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Discussion Starter #1
Hello there!

I do 3 to 4 track weekends a year and I am looking for a tire that performs well on the track while I can still use it as a street tire. I have heard a lot of good about the R888s, but can I seriously drive it on the street (other than getting to and from the track)? Let me know if you have used this tire on the street? Does it have enough traction in rain? Is it harsh and noisy?

Jesper
 

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No, it's too gummy and will puncture easily as it will pick up debris that will work it's way into the tire. I don't even recommend driving to the track on them. The DOT rating is for rules that require one, it isn't so you can drive it on the street.
 

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I agree with everyone. I used them on the track last season and they worked really well. And will do so again this year as I have plenty of life left on them after just a few events. You're better off with a dedicated street tire and sourcing some track wheels.
 

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+100

Not a daily tire. Besides if you are pushing those tires to their limits on the streets make sure I am not on the same street :).
 

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pirelli corsa systems are what you want, great on the road and awesome on the track just not quite as good as a full street tyre in the wet... Wear brilliantly too...
 

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toyo r888 very noisy for street use.toyo ra-1 much better for street use.I've had one set of r888's and am on my 2nd set of ra-1's which have an excellent ride and low noise.got about 5500 miles use out of the ra-1
 

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Most of the noise from a DOT-R tire is from the adhesive qualities of the rubber and the lack of siping, unequal tread blocks. All the stuff that helps to keep a street bound tire from making noise. FWIW noise shouldn't be a factor when buying a track tire..

Also bear in mind the RA1 has a much softer sidewall than the R888. Both require a different setup to get optimal tire life and adhesion.
 

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Most of the noise from a DOT-R tire is from the adhesive qualities of the rubber and the lack of siping, unequal tread blocks. All the stuff that helps to keep a street bound tire from making noise. FWIW noise shouldn't be a factor when buying a track tire..

Also bear in mind the RA1 has a much softer sidewall than the R888. Both require a different setup to get optimal tire life and adhesion
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Very true.

The R888's had mixed reviews. They needed different pressures to work well.'

The RA-1's made a comeback, after supposedly being "upgraded". You could get away with RA1's in good weather on the street, but the best advice above was to have a dedicated set of tires and wheels for track and street. The Mich SuperSport is getting terrific reviews as a steet/track tire, although Mich's tend to be pretty pricey.

With 2 sets of wheels/tires, being used for their intended purposes, both will last a lot longer.

Regards,
Jerry
 

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Very true.

The R888's had mixed reviews. They needed different pressures to work well.'

The RA-1's made a comeback, after supposedly being "upgraded". You could get away with RA1's in good weather on the street, but the best advice above was to have a dedicated set of tires and wheels for track and street. The Mich SuperSport is getting terrific reviews as a steet/track tire, although Mich's tend to be pretty pricey.

With 2 sets of wheels/tires, being used for their intended purposes, both will last a lot longer.

Regards,
Jerry
The R88 is a completely different tire than the RA1. Along with the Spec Miatas our series made the change to the R888, our cars were faster, the Spec Miatas were slower. People automatically assumed that the R888 require less air pressure and ended up with a weird groove just off center of the tire (See groove of doom Toyo for details). Our cars are lightly sprung and run less camber so essentially the tire came to us. The faster Spec Miata guys in our region quickly figured out that they needed to raise their cars 1/4" and also run MORE air not less. They were faster with this tire than the RA1.

The issue at hand was that the sweet spot the R888 had was smaller but faster. The club racers preferred a tire that was faster longer so after a season or so of R888 we went back to the RA1. The RA1 was not upgraded, it remained unchanged from the original tire compound, tread design and carcass. What changed was that the RA1's we had over the last few years were older date stamped. IOW they sat in the warehouse longer and were "aged" more. Since the changeover there has been a period of catch up on the part of Toyo and the date stamps we're getting are more recent. They sit on the warehouse floor for a shorter period of time. The sweet spot on the RA1 is now short same as the R888, this prompted people to think that they were reformulated. The thought now is that the R888 would have had the same sweet spot had we run them a few years more.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wow, that was even more detail than I had hoped for! You guys are great. I now realize that I can forget about using R-comps for my daily commute even if I only drive 8000 miles a year. If nothing else, they will wear out too fast. Now, I still have two main choices:

1: I have two sets of OEM wheels and I am obviously using the 4 rear wide rims for the track (with 3mm spacers). I could could go with the R888/RA1 for the track and then use the front wheels for the street. The downside would be the look and lack of traction from using the 245s on the rear, which I could probably live with for my Toronto city commute (I have actually tried having the narrow tires in the rear and it is pretty OK as long as you don't go crazy). However, given that my suspension is stock, would the R888s or RA1s even be appropriate choices for my car on the track? I have to say that I would love to try them out and you only live once!

