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I need to replace the tires on my Insight, and the fellow at Tire Discounters has given me the choice of the very expensive special-order OEM Bridgestone Blizzaks (165/65R14) or a wide range of what he says are better-quality tires at half the price, all in 175/65R14 size.

He says that a lot of Insight owners come back after installing the 175's, however, because they get "3% to 4% less of a battery charge", and that "Insight owners hate that".

I've never had trouble keeping my batteries charged, and I don't see how this would affect MPG. Should I go with the OEM Blizzaks, or one of these 175s?
 

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What Gobo means is the Bridgestone makes a winter tire specially sized for the Insight. The Blizzak MZ03 winter tire is made in only 3 very unique and very different sizes to provide the exact OEM size for 3 types of vehicles that come with very unique sized Bridgestone tires from the factory.

The Blizzak MZ03 winter tire is only made in these 3 sizes:
165/65R14 (made for Insight, what other car comes in this size?)
215/55R17
245/40R18

http://www.bridgestonetire.com/tireselector/dpp/glamourindex.asp?passproductid=1088

Blizzak makes the best ice tires so the reason they cost a little more then other winter tires is because they are actually better not just because it's a unique size.
Tire rack sells them for $64 each which is pretty good, considering most people with other cars have to buy 14" or 15" winter tires that cost closer to $100 each.
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/Compare1.jsp?width=165/&ratio=65&diameter=14&startIndex=0&search=true&pagelen=20&pagenum=1&pagemark=1&x=85&y=6&RunFlat=All

Theoretically 175 mm wide winter tire will be better on ice but not as good in snow as the exact model of tire with 165 mm width. But the 175 mm tire is taller so it actually helps a little with ground clearance in deeper snow. The 165 mm winter tire will be slightly better for fuel ecomony and it's lighter in weight (comparing identical brands and models).

You can't go wrong with either size depends what your winter tire priories are. Even the cheapest winter tires are significally better in snow and ice compared to brand new OEM RE92 Insight tires.
 

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Thanks for the snow tire 101 (but I hope I'll never need it). Its the "other" guy around these parts
that will get you stuck by driving too slow and loosing traction on the many ridges in this area.

I'm not as sure what Gobo meant. My read was that somebody was trying to sell him some snow
tires and calling them OEM. And maybe inflating the price. :shock: Yes, the Bridgestone Blizzaks are
sized to be OEM compatable, but their not OEM. AFAIK Cincinatti is a bit south to benefit from snow tires.
 
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