Run flat tires are pretty new on the market, with several manufacturers pushing for them in their recent vehicles. The biggest advocate of these tires is BMW, the car manufacturer that wants to give their customers the ultimate driving experience. In order to have the ultimate driving experience, the driver shouldn’t waste time on replacing the wheels while on the road – that’s probably why BMW puts run flat tires on almost every new car you will buy in the dealership. Except for the glorified M models and electrified “i” models, that is.
The reason behind their reasoning is simple – run flat tires are heavier than normal tires. On performance cars, heavier tires can take away from acceleration and dynamics, or range in electric vehicles. That said, most BMW SUVs and sedans are powerful enough to mitigate the disadvantages of heavier run flat tires.
On the other hand, the most attractive thing about run flat tires is that you won’t need to replace them immediately after a puncture. Sure, you will need to replace them at some point or repair the punctured tire, but you’re free to drive up to 50 miles and at speeds up to 50mph. Run flat tires are also less likely to explode during a puncture, which means that they are also much safer than normal tires in those circumstances.
The thing is, there are not a lot of good run-flat options available on the market today. Sure, you can shell out a ton of cash and buy premium tires, but what if you own an older BMW and want to save some money? To help you choose the best run flat tires for BMW, we created a Top 10 list of the best products on the market right now. The list will be divided into several categories, simply because BMW sedans don’t use the same tires as BMW SUVs or sports coupes.
After the list, you will be able to learn more about run-flat tires. Things like their advantages and disadvantages, and pick out the best run flat tires you can buy, but also the types of tires that are used for various types of vehicles. In other words, we will explain why we divided the list into those categories.
Run Flat Tires Advantages and Disadvantages
Apart from the added weight, run flat tires have some other disadvantages that make them the worse choice for some people. Here is the full list of their advantages and disadvantages:
Top 10 List of The Best Run Flat Tires for BMW Recommended
Best Grand-Touring Tires for BMW Sedans and Hatchbacks
1. Bridgestone DriveGuard
The DriveGuard is an all-season grand-touring tire from Bridgestone that provides a safe and reliable driving experience. It can drive up to 50 miles at speeds up to 50 mph without any pressure in the tire, which is pretty much par for the course.
On the road, the DriveGuard is very responsive for a grand-touring tire. It also has very high levels of grip and traction, both on dry and wet surfaces. Despite the stiffer sidewalls, the ride quality is very good for a run-flat tire, and there is almost no noise at highway speeds.
The 60,000-mile treadwear warranty for H-,V-,T-Speed Rated models, and 50,000-miles warranty for W-Speed Rated is one of the best in the run-flat world as well.
The only downside of the DriveGuard is the slightly worse snow traction.
2. Michelin Primacy MXM4 ZP
The Primacy MXM4 ZP is a tire that offers slightly better snow traction than the DriveGuard, so if you live in areas with harsher winters, the Primacy is the way to go. However, the Michelin tire also has slightly worse ride quality. The noise is almost the same, though.
On the road, the Primacy MXM4 ZP provides the driver with ample grip and traction in dry and wet conditions. Responsiveness is excellent, as well. That said, the treadwear warranty is slightly lower than the one on the Bridgestone – 55,000-miles for H- & V-Speed Rated models, and 45,000-miles for W-, Y-, & Z-Speed Rated models.
3. Goodyear Eagle LS-2 RunOnFlat
The Eagle LS-2 is one of the best grand-touring run-flat tires for BMW owners that want a more engaging driving experience. The Goodyear competitor is very responsive in the corners and provides the driver with a lot of grip and traction in dry conditions. Wet performance is also one of the best in the category, and the tire even has the biting edges for light-snow traction.
The tire is also pretty comfortable on bumpy roads and doesn’t produce a lot of noise on the highway. However, it also doesn’t come with any treadwear warranty, which is a shame in this day and age.
Best Crossover/SUV Touring Run Flat Tires for BMW Crossovers
4. Michelin Latitude Tour HP ZP
The Michelin Latitude Tour HP ZP is a tire that is used as original equipment on BMW vehicles, and naturally, it is also a great choice for a replacement tire.
This is one of the best touring tires when it comes to handling. It is responsive, provides the driver with ample grip and traction, and brakes very well. The Michelin tire works both in dry and wet conditions and even in light snow.
Unlike most run-flat tires, the Latitude Tour is also very comfortable and doesn’t produce a lot of noise on the highway. The 30,000-mile treadwear warranty is good, albeit not exceptional.
