Run-Flat Tires–and No Spare!

My 335 came equipped with Bridgestone Potenza RE050A run-flats.  Apparently BMW thinks that if you have run-flats, you don’t need a spare. We’ll see why that’s a total myth in a second.   The ‘Stones had a lot of grip in the corners, but not much else.  They were heavy, expensive, and in my opinion detrimental to the car’s ride.  After 20,000 miles, the rear tires were worn out, and no, I didn’t do a lot of burnouts.  Not too many burnouts.  Just a nice, reasonable number of burnouts.  Anyway, I replaced the ‘Stones with a set of vastly superior Continental ContiSport Contact 3’s.  The ride improved, grip stayed the same, and road feel was actually better.  The Conti’s are cheaper and they last longer than the ‘Stones.  To top it off, I bought a Continental inflation/foam kit in case I got a flat. 

Well, I got a flat two days ago on the way home from work.  This wasn’t your garden-variety nail-in-the-middle-of-the-tire flat, either.  You see, a 4-inch by 2-inch thick steel flange fell off a flatbed and landed on the road in front of my car, and I didn’t have time or room to swerve around it.  BAM!! I hit the stupid thing with my left front tire.  I promptly pulled into a bank parking lot to assess the damage and fill the tire with my inflation kit.  I also ran back into the road (after looking both ways, like I was taught) and picked up the flange.  After the prescribed seven minutes, the inflation kit still couldn’t fill the tire with any sustainable presure.  I called BMW Assist, which set up a tow truck for the next morning.  My loving wife came to pick me up. 

We flatbedded the car to Hendrick BMW in Charlotte the next day.  After they got the car up on the rack, I was permitted to inspect the damage.  There was a huge gash in the inner sidewall running toward the middle of the tire, and the wheel was bent.  Significantly, I think that even with run-flats this sort of injury would have disabled the car. Hendrick had to order me a new Conti and a new wheel.  The car will be at Hendrick over the weekend to wait for the wheel and tire, and I get to drive a pinkish-maroon rental Mercury Milan.  If I would have had a spare, I could have been on my merry way in short order, driving MY car. I could even have waited for Hendrick to order me a new wheel and tire while driving MY car.  By the way, the service at Hendrick is exemplary; the service advisors are going out of their way to accomodate me and possibly even get me reimbursed under a wheel and tire warranty I purchased at Leith BMW when I initially got the car.  Hendrick has always done a great job with service. 

I hope this post illustrates just how preposterous run-flats, especially run-flats with no spare, really are.  My car had to be flatbedded and will be at the dealership for five days.  I missed half a day of work.  I’m driving a granny-mobile. All for a flat tire.

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7 Responses to “Run-Flat Tires–and No Spare!”

  1. Jason Shoemaker Says:

    A decent driver would have been able to avoid the plange ( whatever that is) and I am surprised that you have a loving wife since you seem so fixated on your car.

  2. A decent commentator would have posted under his own name, say for example DOLPH SUMNER, instead of implicating poor Jason. And while I was dealing with your comment, Bobbie came in and stole my paycheck. Thanks a lot. Now I definitely won’t have a loving wife!

  3. Your marriage is a sham. You are obviously gay. If your marriage was serious, you wouldn’t have been passed out in the bed with my boyfriend on your wife’s birthday. It’s time to stop pretending.

  4. Just because I was passed out on the bed doesn’t mean I’m gay. Your boyfriend’s a sasquatch. He wouldn’t by my type anyway.

  5. Just because I was passed out on the bed doesn’t mean I’m gay. Your boyfriend’s a sasquatch. He wouldn’t by my type anyway.

  6. Sasquatch Says:

    You’re right, four paragraphs on a flat tire and burnouts means you’re a d-bag.

  7. D-bag? That’s all you got? You’re lucky I even approved this post.

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