Pros: Smooth, quiet, lasts long, asymmetrical design, good traction, mileage warranty, mpg
Cons: Not very responsive
After using Yokohama YK520 tires for almost 6 years, I got the updated version: the Yokohama YK580. Originally, my 2004 Infiniti G35 came with mediocre Bridgestone Turanza EL42 tires. I replaced them with the YK520 even before they wore out. The YK520 were good but got progressively louder and harsher as miles and years accumulated. For that reason and also because I didn’t want to compromise wet traction by driving on diminished tread, before they wore out I got the newer version of America’s tire-exclusive Yokohama YK580.
In addition to the YK520, my other points of comparison are the Yokohama TRZ, Bridgestone Turanza EL41, Goodyear Eagle RS-A, Bridgestone Turanza EL42 and others . I got the YK580 in 225/55VR17 size with 60,000 mile warranty and the premise of good ride, handling and free tire rotation/balancing for the life of the tire.
About the Yokohama YK580
The YK580 is a Yokohama tire made exclusively for Discount Tire / America’s Tire. It is a high-performance all-season tire with an asymmetrical tread design, low rolling resistance and long tread life. In appearance I don’t see much difference (if any) from the YK520 I had before. Available in T, H, V and W speed ratings (based on size). I got mine in V rating.
Just as the YK520 before them, the Yokohama YK580 should be wearing very well. I will update this review once I have them longer. The Yokohama YK580, at least in my size offers 60K warranty. We will see how long these last. I don't drive on sandpaper-covered roads, but I do use throttle to improve the turn-in with a bit of power oversteer sometimes.
Since the YK520 could have easily lasted me over 60K miles and the YK580 have a better treadwear rating of 580 (vs. 520 of YK520), they should last me at least 60K. But your mileage may vary.
The Yokohama YK580 is an asymmetrical non-directional tire, which can be rotated to any position. The outer, middle and inner parts serve different purposes for dry, wet and light snow duty (the tire is an all-season one).
Initial impressions are deceiving, because new tires ride softer than worn ones. But once more I don’t have a harsh, noisy ride quality. The ride became very smooth and quiet, especially comparing with the worn YK520.
The traction in dry and wet weather is very good; comparable to the YK520 and much better than the EL42. The tire is speed-rated V and can go as fast as I can legally (and illegally) drive. Tires are speed rated to ensure the construction is robust enough to withstand the force that tries to rip it apart the faster the tire spins. The YK580 in V speed rating is more than robust for my purposes and the 60K mile warranty is enticing too.
Familiar Yokohama YK-series traits are visible in this tire as well. Despite the fact that the traction in turns, acceleration and braking are very good, the tires are not very suitable for spirited driving. They are not very responsive: it seems that the initial split second you turn/accelerate/brake nothing happens. Is it the fault of the progressive sidewall that gives you cushy/quiet ride? Maybe. With the YK520 this behavior diminished somewhat as the tread wore, but didn’t go away completely so there must be more to it than just the elasticity of the tread.
I do run recommended by Infiniti 30 psi and tried 34 psi with no noticeable responsiveness improvement. And in LA, when someone cuts in front of you (I have seen some of the worst drivers in the world right here in LA, and cutting in front of someone with no use of turn signals is what they do all the time), you want maximum deceleration or turning immediately. Perhaps more importantly, because of the relaxed nature of the tire, you tend not to perform abrupt maneuvres. It just doesn't inspire confidence otherwise.
For that reason, I would not get this tire if I were looking for super-sharp, responsive handling. But for the great balance of ultimate traction, comfort, long life and good MPG these are very good.
As mentioned above, the traction is very good. It doesn't rain here much so most of my driving is done in dry conditions. The speed I can sustain in turns is much higher than what I could do with Turanza EL42 (equating to high g-loads), same with ultimate acceleration and braking acceleration (or deceleration). And as most tires, these should grip even better when worn in dry conditions.
During thunderstorms (which are unfrequent here ) the tires provide excellent traction with no hydroplanning at freeway speeds and good traction in turns.
Behavior When Worn
This section will be updated once the tires actually develop any significant wear. So far, after 900 miles they behave like new. Handling in the wet weather is excellent. The inflation pressure is maintained at a factory-recommended 30 psi, both front and rear.
Low Rolling Resistance
The YK580 is advertised as having low rolling resistance. No numbers are cited and I was eager to test this claim and, indeed, my mpg went up by about 1, which is about 5%. And since this is comparing new tires to old worn ones, the MPG is bound to improve more. So it looks like these are, indeed, low rolling-resistance tires, as advertised. And I will save some money and gas, even thouth the fuel consumption mostly depends on the driving style and speed.
A small note about the statements above: worn tires have lower rolling resistance than when new. So replacing a worn tire with a new tire reduces fuel economy whereas low rolling resistance increases it.
Another Yokohama Tire
I have another Yokohama tire on a Honda Accord; check it out: Yokohama TRZ.
The Yokohama YK580 is a quiet, smooth, long-lasting tire with very good traction in dry and wet weather (no snow here). It is an excellent choice overall, provided you want exactly that: smooth, quiet tire with good traction that will last long. A great replacement for any OEM all-season non-sport tire and possibly even for sporty tires.
Just as the YK520 before it, it is not for you if you want responsiveness and/or the best traction possible. I am no longer seeking that quality so the YK580 works well for me. And the low rolling resistance saves me gas, and therefore money as well.
Update: I replaced this tire with the Michelin Primacy MXV4.