5. Pirelli Scorpion Verde All-Season Run-Flat Tires
Even though the Scorpion Verde is a touring tire, it has enough oomph to provide an engaging driving experience. Right now, it is probably the most responsive tire for BMW crossovers, including the X1, X2, X3, X4, and X5.
The Scorpion Verde provides the driver with a lot of grip and traction, and excellent braking performance, both on dry and wet surfaces. Light-snow traction is only average, though.
On the comfort side, the Pirelli has very good ride quality and doesn’t produce a lot of noise on the highway. However, it also doesn’t come with any treadwear warranty.
Best Performance Run Flat Tires for BMW Sports Cars
6. Michelin Pilot Sport A/S3 Plus ZP
The Pilot Sport A/S3 is one of the best ultra-high-performance all-season tires on the market right now, if not the best. The ZP version is run-flat and can be used for up to 50 miles of driving without any pressure.
On the road, the Pilot Sport is extremely responsive and provides the driver with outstanding grip, traction, and braking in dry conditions. Wet performance is covered with Helio+ Technology and is class-leading. The ride quality is also very good, and there is not a lot of noise on the highway.
Finally, the Pilot Sport A/S 3 also comes with an excellent 30,000-mile treadwear warranty.
7. Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 3 Run-On-Flat
The Eagle F1 Asymmetric 3 is a max-performance tire, which means that it is the best choice for drivers of very fast BMW coupes and sedans, and even M-badged cars. This tire provides an outstanding driving experience that you can’t get with almost any other tire. The responsiveness is simply astonishing, grip and traction are like on a racing tire, while braking is sublime. The Goodyear is even quiet on the road, something that we didn’t expect. Wet performance is slightly worse, especially in heavy rain, but that’s expected in a max-performance tire. Also, the Eagle F1 is a summer tire, which means that it can’t be used in wintry conditions.
Best Street/Sport Tires for BMW Performance Crossovers
8. Bridgestone Dueler H/P Sport RFT
The Dueler H/P Sport RFT is almost the go-to tire for BMW X-Drive crossovers with big wheels and powerful engines. The Bridgestone is a very responsive summer tire that can provide the driver with very high levels of grip and traction, even on some heavier BMWs. Wet performance is very good as well, and we didn’t find any noise issues. That said, Bridgestone doesn’t offer any treadwear warranty on this tire, which is a shame.
Best Winter Run Flat Tires for BMW
9. Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25 RFT
This run flat tire is specifically designed for BMW performance cars, and naturally, it is the best one. In the winter, the Blizzak LM-25 provides the driver with outstanding performance on the road, even when driven very hard. Responsiveness is top-notch, and the same can be said for grip, traction, and braking. On top of that, the Blizzak is one of the best snow tires in its category. That said, this tire doesn’t come with any treadwear warranty.
10. Pirelli Winter Sottozero Serie II Run Flat
The newest addition to the Sottozero family of Pirelli winter tires is an excellent choice for any BMW driver. This is one of the sportiest tires for winter weather. It is very responsive and has excellent handling characteristics on dry and wet tarmac. Snow traction and braking are excellent as well, and the Pirelli is even usable on ice. That said, like the Bridgestone Blizzak, the Pirelli Sottozero doesn’t come with any treadwear warranty.
Best Run Flat Tires: Buying Guide
Grand-Touring Run Flat Tires are the Best Choice for Lower-End BMW Vehicles
If you drive a BMW 1-Series or 3-Series, chances are you will need a set of grand-touring tires. These tires are specifically designed to offer a balanced driving experience on models without too much power under the bonnet, but cars that still offer an engaging driving experience. Grand-touring tires are a tad more expensive version of touring tires, which are made for slower mid-size sedans, compact, and sub-compact vehicles. We think that grand-touring tires are a better choice for BMW owners.
The main advantage of grand-touring tires is their outstanding treadlife. The best tires in this category often come with a 70,000-mile treadwear warranty, which means that you can use them up to 6 seasons without worrying about replacing them. Grand-touring tires are also very quiet and comfortable, and that’s true even for run-flat models. This makes them a great choice for people that drive a lot with their BMWs or use them for long road trips.
On the performance side, grand-touring tires are adequate for the average driver. They don’t offer the most engaging driving experience in the world, but can still be driven hard in most circumstances. Grand-touring tires are also excellent when it rains, especially in very heavy rain, thanks to their outstanding hydroplaning resistance. Most all-season grand-touring tires today can also provide traction in light snow, which is another great advantage.
That said, if you own more powerful versions of BMW 1-Series or 3-Series, these tires won’t cut the mustard. They simply lack the ultimate sharpness, traction, and grip for very fast driving in the corners.
