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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking to build a track wheel/tire set up for my 2014 Cayman S. My car is a six speed manual. When I say track, I mean, about 6 autocross events and maybe two DE events a year. I'll do most of these events in NM, AZ and CO (dry and hot). I'm a solid intermediate, who wants to get a little more performance out of the car via R comp tires.
I have a set of 18" 987 wheels in the garage right now left over from a previous 2006 Cayman S, and I would like to use them. They are F. 8x18 ET 57 and R. 9x18 ET43. I have 7, 8 and 15 mm spacers at my disposal if needed. As for rubber, here is what I am looking at:

Option 1: Bridgestone Potenza RE71R, F. 235/45 R18, R. 265/45 R18. Lots of guys running these at my local AX events. This is also one of the rare performance tires offered in an 18" OEM width and a 45 aspect ratio (AR) that will keep the overall diameter the same as what was delivered with the car. I like the ground clearance this provides, how they fill the wheel well, but worry about the AR and any associated loss of handling that might come with it. Of note, I have seen base Caymans wearing 18" wheels using the same size tires. This is also the recommended size for my car for winter tires.

Option 2: Hankook RS4, F 245/40 R18, R. 275/40 R18. I've used this tire on previous cars, and really like the way they wear/hold up to abuse. I was also very happy with their manners during DE, but have never used them for AX. I like that the width will provide a little larger contact patch, and hopefully increase grip. This set up is a little smaller in overall diameter, decreasing ground clearance by about .7 inch from the OEM 19" setup and the one described above.

Option 3: Bite the bullet. Sell the 18's, and get a nice set of light weight 19" wheels and mount one of the above two tires on them. All in, i could probably get this done for about $3k.

BTW, my daily drive tires/wheels are a set of OEM 19" wheels with Michelin AS3+ rubber in 245/275 40 R 19. Pretty good compromise for year round rubber in the southwest.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Any option will work. Based upon how you've posed the question, it doesn't matter which tire you choose. Once you have the seat time your understanding of tire requirements will change and you will answer your own questions.

18" wheels and 19" wheels have 4-5 choices each at roughly OEM widths, OEM heights, and OEM height stagger. The 18" selections are slightly cheaper than the 19" selections. Your options are RE-71R, Trefeo R, NT-01, A052, RS-4, and AD08R for the 18". Your options are RE-71R, PSC2, R888R, RS-4, and AD08R. RE-71R and RS-4 are the most affordable options, with the RE-71R being more competitive at the sake of durability compared to the RS-4. The AD08R is the only other 200TW tire; the others are streetable track tires.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Any option will work. Based upon how you've posed the question, it doesn't matter which tire you choose. Once you have the seat time your understanding of tire requirements will change and you will answer your own questions.

18" wheels and 19" wheels have 4-5 choices each at roughly OEM widths, OEM heights, and OEM height stagger. The 18" selections are slightly cheaper than the 19" selections. Your options are RE-71R, Trefeo R, NT-01, A052, RS-4, and AD08R for the 18". Your options are RE-71R, PSC2, R888R, RS-4, and AD08R. RE-71R and RS-4 are the most affordable options, with the RE-71R being more competitive at the sake of durability compared to the RS-4. The AD08R is the only other 200TW tire; the others are streetable track tires.
After reading a few other threads, I think I have talked myself into making the 18" wheels work, and mounting the RE71 in 235/265 45 R18. I'll get them mounted up before my next DE event in late Oct (followed by an AX in early Nov), and will report on their performance soon after.
Thanks!
 

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After reading a few other threads, I think I have talked myself into making the 18" wheels work, and mounting the RE71 in 235/265 45 R18. I'll get them mounted up before my next DE event in late Oct (followed by an AX in early Nov), and will report on their performance soon after.
Thanks!
Good choice. I ran the smaller aspect ratio (35 on 19s) and did not like the 0.7" lower - scraped the chin coming into my driveway, smaller look did not fill the wheel wells. Went to OE size on the next set of tires and loved them (RE71s).

You'll really like the RE71s for both AX and DE. Get as much negative camber as possible to help tire life on DE. I got -1.5F at my local Firestone shop on OE parts. I also swapped the tires on the wheels after 4 track days to move the wear to the opposite shoulder - worth the cost to get 4 more days.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Good choice. I ran the smaller aspect ratio (35 on 19s) and did not like the 0.7" lower - scraped the chin coming into my driveway, smaller look did not fill the wheel wells. Went to OE size on the next set of tires and loved them (RE71s).

You'll really like the RE71s for both AX and DE. Get as much negative camber as possible to help tire life on DE. I got -1.5F at my local Firestone shop on OE parts. I also swapped the tires on the wheels after 4 track days to move the wear to the opposite shoulder - worth the cost to get 4 more days.
Thanks for the advice on the camber settings. I just sprung for the lifetime alignment Firestone offers. My shop is run by an enthusiast who not only helps local AX'ers with tires, but also with alignments.

How does that alignment effect daily driving?
 

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smart move going 18's much cheaper and more selection
my car came with 20's but first purchase was re-71r 18"
cost $3100 delivered
 
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