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Discussion Starter #1
A little background, when I bought my Caymen S it had 4 year old MPSS with half their tread. The tires slipped a lot on the street and were horrible on the track. I installed Bridgestone RE-71R and was very happy with their grip and all round performance. When they wore the tread off I tried Nitto's NT-05 because they were half the cost of the RE-71R's. Unfortunately, their on track performance was also only half as good. I read a few good reviews about Firestone Firehawk tires, most reviews called them underrated and great performers. Knowing that Bridgestone owns Firestone and they share technology and manufacturing materials and techniques, I thought that they would be a good tire to try.
On the street they are quiet and responsive, they don't follow the ruts in the highway so they are easy to drive. Yesterday on the track, they came up to temp and reached maximum grip much more quickly than expected. The first session out, I had left the pressure a little high (42 PSI) and they still performed extremely well. Braking was excellent, turn in was very sure and predictable, less push than even the RE-71R on corner exit under power. I lowered the pressure to 39 PSI hot for the rest of the day and the grip was even better.
If these cost the same as the RE-71R'S, I would same they are worth it. The fact that they cost $100 per tire less makes them an outstanding value.
 

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A little background, when I bought my Caymen S it had 4 year old MPSS with half their tread. The tires slipped a lot on the street and were horrible on the track. I installed Bridgestone RE-71R and was very happy with their grip and all round performance. When they wore the tread off I tried Nitto's NT-05 because they were half the cost of the RE-71R's. Unfortunately, their on track performance was also only half as good. I read a few good reviews about Firestone Firehawk tires, most reviews called them underrated and great performers. Knowing that Bridgestone owns Firestone and they share technology and manufacturing materials and techniques, I thought that they would be a good tire to try.
On the street they are quiet and responsive, they don't follow the ruts in the highway so they are easy to drive. Yesterday on the track, they came up to temp and reached maximum grip much more quickly than expected. The first session out, I had left the pressure a little high (42 PSI) and they still performed extremely well. Braking was excellent, turn in was very sure and predictable, less push than even the RE-71R on corner exit under power. I lowered the pressure to 39 PSI hot for the rest of the day and the grip was even better.
If these cost the same as the RE-71R'S, I would same they are worth it. The fact that they cost $100 per tire less makes them an outstanding value.
Fascinating. I'm looking for a 19" tire replacement for the OE PZeros street tires and was thinking new Conti Extreme Contact Sport, but these might be the ticket. There is no 235/40/19 size available with these tires so I'd have to do a +1 sizing, but at a (guessing) $300/set saving vs. the Conti it could make a lot of sense.
Questions:
-Any downside to these tires on the street that you can see?
-Comparing them to the RE-71, Would you say they are the equal or a bit less? If less, where do they fall short?
-Can they handle a 25 minute DE session w/o getting greasy?

Many thanks for your comments, Brian.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I had no issues in 75˚ ambient running two 20 minute sessions back to back. I think that they were a little more quiet on the street, but the RE-71R's were almost to the cords, so that's not really a fair comparison. We have another HPDE in 3 weeks. I'll post more info then. But my initial impression was that these grip every bit as well as the Bridgestones did.

I have driven 2 other cars with Conti's and they do not grip nearly as well as the Bridgestones nor the Firehawk 500 tires.

With 19" wheels, you could be running 35% profile tires.
 

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I had no issues in 75˚ ambient running two 20 minute sessions back to back. I think that they were a little more quiet on the street, but the RE-71R's were almost to the cords, so that's not really a fair comparison. We have another HPDE in 3 weeks. I'll post more info then. But my initial impression was that these grip every bit as well as the Bridgestones did.

I have driven 2 other cars with Conti's and they do not grip nearly as well as the Bridgestones nor the Firehawk 500 tires.

With 19" wheels, you could be running 35% profile tires.
I'm trying to stay close to the stock OD F&R, so I don't think a 35 series tires will get me there besides having the X73 , it's nice having a little more sidewall.

BTW, I got pricing from TR today on the Conti Extreme contact sport---in 235-265/40/19 sizes: F $240, R $290. Including shipping, that would put the price differential at nearly $480 on a set delivered to my front door.
 

