For all-out, race-tire-like performance, reviews recommend the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 over any other tire. This extreme-performance tire is based on Bridgestone's Formula One race tires for ultimate grip on wet and dry tracks. Experts and owners say it's a good day-to-day tire, too, delivering a fairly smooth, quiet ride on public roads.
It's expensive, though. Step down to the max-performance summer class and you'll find the top-rated Michelin Pilot Super Sport (*Est. $195), which wows experts and owners at a lower price and carries a 30,000-mile tread-wear warranty (the Bridgestone has none). Note that neither of these summer-only tires can be driven on snow, ice or in near-freezing temperatures. If your performance car needs a more durable tire with remarkable grip in all weather conditions, reviewers are most impressed with the Bridgestone Potenza RE970AS Pole Position (*Est. $185) performance all-season tire, which carries a 40,000-mile tread-wear warranty.
TireRack.com experts test the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 head-to-head against three other extreme performance summer tires on wet and dry track surfaces as well as on a variety of public roads. We also found almost 200 owner reviews at TireRack.com, and a handful at 1010Tires.com. SaferCar.gov, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's website, posts government tire ratings for traction, tread wear and heat resistance.
1. Tire Rack
The Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 edges out the Yokohama Advan Neova AD08 in this test. The Bridgestone offers the most comfortable ride and a slim advantage in wet traction, but the Yokohama wins for dry traction and steering response. The Dunlop Direzza Sport Z1 Star Spec and Kumho Ecsta XS take third and fourth place.
Review: Testing the New Extremes of Extreme Performance Summer Tires, Editors of TireRack.com, May 21, 2009
2. Tire Rack
With nearly 200 owner reviews posted, the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 is the favorite extreme-performance summer tire among customers here. A link leads to a chart that ranks all tires in this category.
Review: Bridgestone Potenza RE-11, Contributors to TireRack.com
In government tests, the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 earns the highest score of A for heat resistance and an A for traction (the highest score is AA). Its low tread-wear rating (180) is normal for a summer-only performance tire.
Review: Tire Rating Lookup, Editors of SaferCar.gov
Ten customers rated the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11 here when we checked. It averages more than 4 stars out of 5 for performance on dry and wet roads, handling and noise. Its lowest ratings are for snow grip, comfort and tread wear -- not surprising as this is a summer-only tire that emphasizes performance over all else.
Review: Bridgestone Potenza RE-11, Contributors to 1010Tires.com