber tends to make it harder and loose resiliency.

I'm currently working on something that will get me out of car. I picked up at dealer yesterday afternoon. It still had looseness on interstate and worse on country road. It was drizzling on the way home and the handling was worse. And crossing the iron grating of a bridge I've crossed many times, even with this car, was near devastating.
I've had vehicles that give just the feeling of the grating, some that give a mild squirm but maintain direction, and some that require a minor correction. It was good that I was very alert when returning home last night. If I had not jerked the wheel left, it would have thrown me into the bridge railing at my right side.
Any ideas what that was about?
If you've seen other threads of mine, the play in the EPS has been a major concern.
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Really?? Seems it says Grand Touring All season there.

There is very minimal weight difference between the Malibu and Impala. The W body platform is over 20 years old and has very little update in those years. Its known as a marshmallow platform for a reason.

:eek: What? A tire does not make suspension components wear faster. The clunks that people here are pretty normal actually. The majority say that they go away when the car gets warm and in the warmer months they never noticed it. When cold rubber is moved it makes noises. It even happens on BMWs, Audi's and other high end cars.

Again, another weird driving encounter youve had. I just dont understand why you have such insane happenings when behind the wheel. :confused::confused:

If you are THAT concerned about the safety of the car, communicate it to someone.

I also highly suggest you take an evasive driving course. They are cheapish and will teach you things you have no clue a car could do. It honestly seems like you need it.
just who would you trust at rating the tire? Goodyear or a general retailer of all brands?

Marshmallow? Would you say that of the SS as well? I definitely could not deal with MPG of that one. Daughter-in-law has an 07 and the best they get running it 70 MPH is 20MPG.
I would think the clunking would be either because the rubber component had some play or maybe it is hard and not really absorbing impacts or noise. As to loose, what you say about it happening when cold defies that since rubber and plastic expands when colder so they should be tighter if anything. That sort of narrows the situation to resiliency.

As to the things happening, I agree that it seems insane and thus creating worry. The whole thing about has me on pins and needles wondering what next? Since that last crossing of iron grating on bridge, I'm actually a bit scared, way beyond upset.

It is looking a lot like a lemon since dealer can not figure it out. Manager told me he is requesting someone from GM and if they can't figure out they will persue buy back.
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bballr4567;28271 :eek: What? A tire does not make suspension components wear faster.[/QUOTE said:
Just as riding on bad roads, a harder tire impacts suspension more and accelerates wear. Likely part of the reason solid rubber tires are no longer used.
His latest post said that "he is working on somehting to get him out of the car".
Let's all say a prayer tonight that he is succesful. Then we can get some relief from his soapbox sermons.
Thanks for the thought. And it is great if none of you are having problems like mine. Amen.

I will try to keep posted of updates or changes.
Ha, I got a nice little chuckle out of this.;)
And well you should, and I.

If some were not so one minded, they would have followed a different train of thought concerning just the handling and that I took it to a second dealer that said the first one forgot to zero EPS after the alignment. Then I learned about recalibrating and asked the first one if it had been zeroed and recalibrated after aligning and I was assured that they had. (That is without them knowing of second.) So the first could be wrong, the second could have forgot to recalibrate, or maybe something in the electronics is causing it to go awry after they work on it. So what do I do now, I have to ask myself?

And as to payment, that is a fishing expedition if I ever heard one. And apparently trying to deny that a problem does exist. Just for your info, I made my last house payment in October. And that would cover more than twice my payment.
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You think that plastic and rubber EXPANDS when cold? Negative.
Not sure why I said that now. Maybe a senior moment. And can not remember what it is that I know has a negative coefficient of expansion, except water at freezing.:):confused:
Even the SS Impala is on a dated W Body platform. Its still the same suspension components. Its still was engineered in 1982ish and put into cars in 1988. There has been updates but its still over 20 years old.
How can you compare RWD to FWD?
I had a 81 Bonneville and a 86 Parisieene. Both handled very respectably. I tested later Caprice and Roadmaster and those cars handled terribly. Very mushy and swishy, handling like they had a trailer behind and not properly equipped for that. Don't know that it is true, but I was told they got the wider stance by adding dished wheels and not changing the length of the rear axle. Knowing that a lot of those were used as police cruisers, I feel that some beefed up suspension was available and used in those models. Although there may be similarities in the body design, there had to be major changes when they went to FWD. Struts for one and the current 4 link H on the rear.

You say you put Malibu in top 3. What are the other 2?
Hey, nitro-whatever.

Post some more but be a little more respectful. And observant.
Thanks for setting him upright. If some of our comments seem just negative it might be because we are at a loss for what the real problems are and refrain from wildly spurting out excuses. Comments as to what may be the cause are welcome but should be posted as an opinion not fact.

That said, my model is the LT2, certainly not base. And the little 4 banger with 6 speed is surprisingly peppy though likely not to win any races. His comments make it sound like the vehicle was designed for the 6 and never intended to have a 4. Can you say American Motors Pacer? That vehicle was designed to get the Wankel. It certainly looked a bit futuristic with far more glass than anything near its size. Timing was bad though. That was the year of the first oil crunch and Wankels though powerful were terrible on gas. They stopped using Wankel and put in an undersized contemporary engine because that was all there was room for with the Wankel design from the ground up. That killed sales and AM lost a huge investment. Likely the reason of their demise. They had no money left to regear into better economy, the new EPA requirements, and unleaded gas.
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