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MG MGF Technical - handling Problems Goodyear Ventura Tyres

My MGF has done 23000 miles on the original set of tyres. I noticed that a split running around the sidewall of the rear tyres. Has anyone had a similar problem.

I changed the tyres to Goodyear Eagle Ventura's the tyre fitters had to hammer one of the wheels off since it was corroded to the hub.

The rear of the car now seems to have a mind of its own at motorway speeds. The local MG dealer will not even look at the car since they said the tyres are not standard and the sidewalls of the tyres need to be stronger. A comment that I find strange since the new tyres have a higher speed rating than the old ones.

A local garage is having a look at the car at the momment.

Between the head gasket failure and window stops I am trying to thing what will go wrong next

Ryan Harley

This sounds like a really serious problems- handling anomolies like you describe could be very dangerous. Seeking help now is a very sensible thing to do.

I find the attitude of your dealer to be very dissappointing- take time to include an entry into Paul's dealer survery (

IMO they should have been considerably more sympathetic to your plight- although obviously they cannot be help responsible for tyres fitted by another company.

First- the simple check. Are the tyre pressures correct? Maybe the tyre centre have over inflated the tyres- this certainly can lead to a significant problems with the 'feel' of the car. If it isn't this, then there may be a problem with the tyres you have had fitted, or a problem has occurred resulting from the wheels having to be knocked off the hub.

On the tyre choice, I would have thought that Venturas should have been okay for the job- yet Rover has issued warnings regarding the fitment of tyres other than the NCT-3 can cause handling anomolies. So this could be useful for when you return to the tyre centre. and it looks as though this will be your only recourse if the problem is anything other than a simple tyre pressure problem.

Second problem is that the tracking has been knocked out of true by the tyre fitters attempting to fit the tyre. Basically get them to get the geometry checked and then corrected.

Sorry to hear that you have had such problems- and hope you get to a solution soon!

Rob Bell

My local backstreet garage have had a look at the car. The rear alloy wheel is buckeled where the tyre fitters hammered it of the hub.

They also recommended a local tyre place where they send cars to have the tracking etc tested. I'll post the address if its any good.

I've contacted the local mg dealer who quoted 177 for a new wheel.

I wonder what my changes of getting the tyre place to pay for the alloy wheel.



I saw some spare MGF VVC wheels at a fair recently but can't remeber how much or who had them.

Could try the adverts on here they sometimes pop up.


Ryan, it sounds like you got a very poor tyre dealer to change your tyres, as an engineering manager at Bridgestone/Firestone Europe I often see tyres with damage directly attributable to dealer abuse of rims. I think you should try to approach the dealer with the bill for a new rim, if it is damaged significantly.

I am interested in why however your car is unstable on the motorway. Air pressure is a good start, as is tyre sizes. Check that the correct size has been fited front and rear, a wider than normal front tyre may also give this effect on the motorway. I, in fact drive at the moment with 205/50R15 (Bridgestone S-02 Pole-Position) all round which is slightly less stable than the NCT-3. However the grip levels on the fun stuff (bends) is hugely improved and the wider front tyres stops the understeer that occurs on fast corners (be careful though as oversteer will kick in quickly without the pre-warning of understeer!!). My advice is to go to a track day (or airfield day) and try to drive past the limit of the vehicle. Knowledge is the most powerfull tool when things start to go pear-shaped!!

The Ventura tyre I can not comment on (and you may not believe me if I did!!), but I believe it should be a fairly able tyre on the MGF (although not up to S-02 levels)

Hope this somehow helps you further.

Neil Purves
Mgr. Product Planning & Engineering
Bridgestone/Firestone Europe
Neil Purves


I though this was only me. I have recently had a set of 185/55 15" Venturas fitted to my 214, replacing the Pirelli P600s (as they were about 10 a tyre cheaper). I immediately noticed that I had to turn the steering wheel a little more to get the car to turn, it seemed as though the tyre walls were too flexible. I put it down to the new tyres having more tread to flex. The next day I had to pull over to check whether I had a puncture or not, the high(ish) speed handling was so un-nerving. I'm now used to it, but the car sits low on its tyres even at 4 lbs sq in over the correct pressure. I'll go back to Pirellis next time.

If NCT3s are no longer available then what is the recommended tyre?

This abuse of wheels is appalling, there's no excuse for hammering the wheels off, even though the fitters haven't the time to mess about. It's no help now, but take the wheels off and grease the hub spigots before anyone else (this includes the standard service) gets their hands on them. From the damage you describe you certainly seem to have a case for some compensation from the fitters, Ryan, if not the full list price. Good luck! I'm dreading the day I have the tyres on my F changed!

Regards, Kes.