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I'm trying to stay close to the stock OD F&R, so I don't think a 35 series tires will get me there besides having the X73 , it's nice having a little more sidewall.

BTW, I got pricing from TR today on the Conti Extreme contact sport---in 235-265/40/19 sizes: F $240, R $290. Including shipping, that would put the price differential at nearly $480 on a set delivered to my front door.
When I replaced the OE Goodyears, I went with 245-275/40/19 MPSS. They fit the wheels perfectly, keep the F&R OD ratio the same, and keep the stock understeer (if that's a concern). Just something to consider when shopping sizes / cost.

Tom
 

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Brian C in Az - Can we get an update on your experience? I'm looking at putting a set of these on myself for track use on a 981 Boxster S w/PASM, PTV. Are you using stock 19" rims? What size tires are you running?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'm very happy with them. I am running 19" wheels in stock sizes. They are much quieter than the Michillens and Briadgestones when driving on the freeway to local events. They do have less ultimate grip on track, but it is such a minor difference that I don't mind. What I really like is their transition from grip to slip. They recover well, they are smooth during recovery. They do give excellent feedback as I approach their limit. They are fun, fun, fun.
The price is fantastic and they are not wearing nearly as fast as the others. I'm guessing that I will get triple the events unless they heat cycle out on me and start to slide more.
I've added Joe Toth's front splitter and side skirts recently. They made a noticeable increase in front grip. Now the car is gripping better on turn in (8 mph higher entry speed on a corner that I previously entered at about 68 due to understeer, I'm now easily entering at 76 mph) , better than with the Bridgestones and Michelins without any aero. Once I get my rear wing sorted out, I'll easily increase that entry speed even more because the car is now oversteering.
 

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Just installed some Firehawk Indy 500's on my 2014 (981) Boxster S for track use. Went with 245/35-19 and 275/35-19 on stock 19" rims. Replaced the stock Goodyear F1 Asymmetric 2's. I'll give you an update in a few months after I put a few DE's on them.
 

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We have had really good feedback on the new Firestone. In Europe this tire was sold as a Bridgestone Potenza and brought into the US market as the firestone. While I would not say they are a good track tire nor are they as good as the Pilot 4s they are a good DD performance tire. If I can help with anything let me know,
 

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I had my first track day on these tires today. 245/35-19 front and 275/35-19 back on 981 Boxster S, PDK, Sport Chrono, stock 19" rims.

To be honest, it felt like I was driving on ice skates all day. They seem to perform a bit worse than the worn down stock Goodyear F1 Asymmetric 2's I replaced. Cornering was slippery. Stopping seemed sub-par as well.

It may be that I'm learning to drive more at the edge of grip each time out, but it seems like I was at the edge of grip in every corner today. I do push the car quite a bit more than most drivers on the track based on my experience - this was my 8th track day, and I'm one of the fastest drivers in the our PCA blue-solo run group.

I'll drive them until they're dead, but will probably go to something with better track grip next time around. It will probably make me a better driver learning to drive on these, but I wouldn't necessarily recommend these for the track for intermediate+ drivers unless you really want to save a buck.
 

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I had my second track day on these tires today. After further consideration, I think track temperature has a lot to do with the traction on these tires. Ambient temps yesterday and today were in the low 60's. The track was relatively cold during my runs yesterday and the tires had poor traction. Today we I had a run at the end of the day on a warm track, after two back-to-back enduro (1 hour) races in the prior run groups, and the grip was pretty good - on par with my Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2's. When the track cooled the grip started fading. So, I think these would probably be good on warm track days. My times today on the warm track were on-par with my times a few weeks ago with my other tires.
 

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On my 06 CS, I want to change from MPSS 235/265-40 (OEM 18 wheels) to the Firestone Firehawk 245/275-40. I have the 5mm spacers in front and 17mm in rear.

My question is whether I'll have any front tire rubbing (mainly on u-turns) with the 245-40 since the car is lowered (1.5") but have the 5mm spacers.

Thanks
 
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