Crossover/SUV Touring Tires are the Best Choice for Normal BMW Crossovers and SUVs
Crossover/SUV touring tires are similar to grand-touring tires, only made specifically for crossovers and SUVs. In the BMW lineup, the BMW X1, X2, X3, X4, and X5 work great with these tires, albeit only the less powerful models. If you own some of the turbocharged inline-6 models or even worse, the M models than you will need different types of tires.
Like grand-touring tires, crossover and SUV touring tires last very long, with treadwear warranties that range from 60,000-miles to 80,000-miles, depending on the model. They are also very comfortable and quiet and provide the driver with enough traction, grip, and braking power for most circumstances. As expected, touring tires aren’t the best choice for performance driving, but you are also not able to find them in dimensions made for sporty versions of BMW crossovers and SUVs.
High-Performance Tires are the Best Choice for Sporty BMW Models and M Versions
BMW doesn’t offer run flat tires on all of their performance models, but most of them still come with this new technology. High-performance tires, as their name suggests, are specifically made for fast, performance cars. They are more focused on performance rather than comfort.
Thanks to that, high-performance tires are much more responsive than grand-touring tires – the moment you turn the wheel, the car turns. Then, high-performance tires also have much better traction, especially on more powerful cars, much better grip in the corners, and stronger braking performance. Overall, these tires will give you by far the best driving experience of all types.
While we are at it, let’s mention ultra-high-performance tires and max-performance tires. These tires have an even more aggressive compound than high-performance tires. For “M” cars, we recommend ultra-high-performance tires if you mostly drive on the street, or max-performance tires if you use your BMW sports car on track days.
Whatever performance tires you choose, be prepared for a shorter treadwear warranty than what you’d get on grand-touring tires. High-performance tires are good in this regard, with some models getting even to 60,000-miles warranty, but ultra-high-performance tires (40,000-miles) and max-performance tires (no treadwear warranty) are much worse.
Performance tires also have worse ride quality than grand-touring tires due to the stiffer sidewall and produce more noise at higher speeds. On top of that, they are also much more expensive than grand-touring tires. Driving a sports car has always been expensive, anyway.
Street/Sport Tires are the Best Choice for Performance BMW Crossovers
BMW is one of the few manufacturers that offers sporty crossovers, some even with the “M” badge. If you happen to own one of those vehicles, then you will need Street/Sport tires. These tires are specifically designed for fast crossovers and are similar in most regards to high-performance tires. Compared to Crossover/SUV Touring tires, these have worse ride quality and more noise on the highway, but also a much more responsive ride.
The best tires in this category have high levels of traction and grip, and also excellent braking performance. That said, they mostly come in very big sizes (over 18-inches), and are very, very expensive.
What About the Weather?
That’s a very important aspect when choosing a set of tires, if not the most important. See, the rubber compound in your tires is specifically designed to operate in one temperature window. If it gets too cold, the tire becomes hard and brittle and loses the ability to grip the road well. If it gets too hot, the tire becomes too soft and unresponsive. That’s why choosing a set of tires that will operate best in your area is of paramount importance.
That said, all-season tires are the best choice for most people. These tires are designed to work in a wider temperature range and can genuinely work most of the time. They are especially good in the summer, fall, and spring, and some of them even work in wintry conditions, even snow. All-weather tires are a version of all-season tires that are designed for harsher wintry conditions. They also work better in snow. Both all-season and all-weather tires work great in heavy rain, thanks to the outstanding resistance to hydroplaning.
Winter tires, as their name suggests, are designed to work best in the winter. The rubber compound in these tires is softer and more pliable in very cold conditions, providing outstanding traction, grip, and braking performance. Thanks to the deeper tread and a lot of sipes in the tread blocks, winter tires also work excellently in light and deep snow, packed or unpacked. If you live in areas with a lot of snow in the winter, these tires are the way to go.
Summer tires, on the other hand, are specifically designed to give you the best performance in the summer. Compared to all-season tires, summer tires have much better traction, grip, and braking performance in warmer conditions. They simply stick the road better. Most ultra-high-performance and max-performance tires are also summer tires, simply because they provide the driver with the best possible handling on faster performance vehicles.
Sure, there are some all-season ultra-high-performance tires, but they pale in comparison to summer tires. Suffice to say, if you own an “M” car, you’d want high-performance summer tires in the summer and high-performance winter tires in the winter.
As you can see from the list above, we only included high-quality run flat tires. The main reasoning is that very cheap tires won’t provide you with the handling you would want on your BMW, but also because most of them are unsafe, especially in the wet. To get a top-notch driving experience from your BMW, high-quality tires are a necessity. That’s why always choose the best run flat tires from reputable manufacturers!