Continental VikingContact 7 Comes to N. America

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2,643
Location
NYC
Well, I guess I know what I'm replacing my WinterContact Si winter set with Whether I want to or not, because I'll probably blow one out, and it'll be discontinued, and the circle of mismatched tires continues Looks a good tire, hopefully quieter then my WinterContact Si set
 
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988
Location
USA
I just ordered a set. Pretty good deal with the $70 rebate as they already start out cheaper that the Xi3, WS90, etc. Ordered from TireBuyer's eBay store and shipped to a nearby tire shop.
 
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3,035
Location
Idaho
Thread starter
The Russian tire enthusiast website Shina Guide has published their summary of the 2019/2020 international winter tire tests of studless tires: https://shina.guide/press/22021/#more-22021 Google translation of some excerpts:
Quote
...By the winter season 2019-2020, six tests were conducted with the participation of [studless tires], and this is almost half as much as last year : someone joined forces, and someone for unknown reasons sank into oblivion. In total, 27 scandinavian models from 23 tire brands took part in the tests. ....Let's not wander around for a long time, the title of "The Best Winter Studless Tires of the Nordic Type of the 2019/2020 Season" goes to the score of Continental VikingContact 7............So far, it is difficult, if not impossible, to compete with these tires: they were the leaders in three tests of the season for Nordic tires, and in the mixed tests of winter tires conducted by Teknikens Värld and Test World, where studded tires took part, Viking Contact 7 not only overtook their toothed rivals , but also were able to take the first lines of the rating in their subgroups. ...The spirited Nokian Hakkapeliitta R3 tires have noticeably improved performance compared to last year. In the 2019/2020 season, they are unequivocal No. 2 . Both Russian testers from Behind the Wheel and Auto Review, as well as experts from Northern Europe, will agree with this. ...We emphasize that Michelin Xi3 has been produced since 2012, and despite its unstable test results, which we described in our separate publication about the sudden failure of X-Ice 3 tires in Motor tests , the French are still in no hurry with the launch of the fourth generation of Nordic friction tire. One problem: when the results of the Michelin Xi3 model float from test to test, their purchase becomes a lottery.
 
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10,257
Location
Colorado Springs
Ok guys, I got Viking 7 for my BMW 328i. I got a car between Christmas and NY. Drove it from MD to CO, had 4 new Bridgestone Driveguard RFT tires on (225/45 R17 91W). Went through snow storm in KS, got reminded why all seasons are absolute POS in snow. So, was thinking should I get just wheels from Discount Tires or whole package bcs. I am seriously tired of their incompetence. Decided to roll the dice and get whole package (I lost). Tires were delivered yesterday with wheels, 205/55 R16 91 T. They installed it, of course did horrid job balancing, and as usual was this morning in Costco for rebalancing. That is where they determined that one wheel has too much runout, probably manufacturing error, and DT forgot to put TPMS on the wheels (explains why I could not reset TPMS all morning). Anyway, all that back and forth plus daycare runs twice, gave me some opportunity to feel tires on dry pavement. 1. Extremely smooth tire. They are ridiculously quite. Very smooth over any kind of road imperfections (though any would be after RFT, but it is kind of obvious in this case). Braking in dry seems very good for winter tire of that level (temperature was 57 today in COS). No spongy feeling on pedal. 2. On other hand, on steering wheel it is obvious that it is winter tire. Tires are extremely soft. Actually they are more flexible than Nokian Hakka R2 I have on Tiguan (however, several steps up refinement wise compared to R2). There is a bit of mushy feeling on steering and a bit of "delay" to put it this way. I will see once DT delivers replacement wheel if I could bump up pressure a bit and whether that would help. But, it is nothing major. Could be warmer weather than usual. Could be also that bcs. E90 has telepathis steering I feel much more than on my Tiguan (R2) and especially Sienna (Michelin Xi2). Keep you posted on wet, snow and ice performance.
 
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Messages
588
Location
MA, USA
Yesterday we had decent amount of dry snow (-6C, 17F). The tires provided very controlable experience on white roads and interstates. So far so good. Krzys
 
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10,257
Location
Colorado Springs
Update: So, on Thursday night we got out of nowhere blizzard like conditions for 2hrs (this is quite normal for CO, after beautiful day). We got 1-2 inch of fast snow, and I was already disappointed that I will not be able to test tires properly. However, in the morning roads were super slick. That fast snow landed on quite warm roads and froze. Morning temperature was around 15 degrees and it was absolute s...show going to daycare. In some spots there was slush from truck treating it, but in many spots roads looked like mirror. Tires are pure joy in those conditions. As I stated, in dry and warmer weather there is a bit of squishy feeling compared to Michelin's Xi2, though better than Nokian's R2 on Tiguan. But on ice these Viking7 absolutely outperform both those tires. Stability on ice is really, really good, and turning in curves does not provide any slip in normal driving. I purposely slid car several times and there is comfortable feeling of progressive break of traction, so there are no nasty surprises (this is where I am thinking of Blizzak's DM-V2 and how nasty they were in this particular situation). Going through slush is a breeze. No any sudden impacts on steering wheel. Tires obviously evacuate slush properly. In this condition they flat out outperform Michelin Xi2, while I really cannot say are they any better than Hakka R2 as those are also excellent in slush. I do have narrowest set up on BMW (205/55 R16) for winter so that definiately helps. Downside is that vehicle capabilities are clearly higher than tires in dry, and I tend to forget that sometimes. Anyway, we should get on Monday-Tuesday some 10-12 inches so we will see how they do in deeper snow.
 
