One of the reasons why modern performance cars are so shockingly good is that tire technology has progressed to an almost unbelievable point. Especially with brands like Michelin, tire manufacturers can specifically tune a tire to fit one specific car’s driving characteristics, making the car behave exactly as the car maker wanted it to. This is common with modern performance cars, as automakers and tire makers are working together on tire development far more frequently than ever before. Because of the bespoke nature of sports car tires, replacing them with standard aftermarket versions of even the same tire can have a negative affect on performance.
In this new video from Tyre Reviews, we get a very specific breakdown of how the Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S tire for the G80 BMW M4 Competition is different than the standard version of the PS4 that can be bought aftermarket.
For starters, the G80 BMW M3’s bespoke Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S has a total of four different rubber compounds, while the standard tire only has two. According to this video, the compound of the G80 M3’s PS4 is more similar to the more extreme Michelin Cup 2 tire, just with some added wet performance compounds.
More than that, though, the actual construction of the inside of the tire is different for the M3 version. The steel belting was made tighter in certain areas, and grooves in it help increase lateral rigidity under load.
So much went into developing the bespoke tire for the G80 M3 that it took two and a half years for BMW and Michelin to finally develop the M3’s Pilot Sport 4 S. The project started in 2017 and the first production-ready tire for the car wasn’t made until 2020.
The G80 BMW M3’s Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S is so different from the standard PS4 that they might as well be two completely different tires. So if you’re an M3 owner, or really any performance car owner, it will be wise to have your tires replaced at the dealer, where they can fit the exact, bespoke tires for your car. If you go for off-the-shelf PS4 tires, you’re going to notice a chance in your car’s driving characteristics that you might not like.