Run-flat, self-sealing, PAX tires for Minivans



  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    It wasn't a typo, since pax does translate as peace. The piece/peace of mind aside was a bit of word play.


    Does that little singular piece of datum clear things up? (gawd, I had that word).


    Steve, Host
  • luckylouluckylou Member Posts: 308
    Point taken.

  • user777user777 Member Posts: 3,341
    the shop where it was taken could not remove the tire and replace it with another. wondering.


    didn't i read a post that said effectively this is what would be done, if replacement was required...

  the information on the michelanman website and it will be clear than in cases of tire must be inspected, maybe to determine if the inner ring has been compromised?


    if you don't have the equipment to dismount the tire from the rim to inspect the innards of the tire, what else are you going to do but replace everything as a unit?




    i would agree with the poster - the company also wants good experiences for early adopters...but also...perhaps they might want some real-world damaged tires to inspect...
  • scottybscottyb Member Posts: 83
    According to a number of posts, you may be able to install EX wheels and retain the TPMS.


    I may know someone that is interested in trading brand-new OEM EX wheels and tires for touring PAX wheels and tires.


    If you are interested, you can email me at the address in my profile.
  • brightness04brightness04 Member Posts: 3,148
    Reading that Road&Track article alone, you'd think none of the conventional runf-flats could support SUV weight, and only PAX can do it. In reality, there are mini vans fitted with run-flats on the road for years. 4 PAX tires weighing the same as 4.7 conventional tires, what a great 6% weight saving off 5 conventional tires! Except isn't that 14% more rolling/unsprung mass? whereas the weight saving in sprung mass is negaligible for a car that weighs 3000-4500lbs. Where's the comparison to 4 conventinal run-flats?


    Then, there's the Tweel. What a brilliant idea, except for road noise and ride quality issues . . . the same issues that made Dunlop's pneumatic tire patents such a great success over a hundred years ago!


    Further proof that journalists are paid to act dumb and gullible. Like Thomas Jefferson once said, the less newspapers you read, the better informed you are.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    No buying and selling on the boards please.


    Steve, Host
  • txcheeseheadtxcheesehead Member Posts: 6
    I wasn't going to argue with the dealer if they were going to replace the tire under warranty. Would I expect it, not necessarily, but since there wasn't any other damage to the vehicle, they may have decided it was a road hazard. I wasn't writing my post so much to talk about them replacing it under warranty as much as how well the PAX tires performed under a real tire failure situation.


    Hope that helps.

  • txcheeseheadtxcheesehead Member Posts: 6
    The dealership carries a tire and rim assembly in stock. (I believe all dealerships are required to stock them.) Since the PAX tires require special equipment to replace the tire, perhaps they feel at this early stage it is more expedient to replace the tire and rim assembly together until more dealerships and tire stores have the proper equipment. The rim itself was in good shape and could have been used again. It had a scrape on the side, but not enough to cause a problem using it again. I suspect the tire and rim assembly will be sent to Michelin or Honda to be examined.


    Hope that helps clarify.

  • txcheeseheadtxcheesehead Member Posts: 6
    You make very valid points.

  • msullivanmsullivan Member Posts: 2
    Michelin replaces with a new rim each time. No chance of metal fatigue.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I think it's because the shops don't have the tire machines yet that can dismount them.


    Pretty slim chance of metal fatigue.
  • gkkimgkkim Member Posts: 17
    "4 PAX tires weighing the same as 4.7 conventional tires, what a great 6% weight saving off 5 conventional tires! Except isn't that 14% more rolling/unsprung mass? whereas the weight saving in sprung mass is negaligible for a car that weighs 3000-4500lbs. Where's the comparison to 4 conventinal run-flats?"


    The weight savings doesn't just stop at replacing 5 tires with 4.7. It had to be less than 5 because that's what all the cars carried, just a starting point.


