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GixxerSteve said:
Wireboltman said:
-18F at 6AM this morning.

AZ and Southern CA will be my quarters this time next year.
Phoenix area in AZ and Huntington Beach in CA
That's the plan, anyhow- :D
Since we're already off topic.....

WBM, congrats on your upcoming retirement! Must be a great feeling to know that you're finally puting all that WORK behind you! :lol: Looks like you'll be down in this part of the country next year. Surely nice weather here; partly sunny and 63F today. Perhaps that's why they moved the Match Play Championship from SoCal to Tucson. http://www.dovemountain.com/championship/

Okay, back to the tires......

Thanks, Steve,
I appreciate that.

34 + yrs in the trade-
The last 23 involved with the business and running one of our "fleet" of two service vans vs traveling and working on big jobs in many different parts of the country.

Back to tires and bumps-

Seriously- 8)
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
Bringing back an old thread...

Just installed Yokohama Parada Spec-X on the wife's FX and it has transformed the vehicle dramatically. No trammeling/tracking/darting across the roads when driving over ruts, as well as no correction needed across bumps. Smooth ride and quiet as well.

The GoodYear RSAs were horrible for every-day driving on anything but a smooth road as they wear out. Switching to the Paradas made my wife very happy - and I feel that she is now safer behind the wheel.

Thanks for all the suggestions for the Paradas.
 

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I'm glad you had an improvement.

My FX45 was much better with the Hankook Ventus than the RSA's.

It's too bad you waited so long to make the change.
 

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Hi, Rich -

I have a 2006 AWD with the 18" wheels, and have added several posts over the past couple of years about the condition you describe - the wandering around and tracking with pavement dips, particularly on braking and when the blacktop pavement is "rutted" near an intersection. My feeling since I bought my car is that it doesn't have enough caster, which makes the steering feel vague and causes the vehicle to lack an on-center feel. I, to, have had other cars with big tires, but they tracked like a train. Unfortunately the caster on the FX is fixed and not adjustable.

I recently had my FX at the dealer for a warranty item (replaced the receiving unit for the smart-key). That had been a chronic problem since I bought the car in September 2007 (CPO with 21,000 miles - now have 87,000). Had it into the dealer a couple of times, but since it was intermittent, they couldn't fix it. Finally one of the dealer techs found an error code that indicated the faulty receiving unit - and fixed it. I asked him about the lack of on-center feel (the Murano I had before the FX had the same issue). He told me the front suspension arms are particularly long on these vehicles, and this, combined with the wide tires, causes the problem. He did say it was more pronounced on the 20" wheel models. But it's mainly a suspension issue. I don't know anything about suspension arms, but at least this guy fully understood the issue (unlike the salespeople who all said it was due to the big tires).

I also recently needed new tires. After much research on Tire Rack, etc., I bought Bridgestone Dueler H/P 92As. These are the OE tires on the 2009 FX, so I thought they would be a good match. My OE Potenza RE 92As were fine, but these tires look identical and were about $70 each less expensive. I also considered the Bridgestone Alenzas and the Yoko Avid V4S. Alenzas look more like snow tires (not the look I wanted) and the Yokos were not good in snow according to the reviews. So far the H/Ps have been fine, but they have somewhat enhanced the wandering feeling (probably since the tread is new and is really gripping more than the old, shot tires).

So here's the deal: these cars don't have a good, on-center feel. Constant steering corrections are needed to keep the car going straight, much more than other cars. It's like they don't want to go straight, so you're constantly making these little corrections. But it's also like you're always over-correcting, so you have to turn back the other way. Then, oops, you've over-corrected again. It's odd, because if you are going straight down the street or highway and take your hands off the wheel. it will continue straight ahead. But try turning the wheel a bit and notice how the car keeps turning instead of righting itself. Very unusual, and I have to say unique in my 45 years of driving.

That said, you'll get used to it over time. And in my opinion the good parts of the FX far outweigh the bad. My car has all the electronic goodies. It's comfortable (except for the hard ride - again, you'll get used to it), quick, distinctive, and practical. It has a killer stereo, holds its value and is reliable. I really don't think it has any competition. The X5 and Cayenne don't perform as well, aren't as reliable, and are much more expensive. For the money, the FX stand alone as a high-performace sports sedan with lots of utility.

So, unfortunately, your FX is going to wander around. I doubt new tires or wheels will help. But every car has some trade-offs, so enjoy the fun parts of the FX - a truly terrific vehicle.

gibby26
 

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gibby26 said:
So here's the deal: these cars don't have a good, on-center feel. Constant steering corrections are needed to keep the car going straight, much more than other cars. It's like they don't want to go straight, so you're constantly making these little corrections. But it's also like you're always over-correcting, so you have to turn back the other way. Then, oops, you've over-corrected again. It's odd, because if you are going straight down the street or highway and take your hands off the wheel. it will continue straight ahead. But try turning the wheel a bit and notice how the car keeps turning instead of righting itself. Very unusual, and I have to say unique in my 45 years of driving.
Yep, this is exactly what happens when I drive my FX. The odd thing is, I have been noticing it more lately than I ever remember noticing when I first got my FX in 2005. Perhaps I was distracted with all the other gadetry when I first got the new car, but perhaps it is actually getting worse over time. While I do think that my 295/45-20 tires play a role in the wandering, I have also started to think about the worn front hub bearings on my FX. The hub bearings on my FX, like many other owners here, have gone bad and need to be replaced. They have been making humming noises since at least late 2007, but I am too cheap a ******* to replace them.

