I replaced mine just to avoid the chance of bubbling the potenza's. I think I paid a little under 700 for a set of Yokohama AVS Sports from tirerack. I only put 3K miles on the potenza's before I replaced them. Now they are sitting in my basement.
Apparently the RE040's sidewall has a tendency to bubble under high load. It happened to several people here, but not alot I think. I had my tires replaced at 11K or so miles with S02 Pole Position. Much better tire for $170 a piece (much cheaper now). But the life of these tires are pretty short, as I now start to notice the tires are getting pretty worn down, and I am only have about 10K miles on them.
I'm about to replace mine, probably 1 or 2 months from now. I have about 20-25K miles on my car, however I use winter tires from November to March, so I'll probably end up getting 18-20K miles out of them. They were good, but I'm replacing them with Potenza RE730's which run about $125-150 a pop. I'm looking forward to having some decent tread again! ;-)
The stock GS-Ds are at the rack for $96. They get the job done if you're looking for a good price, but I'm thinking the S0-2 or S0-3s myself in another 5,000 miles. The Goodyears are holding up well at 10K with about half the tread left.
I have a question about tires bought online. Where do you get them installed at? It seems to be kind of odd to get them installed at a tire shop where you didn't buy the tires from. I want to know how you guys do it?
My local Goodyear shop told me they have people ship tires directly to their shop all the time. They're very much aware they can't compete with the rack, and told me they'd be more than happy to install them if I shipped the tires directly to their shop. And why wouldn't they since they at least get the business for the installation?
I've done a lot of research on tires I've narrowed it down to two favorites in terms of traction/treadwear/value in that order. Normally, these three aspects don't compliment each other but these two tires are are well rounded in each respect. Having autocrossed several times, I can say I have a good idea of what a performance tire should offer.
- Bridgestone Potenza RE730
BEST all around tire. Great traction...If I were to rate the Potenza S-02 Pole Positions a 10 in traction, then the RE730's deserve a 9.5. What I love about these is that they also don't screech at the limit, but produce more of a low rumble/howl with very forgiving breakaway characteristics. Noise wise, they are relatively quiet but some people have found them to get a bit louder as they wear down. Also, they have a built in rim protector. Treadwear: 300! That's amazing in a tire with this good of traction. And price is very reasonable at about $145.
Find more info here: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/bridgestone/bs_re730.jsp
- Kumhos Ecsta Supra 712
This tire is everything the RE730 and is a steal at about $100 a piece. They offer 95% of the traction that the RE730's offer and about the same in treadwear - 280. Can't beat that combination.
More info: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/kumho/ku_712.jsp
Believe it or not I do have over 47,000 miles on my original Pirellis. Although last time I got the car serviced they said I need to think about it soon. I live in California (so no snow or much rain) but I drive pretty cautiously. Still with freeway speeds and stuff I am shocked at the lifespan given that everything/everyone says these Z rated tires would get like 20-25k only.