Defender vs energy saver and size

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Fuel Economy' started by gadgets2sell, Mar 23, 2014.

  1. Scallywag

    Scallywag Member

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    Ah, crap, yes. Very sorry about that; dhanson865 got it right.
     
  2. CooCooCaChoo

    CooCooCaChoo Active Member

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    My take on Defender vs. Energy Saver is as follows:

    Costco has the tires listed:

    Defender XT $377.96 for four tires. 90k mile warranty. After savings.
    Energy Saver $409.96 for four tires. 65k mile warranty. After savings.

    Cost paid to run tires per mile:
    DXT: $377.96 / 90k miles = $0.0042 per mile
    ES: $409.96 / 65k miles = $0.0063 per mile

    But since ES is touted to save up to $400 in gas over the life of the tires at $3.75 per gallon, you have to that that into account as well. Since gas prices have been in flux lately, you have to calculate the number of gallons it will save you instead: $400/$3.75 = 106.6 gallons.

    Lets say that your Prius is in well maintained condition and gets exactly 50mpg and you drive the entire life of the tire:

    DXT: 90000 miles / 50 mpg = 1800 gallons
    ES: 65000 miles / 50 mpg = 1300 gallons

    But we have to take the ES' added mpg savings into account:

    DXT: 1800 gallons
    ES: 1300 - 106.6 = 1193.4 gallons

    Recalculating mpgs based on this:

    DXT: 90000 miles / 1800 gallons = 50 mpg
    ES: 65000 miles / 1193.4 gallons = 54.47 mpg

    So with ES you get 9% more mpg, or save 9% on the cost to run the tire per mile:

    DXT: $0.0042 / mile
    ES: $0.0063 / mile * 0.91 = $0.005733 / mile

    Energy Saver tires still cost more to run per mile than the Defender XTx, even with the savings.

    9% difference in MPG can be realized a number of ways besides the tires as well:

    - Maintenance (spark plugs, tire pressure, air filters, MAF cleanliness, etc.)
    - Driving habits (at or below speed limit, coast early, etc.)
    - Driving routes (long stretches of highways vs. city streets, hills vs. flat, etc.)
    - Traffic

    My money is on the Defender XT.
     
  3. Mr. Luigi

    Mr. Luigi Junior Member

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    Hi Folks,

    I own a 2011 Prius and its OEM tires have very little tread left (Goodyear Assurance-30,000 miles). Time for new tires. I am running P195/65R15. I live in North Carolina. We have much more rain than snow. However, it does snow here!

    There are more tire threads on Prius Chat than I've had hot dinners in the past 10 years. But, I have narrowed down my choices to three tires:
    • Michelin Premier A/S
    • Michelin Defender
    • Michelin Energy Saver A/S

    My understanding is that the Premier is Michelin's newest tire and that it aims to hit the sweet spot between the Defenders and Energy Saver A/S. The Goodyear Assurance tires have got nice fuel mileage. I have averaged about 50 MPG overall during their life. But, 30,000 mile tread wear was disappointing. (I am a very conservative driver in the Prius...always driving for maximum MPG. Tire pressures were religiously kept correct. They have worn evenly. That made 30,000 miles even more disappointing.)

    Fuel economy is important to me. So is handling. So is tread wear. I don't need the tires to last 100,000 miles! But, 30,000 miles is not acceptable.

    Given this information, does anyone have thoughts on which of the three Michelin's to go with. (I have always been pleased with the Michelin tires I have bought and don't want to potentially poke the bear and leave the brand.)

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

    Mr. Luigi
     
  4. dhanson865

    dhanson865 Expert and Devil's advocate

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    The Defender has the longest tread life and comes in a size that is optimal that being the 205/60/15 which has a narrower tread width than the 195/65/15. The Defender wouldn't be my first choice but if you are pricing it be sure to ask about the price of the 205/60/15 variant. FWIW both are listed at 19 pounds.

    The Energy Saver A/S is going to give the best fuel economy but you'll have to get the 195/65/15 as they don't make this style in the 205/60/15. It's the lightest of the 3 at 18 pounds.

    The Premier A/S is the best at braking when tread gets low, I suppose I'd consider this if the Energy Saver A/S was out of stock temporarily but it more expensive. I'd focus on the 195/65/15 as the 205/60/15 in this style is heavier and doesn't have the narrower tread width seen on the Defender. The 195 is only 19 pounds, the 205 is 20 pounds.

    So if you are price comparison shopping look for

    Energy Saver A/S 195/65/15 vs
    Premier A/S 195/65/15 vs
    Defender 205/60/15
     
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  5. Mr. Luigi

    Mr. Luigi Junior Member

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    Thank you dHanson865!
     
    #45 Mr. Luigi, Mar 16, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2015
  6. Mr. Luigi

    Mr. Luigi Junior Member

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    As I read this thread the first time I didn't take note of how generous dHanson865 has been with his time...helping others with his posts.

    So here is a double shout-out to you dHanson865. Well done. :)
     
    #46 Mr. Luigi, Mar 16, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2015
  7. dhanson865

    dhanson865 Expert and Devil's advocate

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    you are welcome, I guess I should have said that the last time I made this decision around Jan 2014 I went with the Energy Saver A/S even though the Premier A/S just came out. The Premier is better in some ways but I didn't want to pay the extra up front for worse gas mileage and I didn't want to pay the same for the Defender for worse gas mileage even if it would last longer.

    But really you'd have to be doing math down to the pennies per mile level to notice the difference between the three. You wouldn't kick yourself too hard on picking any of them.
     
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  8. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Titanic Social Director

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    Typo, right? "narrower" should read "wider"?
     
  9. Janstheman

    Janstheman Junior Member

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    If you choose any Michelin tire you will not be sorry. Tread wear will be excellent. We put a set of Defenders on our 2010 Camry Hybrid before we sold it. Before it would slide if there was a drop of water on the highway.
    The Defenders are quiet and have grip. Plus they were seventh in the snow.
    I have a set of HydroEdge Michelins on my 2004 Prius. My only complaint is they are noisy. But traction in the rain id great. They just go. They don't make them anymore but the nearest to them is the. Defender. Spend the money and get the Defender. When my HydroEdge tires finally wear out, that's what I will have next. Good luck and happy tire hunting.
     
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  10. Mr. Luigi

    Mr. Luigi Junior Member

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    Thank you janstheman!!!
     
  11. dhanson865

    dhanson865 Expert and Devil's advocate

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    No, the Defender 205/60/15 has a narrower tread width than the 195/65/15. Go to tirerack or the michelin websites and look at the specs.

    The section width is wider but the tread width is narrower. It's unusual and why I noted it.


    Michelin Defender


    195/65R15
    91T SL
    19 lbs.
    5.5-7" Rim Width Range
    6"Meas.Rim Width
    7.9"Sect. Width
    7.4" Tread Width
    25" Overall Diameter
    832 revs per mile

    205/60R15
    91T SL
    19 lbs.
    5.5-7.5" Rim Width Range
    6" Meas.Rim Width
    8.2" Section width
    7" tread width
    24.7" overall diameter
    842 Revs per mile
     
    #51 dhanson865, Mar 18, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2015
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