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2019 QV Rosso Comp
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm going to do this review in 2 parts, so as to give the tires time to break in.

PART 1

Background

My used QV came with Michelin PSS with some sort of weird treadwear issue after 7000 miles. Fronts had 7/32, rears had 3/32, and they were not driven particularly hard. Worse, I swapped from my all-seasons (DWS06+) to the PSS as it warmed up, and the PSS spun like mad in situations where the DWS06+ hooked. Michelin, to their credit, warrantied the rear set.

It's worth noting that I'm not the only person to complain about PSS performance below 4/32 - there are a handful of BMW, Porsche, Miata threads with the same issue. They almost get universally shouted down and told it is driver error.

On to the review!

Continental ExtremeContact Sport 245/35ZR19 // 285/30ZR19 on dark 5 hole OEM wheels, installed by Discount Tire. Install was great, took them 38 minutes!
The tires have rim protection, which is absolutely amazing. It's been a few Giulias since I have scraped a rim, but it was not a fun experience. I wouldn't trade performance for rim protection, but it's a nice bonus.
Tire Wheel Vehicle Car Automotive tire


I've got about 200 miles on the tires, so I feel that the initial greasiness has worn off. From the absolute get-go, day one, these had more grip than my worn PSS. Race mode pulls with the PSS would cause a sudden breakaway, RPM surge, and spin at about 6000 RPM in 3rd gear or above. The car as a result "felt fast" but went slow. Those of you who have a QV understand the rocket-like acceleration once you pass the turbo lag. This gave me that feeling again, after it disappeared with the PSS.

I drive a mountain road commute with a twisty section that "fast" traffic takes at about 65mph, and "really fast" traffic takes at 70-75. At 75mph these tires were comfortable and composed, with plenty of lateral grip. On the downhill, a JDM S13 decided to breakaway from me. I wasn't comfortable going really hard on the downhill with brand new tires, but at 70 (about +5mph over "fast" for me) the tires were comfortable and planted. No drama. The "speed limit" on this hill (whatever those words mean, am i right) is 45mph.

The primary area of critique is in the initial turn-in. For moose-test type maneuvers or small, sharp inputs, there is a slight but faintly noticeable decrease in sharpness. After playing with tire pressures and doing the "autocross" test (chalk mark sidewall to tread, go drive "the course", i.e. the twisty backroads where the nasty HOA I don't like is located, with valves open, then see if you under or overinflated the tire) I improved this feeling. With tire pressures at 36.5F/34R cold, the tire felt nearly indistinguishable in turn-in from the Michelins. I reduced tire pressure by 0.5 psi in the front and 1 psi in the rear (36F, 33R) when I got back based on where I had worn the chalk. Again, not autocross, but definitely spirited driving with tight turns and some high speed sweepers.

Once you are at speed or on more track-like turns, the steering is sharp and linear and the car is on rails. It's clear these were optimized for smooth track-style driving vs absolute sharpness all the time. I'm not the expert, but that's probably a good thing.

Tire Wheel Automotive tire Synthetic rubber Light



The truly small decrease in sharpness comes with good ride quality and absolutely great lateral grip. I'm also getting 22-23mpg on my commute (~65mph, no traffic, 38 miles). This is a patently insane number. From an objective "I don't track my car, but want the best tire I can get" perspective, the Contis are a compelling argument. Some people say the MPS4S is sharper, some say the Conti is sharper. Just depends on the review. For road driving, the slight decrease in twitchiness and bump steer (while it will take some getting used to) is probably a good thing.

Price is a big deal with these tires, as is availability. I would certainly try Michelin again - the resolution to my issue was amazing and super easy. But these are significantly cheaper than the PSS, and from reviews should be good down to the wear bars. I think PSS tends to fall off in performance as it gets below 4/32, and that means it's a "more expensive" tire from a number of miles perspective and an absolute perspective.


What next?

At the end of the summer, I'll re-review and compare to my DWS06+ (which is a fabulous tire).

If I were looking to go one up in performance level, I think the contenders are:

Advan AD08R
Bridgestone Potenza Sports (something is up with these, they seem like "sponsored")
(*) Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar 3.

The Eagles would have been my choice if I could have gotten them in a reasonable amount of time. If I am in any way unsatisfied with the performance of the contis at the end of the summer, I'll switch to the Eagles for next summer. If you track the car, I would recommend the Eagles or the Advans - but I'm not going to track. I want a razor-sharp road car than can grip, and for that the Contis seem excellent so far.
 

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2018 Giulia Ti Sport Q4
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Great review, but keep in mind the chalk method is only meant for getting track ready. Normal use will wear the tires more evenly, where as track use wears the outer tread blocks. You may be under inflated and end up wearing the out edge prematurely. Run it for a while and check tread depth across the width of the tire.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Great review, but keep in mind the chalk method is only meant for getting track ready. Normal use will wear the tires more evenly, where as track use wears the outer tread blocks. You may be under inflated and end up wearing the out edge prematurely. Run it for a while and check tread depth across the width of the tire.
This is a great point. May put the extra psi back in to keep the steering as crisp as possible.
 
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I'm running these also and generally pleased. I used Contis (DW) years ago on a couple different vehicles with good results. Yes, they weren't as sharp as Michelin PSS or PS4S, but I swear the dry grip was at least as good, wet grip superior, comfort comparable (honesty irrelevant), and less expensive. I've never kept the same set of tires long enough for treadwear to be an issue, except Pirelli PZero which were unbalanceable after 6k miles. Can't speak to track use. Only aggressive daily driving. The Contis work well for me.
 

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For additional reference, about 6 weeks ago I took my car in for 4 year maintenance and the last service under warranty at Foreign Cars Italia in Charlotte. Can't say enough positive about the service experience there, so that's for another discussion. I was given another newer Giulia as a loaner for a few days. It had the same stock Pirelli P7 all seasons as mine came with from the factory. I was shocked by the differences in driving the newer car compared to mine, 4 years old with 18k miles. Driving primarily on I-77, which is either silky smooth or in bad shape due to continuous construction, the loaner seemed to wander and need constant correction. It was comfortable but otherwise unpleasant. I got back in mine with the Continentals, and it was rock solid stable, comfortable, and better in every way dynamically. Made me completely satisfied with my choice of the Contis which I had mounted two weeks earlier.
 
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