Hi Ryan-

Do not get another garage involved in the work at this time- go straight back to the tyre fitters and confront them with the damage and insist that they pay for a new wheel in full- if that is in fact what is required.

Then tell everyone you know who the offending outfit is, and to avoid at all cost!!!

Neil wrote >>all round which is slightly less stable than the NCT-3<<

I am very surprised by your observation Neil, as I have found the exact contrary with your company's excellent product. 195/50 R15 fronts maintain the chassis balance quite nicely- the front isn't over tyred. Could this be part of the explanation?

Rob Bell

I recently had some Eagle F1's fitted to the rear of my car and had the front tyres rotated. I checked the tyre pressures when I got home as the handling seemed very strange - all 4 tyres had been set to 35psi. Released the air to get the tyres to right pressure and went for a run - vast improvement at rear over NCT3's.

I was going to have SO-2's fitted but no one locally had them in stock.


Can anyone suggest a way of getting wheels off with out hammering with a rubber mallet if corroded on . My Tyre centre had to to get the wheels off but they did gease the hub so it shouldn't be a problem again.

To stop the wheels sticking use some copper grease between wheel and hub when you put the wheels back. The problem is alloy wheels on alloy hubs tend to stick, the dealer and the Tyre place should know about this as it is quite common with alloy wheels on many cars.
Tony Smith


Rich, it is possible with some effort, there's plenty of how-to info in the FAQs.

Regards, Kes.

>>>> alloy wheels on alloy hubs
should be 'alloy wheels on steel hubs' as the Metro never aspired to such things as ally hubs, and they are the same component.
David Smith

With regard to Rob Bells comment about less stability on 205/50R15 all round, I was only commenting on high speed straight stability. This is affected by the tyre picking up on road irregularities such as the grooves created by trucks and wandering about a bit more than before. The S-02 is of course a perfect tyre for this car in terms of grip, and you can mix and match the tyres on the front to get the set-up you like.
Driving an old MGA which oversteers at the least provocation I prefer this driving style so have tuned out the understeer by fitting wider tyres on the front.
I also should say that my motorway speeds in Germany have been 200kph plus and there has never been a problem with stability in terms of control. Just being a tyre engineer I tend to notice small differences in handling more than most people (its my job?!!).

Best regards
Neil Purves

Venturas are the MG(Rover) approved replacement for NCT3's. As NCT3's are no longer made. Aren't they?
I have Venturas fitted all round on my VVC. Grip and traction is pretty good especially in the wet. Overall not a bad tyre for the money.

Will try Bridgestones next time though.

Its all a bit concerning really isn't it. hope you get the tyre place to pay out, think they should. i also think you should have a word with the dealer just to find the answer to Kes's question. I was under the impression that the ventura was the replacement for the NCT3, which in my mind would mean it should be a slight improvement (or what are goodyear playing at) and therefore it should follow that this tyre takes the place as the recommended footwear for the F. how can a dealer not help you , when hes expecting you to fit tyres that you can't buy anymore, theres something wrong there.
Matt Lawrance

My dealer insisted on Venturas. I had two NCT's replaced with Venturas under warranty. Perhaps its time to call the MG helpline and have a polite moan.

They cant penalise you for fitting a tyre which is the direct replacement of a tyre that is no longer made. Can they ?

One point about the Venturas is that they have a much more aggressive profile than the NCT's. More suited for wet roads than dry. IMO that's useful for this country. I think the tread pattern does cause a more jittery feel especially at speed though. My front tyres have been on for 18,000 miles, the rears for 5000 miles. No sign of wear on any tyre up to now. All in all I'm happy with them.


Hi everyone and thanks for your advice

I've just collected the car from the tyre fitters and even at 40 mph there is a vast improvement in the stability and steering.

NCT tyre on the front and ventura's on the back seemed to cause almost perminant oversteer. In the way the the tyre fitters this was very noticable on roundabouts at a constant 20 mph !!! a bit scary.

They contacted the technical department at Goodyear who told them the NCT tyre is the only tyre to be fitted to the MGF.

They fitted the NCT's free of charge.

They have been contacted by Toyota relating to a simmilar problem with the MR2.

The car will be given the once over by my local ex MG garage to see if they can confirm if the wheel of hub have been damaged, If it has I will go back the the fitters with some more ammunition. ( they have dropped the MG range to deal only with Landrovers from the 1/6/00 - Another bad sign for MG ? )



Here's a way to get alloy wheels that have electrolytically welded themselves to the hub off. I used this on more than one occassion when I had a MG Metro.

Loosen the wheel nuts about half a turn and then go for a drive around some bends (not too far though!). Once you've got the wheels off put some copper grease on the surface between the wheel and the hub.


This thread was discussed between 05/06/2000 and 06/06/2000

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