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09-24-2006 05:51 PM #1
We need to buy replacement tires for our 05 Prius. What tires have Prius ownerd found to be the best for control in snow and mileage? The dealership service recommended a good all weather tire not snow tires.
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09-24-2006 10:04 PM #2
Ann, it depends on where you live. I use standard stock tires on my 2003 Honda Civic Hybrid driving around the San Francisco Bay area, and I use cable "chains" when I drive to Lake Tahoe in the winter. See my report on this at http://www.hybridcars.com/blogs/hybrid-commuter/chains. Short answer: Your dealer may be right - get some cable chains.
09-27-2006 02:26 AM #3
Ann - It does depend on where you live. If you rarely encounter snow, you can carry chains, as long as you don't mind the hassle of putting them on. A lot cheaper than snow tires, and don't cost you anything if you don't need to use them.
On the other hand, if snow is a more or less regular thing in your winter life, I would highly recommend the modern studless snow tire, such as the Bridgestone Blizzak and the Dunlop Graspic. They have about 75% of the ice traction of a studded tire with no "whining studs" road noise, and are not illegal anywhere at any time (many states do not allow studded tires, either at all, or, more commonly, outside of the winter season). Their snow traction is phenomenal. Put them on all four wheels.
I live 6000 feet above sea level in western Colorado, and I have used both of these tires on Civic Hybrids (we have two). The Dunlop is a little cheaper, and in my experience just as good. I believe that there are other companies that manufacture this type of tire (Scandinavian, I think) but I have no experience with them.
09-29-2006 05:54 AM #4
I have used the (I believe Firestone) Blizzaks before and they are very good in the snow. I have also used a snow tire manufactured by Vredestein, with models called: Wintrac, Snowtrac, and Icetrac. The Icetracs are studded so don't bother about them.
I drive mostly highway and I-70 in Ohio is usually windy and blown over with snow and ice in the winter.
The Vredesteins are made in Holland and the N. Amer. distributor is in Canada (as far as I know). The distributor told me that they are the no. 1 selling snow tire in Canada. The thing I like about the Vredesteins is that they are a highway tire (the rubber is harder than the Blizzaks) when the streets are dry, but are still an excellent snow tire when the streets are snow-covered. The Blizzaks don't handle as well at highway speeds and they don't last as long. The Vredesteins will go about 40K miles.
If you live in a place where you get snow-covered roads but they get cleaned up for a while before another snowfall, then the Vredesteins might be better. If your streets are generally covered with snow and ice most of the time, then the Blizzaks may be better.
The bottom line for me is: either tire would probably work well. I usually buy a second set of rims just so the tires do not have to be dismounted and remounted every year. This helps save the tire bead. Good luck.