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Hi everyone,
I decided to get a GT86 to use as my everyday car! I’m picking it up on Sunday, when a bit of snow is forecast (I’m in UK)
It’s a 45 min drive from the garage to my house.
It’s a 19 plate with 5400 miles. It comes with the stock primacy tyres.
If I drive this car sensibly, (as I always do with my cars in this type of weather) is it still likely to slide around? I’d be doing like 20mph on corners? RWD is completely new to me.
As it’s February already, I don’t know if it’s worth putting winter tyres on or not?
Thanks in advance for any advice! :)
 

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Congratulations.
Mine came with a set of winters, but after 3 years I never used them so just sold them a few months ago. Now, of course, I can't even get the car off the drive because of 2 inches of snow! Main roads tend to be kept clear unless it is really severe, so I wouldn't worry. I might leave the traction control on though.
 

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Slow is generally safe, regardless of the tyre. So it should work out fine.

But I will still add a comment. There is a basic rule which RWD drivers have internalized so they won't spell it out and be surprised when people completely ignore it: If the steering angle is large there should be little throttle.
A lot of throttle on a tight and slippery roundabout will make the rear break out, also at low speed. Turning on to the main road and accelerating too soon will cause a drift. Stability control will catch it, but maybe too late and maybe you're already reacting the wrong way.
Better tyres will make the threshold higher.

So slow will be good enough but in a few cases you will need a basic idea of what is slow in the circumstances.
 

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Like above i don't have winter tyres. When we had a couple of inches of snow my car was left at home as a) my drive is on slight slope upwards b) the street itself slopes upwards with an s-bend to leave my street only to go down a hill to reach the first road that is gritted. I have no chance of getting it down to that road much less get it back again lol

What I would say though is even in the wet the gt-86 does slide at much lower speeds on mini roundabouts on the stock primaries than any of my other cars have ever done. It's not too much throttle as it's kept constant. The approach speed required is just lower in comparison and that's the primaries. ****, they still have 4mm left on them 5yrs 40k later as they are just too hard/eco friendly lol The continental sport 5s on my other car last 10k tops lol
 

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In my book proper age of use for tires should be 3 years. By 5 rubber compound noticeably deteriorates and hardens, even if there is much thread left.
And that's the beauty of proper winter tires, to not mind weather (within reasonable bounds) and keep driving car even over ice/snow. Obviously summer tires of any model shouldn't be used in winter/cold, even if it's cleaned up tarmac, not actual snow/ice. At very least all seasons should be considered, there are plenty of good ones.
 

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Snow wouldn't put me off in that scenario, but I'd be looking for a route that minimised any hill-climbing or descending; that's where you and everyone else might come unstuck.

Just leave the nannies on, and use high gears, smooth shifts and drive at moderate speeds and you should be OK.
 

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There can always be emergency that may require to drive route that includes them, there can be case when "winter beater" replacement car is unavailable due something broken or it being in service, coincidentally at same time when one needs to drive somewhere. Finally as my GT86 is car chosen/bought for driving fun/enjoyment, i see no reason to not drive it in winter too. Especially so, that summer trackdays are replaced for me with something equally fun, ice tracks :). All that is needed, proper for season, tires. And are there inclines/declines en route, doesn't matter. One will pay way more on other car related expenses like fuel & insurance anyway, and tires are one of most important parts of any car, if not the most important. So why not get good tires and still enjoy car even in winter? :)
 

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In my book proper age of use for tires should be 3 years. By 5 rubber compound noticeably deteriorates and hardens, even if there is much thread left.
I don't believe that anymore. Compounds are evolving you know and then it still depends on the amount of sun they get. A rubberband can become brittle in less time while there are other rubbers which last forever.
 

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If part of that age is in proper conditions presales storage, i wouldn't count that in obviously. Recall watching youtube vid with tests on that, that even 3-5 years just stored in shop tire didn't degrade much for that to impact much tire properties (IIRC degradation were <5%). Still, it may help to use that fact to haggle price down for such "old" tire set for some good deal on that :).
Noticeable tire property aging starts when it gets actually used, goes through different weather ambient temps, heatcycles depending on use, flexes many times during driving, then slowly some micro defects accumulate, some additives to rubber for specific tire properties dissipate.
Will tire turn undriveable after three years? No. But i expect at least 30% of it's grip when new gone. Would i like to drive on 5 years old primacies as mentioned? Heck, no (even if i felt fine using them less then that, have nothing against them except too expensive price for them to be next set). If thread is still of legal depth, then in such case i'd sell them off used to someone caring more about absolute savings, less about car handling/tire grip, and use that money to partially finance purchase of new tires. This way i'll always be on well performing tires .. well, no, as when i started participating track days, no tire set ever lasted for me more then season even thread depth wise, so after purchase of this car in most cases i'm free of doubts to get new tires or not :). But even before, with previous generic family hatchback i kept at policy of changing tires after three seasons use (or years, as i switch between summer & winter tires) or when thread is down to legal depth, whichever arrives first, and never regretted it, of always having good tires on my car with all the expected handling/performance from that.
BTW, Michelin always advertised that their tires, while more expensive then competitor's in similar class, usually retain more grip when noticeably worn (usually means less then 2/3rd of thread depth left). But doesn't it assume, that it's common for majority of tires at that wear level to have lot of grip gone? Even if though there is still far to go down to minimum legal thread depth ..
 