    Due to the new domed profile of the pax, which allows it to carry the more weigh while being the same size (or carry same weight while being a smaller size), there is additional weight savings. The smaller rolling resistance (compared to a 'regular' tire or a stiff side wall tire) allows it to carry more weight at the same fuel economy. The asymmetrical profile of the wheel also allows for some interesting design options with regards to brakes and support structure, creating more room. Instead of designing a car with 4 of the same tire/wheels, one may be so bold as to use different size wheels front vs. back to distribute the loads more efficiently. Rumor has it that the dynamic weigh issues took Michelin 18 months to resolve. How? I do not know.... I'd imagine as this "standard" progress, we'd see more immediate weight savings comparison. Dow provides the materials for the rubber ring support structure. They were able to shaved some rotational mass using a certain polyurethane.


    This is just the beginning. Things may get more interesting as materials construction techniques change for the new PAX system (wheel, support ring, tire, pressure monitors) to come. New automobile manufacturers definitely have to take the option to incorporate PAX designs into their car to reap the benefit of the weigh gain.


    After the TRX debacle where Michelin attempted to sell the technology as its own niche product, the largest opposition to the PAX is not from the consumer and auto manufacturers. It actually comes from Michelin's internal people who still still feel the lingering effects of the TRX failures. Thus the PAX was introduced as a potential "standard", openly licensed to the competition as a generic product.


    One of the by-product of the PAX system is apparently its quieter ride compared to stiff side-wall tires. Interesting.... And there really is no comparison between PAX, which is designed to mechanically hold on to a tire while deflated to one that doesn't (whether runflat or not). For all those what-if's about the PAX, consider the what-if about a conventional wheel/tire-beads that can be dislodged in an unlikely event of a blow-out.


    Michelin's own research shows that people are willing to pay more to keep a spare tire. They've prepared for a 4-5 year time period to overcome the initial resistance. And service and support is a big part of it. We've got a couple more to go before all the support infrastructure is in place. We're just at the leading edge of the discussion
  • corvettecorvette Member Posts: 10,202
    The runflats on the Sienna's seem to be wearing prematurely (10-15,000 miles). What is the expected treadlife on the Odyssey?
  • cccompsoncccompson Member Posts: 2,382
    Although others might disagree, with a treadwear rating of, I believe, 500, the PAX tires should be good for a great many miles (figure on 40,000 minimum and, quite possibly, as many as 60,000 or more) IMHO.


    The rating on the Sienna run-flats is around 240. The only guarantee one gets with such a low number is that the tire will not last long.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    The question today is whether the Odyssey Touring can use any other wheels. See:


    stickguy, "Ask Connor at The Tire Rack" #681, 27 Jan 2005 7:01 pm


    I thought the Touring suspension was tweaked for the PAX set-up, but that you could swap out the tires and wheels.


    Clarifications please.


    Steve, Host
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    I think it's terribly interesting that buyers are even bothering to discuss the feasibility of swapping out the PAX tires for conventional ones, considering the PAX tires are supposedly one of the 'benefits' included in the extra cost of the 'Touring' model.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Well, I have a set of mounted studded tires for my wagon, so there's other reasons for swapping out tires than just wider availability of all season tires.


    C'mon Stickguy, we won't bite :-)


    Steve, Host
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    True. But I believe there are NO winter tires available for PAX yet. The posts I'm referring to are people who just seem to want to dump the proprietary technology in-general...
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Yeah, you're right. I meant to say swapping out wheels. It's not unusual for people to seasonally run different size wheels on their cars, depending on whether they have the snow tires on or their summer dubs on.


    I suspect that suspensions in those cases are tuned for the 18" or larger wheels too (say, the FX45?).


    Steve, Host
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    Gotta love those unbiased press releases! I love the part that mentions Odyssey sales are up 22%. As if PAX has anything to do with this...
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    What is a negative to some is a big plus to others.
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    Yes, to the people they (selectively) interviewed. If you don't believe the complaints in this forum are typical experiences, why would you believe so regarding the praises in a corporate press release?
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Stickguy does bring up a good point though.


    Unless there's a TSB out amending it, the Ody Touring manual says to use the PAX system and if you don't the warranty may be void. Tirerack reps have been told by Honda USA that it's ok to swap out the wheels.


    What part of the warranty is at risk? If the tire placement warranty goes away when you swap the wheels, that's logical.