2: Get the best street tire such as the Dunlop Star Specs or the new Michelin Super Sport (cheaper than PS2). I am an "A-student" and my old Dunlop Sport 01 tires did definitely not cut it last year. Do you think the newer and better street tires will get the big grin back on my face? Then it is a pretty easy decision!

Thanks again for your help!

Jesper
 

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Wow, that was even more detail than I had hoped for! You guys are great. I now realize that I can forget about using R-comps for my daily commute even if I only drive 8000 miles a year. If nothing else, they will wear out too fast. Now, I still have two main choices:

1: I have two sets of OEM wheels and I am obviously using the 4 rear wide rims for the track (with 3mm spacers). I could could go with the R888/RA1 for the track and then use the front wheels for the street. The downside would be the look and lack of traction from using the 245s on the rear, which I could probably live with for my Toronto city commute (I have actually tried having the narrow tires in the rear and it is pretty OK as long as you don't go crazy). However, given that my suspension is stock, would the R888s or RA1s even be appropriate choices for my car on the track? I have to say that I would love to try them out and you only live once!

2: Get the best street tire such as the Dunlop Star Specs or the new Michelin Super Sport (cheaper than PS2). I am an "A-student" and my old Dunlop Sport 01 tires did definitely not cut it last year. Do you think the newer and better street tires will get the big grin back on my face? Then it is a pretty easy decision!

Thanks again for your help!

Jesper

Sorry I got diarrhea of the keyboard :) You can say I had alot of experience with the Toyos over the last 5 years or so. I run the Hankook Ventus on my Cooper S and had a pretty good result at Thunderhill a month or so ago at Mini Thunder, (we were the main sponsor). The star spec is also a good tire.. for a BMWCCA "A" student just about anything with a treadwear under 200 will yield good results. The Ventus took a 1/2 lap to get sticky but they held up well in 20 to 25 minute sessions. They had enough grip to get my BBK equipped Cooper smoking whenever I came off track. :)

Look into the Ventus RS3 -
 

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I have used R888's on my old M3 & my Golf track car,great track tyres so much better than road tyres. I found the best solution was 2 have 2 sets of wheels, one with R888's & one with road tyres. I change my wheels over when i get to the circuit. Also means you are not wearing your road tyres out on the track. I've switched from R888's to Dunlop D02 track tyres now.

Simon.
 

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Wow, that was even more detail than I had hoped for! You guys are great. I now realize that I can forget about using R-comps for my daily commute even if I only drive 8000 miles a year. If nothing else, they will wear out too fast. Now, I still have two main choices:

1: I have two sets of OEM wheels and I am obviously using the 4 rear wide rims for the track (with 3mm spacers). I could could go with the R888/RA1 for the track and then use the front wheels for the street. The downside would be the look and lack of traction from using the 245s on the rear, which I could probably live with for my Toronto city commute (I have actually tried having the narrow tires in the rear and it is pretty OK as long as you don't go crazy). However, given that my suspension is stock, would the R888s or RA1s even be appropriate choices for my car on the track? I have to say that I would love to try them out and you only live once!

2: Get the best street tire such as the Dunlop Star Specs or the new Michelin Super Sport (cheaper than PS2). I am an "A-student" and my old Dunlop Sport 01 tires did definitely not cut it last year. Do you think the newer and better street tires will get the big grin back on my face? Then it is a pretty easy decision!

Thanks again for your help!

Jesper
Assuming you're in A-group, meaning the top non-instructor group, I would strongly suggest some suspension modifications prior to going to an R-comp, especially front camber adjustment. You are likely destroying the outer 2" of the front tires if you're running strong lap times with the stock suspension. You will simply destroy the R-comp even more given that it will generate more grip, hence more loading, hence more compression, hence more of a nasty camber situation up front (granted this is a small effect, but you're not going to get any camber profile improvement, it can only be worse).

