2002 Dreamcruiser/Turbo - New Tires

My boys inherited this car from their grandfather. It’s in mint condition, 43,000 miles - but it’s not an SUV. I want to upgrade the tires. (205/55/R16) Goodyear Eagle LS2 come standard, but we’ve been having problems with the rubber pulling-away from the center cap and leaking air. I’ve read that these tires don’t wear well. They’ve been removed, cleaned, and resealed twice. I’ve been told that this is common with PTs. I’ve also been told that new tires won’t rectify this. Regardless, I want to buy new tires for the car - making it as safe as possible for my kids. We live in snowy Ohio so I need a good all-season tire.

Any thoughts on making this car more of a road-warrior?



For snowy ohio ( I’m from Wooster ),if you don’t want goodyear, I like;

Continental ContiExtremeContact
Contineltal ContiWinterContact
BFGoodrich Traction T/A
Dunlop Signature
Dunlop WinterSport
Republic Ensign
Republic SnowTrakker

For multi-weather traction , But not ONLY traction ( ie; keeping them on the car year round for many years ), You’ll want to see space between the tread blocks and some degree of zigzag in the channels.

My personal first choice, multi-weather, the BFG traction t/a.
For a ‘snow’ tire, the republic SnowTrakker.

( Dunlop & Republic are sold at Goodyear stores )

For all-seasons that work in performance size:

I recommend the Continental ExtremeContact or new version called Continental ExtremeContact DWS. Excellent all around performer.

Alternatively at least price Nokian WR G2’s(a good high performance all-season that is winter tire rated ). Nokian’s unfortunately are $$$$ but really good. I own a set but got them at a good price with lots of homework.

You can also check out tirerack.com, lots of tire info specific to your PT Cruiser.

Are you saying the current tires aren’t seating correctly on the rims, and that the leak is between the rim and tire? You need to get that fixed before putting new tires on the car. If the rims are bad, you need to replace them.

Thanks for your response. I have never been told that my rims were bad, just that the tires can pull-away because of the seal. What makes a bad rim - short of it being damaged somehow?

Wow, lots of choices. I’ll price-out the BFG and Continentals.
Thank you!

Thanks for your response. I’ll price out the BFG and Continental tires and go from there!

Thank you. Looks like the Continental Extreme Contact could be a winner if they aren’t off-the-chart expensive! Pricing will be my next step, provided my rims are okay?

There can be corrosion that causes leaks, or if they’re chrome-plated, the plating can peel off in places. Also the valve stem can leak, or the rim can be corroded where the valve stem seats. A good tire shop can diagnose this for you.

The rims are aluminum, peeling a bit, and yes there is some corrosion. Would buying new rims for the car solve the air-leakage issue? Any advice on what kind of rims to purchase? I guess I have to check with the parts department at a dealership as well.
Thanks for your response.

Yes, new rims and tires should be entirely leak-free. But before you spend that money, have a tire shop inspect one of the tires known to be leaking. They’ll need to remove it from the car and take off the tire. The external appearance of the rim does not directly indicate the situation where the bead of the tire seals against the rim. As for new wheels, shop around. For a teen’s car steel wheels are cheaper and sturdier. Wheel covers are cheap.

I have the same exact size tire on my Subaru WRX. I nearly pulled the trigger on the Continental ExtremeContact DWS(newer model). The best pricing was $462 installed for reference.

Thanks for the info! I’m going to see if I can get some sort of rim/wheel package. After having the tires removed, cleaned, then re-sealed, they still seem to be leaking. I don’t want to deal with this anymore. I’m researching this through Tirerack. Everyone that I have spoken to seems to recommend them.

A huge bonus of new rims and tires thru tirerack is they mount balance tires to rim for free. This really offsets the shipping costs. They are wonderful to work with.

Good luck.