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Toyota Prius Tire/Wheel Questions



  • I went to Big O. I was going to purchase a set of the wing-tread sports tires that I once had on an Eclipse. However, Big O offered me a set of their 90,000 mile tires. I have had no problems with them, other than a flat after the first year on a rough rock road access to a wilderness area. Big O replaced the tire without charge. I lost a few miles per gallon in efficiency going to an all-season tire, but traction has been quite effective for mountain driving. The ABS gives a nudge in a snowstorm on acceleration from a stop. However, overall road traction has always been good. I do avoid Forest Service roads with steep grades covered in ice. There are limits to traction with a front-wheel-drive, low-clearance vehicle.
  • Big O was always good from a warranty point of view; I know they used to replace tires from "road hazards" even when they were worn, and they may still do that. I'd be surprised about 90,000 miles though, in fact, I'd be amazed. On a Prius, you get wear upon acceleration, and wear upon breaking (with regen cycle), so tires are subjected to more forces and different forces than most cars. I too saw what seemed like an unusual number of flat tires--I had three one summer--but that may have been just the luck of the draw. But the original tires really did seem to be prone to picking up screws and nails. No flats yet on my new tires (Toyo)...knock on wood.
  • biomanbioman Posts: 171
    Just put a set of Michelin Energy Saver A/S on my 2010 Prius IV after 40K with OEM Yokohama Avid S33D's. Handling much improved and mpg's are up slightly but will probably get better. My final two tire choices were both Michelins, the A/s and MV4. I went with the A/S after dong a CBA and the savings on gas was the difference. If things continue as they have, for the first couple of hundred miles, I believe I made the right choice.
  • saz25saz25 Posts: 152
    I just bought a new Prius about 3 months ago. We live in the northeast, thus about to start winter/snow season.

    Should we consider snow tires? How does the Prius handle in the snow with and without snow tires?

    Thanks in advance for your comments.
  • Similarly, I have struggled with your issue in the Colorado mountains. I felt that the factory-issued tires were inadequate for winter traction. I have no place to store an extra set of tires and do not want to lose too much fuel efficiency. Therefore, I bought all-season tires. I lost 10 percent fuel efficiency, but gained a bit on traction. I simply drive 45 to 55 miles an hour on snow and ice to maintain good traction. Also, I do not attempt climbing Forest Serivce roads in winter.

    I have friends who endorse the Michelin X-Ice tires. eased-by-consumer-reports.html
  • Do any of you folks have experience with the new Michelin Defender tires?

    Is there a difference in the fuel effeciency?

    What about handling, ride, or noise?

  • exit56exit56 Posts: 9
    Going to get a set today at Costco ($70 coupon in effect until Wednesday).

    Did you ever get yours? Happy with them?
  • I still have not replaced mine.

    I was looking at them a few days ago right after we had some "freezing" rain that caused about 200 accidents in one rush hour morning.

    Mine are still serviceable, but the time for replacement is certainly getting close so any information you can provide would certainly be appreciated!!!

    Thank you
  • 63pro63pro Posts: 15
    I bought my 2010 Prius new because of one big thing--MPG. I couldn't be more pleased. I took off the wheel covers, changed to synthetic oil and consistently get over 55 per gal. I don't think the wheel covers have any bearing on mpg, but I do think I have noticed 1 to 2 mpg increase because of the oil. Oil changes are now at 10K instead of 5K on reg. oil. This is done with Toyota's blessing. I originally had OEM Yokohamas which did fine, but had to replace at about 40K. I didn't want to upset my mpg applecart, so I bought the same Yokos from Tire Rack. Now, nearing 70K, I think I am getting near to buying another set of tires. I thought I would go Yokos again because my mileage has been so good, I just didn't want to mess with anything that would cause my mileage to go down. However, I am kind of falling in love the the Michelin Defender XT Tire that also claims low resistance and has a 90K warranty. The tire is realtively new as I understand it, but have any of you had any experience with this tire? They will be on sale this coming month and that would put these tires in the same price range as a new set of Yokos. I live in Ohio and am retired, so in really bad weather I just stay home. However, the Yokos did fine in the snow as long as I drove like an old man and I'm OK with that. Any comments would be most welcome.
    Thanks, :)
  • capriracercapriracer Somewhere in the USPosts: 785
    You are going to take a hit in fuel economy if you change from the Yoko's.

    "LRR" is a relative term and it means relative to other tires with the same treadwear and traction levels. The Michelin Defender has a very very high treadwear rating - and while it will be better for fuel economy (maybe a lot, maybe a little) than other tires with high treadwear ratings, it will not match the Yokohama's for fuel economy.
  • I own a 2011 Prius with 195/65/15 on factory rims.  The tires are bald and I can swap with a 2010 Matrix with 205/55/16 on steel wheels and new tires
    - I will be losing my factory Prius rims so I want to make sure this will work?
  • capriracercapriracer Somewhere in the USPosts: 785
    IF you mean "fit", then yes, they'll fit.

    If you mean "get better wear", then you haven't told us enough information.

    Tire wear is very highly dependent on the tire - and there is a rating on the sidewall that gives you an idea of how well a tire wears. It's called the UTQG rating. Google it and you find out what it means and where to look for it.

    So if you only want to get better tires, changing tire size isn't he way to go. Select tires with a higher UTQG rating - and you can get them in your current size. Just be aware that you will be sacrificing fuel economy to get that better wear.
  • biomanbioman Posts: 171
    To follow up on what capeprius mentioned, you must also consider whether the tires you'll be replacing the OEM's with are LRR tires. I am positive that the original tires on your Prius were Low Roll Resistance tires. Switching to anything else will seriously cut in to your MPG. My advice, check out Michelin Energy Savers A/S. Purchased them at Costco and they actually INCREASED my average MPG. Another thing to consider, in this case, is switching from 16" to 15" tires and the effects this will have on your odometer and speedometer.
  • Are the Michelin Energy Saver tires good on ice and snow. I just purchased a 2012 Prius and I haven't driven during the winter months yet. People have warned me about poor traction. I bought the car used with Bridgestone tires. Would the Michelin Energy Savers be good for traction?
  • capriracercapriracer Somewhere in the USPosts: 785
    According to Tire Rack, an Energy Saver is a summer tire - so by definition it would NOT have good snow or ice traction. They don't even bother trying to rate those properties.

    If you want a more complete picture, look at the surveys on Tire Rack's website
  • According to the recommendations of my friends in the mountains, you should be buying Michelin X-Ice Winter Tires.
  • biomanbioman Posts: 171
    I can't understand the Tire Rack recommendation because my Energy Savers say M + S on the side walls. M + S ratings mean Mud-Snow or All Weather.

  • capriracercapriracer Somewhere in the USPosts: 785
    That's because you have the "Energy Saver A/S" - which is a different tire.

    Now that you have the proper name, go look at the ratings.
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