C7 Corvette Cracked Tires Problem Explained by Michelin Engineer

C7 Corvette Cracked Tires 5 photos
Photo: sdtoothdoc on
2015 Corvette Z06 with cracked tires2015 Corvette Z06 with cracked tires2015 Corvette Z06 with cracked tires2015 Corvette Z06 with cracked tires
It’s been only a week since member sdtoothdoc uploaded photographs of his 2015 Corvette Z06 wearing cracked tires all-round. Following this rather disappointing state of the Michelin Pilot Super Sport ZP / SC2 tires, a Michelin official cleared the matter up for CorvetteForum.
In the original forum thread, sdtoothdoc says that “my A8 Z finally got here in San Diego and took her home a few miles away. As suspected, all 4 tires have cracks like Dennis's from Las Vegas. When at the dealer, they said that 4 other Stingrays all have the same cracks in the tires. Car looks amazing otherwise!” What can we learn from this? It’s not an isolated case...

Considering that a new set of high-performance Michelin rubber costs more than $2,000, both C7 Corvette owners and enthusiasts wondered if dealers will replace the damaged tires free of charge. Fortunately though, Michelin’s lead engineer for the C7 Corvette Lee Willard issued the following statement to

“This winter has been extremely harsh in much of the country and some recently shipped Corvette tires may exhibit cracking. In general, summer tires should never be driven on or moved in temperatures under 20°F because they may crack. Tires should be carefully inspected at the dealership before taking delivery of a vehicle.” declared Willard.

“Never use a tire with freeze cracks, breaks, or damage to the sidewall or tread. For those residing in colder climates, Corvette owners should have a plan for vehicle storage during cold winter months. If your garage drops below 20°F regularly, consider removing tires and storing them inside. If you live in colder climates and want to drive your vehicle in temperatures below 40°F we strongly recommend investing in a set of winter or all-season tires.” he added.

As things stand now, Michelin is right - it’s not their fault that the tires on brand spanking new C7 Corvette Stingrays and Z06s were cracked, but General Motors'. It’s the carmaker’s duty to ship new cars from assembly plant to dealer in perfect conditions, including temperature. Let’s keep those fingers crossed General Motors will man up and replace the cracked tires at no cost to the owners in the near future.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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