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Discussion Starter #1
This was the first year for me AutoXing and I have done pretty well considering I am new to the sport. I have been entering my SVT Focus in STS class with a set of lightweight 17" wheels wrapped with my stock rubber. The ContiSports have done very well for me but I am buying a nearly new set of tires from a friend of mine that are on wheels identical to mine that I am running on now. They tires are Kuhmo ECSTA MX which I have heard are very decent tires for Autox use, but the tires are a bit smaller then I would have gotten if I had bought them new. They are 205/40/17 instead of the stock tire size of 215/45/17/. My question is which tires are going to be better for my last AutoX of the year? I know that the Smaller sized Kuhmo's will give me a little better gearing while accelerating, but I don't know if they change in tire size will decrease my traction going around corners. Let me know what you guys think.
 

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In my opinion the tire sizes are so close that given identical tire makes and construction you won't notice any measureable difference. With the Kumho MX tires you WILL notice a difference in performance due to the grippier compound versus the stock Continentals; even though the MX tires are fractionally smaller overall they more than make up for the smaller size with a construction and compound that are more suited to autocrossing, so your times should improve somewhat. Now, if you did what I did this year in SCCA autoX with my SVTF, you'd notice a BIG difference; I went with aftermarket 16" x 7" wheels, 42mm offset rather than the stock 49mm, and the Falken Azenis tires in size 215/45-16. I'm driving the highly-modded BMW guys nuts in DSP and I'm currently in 2nd place for the year-end championship with a bone-stock SVTF except for the wheels and tires!
 

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I'll concur w/ the above post.
 

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Well, I just attended a PCA event today, Porsche Club of America, and I think I pretty much am done with those tires. After almost 17,000 miles and a handful of AutoX events this year, they are toast. They did very well though but I am excited to try the Kuhmo ECSTA MX's this coming weekend in the Detroit region SCCA closing event. I would love to get a set of 16" wheels with some Azenis but I don't have any extra cash to throw down on another set of rims and tires. I am already going to have 3 seperate sets of wheels and tires after this weekend. Thanks for you input guys.
 

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Bill: I consider this year a "development" year with the SVTF, and after doing a LOT of research I decided that one thing the SVTF needed was smaller wheels for a little more acceleration, especially on one of the autoX venues we have here that's rather small. 16" is the smallest size that will fit over the front brakes, and as I had enough cash to buy some ASA JS1 wheels (Back in March they were on sale from TireRack) and the Azenis tires or just some 17" Hoosiers without the wheels, I decided to get the 16" wheel/tire combo, and I'm very happy with this combination. I decided not to enter STS as that class now here in North Texas is RULED by late 80's Civic hatchbacks that are modded to the max under the STS rules and weigh about 700 pounds or so less than my car; I also am not going to mod the SVTF very much as I really like it the way it is. DSP has less entrants and is more relaxed as the BMW's I'm running against have about the same power-to-weight ratio and I'm very competitive with them. VictoRacers are a good choice; I ran with them two years ago with my "old" 2000 ZX3 and I won the local "H" Stock championship with them and I liked them a lot. I just recently traded some 16" stock ZX3 wheels for some 17" stock SVT wheels and I'm thinking about buying some VictoRacers or Hoosiers for 2004; depends on the finances after Christmas!
 

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Bill.... where were you able to get the Kosie's??? I'm looking to possibly pick up a set. What is the offset on those? 45?

I'm running 40mm offset 16x7's right now, and I'm just not a fan of them.
 
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