Writing about the Falken Azenis RT660
Driving on a combination of roads
for 1000 spirited
Stage 3 turbo w/ a mild tune. 17x7.5 SSR Comp-C wheels for a good fitment.
These were bought to replace a well overdue set of Hanook RS-3 tires of the same size. I originally wanted to get their RS-4 tire, but couldn't find any in stock. After some searching, and several online reviews, I took a chance and "settled" on these Falken RT660 tires. "Settled" was the wrong thought about these tires. They are, quite frankly, amazing, but with some tradeoffs. At least in this application, they are very sensitive to setup. Alignment needs to be spot on the factory recommended specs, air pressures need to be tightly monitored (OEM is 32psi all around, but the rear end tends to oversteer at those pressures; 32psi front/28psi rear seems to be the sweet spot so far.) These characteristics are both a curse and a blessing. Once you get everything dialed in they will reward you with an insane level of grip. Lately I've pushed them pretty hard (maybe even too hard) on non-closed-course areas, and have yet to find the upper level of grip. I desperately need an event where I can explore the lofty capabilities these tires are exhibiting. In terms of noise level though, these the most "chatty" tire I've ever experienced. They "chirp" over every piece of seam sealer out there, and will frankly howl like the devil on the highway. Luckily, rolling the windows mostly up (or going faster, so wind noise drowns them out!) takes care of the problem nicely. While I ranked the "comfort" level relatively low above, I do not consider it so sufficiently evil that I regret the choice.
In terms foul weather performance, this is my "toy" car, so it generally doesn't see anything other than bright and sunny days. That being said, I did get caught out by a particularly bad weather forecast, and was struck by some rather substantial rain. While I didn't drive with my usual zest, I none the less did not feel out of control in any way, at posted speeds. For fun at a traffic light I explored the levels of grip available for launching. It was more than adequate. As such I rated the wet grip just a bit above neutral. Short of being at a paid for event that receives precipitation, I won't be able to expand upon the wet weather characteristics.
In terms of general wear, I didn't particularly baby these tires after initial install, but as of late have been even more spirited in their use. Visual evidence of such is not appearing yet, so they are at least handling my use quite well so far.
One final note about the tires themselves. I do not know if it's the general norm for Falken's tires, but when these were mounted (and mounted properly; the shop put the yellow dot at the valve stem) 3 assemblies balanced perfectly (0 weight added) and 1 assembly has 0.25oz total weight added. I've NEVER had that happen before, so well done to Falken for that.
Overall, I am extremely pleased with my purchase and would highly recommend them.