The price of different tires seems to be due to graphic location, popularity, and manufacturer pride. Lets face it, the bigger the wheel, the less amount of rubber used with the same amount of effort by the manufacturer.
As that time rolls around again for tires, I am plagued with the daunting task of research, headaches, and booze (not necessarily in that order). I shall stick a couple of relaxing CDs on the turntable (I'm thinking some Crystal Method, Chemical Brothers, Air, and Dubble-D), then get to typing. To make it easier on me, I think I shall state my thoughts, then hope for plenty of input from you, the community.
Story to tell a story:(you should really start your drinking here)
At current, I have installed the 2" RC leveling kit on the truck which will allow me to step my size up a tad bit both up and out, even on the factory rims. The overall plan is to grab the widest tire I can put on these rims, temporarily, while gaining some height. I would rather go wide over tall, but if I could get both, that would be awesome. Also, we shall keep in mind that the RC leveling kit is sort of a band aid since I HAVE to buy tires before I go on vacation and I want to be as right as possible the first time so that in a month or two following vacation, I can switch over to the 3.5" leveling kit then add in the new, wider wheels. I am hoping for 18 x 10s, but may have to settle with -x 9s. This is all dependent upon what I find appealing to my senses at the time of purchase. Nothing against you guys that put really bling type wheels on your 4x4s, but I like the simple cleaning method and it has been in my experience that the busier a wheel is with lines, crevices, and fake bead-locks; case in point:
the harder they will be to clean. I will be going with something simpler. Ultimately, if I really liked a Baja wheel, that would make things really easy, but I'm not this simple:
Back on topic:
Tires obviously vary in sizes, styles, and looks. I could buy just about anything made by anybody (if money wasn't always an issue), but even 'looks' come into consideration when we go out and purchase new meats for our GMC/Chevy trucks, and looks are most important, right? Well no, some will tell you that you don't need that particular type of tire for that kind of vehicle for the type of driving you normally do. I'd like to debunk this first misconception by saying, "You never know when your gonna need that extra grip or mud slinging ability!" I'd rather be safe than sorry (and temporarily poor).
AT vs MT (and other various points in between):
An A/T tire is probably the most popular tire in the community. They have really good traction, not so much hum, and if constructed well will constantly clean the channels with good wheel spin if you find yourself mudding at the lake right after a good rainfall. M/Ts are great for all your off-road needs especially mud and wet or packed snow. Either tire will do well on ice as long as you don't do something stupid. Just let out a little air pressure during the winter months and you will be just fine. All this being said, let's look at the prices of the most popular, must have tire, but most can't afford unless they give up their first born child (I've met some people's kids, and this may not be a bad idea....I say give up the kid, get the tires, bring the ol' lady down to the lake and start fresh). Our hero tire for comparison shopping with be the ever-so-popular B F Goodrich All-Terrain T/A KO.
This tire in different variations has been around since I started driving back in the early '80s. Of course, it didn't have so many characters in the name, but it is pretty much the same tire nonetheless.
On TireRack.com this tire at 33 x 12.5r15 goes for a mere $175.00, yet for the closest metric size tire at 285/65r18 (32.5/11.2r18, which for all practical purposes is a smaller tire both inside and out) runs for $278.00. Now I'm no rocket scientist, but if you are selling a tire that has a 2" less wheel size, even for the same size tire (let's imagine that BF Goodrich actually put out a 33x12.5r18) then you would be using less material, the same concept (mechanically) for tire building, but charging 62% more for a lesser amount of tire...I guess that's good business if you can get someone to pay that much money for a tire, eh? (I think you should sneak in a shot of whiskey or tequila here while the wife's head is turned) And although $278...
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