D rated options in the venerable 255/85-16

TernOverland

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It's that time again to start thinking about new tires for my Gen 2 Tacoma, and this time I'm really hoping to land on the perfect compromise. I've experimented with a number of tire sizes, load ratings, and casing designs. My current tires are the Cooper Discoverer S/T Maxx in LR-E. The tires before that were 235/85-16s in LR-E. I've run LR-P, LR-C as well, in a variety of sizes. My current thinking is that probably the best compromise is the 255/85-16 in a LR-D, but that particular combination is not so common. I love the durability of the E tires, but they do ride a little rough for two reasons. One is that the unsprung weight is high relative to the weight of the truck. My suspension is well tuned so it's not terrible, but it could be better. The second issue is that the casing is really overkill for a truck this light. I have also noticed a difference in power on grades after switching to the heavier tire. One tire that has really caught my eye is the Cooper Discoverer S/T. In the 255/85-16D size, it is a full 10 ten pounds lighter than it's S/T Maxx E cousin! That's 40 pounds of unsprung weight lost, and puts it within a couple of pounds of the S/T Maxx 235/85-16.

So, my question for you all is this. I know there are a few other choices in this odd size/rating. Not all are actually lighter. I am trying to assemble a portfolio of potential choices that weigh in under 50 pounds. I want an aggressive A/T or M/T tread pattern. The Discoverer S/T is listed as a "Commercial Truck Tire", so maybe that is where I should be looking. Does anyone know of any hidden gems that meet this criteria?? Anyone with experience with the S/T?
 

tacollie

Land traveler
Have you seen this thread?
https://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/the-255-85r16-tire-official-list.24853/

The ST will be a lot narrower than your ST Maxx. I with from a D rated 255/85 ST to a ev rated 235/85r16 Duratrac. If I remember correctly the Duratrac was 51lbs. The Duratrac was shorter but the contract patch was almost 1" wider than the ST. The STs rode like crap. Maybe look at switching to a 255/75r17. The are a lot of options that are c and d rated.
 

redthies

Renaissance Redneck
Or go 285/75-16. There are tons of options in a D with that size. I also find the 255/85 ST-Maxxs I have on my 100 follow pavement grooves far more than the 285/75s did.
 

TernOverland

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The problem with most of the options I have found is that they end up weighing as much or more than what I already run.
 

bkg

Explorer
Or go 285/75-16. There are tons of options in a D with that size. I also find the 255/85 ST-Maxxs I have on my 100 follow pavement grooves far more than the 285/75s did.
not sure that's true. I searched for D rated in that size and only found the General Grabber AT2 in an All Terrain. That tire is discontinued and General only make E rated in that size. Jump up to a 17" wheel and the options open up quite a bit.
 

tacollie

Land traveler
I believe the ST Maxx is a 3 ply casing and most the other tires are a 2 ply. Maybe the 2ply will ride better. I could be wrong. There is no perfect compromise.
 

redthies

Renaissance Redneck
not sure that's true. I searched for D rated in that size and only found the General Grabber AT2 in an All Terrain. That tire is discontinued and General only make E rated in that size. Jump up to a 17" wheel and the options open up quite a bit.
Well, it seems things have changed since I last shopped for 285s! I just looked at TireRack and of the 34 options for 285/75-16, 33 of them are load range E. That seems crazy. It used to be at least 60-70% of tires in that size were D rated. I ran that size from 2005 to last year on various Tacoma’s, Land Cruisers and Rubicons. Every set I bought were D rated. The times they are a changing!
 

TernOverland

Supporting Sponsor Ternoverland.com
I believe the ST Maxx is a 3 ply casing and most the other tires are a 2 ply. Maybe the 2ply will ride better. I could be wrong. There is no perfect compromise.
This is true, and a 2 ply version would likely weigh less. I have run Mastercraft (by Cooper) tires in a 2 ply E rating, and they rode very nice.
Well, it seems things have changed since I last shopped for 285s! I just looked at TireRack and of the 34 options for 285/75-16, 33 of them are load range E. That seems crazy. It used to be at least 60-70% of tires in that size were D rated. I ran that size from 2005 to last year on various Tacoma’s, Land Cruisers and Rubicons. Every set I bought were D rated. The times they are a changing!
True. There used to be a ton of Ds. Maybe E's are the new D's?
 

redthies

Renaissance Redneck
I just looked up Coopers ST Maxx page. With the exception of 315/70-17 D and 37x12.50-17 D, every single option is either C or E. There are 5 C sizes. All are 15” except the Jeep JKRubicon oddball in 255/75-17 which is also a C. There are 39 choices in E. Better get used to running E with 20 psi in them! As a side note, I have the E rated 255/85-16s on my 100 seriesand run them at 30 psi with no harshness. I don’t air it down below 20 or so, as it’s just not necessary for how I use that rig. If you are looking for a crawler tire to run at 5 psi with beadlocks, what are you doing on ExPo?? Pirate 4x4 is that way>>>

http://us.coopertire.com/tires/discoverer-s-t-maxx.aspx
 

thezentree

pretend redneck
Well, it seems things have changed since I last shopped for 285s! I just looked at TireRack and of the 34 options for 285/75-16, 33 of them are load range E. That seems crazy. It used to be at least 60-70% of tires in that size were D rated. I ran that size from 2005 to last year on various Tacoma’s, Land Cruisers and Rubicons. Every set I bought were D rated. The times they are a changing!
It sucks. I've got 285s on my 4Runner and took a ~3mpg hit because I had to buy 60lb tires if I want that size.
 

thezentree

pretend redneck
P265/75R16 AT3Ws. True size was only about a half inch difference (KO2s run small) but these KO2s are WAY heavier than the Falkens. I'm sure dimension increases didn't help but I'm pretty bummed at how big of an mpg drop I've seen so far. 3rd gen 4Runners have a laughably small fuel tank as it is, and I'm getting ~200 miles per fill-up.
 

bkg

Explorer
What size were you running before? I’d bet the mileage hit is as much from width and diameter changes.
I agree with this. Not buying that ~7# increase in tire weight had a 3mpg impact. Going from a 31 to a 33 does.
 

thezentree

pretend redneck
I agree with this. Not buying that ~7# increase in tire weight had a 3mpg impact. Going from a 31 to a 33 does.
I'm not trying to argue that it was only the increase in weight that cost me mpgs, just that it wouldn't have been near as much if I could have found a lighter tire. I expected to lose some mileage, just disappointed it was as significant as it was.
 
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