I am going to purchase new tires this week and was looking for some experienced advise.
The car is a daily driver in Cincinnati where it does get pretty cold over the winter. I'm not that worried about snow, because my wife doesn't drive on snow, so I can always take the SUV then.
My question is...Does it hurt summer tires to drive them in colder weather?
I have read good things about the Michlein Pilot Super Sports, but if this is a problem will go with the Pilot Sport A/S Plus.
With so many users all over the world, never thought I'd respond to someone else right here in Cinci!
I had a set of pirelli PZeros, and while I drive my 4x4 truck most of the winter, I've tried driving my C5 with the summer Pzeros with a little snow on the ground- Doesnt work. In fact, they had plowed the street and I pulled the car out of my driveway just to use the snow blower, and had to have some neighbors come over and helpd me PUSH the car back in.
I also started losing traction and even spun out when the temperatures neared freezing because of the hardening of the tire. I want to reiterate what a bunch of your other SLK friends have said and that its not just snow you worry about with summer tires, the cold weather hardens the tire so you lose traction even on dry pavement, and you have to drive very carefully all through the winter seasons.
From my experience in Cincinnati (and I spent some time in upstate NY too, the snow capital of the US), driving summer-only tires in winter is just a bad idea, and not worth it on any accounts. Your not necessarily going to do tire damage (Theoretically just a little bit of advanced wear and shortening of the life- unless your talking some Rcomps) but it becomes a risky proposition.
Some of the performance all-seasons are pretty impressive tires for summer driving, so I urge you to look at them (Kumho makes some decent ones for example) if you'll only have one set of tires. If you want two sets, pick up a set of blizzaks for winter and one of the various fine summer-driving tires. Summer-only tires only work in two scenarios: You winterize your car and leave it garaged for 6 months or you have two sets of wheels and you swap them between seasons (thats what I've done for years back when I only had a car or two, as well as many of the performance enthusiasts I know)
Of the ones you listed, I say Pilot Sport A/S Plus. Those are pretty solid tires and should give you good performance that could even hold up on a track day or two!