Tired and Feathered: Performance Tire Sales Grow, Some Consumers Shocked

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A couple of months back, the man who asks, "Why can't there be more talk about buttsex on Jalopnik?" aka CTE blew a tire. Like, as in, it exploded. CTE, being the stylish man of means that he is, drives a Focus ZX3, which features a Blaupunkt stereo, crank windows and Pirelli tires that're some special half-inch size that also cost an arm and a leg to replace. Needless to say, when the time came to replace the tire, CTE wasn't a happy camper. But the tire companies and the automakers are loving it.

For example, the Scion TC can be had with Goodyear Eagle F1s all around. The bad news is that it costs about a seventeenth of the car's price to replace 'em. Our friend Chad used to work at a Big O in Napa and said that he used to have rich Napans showing up in their swanky cars, wondering why their tires hadn't lasted longer and wanting the cheapest possible replacement. One other downside to all of these new, playa-tastic tires we once blew a tire outside of Lordsburg, NM on a Saturday night. And nobody in town, or indeed, within a 50 mile radius, had a couple 245/50 R15s to get us on our way again. Now, imagine if you were looking for a set of 245/20 R24s or whatever. Good luck, Funkmaster.

Still, it only spells growth for the tire industry performance tires are the one expanding area in what's otherwise a somewhat stagnant market. The tire & wheel area at SEMA has gotten so ridiculously huge it's threatening to swallow the rest of the show like Dom DeLuise after a four-hour hunger strike. And tires are the easiest change you can make to improve your car's handling. Even a set of modest performance tires can make a massive difference over rock-hard all-season tires. And, of course, we can't discount the love the ladies have for the dubs...


Sporty tires jazz up cars, but cost burns hole in wallets [USA Today]

New Red Smoke Tires Introduced for Drifting [Internal]