Good street tires for 400+ hp

Discussion in 'Fox 5.0 Mustang Tech' started by oz, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. Greetings,
    I added a blower to my '91 and it made 488 hp SAE on the dyno. Needless to say, my 17 year old BFG ZR's won't grip.
    I want better grip - but not too good - as I have a stock crank, rods and pistons - so I don't want the car to hook like it's on slicks because I'd surely grenade it (they ran 6 dyno runs and didn't blow it up but I don't want to try).

    I have 17" x 9" Cobra R rims in the garage ready to put tires on but I don't know what to get. I'm looking at 255/45R17's all around.

    I'm considering Continental Extreme Contact DW as well as some from the Korean's (Nitto 555, Kumho Ecsta ASX, Falken FK 452, etc).

    Is spending the extra on 'traditional' brand (Michelin, Bridgestone, Good Year, Continental, etc) worth it or would I be just as well off with one of the Korean tires?

  2. Dot rated street radials?
  3. Nitto DR? They look like a street tire but hook well. Just don't expect 30000 miles on them. lol
  4. Traction is one of the most important things, especially with that much power.
    IMO, run drag radials. Realize that unless the pavement is fresh, warm and clean, even with drag radials the tires are going to spin. It's not a slicks type of feeling on the street.

    If you are truly concerned about blowing it, dial the power back a bit.

    I'd rather have less power and more traction than more power and no traction (because 488rwhp on regular tires i consider no traction).
    90lxcoupe likes this.
  5. toyo R888 if you drive in the rain, drag radials if you don't. I run MT drag radials on my 89 with 425 rwhp, and traction on the street is always an adventure....
  6. i like my drag radials on the street
    f8tlfiveo likes this.
  7. I loved my BFG drag radials on the street, except when it rained. I also did not like the rocks they picked up when they got some heat in them.

    Nitto and Toyo seem to have some pretty high tech drag radials these days. I'll probably be going to a set of them when I wear through the F1's I have.
  8. I'm running 275/40/17 Nitto NT-555Rs on the street I think ill be lucky to get 12,000 miles out of them with no burnouts.
  9. They are going to pick up rocks too.
    Ever see the price on nitto drag radials? Not sure what your size is, but the BFG's offer more traction for less money in my case. 18 inch nittos are like $300 a tire.

    I drove on mine a long time, just got a new set, but waiting to put my panhard bar on before i install them.
  10. Mickey Thompson Drag Radials FTW!!!
    90lxcoupe likes this.
  11. I'm lucky and have a wholesale account through my work and get nittos for under $100 worked out to be about $110 once installed. 315s will cost about $140 installed
  12. My BFG drag radials seem to be pretty good in the rain(straight line acceleration that is). The car seems to hold accelerating till I get to say 4000rpm then the tires break loose. I thought that was impressive in the rain.

    That being said I definitely drive my car different in the rain. You have to be a lot more careful with picking speeds in corners and accelerating out of them. I like to explain how my car handles in the rain by saying that the car wants to play even when you don't.
  13. Thanks for all the replies.

    A question about 'drag radials' - do they compromise cornering ability for straight line traction?

    I'd really like to come in under $150/tire for something in the 100 - 200 UTOG range. Drag radials are about UTOG 100 and more than $150 while something cheap like a Sumitomo HTR Z II is UTOG 160 - 220 for $90 each.
    Would I be unhappy with the cheapo Sumitomo's?
  14. Bfg's and nitto drag radials are good for handling in sizes 17 and up, some people have even been known to use 4 nitto dr's on road race tracks.

    I wouldn't even be considering anything but drag radials.
    IMO, price is irrelevant, you have money for 400hp, you have money for better tires. Foxbodies have no traction control or antilock brakes, the first time the car gets away from you because you tried to save money on tires you'll be kicking yourself.
  15. Good point... I think it will be the Nitto's then because I've sworn off BFG's - I also own a Mercury Marauder which has an odd size on the rear that was made by BFG and we started having supply issues about the time the car turned 3 years old. It's 10 now and after fighting with BFG for years trying to get them to make a run of our tire, I've given up. I've had wider Falkens and now Firestone Indy 500's on it. I put a set of raised white letter Firestone Indy 500's on my '69 even though I liked the sizes available in the BFG's better just because of the Marauder issue. Same rule for all 7 vehicles I own - no BFG's.
  16. Oh, what size will fit my 17 x 9 Cobra R rims w/ +18 to +20 mm offset?

    I was targeting 255/45's but Nitto 555R's don't come in that size.
    Will 275/40's fit on all 4 corners?

  17. Drag radials tend to run a bit wide, probably tight out back, rolled fenders and no quads is a possibility. In the front i'd say you have close to zero chance of going that wide with any type of tire.
  18. Thanks - What about 245/45R17's all around? Nitto 555R's come in that size and it's only slightly smaller diameter than the stock 16's (652.3 mm vs 653.9 stock)?

    I've read that 275's will work in back (may need to flip the quad shock over) so I'd like to try the 275's but if there is any chance that they'll give me problems, I'll stick with 245's.

    Thanks again!
  19. I went ahead and pulled the trigger on a set of Nitto 555R drag radials.
    245/45R17 front
    275/40R17 rear

    now i just hope the 275's fit... :scratch:
  20. If they're tight, no biggie. You got a bat at home? May just have to roll those fenders :)