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What Tire Would Be Best for My S550 Mustang

Shop S550 Tires

Depending on what you use your S550 Mustang for, the appropriate set of tires will help further your goals. From drag slicks to street touring tires, AmericanMuscle has you covered.

Shop Tires

When it comes time to buy new rubber for your S550 Mustang you may find the number of options available overwhelming. What do all these numbers mean? Does the size matter? What tire would be best? This guide is designed to help you really get a grip on some tire knowledge.

American Muscle

Figuring Out What You Need

Determining which tire would be best for your S550 Mustang really depends on the conditions in which you drive in. For example, the tire someone uses in relatively warm climates and rarely see poor weather conditions would be different from someone who lives in a colder climate or an area that sees a decent amount of rainfall. There is no such thing as a tire that can perfectly do it all. The tire that will be best at the drag strip is virtually useless in the snow. There will always be some sort of trade off. Some of the factors to consider when looking at tires are:

  • Tire Compound (The material a tire is made out of)
  • Tread Pattern
  • Tread Wear
  • Dry and/or Wet Traction
  • Road Noise
  • Price
  • Size

Tires are categorized by their intended purpose. Here are the main categories in which tires are grouped into.

2015 Mustang GT on the Street

All-Season

All-Season tires are very well balanced when it comes to their performance. They do everything well enough to get you through all kinds of weather conditions. No matter if it’s hot, cold, raining, or even snowing, these tires will usually be good enough to get the job done. If tread wear is a concern, these tires usually have a hard or medium compound which allows them to last a long time. A good all season tire would be best for someone who daily drives their Mustang. These types of tires are also usually more affordable than a high performance summer tire, and they're typically the closest thing to an OE replacement.

Sumitomo All-Season Mustang Tire Set

Winter Tires

The winter months present some of the most dangerous driving conditions, and it's important for you to have a tire capable of conquering the weather if you decide to venture out in the cold. The compounds used in manufacturing winter tires are designed specifically for cold weather. The rubber will still perform at extremely low temperatures whereas a summer tires feel like they turn rock hard in the cold, rendering them useless. Winter tires also have a tread pattern designed to dig into snow and ice to prevent you from getting stuck. If you don't want to commit to winter tires year round it's pretty common for people to purchase another set of wheels dedicated to winter tires so you can switch out sets of wheels when you need the added performance.

2015 Mustang GT with Forgestar Rim Set

Summer and High Performance Tires

Both summer and high performance tires perform best when the ground is warm, and they have similar characteristics. Generally speaking, heat improves traction. These tires will not perform well in wet or cold conditions at all, and the reasoning is because of the tread pattern and the materials the tire is made out of. It is common to see less of a tread pattern on high performance tires and they are made out of a reasonably soft compound to improve traction. Since these tires are usually made with a softer compound they do not tend to last very long because the tread wears much faster than that of a winter or all season tire, but for the spirited driver or the weekend warrior a good high performance tire may be the choice for you.

Mustang Sumitomo Performance Tire Tread Pattern

Drag Radials and Slicks

These tires are mainly made for drag racing and autocross. No other type of tire will performance as well a drag radial or a slick when it comes to the harsh demands of racing. It is not uncommon to see a drag radial being used on the street on a high horsepower car that can’t seem to get traction to a traditional high performance tire. Drag radials are DOT approved for the street but a true slick is not and should only be used at the track. Drag radials and slick have very little tread pattern and are mode out of extremely soft compound to ensure good contact with the road and optimize traction. Since these tires are so soft they have a very short life span when used on the street. There is nothing better than a drag radial or slick to achieve dry traction.

Mickey Thompson Mustang Drag Tire

Tire Sizes

Tires come in various sizes. Your best bet is to just buy the same size tire that came on the car to avoid any issues. If you are looking to get a wider tire in hopes to achieve more traction than it is important that you know how to find your desired tire. The size of a tire is indicated by a series of two or three numbers. For example, I common S550 tire size is 255/40/19. The 255 is the width of the tire measured in millimeters, the 40 tells us that the height of the tire is 40% of the width of the tire (the higher this number, the bigger the sidewall will be), and 19 is the diameter of the wheel the tire is to be mounted on.

If you are currently running a 255/40/19 like I mentioned above and you want to go with a wider tire then a 275/40/19 may be your solution, but it is very important to note that buying a wider tire isn’t as easy as increasing that first number. You can only go up in width a tiny bit before it alter the aspect ratio number (40). Doing this may affect the overall tire height and could possibly throw off your speedometer. If the tire you decide to go with a far from factory specs then I would recommend getting the car tuned so the new tire size can be accounted for.

Staggered Tire Set Up on a 2015 Mustang Drag Car
Fitment includes: 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, GT, V6, EcoBoost