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Advice needed re: new tires for Mazda2

I need to get new all-season tires (185/55R15) for my 2013 Mazda 2 Touring this week, but do not have time to go to a tire specialist. I live in Boston and work north of the city thus need all-season tires that will perform decently in winter conditions. I’m planning to buy another car within two years. My car currently is at 120K miles and will probably reach 140K by next summer, and the shocks and struts are getting worn and would cost $1K to replace.

My mechanic can order an “off brand” tire called Antares, which he says should perform quite adequately in winter conditions. For an additional $30/tire, however, he can get the Yokohama Avid Ascend tires, which I believe were the original tires. Any advice on whether it’s worth the extra $120 for the Yokohamas if I’m only going to have the car for at most another 35K miles? Any advice would be much appreciated!

My go-tos for test data and expert opinions are Consumer Reports and At the tirerack site you enter your car and peruse a big variety of tires that fit. There are tire decision guides, their own test data, and customer reports. They are a good and honest company. You can buy tires from them or nearer to home. I have sometimes had my local shop OK receiving the tires from tirerack on my behalf, then do the mounting/balancing etc.

Surf over to and see what tires they offer that fit your Mazda. They have some pretty comprehensive info on the tires the sell, and customer reviews, etc. The two tires you mention may well be there too. Another source of informative data about how tires perform and their reliability is Consumer Reports magazine. They publish a tire report every year I think. You local public library should have the back issues, if you can’t find it at their website. I don’t have any personal experience with either of those brands, so can’t offer much guidance there.

Good Grief , why do so many people have so much trouble buying tires ? Tire shops are open 7 days a week. Sams , Costco , WalMart all sell tires . Every tire dealer has a web site so a person can see what tire fits their vehicle with specifications. Tires , engine oil and oil filters questions will get you so many biased opinions that you will lose count.

I had some no name tires that I got from the Goodyear dealer that worked fine for me in the rain and snow. I trusted their advice but no nothing of that brand you are looking at. I’ve had a couple sets of Generals now that I like and were under $600 out the door, and made in the US. I guess it just depends on if you think the dealer knows what he’s talking about or not.

Every tire is a compromise. The General Altimax RT43 was my choice because it has better snow and ice performance than other high-ranked tires according to CR, and because my trusted local garage people them on their truck and think highly of them, too. We like them summer and winter on our minivan, and they will be my first choice when the Civic needs new all season tires. My local garage guys came pretty close to tirerack’s price and got them within a couple days so I went with them.