Since I bought my car (Alfa Romeo 156) I’ve been enjoying maintaining and playing with it. One thing I knew I needed to do when I got the car was change the tyres, the old tyres celebrated their 5th year birthday this week ;-) but like everything else I do I gotta go through a research and fermentation phase till I actually go ahead with whatever it is I want to buy. This Saturday we’ve got a trip coming up to a trackday in Pattaya Bira race track so I thought it’s time to actually get the new tyres (I’m not going on track but getting there involves a couple of hours on the highway). Like most people new to owning a car in Bangkok I had no idea where to begin. The nice folks at the Alfa Romeo Thailand Club helped with some tips I followed on from there.
As for the tyre itself, after doing some research, reviews reading, auto magazine tests I decided to go for the Michelin Pilot Spot 3. I wanted a nice performance tyre since my rides are mostly for fun and I don’t do high routine commute mileage. If you want to read more about the tyre and others in its category you can see more here.
Here’s the mini report on my findings re buying tires in Bangkok. I went around the area where I live looking at tyre shops, small and chain stores for the PS3, including some very “local” shops and this is the jist of what I found out: basically if the shop has the tyres in stock then you can get some discount, the B-Quik chain store price is 4890 Baht and the lowest I was offered at a small shop was 4600. However the tyres at that shop were coming to 1 year old, not ideal, especially given the storage conditions – pretty much open air, no direct sunlight but plenty of natural light and UV all around. Small shops which didn’t have the tyre in stock could bring it in within a couple of hours but the prices were unattractive, 4900, 5000 etc.
Then I went to TyrePlus where the lady just stared at me and had trouble understanding me despite the fact I asked everything in Thai (and all the other shops had no problem understanding it), eventually she snapped out of it and said there’s no stock and it’ll take 4 days to bring them, the price was 49XX I can’t remember exactly now.
Finally I ended up at B-Quik as the last stop, turns out you can negotiate there and they knocked 100 Baht off each tyre so 4790 each, the best thing was that the tyres are brand new! 0212 and stored in the shade. So I bought them and had them fitted. For the old tyres, a couple of the smaller shops looked at them closely but both decided they weren’t in good enough shape and they weren’t interested in buying them at all. I ended up just leaving them at BQ.
The level of professionalism at BQ (Beungkum branch located at GPS coordinates: 13.790707,100.679709) was quite impressive. It was obvious they were very experienced doing this day in and day out. The alloys were gently handled, tyres balance checked and then laser alignment checked. Unlike in some other shops they didn’t tighten the bolts to the max with an air powered tool but used a ratchet with proper tightness setting. There are also all kinds of after-sales warranties and services at BQ which seems like a nice add-on. I still need to figure out what exactly the warranty covers. Another advantage at BQ is that the cover is national, you can get service at any of the hundreds of shops they have. That’s it, hopefully this helps someone if they’re like me –
have had no idea about how to get new tyres here in LOS.
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