    If it's the tire pressure system, that's a gray area in my mind. Seems like it should be covered by Honda though.


    If someone swaps the wheels and then has suspension problems that aren't covered by the warranty, then that's a significant issue.


    Steve, Host
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Well, you seem to be the one who pours the most poison every time you get a chance and you don't even have an Odyssey with PAX!
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    I think the technology is doomed, and I'm entitled to my opinion. I don't have to own a boat to know I don't like sailing.


    And you didn't answer my question.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    You guys want to leave the cabin fever comments at the door and stick to the tires?




    Steve, Host
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I've already said that only time will tell.


    I just know that Honda and Michelin are very smart companies that don't leap into new technology blindly.


    I don't think ANY of know what the future will be for the PAX system.
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    Unless and until winter treads are available for PAX wheels, I would never consider a vehicle that is equipped with them.


    Also, it is my opinion that limited application (Ody Touring and R-R Phantom & maybe a few others) + priorative technology will NEVER = low cost, wide tread selection, and easy availability.


    I just found it amusing that in its press release, Michelin mentioned PAX and the general increase in Odyssey sales in the same paragraph. The words were parsed very carefully enough to be accurate and true, but the casual reader who is not familiar with the various Ody trim levels might think these statements are related. And they're not.
  • cccompsoncccompson Member Posts: 2,382
    I'm not sure what to make of Michelin's press release but it is good to see them publicly touting their commitment and taking positive steps to assure ready replacement when the inevitable flats occur.
  • scottybscottyb Member Posts: 83
    Honda customer service (in whom I have little confidence, but generally believe on this issue) told me that the Touring and EX/LX have the same suspension; only difference is that the front stabilizer bar of the Touring is 1 mm larger, which the customer service rep said was a very small difference; he suspected that the bar was larger b/c the Touring weighs more due to additional options.


    He was not aware of specific detriment to swapping wheels and said vehicle warranty would remain in effect, but that if a failure of some part was attributable to the change in wheels, Honda might not cover the repair.


    Michelin rep. said that if an EX/LX owner put PAX on and used an appropriate TPMS -- the rep gave the name of a few manufacturers, such as TRW (which manufactures Honda's) -- that Michelin would honor the 24 month warranty. Of course, I would want this in writing, since the warranty refers to the vehicle in which the tires were originally installed. Michelin was not aware of a detriment to using PAX on EX/LX but questioned whether Honda used a different suspension in Touring. (Honda customer service said Honda did not.)


    Honda's TPMS cannot be installed by the dealer b/c it has too many sensors integrated into the car.


    I haven't heard a reason why PAX, with appropriate TPMS, would not work in the EX/LX. Anyone know of a reason?


    And as long as the EX wheels can accomodate the weight of the Touring, I don't see why they wouldn't work in the Touring. Am I right?


    Honda also mentioned that changing the wheels could affect the calibration of the odometer, etc.


    Anyone know of anyone who has actually switched wheels or intends to?


    Unless someone knows better, I would want any switch acknowledged in writing by Honda so that if I needed to have repairs done away from home my warranty claim would not be automatically refused.
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    This would be another reason I would let other people be the guinea pigs for PAX. Michelin and Honda seem to know little about eachother's product, compatibility, or warranty coverage.
  • jim33jim33 Member Posts: 10
    The PAX tires can only be changed by certified Michelin dealers. About 200 nation wide. Honda cannot replace the tires. It takes special equipment to change the tire They can offer a replacement of the entire unit ie wheels tire etc. Cost of tire alone.. about $200. Chances of a flat near a certified dealer... not high. You cannot change out the tires. You need wheels and tires since the PAX rim is unique. Also, complicating the situation is that there is no spare or place to put one on the touring model.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    You can buy a tire changer for around $13,000 US that will do conventional and PAX tires (link). I suspect the PAX only changers are cheaper (link).


    These tools are being sold to tire shops all over, so I don't know why you think only a certified shop can change a PAX tire. If you want reimbursement by Michelin, then you may need to find a "certified" shop.