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To put this into context

I have owned the car for 3.5yrs and they have always required less approach speed at roundabouts in the wet compared to my other cars. If I go slightly faster into the roundabout the front goes and that has nothing to do with it being rwd if you are not accelerating/decelerating

So at 1.5years old It was not the age of the tyres and the geometry is fine :)

The stock tyres are just not wet/damp weather tyres and that's fine with me as I drive appropriate to the conditions or in the case of snow not at all lol

I am totally in favour of using winter/summer tyres as I used them in previous cars but as I work alot closer to home I haven't invested in a set for the gt86 as I can walk 40mins to the office if needs be so not essential to have the gt86 drivable :)
 

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To put this into context

I have owned the car for 3.5yrs and they have always required less approach speed at roundabouts in the wet compared to my other cars. If I go slightly faster into the roundabout the front goes and that has nothing to do with it being rwd if you are not accelerating/decelerating
have you tried lifting off as you turn in, or even light braking? get the front to bite. the rear won't step out at reasonable speeds unless you throttle too early. it is the safe set up, which can be dialled out.
 

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Understeer has lot to do with stock alignment of twins, as it's considered to be "safer", and zero front camber really makes front plow. No wonder that in most "performance alignments" for twins among main focuses is to up front camber, to even more then in rear, then opposite as in stock alignment.
Not sure if i agree on less approach speed compared to other cars bit though. At least i noticed that (probably due less roll, which may impact subjective feel of how much pushing car in roundabout is ok) that yes, it slipped more .. and yes, after thinking about that i was going ~ 15kmh faster then normally in "normal" cars before. When i slowed down due subjective feel before, whereas in twin i went at same speed as in straights in roundabouts too. Or taking to other extreme, one time when i had to drive cargo miniwan which rolled immensly, i went even 20kmh slower then "norm" and still felt like if it is near to tip over.
Worth checking at speedo, if car really is driven slowly and still looses grip .. or it just seems so :).
 

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I am more than capable of knowing what speed I am doing thank you.

Yes I am going slower.🙄
 

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If you look through the steering wheel it is the round thing in the middle :)
Apart from safety , if you're not confident on the HP then it's not going to be much fun. That alone could be a reason to swap.
 

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FWIW, I had stock primacy's on the front of my GT86 until I changed them last year. They were the tyres that were fitted to the car when it left the factory in 2013. They were on the car for 7 years. They were absolutely fine. I only had to change them due to them finally getting to their wear limit.

As for the winter-driving advice, others have already provided everything you need to know. I've made well over 10 journeys in the snow this winter alone, as our area doesn't get treated/gritted. The car will slide as previously described, however, the traction control has proven to be brilliant for me... even getting me up hills that other vehicles on our streets completely failed at. With only around 2.5mm tread on the rears, this is absolutely incredible for a RWD car to achieve. To get up the snowy hills I just had to put it in 2nd (or 1st), feather the throttle and let the traction control do the work.
 

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the rear won't step out at reasonable speeds unless you throttle too early. it is the safe set up, which can be dialled out.

Indeed, it won't. Including the 86 currently, I've run 13 r.w.d. cars of different makes each for a substantial period over the years, and the 86 is the first not to exhibit lift-off oversteer. I'm still trying to decide if I prefer the 86's handling trait.


There is no question that it is very safe on the road, especiually on unknown roads, when you can press on quite hard knowing that the car won't bite you if you misjudge a bend and enter too fast (like my Triumph GT6 and 911 did). But on roads I know, or away from the public highway, the understeer on lift-off entry is frustrating - on previous cars I used to use lift-off oversteer to turn the car into the corner, now I have to patiently wait until the car is rotating before opening the throttle. On occasion I've made trail braking work, but it requires the right bend and a subtle touch; brake too hard and i'm back to understeer.


Ideally I'd have a switch that allowed me to instantlly dial in 2+ degrees of negative camber at the front on bends I know!
 

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Ideally I'd have a switch that allowed me to instantlly dial in 2+ degrees of negative camber at the front on bends I know!
i added camber bolts and a thicker rear arb. more planted front end, tested on my benchmark midi-roundabout afterwards ;)
 

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Well, for those "roads you know" and for track in general, most common suspension tuning way for these cars is to add more front camber. Most do around half degree more negative front camber then rear, for "performance alignment". It deals lot of understeer out (car still is understeer, but closer to neutral, easier to adjust with gas in fast corners to both directions, less fight to guide front into corner then with stock alignment).
Get camber bolt set, go for alignment, telling techs to max out front camber (but if still even and without toe getting out-of-whack).
 
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