2022 honda insight ex with 35k on the stock tires. They are almost to the wear bars. I am buying new tires next week and I'd like to not spend any more than 120 dollars per tire max. What do you guys recommend as a cheap yet long lasting tire? Thanks.
35K seems to be a pretty low mileage to be contemplating new tires but then I am used to having summer and winter tires on my car, probably giving me a false sense of tire life. In any case, I was recently looking up tire characteristics needed for Hybrid and electric vehincles in general. The OEM tires seem to be seelected for quietness, extra grip when starting from rest and also load bearing capability, since the general assumption is that electric vehicles are heavier than the functionally equivalent gasoline cars. I personally rank tire noise or lack thereof as high in priority, all else being equal, but then I happen to be one of those rare birds who listen to Mozart on the radio with the volume turned down. If I was a rock and roll high volume listener then a quiet tire would be of less interest to me. Road grip starting from rest is also a high priority but I have yet to actually push things to the limit by jamming down on the gas pedal. I would suggest researching by looking at what the various manufacturers recommend as well as the reputable retailers. I would also remember that the Honda engineers must have done their own research and determined the optimum choices for each trim level of the Insight. Don't reject the OEM tires out of hand but instead consider them as a baseline to compare against.
I listen to the local classical station when close to home, Händel operas when on the road. Since my hearing remains original equipment with the added delight of constant (but unobtrusive) tinnitus, I'm not sure I would notice increased road noise. I mean, compared to the Saturn, this thing is like the old Lincoln commercials: quiet as a concert hall.
Here's my personal guess as to why Honda chose these specific tires for the Insight.
Michelin Energy Saver (LX/EX): To juice the MPG numbers due to it's pretty good low rolling resistance.
Continental ProContact TX (Touring): It contains a sound absorbing foam to reduce road noise which is what you want on the top trim. I don't believe this tire has low rolling resistance attributes like the Michelin from what I can see on tirerack's website.