• Feb 15, 2007
There aren't too many cars out there that can shred all four tires at once, but that's exactly what certain Pontiac GTO models are being accused of. Cleveland's Newsnet5 looked into GTO owners' complaints of shredded front tires with all the drama and hidden pinhole cameras (see the video here) you'd expect from a such a story.

What they found was actually somewhat startling. Early GTOs are eating their front tires. It seems the Holden Monaro, on which the GTO is based, is sold in Australia with 233 mm-wide tires. In the U.S., the GTO gets 245 mm-wide tires. According to the Center for Auto Safety, that extra rubber puts the tire snug up against the GTO's strut, causing the front tires to eventually fail. The TV station says 65 GTO owners have filed reports with the NHTSA about the problem, which has mailed letters alerting owners to an investigation.

Owners of 2006 GTOs need not worry about the tire-shredding problem. GM fitted the newer cars with updated struts which give sufficient tire clearance. Instead, that group of GTO fans gets to worry about strut failure, of which there have been numerous NHTSA complaints.

You can read a statement the CAS after the jump.

[Source: Newsnet5 via Wired]

From The Center for Auto Safety:

The Center for Auto Safety (CAS) today called on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to open an investigation into tire failures and front suspension problems that occur on the 2004-2006 Pontiac GTO.

The agency has received 65 complaints involving tires on the 2004-2005 GTO, involving 8 blowouts and one crash. Many of these complaints cite tire wear caused by contact with struts as the source of the failures. The problem seems to occur early in the lifespan of the vehicle, as a number of complaints cite mileages of less than 10,000 at the time of the failure.

The 2004-2006 GTO was manufactured by GM subsidiary Holden in Australia based on the Holden Monaro platform. The Australian version came equipped with tires of 235mm in width, however the GTO sold in the United States was equipped with wider tires of 245mm width. The larger width of the GTO tire results in contact with the struts, wearing the tire and creating a risk of tire failures that can result in loss of vehicle control. Additionally, many GTO owners are forced to replace worn tires and damaged struts at their own expense.

The 2006 Pontiac GTO was manufactured with redesigned front struts that seem to have eliminated the tire wear problem. However, NHTSA has received more than 100 complaints of front strut failure in the 2006 model.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 19 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      The only reason why there are not a lot more accidents is due to the tight knit group at www.LS2gto.com many inspected the struts and tire due to posting..

      The only problem with this type of network is that National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) didn't take this problem as a problem unit we beat them up with it..

      GTO 06
      • 7 Years Ago
      I thought that this was about GTO strut rub, not about weight bias and what other cars have for weight distribution. The front tires are supposed to keep you pointed in the right direction, maybe this blog should do the same>
      • 4 Years Ago
      When I saw the title of this page said Tire Shredder, I thought it meant a real tire shredder machine, like the ones we manufacture at http://www.pt6000.com
      • 7 Years Ago
      I have an 05 GTO.I put staggered 19 inch PIAA wheels [9.5 inch wide x 19 .00 on the rear and 8.50 inch wide x 19.00 on the front.The tires are 275x30zr x19`s on the rear and 245x35zrx19`s on the front.My tire guys said that that fitment was about the largest that can be fitted with any long term success.I have had no problems with the fronts and I have almost 31,000 miles on the car.[I love driving this thing!]My pass.side rear tire self destructed last week on trip back from Seattle but I would chalk that up to having 31,000 miles on the car.
      I may have dodged the front tire shredding issue by putting after market wheels and tires on it almost immediately after I bought.
      The offsets on aftermarket wheels is usually greater.
      In my immediate family we have had an Audi TT,five BMW 3 series including a German Spec AC Schnitzer M3,a Lexus 300 with a Supra 2JZ single turbo Japanese crate motor we installed at our shop,and we`re also adding a Japanese Spec 1995 Toyota Celica Turbo GT Four right hand drive car.
      These things never got over to the U.S.
      The GTO though is my favorite as it combines German level interior quality with a Corvette power train.
      We are going to twin turbo it and modify the susupension and add Brembo brakes.
      The styling is classic and not given to silly styling cues like say a Caddilac CTS V series.
      I cannot for the life of me understand what drugs the GM design people are using when they came up with the CTS design.
      It has unrelated sharp "folded paper" body creases and lines going all over it especially when viewed from the rear quarter panels.
      Why is it impossible for GM to draw a straight line from the front of a car to the back?
      That styling direction will date the car in a few short years.I would love to buy a Caddilac if they could manage to build an American version of an M5 with straight softer lines that run from the front to the back that give the car more solid qualitative and timeless look.
      Lexus and BMW seem to be able to instill that look and except for the idiotic styling of the current Mercedes S500 and S600 the cars have a classic yet hip look.

      I intend to keep my GTO it forever and that is saying a lot because I have never kept any car I owned more than two years.
      • 7 Years Ago
      its a muscle car
      • 7 Years Ago
      Well if it wasn't so front heavy (55/45) then it wouldn't need 245/45 17 front tires. 235/45 17 front and 265/40 17 rear, that would be nice if they got 50/50 weight distribution.

      Maybe a small spacer ~2.5 would prevent dynamic rubbing with the strut, but what about the fender?
      • 7 Years Ago
      I posted a lengthy response, I am just waiting...and waiting...and waiting for it to hit my email.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Ahh, strut rub. Being a 2004 GTO owner, I had my fronts cut to the cords. Luckily I heard a strand of wire hitting the strut as it went around. I pulled the tire to see what it was, both fronts, all the way to the cords.

      Through research, an alignment usually helps, as does 235s (which I went to). From what I read, this is mainly a problem on 2004s.

      55/45 is nose so nose heavy? Most FWD cars are biased much more towards the front. 55/45 is pretty close to balanced. 265s in the rear get close to the fender, and may require a roll (100's of post on the LS1GTO forum about wheels :)
      • 7 Years Ago
      I bought new rims with a different clearance. Problem solved and the car looks better anyway. I wouldn't trade my 05 GOAT for anything. Why would you want a car everybody else drives. Say like a mustand dime-a-dozen GT? I love the new vettes but even they are getting to the point where I see like 3 or 4 a day. I still get oohs and aahs everywhere I go with mine. Other GTO guys will tell you the same.
      • 7 Years Ago
      No ever accused the M5/M6 of balance.
      That might be applied to the Boxster, which started as 45/55, but with the addition weight of the center front radiator is ~46/54
      The 911 40/60 is/was for traction, and traction junkies can get Haldex now.
      Rear drive pickups are ~55/45 unladen. They have loads of traction, right.
      The McLaren F1 was somewhere between 43/57 & 41/59, they were trying to get the front/rear sprung to unsprung weight ratios as close the the same as possible.
      Sport bikes are ~50/50
      The Shelby GT500 is a fricking joke, same weight distribution as the Acura RL (which needs better tires)
      • 7 Years Ago
      #4 - Errr.. of course they have an agenda. That's the whole point of an organization. If they didn't have an agenda, they're just sit around and stare at the wall all day. For example, right now my agenda is to mock you. The Center for Auto Safety's agenda is to make autos safer. Get it?
    • Load More Comments