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Messages
3,206
Location
Nashville, TN via Memphis
Originally Posted by edyvw
2. On other hand, on steering wheel it is obvious that it is winter tire. Tires are extremely soft. Actually they are more flexible than Nokian Hakka R2 I have on Tiguan (however, several steps up refinement wise compared to R2). There is a bit of mushy feeling on steering and a bit of "delay" to put it this way.
Put some of these on my fiancee's 2018 Civic (on the stock 16" wheels; she has a set of 18" factory Civic wheels for good weather) for her to drive back home to northern Indiana in winter, and our impressions have been the same as yours. I swapped the wheels with the Vikings on a day or 2 before her trip, and ended up driving the car to work that day, which is an 18-mile mixed freeway and city street commute. It was about 60 that day. The tires ride well, are quiet, and have good directional stability. But when you change lanes at highway speeds, they feel very soft and mushy, like you said, with delayed response, especially when compared with the Goodyear Eagle Sport all-seasons that are on her 18" wheels. She said she was honestly a bit annoyed by it. But she said they firmed up once she got up north into below freezing temps. And she and her mom did run into some snow and ice conditions on a drive back from a town that was about an hour away, and she said they did great in those conditions. This time of year, I do like having her on pure snow tires, in case the weather turns to complete crap up there (she's taking at least 2 more trips up there before we drive up there in mid-April to get married). But, in the future, when these wear out, I may go with a tire that's not so narrowly focused. Like, maybe, one of the "performance winter tires" that won't have that soft, mushy, delayed feeling to the handling, and that would have longer treadlife and that I wouldn't feel like I had to pull off right away as soon as she gets back. Heck, maybe even something I'd leave on all winter. A tire that would be very good in lower temps, rain, snow, ice (possibly not quite as good as a dedicated snow & ice tire like this VikingContact7), but still handle mostly like an all-season, and have good treadwear.
 
Messages
363
Location
Pikes Peak region
I've been doing it wrong crazy Been here from MI since 1993 and getting away with a/s tires but I'll qualify that to minimal travel to ski country. *In 1998 through 2005, I did some regular Winter Park commuting; 5000 miles per ski season for the adaptive ski program there arriving via Pontiac Fiero. Fiero vs Mountains, I hedged my bets with Blizzaks. If you ever want to test winter tires on squirrely mtn roads in the dead of winter with a rwd car and shortest wheel-base imaginable, get counseling. They worked. grin Since then and another rwd sport coupe, I found the Conti DWS Extreme Contact to be a very worthwhile A/S performer just shy of going winter specific. Great all year with some aggressive bite when called for. That being the exception, we seem to get a handful of dicey days / nights through the few wintery months for in town or around the area commuting my wife and I contend with.... maybe 20 + days a month of those = mostly dry pavement. Her drive is one mile to work and mine is 4. I won't bother with special tires or extra wheels so A/S is working on the VW and Mazda (both awd) but I see the common sense in being smart and safe about it. Our situation is unique although in a good way. thumbsup
 
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Messages
10,257
Location
Colorado Springs
Originally Posted by john_pifer
Originally Posted by edyvw
2. On other hand, on steering wheel it is obvious that it is winter tire. Tires are extremely soft. Actually they are more flexible than Nokian Hakka R2 I have on Tiguan (however, several steps up refinement wise compared to R2). There is a bit of mushy feeling on steering and a bit of "delay" to put it this way.
Put some of these on my fiancee's 2018 Civic (on the stock 16" wheels; she has a set of 18" factory Civic wheels for good weather) for her to drive back home to northern Indiana in winter, and our impressions have been the same as yours. I swapped the wheels with the Vikings on a day or 2 before her trip, and ended up driving the car to work that day, which is an 18-mile mixed freeway and city street commute. It was about 60 that day. The tires ride well, are quiet, and have good directional stability. But when you change lanes at highway speeds, they feel very soft and mushy, like you said, with delayed response, especially when compared with the Goodyear Eagle Sport all-seasons that are on her 18" wheels. She said she was honestly a bit annoyed by it. But she said they firmed up once she got up north into below freezing temps. And she and her mom did run into some snow and ice conditions on a drive back from a town that was about an hour away, and she said they did great in those conditions. This time of year, I do like having her on pure snow tires, in case the weather turns to complete crap up there (she's taking at least 2 more trips up there before we drive up there in mid-April to get married). But, in the future, when these wear out, I may go with a tire that's not so narrowly focused. Like, maybe, one of the "performance winter tires" that won't have that soft, mushy, delayed feeling to the handling, and that would have longer treadlife and that I wouldn't feel like I had to pull off right away as soon as she gets back. Heck, maybe even something I'd leave on all winter. A tire that would be very good in lower temps, rain, snow, ice (possibly not quite as good as a dedicated snow & ice tire like this VikingContact7), but still handle mostly like an all-season, and have good treadwear.
Try to bump pressure a bit, it might help. When it comes to dry, clear winner is Michelin. They actually behave better then All Season Bridgestone I have on Sienna. I think for BMW once these wear out I might go Michelin, just bcs. of dry performance. But, on Sienna and Tiguan I will definiately go Viking7 in the future.
 
