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Old 08-11-2013, 07:27 PM   #1
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Do low profile tires add performance

I have a 2013 LS and I like the look of the big fat stock tires but I was wondering if they have as much performance value as the low profile tires the RS and SS have.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:16 AM   #2
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I have a 2013 LS and I like the look of the big fat stock tires but I was wondering if they have as much performance value as the low profile tires the RS and SS have.
You almost always see taller sidewall tires for performance applications. Not 100% sure for cornering/road courses (I would assume they add more grip), but they are always preferred for drag racing.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:32 AM   #3
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Low profile is better for handling, whereas a taller sidewall is better at the strip.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:55 AM   #4
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A smaller sidewall will NOT increase grip, but will increase steering response due to a stiffer sidewall.
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Old 08-12-2013, 11:30 AM   #5
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A smaller sidewall will NOT increase grip, but will increase steering response due to a stiffer sidewall.
This!
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Old 08-12-2013, 12:11 PM   #6
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A bunch of variables go into a tire producing grip. Rubber compound, inner construction materials, width, sidewall profile, air pressure, etc.. all are ingredients in producing grip.
Without going to the extreme of something like a 25 series tire, a lower sidewall tire will help your car handle better.

As in the case with your street Camaro with factory size tires; The standard 18" tire setup with the taller flopier sidewall will not handle as good as something with a lower sidewall that does not roll over on itself as easily when cornering.
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Old 08-12-2013, 12:40 PM   #7
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A bunch of variables go into a tire producing grip. Rubber compound, inner construction materials, width, sidewall profile, air pressure, etc.. all are ingredients in producing grip.
Without going to the extreme of something like a 25 series tire, a lower sidewall tire will help your car handle better.

As in the case with your street Camaro with factory size tires; The standard 18" tire setup with the taller flopier sidewall will not handle as good as something with a lower sidewall that does not roll over on itself as easily when cornering.
True, a bunch of variables go into making a tire, but unfortunately I need to correct you on this because it's not correct information.

If small wheels with big floppy sidewalls don't handle well, then why do Indy cars and Formula one cars have larger sidewalls? Doesn't that defeat the purpose by your information?

Tires that have smaller sidewalls are typically stiffer which does not mean more GRIP. Grip and steering response are NOT the same thing here. Stiffer sidewall tires will respond better when turning into a turn, but during the turn because of the lack of give in the tire, when you go over bumps during the turn which inevitably will happen with all or most turns, you'll find that the sidewall tends to upset the suspension more, giving the suspension more work to do. With a thicker sidewall tire, the tire has more give, absorbing bumps better, which will not unsettle the car like it would with a smaller sidewall tire which has no give.

Hopefully that clears things up, but at the end of the day you are right, there are variables. I'd rather take a low profile Toyo R888 than a huge sidewall Nexen tire for overall grip. Completely depends on the tire, but when you're talking about the exact same tire in the same width, the larger sidewall version has more grip.
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Old 08-12-2013, 01:24 PM   #8
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Actually, you only have half truth. We have run Indy Lights and Formula Atlantic cars, so we have the background to properly correct you.

Indycars and F1 cars dont have big floppy sidewalls. An F1 car has 13" wheels with a taller sidewall. However the construction of that taller sidewall is way different then any tire you could imagine on the street. The F1 and Indycar pull over 4gs and make more downforce than having a second Camaro plopped on top of your car. The level of physics in these cars is way more intenese then what people will see in there car, even if it was a fairly moded car.

You have to compare apples to apples, not oranges. Comparing a Toyo R888 to a Nexen is not doing so. Niether is comparing a big heavy Camaro with street tires and no downforce to a Indycar.

If you had a Camaro with the stock 245-45-20 Pirellis on it and compared it to a Camaro with 245-55-18 Pirellis on it, you would find the car with the lesser sidewall will handle better.
The reason for this is the slightly stiffer sidewall will help keep the tread of the tire contacting the road as oppossed to rolling over on the sidewall and the sideall contacting the road. You never see a F1 tires sidewall rolling over on itself..

As far as grip versus steering response goes: You cant have any steering response without having the needed grip to generate that steering response.
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Old 08-12-2013, 01:29 PM   #9
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We're talking about low profile tires here dude, look at the thread title.

OP: I think you got your answers, I don't think this debate between myself and Group A is going to much good if I'm honest, so I'll leave this as my last post. Contact me if you have any further questions over PM
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:08 AM   #10
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Not looking to get into a pissing match of witts with anyone. But, I think we made the point clear.

If you absolutely need any further clarity you can call us and speak to our race team engineer who manages the race car program.
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Old 08-13-2013, 12:18 PM   #11
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Typically a lower sidewall will increase handling response or how fast and sharp the tire turns in. So it will fill faster when compared to the same tire in a taller sidewall. One other factor as a general rule the lower profile you go the wider the tire becomes which will increase grip.

It is true that one brand low profile tire may have more reinforcement so that it would be stiffer than another. Also there are XL load rated tires which also increase sidewall stiffness.

The question asked is "Does a low profile tire add performance?". Yes its adds handling response which is a performance enhancement. It does not necessarliy add more grip.
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Old 08-13-2013, 12:20 PM   #12
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Low profile is better for handling, whereas a taller sidewall is better at the strip.
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