Tuesday, November 23, 2010

New rims and tyres for the mystery car

It came with stock 17" factory rims and that setup didn't do the car justice. Hence, I immediately set about rectifying this problem. And so, a few weekends back, I made my way to Hup Shun in Sunway PJS 11/7. According to local motoring afficianados, this particular shop sells genuine rims and tyres at lower prices when compared to other places in the Klang Valley.

While browsing through the selection of wheels that were on display, a Hup Shun employee asked me what was my poison. I explained that I was looking for 18" x 9.5" +12 rims. He replied that strangely enough, a R34 GTR had come in earlier in the week to get its Volks Racing RE30s replaced with Volks Racing TE37s (the former came in bronze). He also mentioned that the rims were up for sale and were barely used.

Some Hup Shun technical staff then carried the four rims in and I could see that he was speaking the truth - they looked almost brand new. For those who are not aware, RE30s are one of the lightest rims available on the market. The 18s for example, weigh only 8.10 kg. The TE37s on the other hand weigh in at 8.45 kg. So I'm not sure if the R34 owner was actually "upgrading" but rather the whole exercise was more for looks, as the TE37s are a better match for the sharp edges of the BNR34.


Needless to say I was pretty much sold the moment I lifted up one of these babies. They were so light. After checking all four for any signs of damage and finding none, I asked the Hop Shun employee what tyres they had in stock that could fit the RE30s. He said that they recently brought in 6 units of Bridgestone Potenza S001s. Now I knew that the S001s came on the market in early 2010 and were actually factory fitments for the Aston Martin Rapide and Ferrari 458 Italia. It was also going to be used in the soon to be released Lexus LFA as the car's factory fitted tyres.

Here is the product description by tiretrack.com on the major features of the S001:

The Potenza S001 is Bridgestone's Max Performance Summer tire developed as Original Equipment for premium high-performance sports cars, coupes and sedans. The Potenza S001 is designed to combine low rolling resistance efficiency with maximum sports performance in dry and wet conditions. However, like all summer tires, they are not intended to be driven in near freezing temperatures, through snow or on ice.
The Potenza S001 features an asymmetric design combining a large outboard shoulder, interlocking tread blocks and a central circumferential rib to enhance dry road steering response, high-speed stability and cornering precision. Notches in the shoulders expel water to the sides while high-angle lateral grooves in the intermediate ribs pump water into the wide circumferential grooves to help resist hydroplaning.
The tire's internal structure features a lightweight belt package consisting of twin steel belts supported by a spirally wrapped aramid/nylon cord reinforcement that reduces rolling resistance, enhances ride quality and ensures high-speed durability. Active rubber inserts in the sidewalls near the bead areas tune vertical sidewall stiffness to blend cornering grip with ride comfort, as well as increase longitudinal stiffness to generate straight-line braking forces.
To cut the story short, I purchased both the RE30s and the S001s (265/35/18) that very day and they are now on the mystery car. Very, very happy indeed with the results despite having to cough up some dough.

The RE30s being prepped

Shod with S001s and being loaded onto my workhorse Nissan X-Trail for fitment and alignment eslewhere at a family friend's shop

On the mystery car

Getting the alignment done the old fashioned way

I'm pretty sure people will be able to figure out what the mystery car is by this point in time ;). Till the next mod entry, readers...

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