Messages
10,257
Location
Colorado Springs
Originally Posted by bachman
I've been doing it wrong crazy Been here from MI since 1993 and getting away with a/s tires but I'll qualify that to minimal travel to ski country. *In 1998 through 2005, I did some regular Winter Park commuting; 5000 miles per ski season for the adaptive ski program there arriving via Pontiac Fiero. Fiero vs Mountains, I hedged my bets with Blizzaks. If you ever want to test winter tires on squirrely mtn roads in the dead of winter with a rwd car and shortest wheel-base imaginable, get counseling. They worked. grin Since then and another rwd sport coupe, I found the Conti DWS Extreme Contact to be a very worthwhile A/S performer just shy of going winter specific. Great all year with some aggressive bite when called for. That being the exception, we seem to get a handful of dicey days / nights through the few wintery months for in town or around the area commuting my wife and I contend with.... maybe 20 + days a month of those = mostly dry pavement. Her drive is one mile to work and mine is 4. I won't bother with special tires or extra wheels so A/S is working on the VW and Mazda (both awd) but I see the common sense in being smart and safe about it. Our situation is unique although in a good way. thumbsup
On my neighborhood Facebook page it is same conversation before first snow, or if some people who just moved from sunbelt ask questions about winters: 1. You do not need it, just do not go out. 2. Be careful. It is all about smart driving. 3. It is only handful of really bas snow days. 4. etc. Once first serious snow falls down, it is end of the world and neighborhood turns into absolute s...show which was easily avoidable. As for AWD, On Friday when that snow turned into glass on roads during morning commute, I have not see one of numerous accidents being caused by people not being able to move forward. But I guess, if you can avoid driving in snow at any time, maybe it makes sense.
 
Messages
363
Location
Pikes Peak region
Driving in snow is the FUN part but I realize that's not universal. Many love to stay in, stoke the fireplace and binge episodes or play board games. Lucky one's can work from home. Smart plan. Those that have to get out there or look for adventure get real world feedback on tire performance, honing skills or gaining experience and planning a smart route if your town has hills, mountains or off camber roads. Here, Flintridge or Carefree can be a serious cluster and when so, I wonder if it's always the same folks repeating their last slick roads drama ... lol. 'We' do get in a habit of things like but many seem clueless about things they CAN control mitigating circumstances or dangers- What others consider forward-thinking or common sense. It's snowing now so I'll add this PSA - Try not to need tires or go tire shopping today. No big surprise- The tire stores will be very busy with hundreds of 'extra' customers that bashed a rim, need an alignment or tore a tire off the wheel. The streets will be full of folks pushing and pulling others, directing traffic around slide off's and wreckers will "make Bank." Didn't the weather pro's tell us this was in their crystal ball a few days ahead of time ? popcorn
 
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Messages
10,257
Location
Colorado Springs
Update. So yesterday we had some 2in of snow which got packed. This morning it was -3f n my neighborhood. I got up early to go ski, but before that had to drop my older one to preschool. Tires did great here as I expected. So I hit the road to Arapahoe Basin, I25 to I70 Westbound. Took exit 216 over Loveland Pass. There was around 3 inches of packed to loose snow on the road, temperature dropped from around 5f while on I70 to -17 at top of Loveland Pass (11,990ft). It was slick and tires are absolutely brilliant. The level of control is astonishing. I was passing two cars on uphill straight line after Loveland Ski center and when I hit gas in second gear, rear end of BMW started to dance a bit, just small correction and car simply rocketed forward. So, after ski day where temperature was -22f, and wind chill at one point -37, two beers, one Bison bratwurst, I hit the road through back country, through Breckenridge, over Hoosier Pass, South Park, Woodland Park, back to Colorado Springs. Breckenridge was packed with snow, but Hoosier pass when it is packed with snow due to grade can be fun (or not fun, depends). Today it was a blest. No traffic, so I turned off DTC and tires provide such control that it is easy to get carried away. There was loose snow, maybe 3-4 inches, and it was joy to drive with these tires. So, downside? Regardless that I think that they are brilliant in snow and ice, they are not good match for BMW. In dry, warm weather they are just too soft. However, once my Michelin's on Toyota are gone, and Nokian's on Tiguan, I will switch those two cars to Vikingcontact7.
 
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