good to be back.....time for new tires..

I've been gone from this list for a long time. Here I am back after 3 years and I see a couple names I recognize. T. G. Lambach and mcbrue - diehard MB fans!
Anyways, I'm moving back to Austin from Chicago; with my car still in Chicago. The plan is to drive her down over Memorial Day weekend.
I do need 4 new tires. Any suggestions? Any opinions on the YOKOHAMA AVID V4s? And #2, my suddenly stopped blowing cold air sometime last summer - what's a good starting point to try and find the problem?
Thanks.
Sameer
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Re tires: I am liking the BF Goodrich Traction T/As I got for my '82 diesel coupe...$53 each at the tire rack. A friend put a set on his Audi Ur-S4 avant -- he likes 'em too. He spent a little more than $53 a tire, though. ;-)
Russ Maki
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Hi- Just purchased a set of Traction T/A's H-Rated and wanted to offer a little tip for anyone considering purchasing them: I learned about them at the Tire Rack which has great prices, but there's a $30 deliver charge added on top. I checked out a number of discount chains--Cosco's, BJ's, Sam's Club, Wal-Mart's, the first three at which you obviously have to be a member which carries an annual fee--and found that the tires were just a couple to a few dollars more each and adding to that the sales tax (which delivery places don't charge unless you are in-state), about $12, the price came out about exactly the same.
The principle benefit of ordering the tires through the outfit which mounts them is (and they were a special order as the inventory tires these places stock are made especially for the various discount chains): 1. You can get road hazard if you want it--I don't believe there is any place which will provide it on a tire you brought in or had delivered; 2. You are in a position to negotiate on the labor a bit as they are making the profit on the tires rather than the place from which you bought them; and, 3. You don't have to worry about transporting the tires or arranging delivery and making a separate payment to do so.
More specifically, for the four Traction T/A H-Rated tires, I paid $273.03 total. This included on all four tires: 1. Lifetime Road Hazard (nail in the tire, whatever, bring it in and they'll fix it or replace it free if irreparable up to 15% wear and pro-rate thereafter), 2. Lifetime Rotation, 3. Lifetime Balancing, and of course initial 4. Mounting, 5. Balancing, 6. Four New Stems, 7. Disposal Fees, 8. All Taxes; hence my full walk-out-the door expense. If I'd gone to the Tire Rack and brought them in to have them mounted and balanced, my total would have been about $25 more _without_ Road Hazard.
Sorry to butt in, but thought potential tire purchasers might want to consider my experience.
Finally, I would like to know how you're liking your Traction T/A's, wear and traction in wet/dry and how many miles you have on them. I've just a few hundred on mine.
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Hey, Doggie, that's a good price, all right. I had my tires mounted at Wal-Mart myself -- they just built a new automotive wing nearby, so the equipment is brand new. They charged $10 per tire -- Tires Plus, a chain that does business here in the Upper Midwest, wanted $80! Moreover, I tried to get a quote from them on Traction T/As and they told me they had been discontinued. Yeah right.
Anyway, my total w/o road hazard (Tire Rack *does* offer road hazard protection on these tires, I believe) came to about $296.

I've turned about 3,000 miles on them. I like the firm sidewalls -- they deliver "intimate" road feel, so you're aware of every bump, but it's the first tire I've had on my 300cd that feels like it belongs there. Bridgestone Turanza Revos didn't do that, nor did Dunlop D60A2s. The tires I just replaced, Sumitomo HTR 200s, weren't bad if you pumped them up around 38 psi -- but they lasted only 30,000 miles. Not terrible for a $37 tire, I suppose, but they clearly don't hold a candle to the BFGs.
The sidewall stiffness delivers great turning response and lateral stability -- the characteristics I like best. They aren't super sticky but quiet and very predictable. I find myself taking corners aggressively -- turning late, rotating the car and powering out -- for the fun of it. No other tire I've had on this boat inspired that kind of confidence in the past; the front end always felt a little mushy.
Still a little early to make judgments on durability, but I will say the outer edges on the front wheels are holding up very well -- no sign of wear at all. And I havn't been gentle!
Russ
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Geez guyz - you are driving Mercedes. So put Michelins on. You can run over curbs (or kerbs if you drive in the wrong lane and use tyres) and still go out and buzz down the road at any speed you choose and not blow them out and now try that with your el cheapo tires!
mcbrue frenchtiredly under the bridge in the trailer down by the river
96 S420
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I put a set of Michelin Pilot XGT H4 (195/65-15) tires on my 1987 300E. They ride very smooth and seem to be wearing fine. Paid about $85 each through a regular local tire shop. I think they sell them at Costco.
Having sold tires for Union 76 back in the 1970's . . . there are still only a few tire manufacturers. They will make the tire as cheap or expensive as the particular retailer orders them to. Not all tires are the same just because they are made by the same manufacturer.
Pete Cowper (1987 300E)
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Sameer, I just ordered a set of AVID H4s' from http://www.tirerack.com/ for our 560SL after hours of research. My next choice was the Bridgestone Potenza RE950 but the AVIDs are on special. Don't have the tires yet so I can't tell you more but the reviews on the AVIDs from customers at Tirerack were very positive in all major catagories, including price! Regarding your air conditioning problem, what model and year is your MB? Dale

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Go with the Michelin tires. They cost a bit more depending on where you buy them, but they are worth it. And you can always start with the ac problem down at the shop with Hanz und Franz. Jah und bring der bank president!
PS there are some others still around. That old wrench guy from NJ, the rich kid from NY, and the frozen guy from Canada for example.
mcbrue rollingquietly under the bridge in the trailer down by the river
96 S420
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Russ, Dale, McBrue...thanks for your responses. My car's a 91300SL by the way. And I gambled a bit by buying 4 used tires off ebay - they're the Yokohama V4s. Comes to $190 after shipping. Now we'll have to see what they are like once the mechanic gets them!
Sameer
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BF Goodrich may be owned by Michelin but the tires are produced in different factories. There are differences between the factories and the tires. Regarding wasting money on AOL - AOL is everywhere that I go so if I am in some strange part of the world where there is only one phone for the village, it will get me to AOL whenever I can get the phone. So I stick with it.
mcbrue under the bridge in the trailer down by the river
96 S420
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