The New RT-615K High Performance Tire From Falken

In the early 2000’s, Falken Tire came out with a budget, high performance tire that changed the auto crossing and road racing world – called the Azenis ST-215.  Many local organizations contemplated banning the tire from STS and STX, street tire-based, classes because it performed so well.  They were sticky from the start and maintained the 200 treadwear minimum needed to qualify for many street tire classes.  They were cheap, with the popular tire size at the time being a 205/50/15 that came in at around $60 a tire.  The sidewalls were ultra stiff and did not require a great deal of tire pressure to prevent roll over.  The only downfall of the ST-215 is that it got over-heated after a short period of time and many racers brought bug sprayers filled with water to soak the tires between runs.

Vaughn Gittin Jr is the 2010 Formula Drift champion and has been supported by Falken since 2004 when he ran his personal 240sx in drifting competitions

By the mid 2000’s Falken had replaced the RT-215 with the RT-615.  Many were upset and wondered why Falken discontinued a tire design that was so popular.  Fast forward to earlier this year and the RT-615 was reborn again, though this time with a K behind it.  The RT-615K has been called the revolutionized RT-215, but even better.  The tire technology behind the RT-615K makes the tire work like a 160-180 treadwear tire, with the 200 treadwear life.  That means even better cornering and braking performance.  Also with the new technology, Falken has figured out a way to keep the new K-series tires from getting slick when they are hot; now they heat up fast, and stay sticky.  While the price of the new RT-615K has increased a bit, there is no doubt the performance is there to match.

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About the author

Mark Gearhart

In 1995 Mark started photographing drag races at his once local track, Bradenton Motorsports Park. He became hooked and shot virtually every series at the track until 2007 until he moved to California and began working as a writer for Power Automedia. He was the founding editor for its first online magazines, and transitioned into the role of editorial director role in 2014. Retiring from the company in 2016, Mark continues to expand his career as a car builder, automotive enthusiast, and freelance journalist to provide featured content and technical expertise.
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