200tw tires for drag racing: Are narrower tires quicker? | Advice from Tire Rack

David S.
By David S. Wallens
May 6, 2022 | tires, drag racing, Tire Rack, 200tw tires

200tw tires have made a huge impact in autocross, track days and road racing, but what about using them for drag racing?

[Ultimate track tire guide | 200tw, 100tw, street-legal track and R-comps]

DOT-rated drag tires exist, but they usually carry a very low UTQG treadwear rating–finding a 000 on the sidewall isn’t uncommon. What about those who drag race under rules that require a 200tw tire?

That very question recently came up on our forum. The specifics involve a Tesla Plaid that’s heading to a no-prep drag race.

So, we asked our friends at Tire Rack for some advice in this situation:

The short answer, among 200 treadwear options, is that the Yokohama ADVAN A052 provides the best longitudinal grip. Supply is very spotty, but Yokohama produces a 275/35R19 and a 295/35R19. One of those would be my recommendation.

That said, it's always important to remember the tire design traits and physics that help tires and vehicles turn corners well are a hindrance to maximizing acceleration. Wide tires on wide wheels create a wide footprint that is very short front-rear. In simple terms, that gives the contact patch leverage to turn hard, but lacks the leverage to propel forward. A long footprint really helps acceleration.

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Comments
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stonebreaker
stonebreaker New Reader
5/6/22 2:35 p.m.

Yeah, I guess that's why I see so many narrow rear wheels at the drag strip...

thatsnowinnebago
thatsnowinnebago GRM+ Memberand UberDork
5/6/22 5:20 p.m.
stonebreaker said:

Yeah, I guess that's why I see so many narrow rear wheels at the drag strip...

Consider the height/width ratio. Look at a top fuel dragster and notice how tall the rear tires are compared to their width. And then look at an F1 car. Much shorter tires compared to width. 

te72
te72 Reader
5/7/22 6:21 p.m.

For a Tesla Plaid, I would think any modern 200tw autocross tire would be more than happy to help it launch like a scalded cat. AWD is quite the thing.

stonebreaker
stonebreaker New Reader
5/9/22 8:41 a.m.
thatsnowinnebago said:
stonebreaker said:

Yeah, I guess that's why I see so many narrow rear wheels at the drag strip...

Consider the height/width ratio. Look at a top fuel dragster and notice how tall the rear tires are compared to their width. And then look at an F1 car. Much shorter tires compared to width. 

Right, that's why the F1 front tires, the ones handling steering, are so narrow compared to the rears, the ones handling ALL of the acceleration...

aw614
aw614 Reader
5/9/22 8:48 a.m.

Interesting about the Yoko being the choice, it does seem a lot of the drag racing/straightline guys in the Honda scene when they drive their cars on the street their tire of choice seems to be the Toyo R888R. A lot of the guys seem to love them, which compared to a lot of autocross and track guys I know locally are always seem to place the R888/R888 as "the Firestone Indy 500 for people who think is a faster tire"

trendsetter
trendsetter New Reader
5/9/22 9:01 a.m.

the R888R is what i see quite a bit as well but its a 100tw rating so not in the list of possibilities when talking 200tw.

i ended up ordering some Falken RT660s to try on the plaid.  ill post up how it goes.

eastsideTim
eastsideTim PowerDork
5/9/22 10:00 a.m.

I'll be curious about this.  If I make it to the challenge this year, one set of tires would be my preference.

Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter)
Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
5/9/22 11:01 a.m.

At least FWD the r888 does pretty well even compared to a drag radial or bias DOT cheater like the M&H

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