Michelin Energy Saver tire quandary

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by jcgee88, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. jcgee88

    jcgee88 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2010
    181
    23
    0
    Location:
    Maryland Heights, MO
    Vehicle:
    2009 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    I have 35K miles on my 2009, and as expected the Goodyear
    OEM tires are reaching their wear out point. That's good, in that
    I never liked those tires anyways, so now I can replace them.

    The two decisions on this that I have been struggling with are: which
    tire brand/model to go with; and whether to stay with the original size
    (185/65/15) or go with a "plus zero" wider size (195/60/15).

    Based on various Priuschat posts lauding the Michelin Energy Savers,
    as well as the excellent Tire Rack tire test report, I have pretty much
    settled on the Energy Savers. The other tire I strongly considered was
    the Nokian eNTYRE. The latter sounds good on paper, but not having
    seen any real world reviews and/or posts on that tire ultimately swayed
    me to the Energy Savers. In other words, the Energy Savers are a
    known quantity, while the Nokians are not. [Our new Prius v also
    came with Energy Savers.]

    With regard to the second issue, since the OEM 185's tend to
    wander during windy and/or wet conditions - leaving me feeling
    not really safe - I decided to go with the 195/60/15's. I sense
    their wider track should handle better, and that the Energy Saver's
    almost 5% better mpg over GY will supersede any loss due to
    the 195's extra weight/width/friction.

    After seeing that the 195/60/15 size Energy Savers were not
    being offered on various web stores, including Michelin's own
    website, I started to suspect that that size had been discontinued.
    In fact, I am wondering whether Michelin might even be winding
    down the Energy Saver product line, in anticipation of a new LRR
    product. That wouldn't surprise me, since the Energy Saver line
    has been out for several years now.

    Anyways, I talked to Sams Club about special ordering the 195s,
    and in addition to the 195 no longer being in their catalog, the
    Sams' tire store rep called her Michelin factory contact right
    there in front of me. Then, she told me that the 195's were "not
    available." I eventually called Michelin directly, and their rep
    told me that the 195/60/15's had not been popular and that that
    size had been discontinued.

    It does appear that there is still inventory of 195/60/15's out
    in the market if you look hard enough. Tirebuyer.com, for
    example, still lets you order them. The question is: should I
    buy the wider size I want, knowing that they are discontinued
    and that if I need a replacement tire in the future I might not
    be able to get it? The Michelin agent tried to discourage me
    from buying the 195's for that specific reason. Or, should
    I give up on the wider size, but still go with the brand and
    model that so many other Priuschat posters like, namely,
    the Michelin Energy Saver A/S (in size 185)?
     
  2. jdenenberg

    jdenenberg EE Professor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2005
    3,177
    1,228
    1
    Location:
    Trumbull, CT
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    I used the older Michelin "energy savers" (MVX4+) on my 2004 Prius (185/65HR15) with good results. They improved the handling while maintaining or slightly improving the MPG. They held up 50,000 miles.

    I have used Nokian tires (WR, then WRg2*2) with even better results (in MPG and winter traction) for the next 110,000 miles (and currently). The eNtyre's should perform as well or better, but with a slight sacrifice in winter traction (about the same as the Michelins).

    I would just stick with the OE size and get the Nokian's or the Michelin's. Either would be great tires for normal use, but if you get a lot of snow/ice, consider either snow tires or the WRg2's instead.

    JeffD
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. jdcollins5

    jdcollins5 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2009
    5,131
    1,303
    0
    Location:
    Wilmington, NC
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    III
    I went through about the same scenario as the OP with Sam's Club and the Michelin Energy Saver. I ended up buying the Michelin Primacy MXV4.

    I have mixed opinions on these tires. They greatly improved the comfort, handling and quietness over the OEM Yokohama Avid S33D. I did lose about 4 mpg from a 48 mpg average. Others on here that have installed the MXV4's have reported similar mpg loss.

    Michelin list these tires as a 10 rating on fuel economy which is the same rating as the Energy Saver. Tirerack does not list this size tire, 195/65R15, as LRR but they do on the 16 and 17" versions.

    So, there is a very good thread on here by F8L that gives a lot of good feedback on different tires available today. You really need to do your homework and decide what is important to you.
     
  4. jcgee88

    jcgee88 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2010
    181
    23
    0
    Location:
    Maryland Heights, MO
    Vehicle:
    2009 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Actually, I did read F8L's thread, plus many others, plus the
    various tire articles and reports (like Tire Rack's). In fact, that
    research is what led me to conclude that the Energy Saver
    195/60/15 A/S is what is best for my situation.

    What I am pointing out in my OP is that because Michelin
    unexpectedly withdrew the 195/60/15 Energy Saver A/S
    from the market, others doing this same research will end up
    painting themselves into a corner just like I did. To my
    knowledge, no one had posted that Michelin has stopped
    the 195/60/15 Energy Saver size. Now I am on the horns
    of a dilemma: get the tire brand/model I prefer but in a size
    smaller than I want; or buy the size I want from a tire
    manufacturer whose product I don't like as much as Michelin's.

    Right now I am leaning toward getting the Michelin 185's. <sigh>
     
  5. jdcollins5

    jdcollins5 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2009
    5,131
    1,303
    0
    Location:
    Wilmington, NC
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    III
    Yes, you are the first one that I have seen post that Michelin has stopped producing the Energy Saver tire in our size. Others have posted that these were not available and Michelin would not even give a time frame for when they may be available. I was told by Michelin that they were still being produced in Europe but could not say when they would be available in the US.

    So, thanks for posting that you were told by Michelin that this size tire was no longer being supplied.
     
  6. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    19,011
    4,056
    50
    Location:
    Grass Valley, CA.
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    Model:
    N/A
    The problem here is that even the 185/65/15 sized Energy Saver AS is difficult to find. I've stopped including them in my recommendations for this reason.

    From a performance and money saving aspect I recommend the Continental ContoProContact with EcoPlus. At $80/ea. an 80,000 mile warranty and good performance this tire is hard to beat.

    For summer tire folks then the Bridgestone EP100 is a great choice as it is one of the LRR tires that has been tested, and is fairly inexpensive at $85/ea. and often has a $70 rebate available. Currently the rebate is down and the tire offers a 50,000 mile warranty so it does not last as long as the ContoProContact and it does not perform as well either. The EP422 is the all-season variant.

    Some folks like the Goodyear Fuel Max but I'm not sold on this tire due to construction complaints. The price and longevity is great, however.

    If money is no object then the Nokian enTYRE should be on your list as should the Yokohama BlueEarth or dB Super E-Spec. Each of these tires push you into the $110-$125 range and rarely offer rebates. Performance is great, however. These tires also offer the best choices for the ultimate in sustainability, environmental responsibility, and promote the use of new sustainable technology AND are produced in environmentally responsible factories. This is the main reason I went with the dB Super E-Spec despite the extra cost.
     
Loading...