You would likely love some GC coilovers/camber plates along with a Dinan rear sway bar. You can still only get about ~ -2.2 to -2.3 degrees of camber up front when max'd out, but that is a huge improvement over stock. The car will feel fantastic on track compared to a stock suspension, and it will accept whatever R-comp you want to use nicely. You might consider the Nitto NT-01 to start out with. They are very predictable and howl when you approach slip angle limits similar to a street tire. However, the Dunlop Star Spec isn't far behind in performance. The NT-01 is tough enough to use on the street to drive to the track. I've driven them on 600 mile roundtrip drives numerous times in the past with no issues (other than the horrid truck-tire like howl they make at speed).

Realize that are you progress to a stickier tire, the loading on your brakes goes up and will likely yield issues if you've not had any before.

Chuck
 
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Assuming you're in A-group, meaning the top non-instructor group, I would strongly suggest some suspension modifications prior to going to an R-comp, especially front camber adjustment. You are likely destroying the outer 2" of the front tires if you're running strong lap times with the stock suspension. You will simply destroy the R-comp even more given that it will generate more grip, hence more loading, hence more compression, hence more of a nasty camber situation up front (granted this is a small effect, but you're not going to get any camber profile improvement, it can only be worse).

You would likely love some GC coilovers/camber plates along with a Dinan rear sway bar. You can still only get about ~ -2.2 to -2.3 degrees of camber up front when max'd out, but that is a huge improvement over stock. The car will feel fantastic on track compared to a stock suspension, and it will accept whatever R-comp you want to use nicely. You might consider the Nitto NT-01 to start out with. They are very predictable and howl when you approach slip angle limits similar to a street tire. However, the Dunlop Star Spec isn't far behind in performance. The NT-01 is tough enough to use on the street to drive to the track. I've driven them on 600 mile roundtrip drives numerous times in the past with no issues (other than the horrid truck-tire like howl they make at speed).

Realize that are you progress to a stickier tire, the loading on your brakes goes up and will likely yield issues if you've not had any before.

Chuck

Good suspension info.. in the case where you do not want to make suspension changes for the few track days you do... I would vote for the R888, the sidewall is much stiffer and less prone to rollover.

EDIT: If the choice were between the 2 Toyos, IIRC the Nitto NT01 which we run in US Touring cars has a stiff sidewall too.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I have come to the conclusion that R-comps would lead me to need suspension upgrades and a big brake kit, and that was never the plan with this car. So I have just ordered the new Michelin Pilot Super Sport. It does have a surprising high 300 wear rating but it is supposed to be stickier than the PS2s, so I am looking much forward to see how it does on the track!

Thanks again for your great insight!

Jesper
 

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I have come to the conclusion that R-comps would lead me to need suspension upgrades and a big brake kit, and that was never the plan with this car. So I have just ordered the new Michelin Pilot Super Sport. It does have a surprising high 300 wear rating but it is supposed to be stickier than the PS2s, so I am looking much forward to see how it does on the track!

Thanks again for your great insight!

Jesper
R888 wouldn't lead to either. Your driving style and aggression level would. However to get the maximum from a stickier tire it wouldn't be a bad idea. Just keep tracking! It's the most fun you'll have on 4 wheels.. ;)
 

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Assuming you're in A-group, meaning the top non-instructor group, I would strongly suggest some suspension modifications prior to going to an R-comp, especially front camber adjustment. You are likely destroying the outer 2" of the front tires if you're running strong lap times with the stock suspension. You will simply destroy the R-comp even more given that it will generate more grip, hence more loading, hence more compression, hence more of a nasty camber situation up front (granted this is a small effect, but you're not going to get any camber profile improvement, it can only be worse).

You would likely love some GC coilovers/camber plates along with a Dinan rear sway bar. You can still only get about ~ -2.2 to -2.3 degrees of camber up front when max'd out, but that is a huge improvement over stock. The car will feel fantastic on track compared to a stock suspension, and it will accept whatever R-comp you want to use nicely. You might consider the Nitto NT-01 to start out with. They are very predictable and howl when you approach slip angle limits similar to a street tire. However, the Dunlop Star Spec isn't far behind in performance. The NT-01 is tough enough to use on the street to drive to the track. I've driven them on 600 mile roundtrip drives numerous times in the past with no issues (other than the horrid truck-tire like howl they make at speed).

Realize that are you progress to a stickier tire, the loading on your brakes goes up and will likely yield issues if you've not had any before.

Chuck
Nitto NT-01 = Rebadged RA-1 w/ different tread pattern afaik. Toyo and Nitto are the same company. NT-05 is the one that matches up with the Star Spec.
 
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