Vredestein Ultrac Cento review

MB-BTurbo

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With my Falken FK452s down to 2mm I found myself yet again looking at the limited selection of 215 40 18 tyres available for my B200 Turbo. My usual tyres of choice, the Vredestein Sessantas and Goodyear F1s are unavailable in these sizes so I drew up a shortlist of:

Vredestein Ultrac Cento - £120 fitted
Continental Contisport 2 - £142 fitted
Michelin Super Sport - £165 fitted

New Falkens would only have been £95 fitted and although hold their own to the Contisports 2s in performance they are very noisy tyres. Having had the Contisport 2s fitted previously and the Michelins being just a bit too expensive I thought I would give the Centos a try. After all they are marketed as ultra quiet at 67db and with a more compliant, touring style ride should suit the overly hard sport suspension.


A wet Sunday morning




Vredestein take pride in the fact that this tyre has been developed by Italian agency Giugiaro design with 'less is more' being mentioned a few times. I have to say I was wondering how this would enhance the appearance of my car and to be honest I am still wondering. The writing is nice but the fact that it says in italics 'Giugiaro design' doesnt make it 'designed' in any way. It reminds me of when people who wear those little Polo horses on their T shirts that are no different to any other T shirts yet think that makes them better somehow. I personally prefer the Contisport 2s chequered flag design but each to their own.

At this stage I have only driven 30 miles, so with no opportunity to be fully scrubbed in these are very much first impressions but first impressions are good. Driving down a twisty B road the steering feels much smoother and lighter. Whether lightness is a good thing or not I'm not sure but it doesn't appear to detract from the handling and I still get similar feel as I did with the Falkens and Continentals. Although I haven't driven them particularly hard yet they do feel composed with a positive turn in and good levels of grip, again similar with the two above. The ride is ever so slightly smoother and even passed the wife test as she remarks how it feels 'nicer in here' - but this may well be due to the fact that I have gone straight from 2mm to 8mm tread. It will be interesting to see if this continues as they wear down.

As for being 50% quieter than normal tyres, I can't say I've noticed. They are quieter than the Falkens but bricks would be quieter than those. I honestly couldn't tell these apart from the Contis or any other makes Im afraid.

Overall I would consider these a good purchase. For a fairly potent front wheel drive car getting the right front tyres are important and these appear to be standing up well to the more expensive makes. I will be undertaking a long motorway journey today that looks more than likely to be completed in the rain so I will be able to update later as to how it gets on.






 

SL300-24

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I have the Sessanta's on my E320CDI estate. I have just replaced all four after having the originals on for 3 years and 18k miles. They are quiet, grip really well in the dry and the wet. Probably a bit soft if you are a high mileage driver.
They cost just over £500 for 2 265/35/18 and two 245/40/18. Michelin or Contis were about £800 so they are good value.
One word of caution, my inner sidewalls started to crack on the old set which is why I changed them. The rears were nearly worn out, but the fronts still had 4-5mm of tread so I have sent them back for inspection.
This did not put me off buying again though and I would recommend them.
Thanks for your review.
 

230K

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Let me know how you get on with the inspection.

I had inner wall cracks on mine too.

I posted a pic on here

230k

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SL300-24

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Thanks for that, I will let you know the outcome.
 
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MB-BTurbo

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Part 2

Today I completed a very familiar 100 mile motorway drive with a 10 mile B road stint thrown in. Very heavy rain provided a real opportunity to test its wet weather handling which proved hugely impressive. It had bite in fast corners where the Falkens would have just given up and understeered. I found myself pushing on with far greater confidence that made for a really enjoyable drive. On the motorway the tyres proved to be more refined and smooth compared to the Falkens and Continentals I had before. The supposed reduction in noise also become slightly more apparent but not significantly enough to make it a unique selling point for future purchases.

I did notice a dip in MPG, which was odd. There maybe many reasons for this, however, it was the same journey I had done countless times before, using the same V power 99, similar temperatures, air con off, traffic, speed etc. Where I usually get 40mpg I got only 38.5mpg with an average of 67 mph. Not sure why but thats what the computer read.

Lastly and by far the area I am most impressed with is the dampened effect over pot holes and manhole covers. Where the Contis and Falkens crashed around the Centos sound like there is far less shock being transmitted through the cars suspension components. I had always thought that the sport suspension on the B class was highly unsuitable for UK roads and still do, but for the first time, it has become more bearable. For this reason above all others I would buy the Centos again, especially where cars with overly hard suspension are concerned.
 

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