Here is my theory [and please, someone with more expertise than I, tell me if I'm in left field] -- if a physical symptom of a bad hub bearing is that the wheel/hub will have some amount of lateral play in it (lift the vehicle, grab the bottom of the tire and push/pull), then wouldn't it make sense that the wheel connected to a bad hub bearing would have some amount of uncontrollable left/right "play" while rolling down the road? If one or both front hub bearings are bad, then one or both wheels would wander to the left or to the right (or in opposite directions at the same time) while you are driving down the road. Any amount of correction by the driver through the steering wheel would probably work for a moment, but then the vehicle would start going in another random direction. This is my theory, at least.
 

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Hi, Steve -

Interesting theory. I don't know much about the hub bearings, either. Wonder how much they cost to replace? And how many miles are on your FX?

I've also thought about the power steering. As I've noted in previous posts, it's ENGINE-speed sensitive, not the more common vehicle-speed sensitive. This means there's more boost at low RPMs - like when just driving along at 45-60 mph. Not sure about you, but according to the computer in my car my average speed is always about 35 mph if I don't reset the thing for a few months. That extra boost may make the steering lose feel. Same system on the Murano and the M sedan, but not on the G sedan.

I also see you have a 350Z. About the only knock on those great cars I've ever seen is vague steering. Does yours have the same issue as the FX?

gibby26
 

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gibby26 said:
I also see you have a 350Z. About the only knock on those great cars I've ever seen is vague steering. Does yours have the same issue as the FX?
Its actually my wife's Z, but I drive it occasionally and modded it out when we first bought it. As for the steering in that car, no, it is not even the same. The Z has very heavy steering, meaning that it takes more effort to turn the wheel, and it just feels more solid. Absolutely no "wandering" around while driving it.
 

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Well, Steve - so much for that theory. I just think it's the nature of the car. At least you can make a comparison with the Z, which theoretically is the same platform as our cars - and all Infinitis except the big SUV. I just never noticed this type of vagueness in any other car I've owned - everything from six Ford Explorers to a BMW to a 1976 Porsche to an original SHO to a Mustang GT. Almost fifty different cars over the years.

But I say again - the FX's other features (and value) make up for a lot, and far outweigh this annoyance. I live in the Chicago area and we're getting a good dump of snow today. The FX makes short work of slippery and snowy roads. That seamless AWD is great. With the Explorers there was a tangible "clunk" when the 4WD kicked in.
 

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GixxerSteve said:
but I am too cheap a ******* to replace them.
+1... and what were you talking about again? :)
 

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gibby26 said:
Interesting theory. I don't know much about the hub bearings, either. Wonder how much they cost to replace? And how many miles are on your FX?
I recall the dealer wanting just under $300 per corner to replace the hub bearings. As for the mileage, I have 77k miles on my '04. I started noticing the humming noise somewhere around 56k miles, and since I was still under warranty at the time, I asked the dealer to check it out. They said the humming noise was not my bearings, but was instead due to my aftermarket Yokohama Paradas. They suggested I install some OEM Goodyear RSAs to solve the problem. :roll: Well, I soon ran out of warranty and the noise has steadily gotten worse. I bet if I go back now they would be happy to tell me my hub bearings are shot to **** and need to be replaced.

So my theory would only hold true if the wandering problem we are talking about happens on older FXs with mileage, not brand new ones. How many miles does yours have?
 

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I have 87,000 miles. Bought it as a CPO with 21,000 miles. It has the 100K warranty, and I plan to keep it longer than that. I usually get a new car when the old one has less than 60K miles, but with the economy I'm keeping this one for a while. I've done all the 60K services - all the fluids, coolant, etc. I drive about 25K-30K per year, and try to take really good care of my car. No dings or dents, Lexol the seats, keep it waxed, etc. It really looks new, and I want to keep it that way.

I think the pavement has a fair amount to do with the wandering. New, smooth cement or blacktop? Don't notice it as much. It seems to be older blacktop that's the worst. Like when the pavement is wave-like from right to left, with dips or trenches where hot summers and the tires of a million vehicles have pushed it down. Crowned in the middle, but lower in the tracks, especially approaching an intersection. But have you ever had a car about yank the wheel out of your hand when braking at one of those intersections? Mine pulls hard to the right. It will totally change lanes if I don't hang on tight. Very strange. The Murano did it, too. But not as much.
 

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'06 AWD, Sport suspension, 20" factory wheels/tire package

We've noticed our FX hops and shifts somewhat when hitting bumps in the road. We've also noticed it tracks hard with ruts in the road (especially while braking).

More corrective input is needed in this vehicle than any other I've driven. Have not had much experience with other FXs - so I can't compare myself...

Does anyone else have an issue with this?

Is this normal for the FX?

Is there a fix?

Note:
We've had a 4-wheel alignment done to make sure everything was properly sorted.
All suspension components checked out to be good.

Thsnks,
Rich
this is the exact problem im having...
 
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