    Steve, Host
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    When I inquired, the (quite large) Michelin dealer in the next (relatively large) city to me said they have no plans to buy any PAX equipment. Not to many Tourings or Phantoms in western PA, I guess.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Ok, PAX tire changers are available to be sold to shops all over. I just don't think it's going to be an issue in a couple of years, unless Michelin pulls the plug on PAX. And that doesn't seem to have been their track record with other tire tech they've introduced.


    Steve, Host
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    "...unless Michelin pulls the plug on PAX. And that doesn't seem to have been their track record with other tire tech they've introduced."




    What tire technology (which required a special set of rims) have they NOT pulled the plug on?
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    I think Steve's point is that Micheline IS still manufacturing TRX tires-- even though they're hugely expensive for 15-year-old technology--and I can't imagine who's buying them....
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Thanks Heywood.


    Btw, I think the real profit center is the used car lot, but I wasn't about to step in on your other discussion, LOL.


    Steve, Host
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    Okay, I'll buy that. I guess we just have different definitions of what qualifies as "pull the plug".


    Who's buying them? Good question. Restorers?
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    I was going to mention that too, but figured I'd let them shoot down one thing at a time....
  • prcarpprcarp Member Posts: 3
    Anybody know what the tread life of the PAX tire is? 36,000 miles? 50,000 miles? With the limited availability, how much do replacements cost? The local salesman didn't even know (or didn't want to tell me.)


    I average about 20k /year on the main family vehicle and, putting the safety aside for the moment, what is it going to cost me in tire replacement over the course of say, 8 years. The Ody/Touring is a sweet penny to start out with but I would hate to be raked over the coals every two years.
  • heywood1heywood1 Member Posts: 851
    It's hard to know what the true cost of ownership or real-world tread life will be, as no Tourings have been on the road long enough to know yet.


    You might try and find a neighbor with a Rolls-Royce Phantom and ask him....
  • cccompsoncccompson Member Posts: 2,382
    Tearwear is rated at 500 - a high number. Though there is no guarantee, it is safe to assume they should last 50,000 miles.


    I've seen various figures thrown around as to cost but nothing defintive. They are not inexpensive - you might want to call a Michelin dealer to be sure.
  • weedshastaweedshasta Member Posts: 85
    The good news is that I have just gotten a rim for my 2004 XLE AWD on ebay for $147 + $20 s/h. Now I need to get a tire, but it seems that they are hard to find. Tirerack lists the Dunlop SP sport (which are on now) for $194 and the Bridgestone B380 for $212. Neither of these have gotten very good ratings, although the Bridgestone seems to be a little better than the Dunlop. Both seem to be getting only between 15,000 and 20,000 miles before they need replacing, which is ridiculous for a $200 tire. Anyway, does anyone have any comments on these two tires? Is there anything else out there? Are there any other sources I should be checking? Or maybe I should go for a non- run flat for my spare in the hope that the run flats might be cheaper and easier to find in the future. Can you drive for short periods of time with 3 run flats and one regular tire? Thanks.
  • vgrinshpunvgrinshpun Member Posts: 36
    I have had Bridgestone B380 tires for 42,000 miles on my Sienna LE AWD, and they are down to about 4/32 of an inch. The noise from them is now really unbearable, since about 20,000 miles. Did not feel like replacing them because there were no decent alternatives in 225/60R17 size. I like to keep pressure in my tires within specs, and checking it bi-weekly. I think that longer than usual mileage (as compared to other reports) is due to the fact that tire pressure was maintained at 35 psi all the time. My impression is that these tires are very sensitive to the correct pressure as far as their tread wear is concerned.


    The B380s were decidedly average to lower than average in performance (dry, wet and snow) compared to other all-season passenger tires at double the price of a premium passenger tire, and having a tread wear rating of 1/2 to 1/3 of typical premium passenger tire (240 vs. 500 to 700). The noise level was significantly higher than other premium passenger tires. Let’s sum up: less than average overall for 4 to 6 times the price per mile driven...


    So what is the selling point? Run flat operation. I have had plenty of real world experience in this regard. During less than 1 year and 10 months that I had the minivan, had punctured these tires 3 times. Two times out of three, could not use the widely advertised and vastly over-rated runflat feature. Both times metal objects which were lodged into the tire (piece of somebody's exhaust hanger and a sizeable bolt) could not be removed except using shop tools, because the tire is made so rigid to run without air. Could not drive because in both cases because these metal “studs” were protruding 1 to 1.5 inches out of the tread, making tire jumping and limping up and down. One of these damages was repaired for about $70.00 by a Toyota dealership, another required tire replacement at about $300 after shipping from tire rack and installing at the dealer (four days after the incident). The third damage was minor with tire loosing about 1 psi per week, so again no chance to use run flat feature. Based on my experience with these, I am convinced that the very same construction features that make tire rigid enough to operate without air makes them also more vulnerable to punctures. After all soft, more pliable tire is more likely to run over a metal object without lodging it into the tread, than tire so rigid, that it requires a special machine to remove / install it on the rim.


    Now the most interesting question: How was I able to get to the dealer if I could not run these tires flat (because of 1 to 1.5 inches protrusions)? I never believed in having four tires run flat or not without the spare, especially with availability problems for these tires and special machines required for installation. Within a month of getting the minivan in April 2003, ordered steel wheel + inexpensive tire form tirerack (about $100, including shipping) to use as a spare.


    To anybody who is not buying into the hype of novelty at absurd prices, and interested in replacing runflats with regular tires, a new Yokohama tire is coming to the market this month: Yokohama Avid TRZ (Triple Riding Zone, see for more info) is similar, at least in concept, to Goodyear triple tread tires. I ordered these at $116.00 per tire (including installation and all associated charges) from the local Yokohama dealer. Should have them installed by the end of the month.


    I love everything about the Sienna, and definitely do not regret getting the AWD model, but strongly dislike these tires. Toyota, being a company with conservative business and engineering culture should have never bought into this hype without clearly thinking it through.
  • weedshastaweedshasta Member Posts: 85
    Thank you so much for your detailed contribution. So to be concise, this is what I got:

          1. If I want to stay with the run flat, the Bridgestone seems like a better choice than the Dunlop, but I should be diligent about the tire pressure.

          2. If I want a non run flat for a spare, go with an inexpensive tire, but be sure to have it with me at all times.

          3. You personally are ditching the run flats altogether in favor of the new Yokohama that is coming out. I assume you will be getting 5 tires.

         So you had no problem driving for a few days with 3 run flats and 1 regular tire? Did you keep your spare in the back well or on the roof? I just had another thought. If one switches to non run flats and down the road they become more available, more reliable, and cheaper, there is nothing stopping you from going back to run flats for the third set of tires. They use the same rims. Something to think about. Thanks.
  • phil_lphil_l Member Posts: 7
    I was at a car show over the weekend, and ended up discussing PAX run-flats (on the Ody Touring) with a Honda salesperson. The salesperson claimed the tires could handle trailer towing, even when running flat. However, the PAX owner's manual at claims otherwise (see pertinent manual text below).


    Anyone have other experience of knowledge of run-flat tires and trailer towing issues?

    The idea of leaving a trailer at the side of the road while hunting around to find a tire and service center that can do the work isn't comforting. Of course, this would only happen at night, on a holiday weekend. In the rain.








    Operation of PAX System tires at low or zero air pressure with a trailer in tow, is dangerous and not recommended. If the low pressure warning indicator is activated when a trailer is in tow, stop, disconnect the trailer and do not continue to tow the trailer until the tire has been repaired and re-inflated to the proper air pressure. If the tire cannot be repaired, it must be replaced with a new PAX System tire, and inflated to the proper air pressure, before the trailer can be safely towed again.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Salespeople don't always have the correct info.


    Run-flats for trailers; now there's a good idea.


    Steve, Host
  • phil_lphil_l Member Posts: 7
    Well, I'm more interested in run-flat issues regarding the tow vehicle.


    In particular, it doesn't seem that current run-flat technology is suited for vehicles that tow trailers (even occasionally).


    A run-flat tire that requires me to leave the trailer at the side of the road while hunting down a new tire (within the rated 50 to 100 miles) doesn't seem to be terribly useful.


    But I'm curious what others have learned.
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