When you've saved a car from the doom of a barn shed or just inherited the old Buick Skyhawk from your grandmother, you will need to find the best tires for it.

Often fitting new tires for your Buick Skyhawk means buying new rims, a fitment kit, or even adjusting the fenders to make everything fit.

The best Buick Skyhawk tire will always be the one that can fit on your current set of rims; we recommend the Maxxis sM80008 185-80R13s as they are closest to the standard. You should always check the car's current tires to ensure the new ones will fit without issues.

Several different kinds of tires will work with your Buick Skyhawk, and knowing what the most common are will ensure you get the best possible prices.

We talked to experts in both tires and classic cars and found the best solutions that will fit with both stock Buick Skyhawks and modified cars available on the market.

Best Tires For Buick Skyhawk

TABLE OF CONTENTS

HideShow

What Are The Best 9 Tires For A Buick Skyhawk?

We have found several tires work on Buick Skyhawks, each one offering different rim sizes and overall wall sizes. Many people in colder or warmer climates prefer to have tires that can handle the situations they live in.

Owing to the total size and weight of the Buick Skyhawk, you should always be sure to have tires that can handle snowy weather and sandy weather. We have nine recommendations, each best for different terrains and uses that the Buick Skyhawk uses.

Maxxis M8008 St Radial 185-80r13

{{tire-info-with-links="/tire/maxxis-tire-m8008-st"}}

The M8008 is our top recommended tire for the Buick Skyhawk for several reasons; it will fit most standard Buick Skyhawk rims and provide smooth traction at the max speeds of the car. Further, it is meant to be used on most terrains, allowing people to drive with it throughout the year without a problem.

It is usually listed as a trailer tire, with most classic car tire sizes registering as modern-day trailer sizes. Owing to this, you will not be able to use it for as long; the tire only lasts around two to three years when unused and will last five years when used.

The more a tire is used, the more it will last, with cracking tires usually being left in the sun with a lot of pressure. We chose this to be our best tire for Buick Skyhawks because it has some UV resistance and will also work as a good set of tires to have on hand when racing your Skyhawk.

Basic Facts About The Maxxis M8008 St Radial 185-80r13

The simple facts are that these tires are incredibly affordable for what they can provide, with a max speed rating of 100mph on even the 185s. They provide enough strength to last you several years while also ensuring that your car looks authentic to the classic look that all Buick Skyhawk owners want to keep.

Further, you will be able to use the tires for day-to-day trips while also loading the Skyhawk full of shopping bags or anything else that needs to be carried. The tires can handle much more abuse than most other tires on here while still being light and small enough to be switched out for racing tires.

  • Section Width: 175 to 225
  • Max PSI: 50 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: 100mph
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inches to 15-inches

The BF Goodrich Radial P215/60r14 91s

{{tire-info-with-links="/tire/bfgoodrich-radial-t-a"}}

We would have placed this as our top pick if it fit on more standard Buick Skyhawks on the market; however, it does not. This is a much thicker tire and will provide traction for those who have modified their Skyhawk to have significantly larger torque than the standard.

Many Skyhawk owners prefer to add some strength to the car or even use it on tracks, which means thinner tires will not be able to keep traction. The BF Goodrich Radial P215s are not so thick that you would need to bend the car's fenders to make them fit properly.

However, it should be noted that Skyhawks from the 1980s will have large enough fenders at the back and front to have these tires just fitted. We recommend constantly checking what your rims have been made for before simply installing or buying new tires sight unseen.

Basic Facts About The BF Goodrich Radial P215/60r14 91s

Because of the size and shape of this tire, it has been rated for all seasons, with many people preferring to use it in the summer months. Thicker tires have trouble with water and ice as they have trouble cutting through the water or snow in the same way that thinner tires will.

Further, you will find that you can load much more into your Skyhawk because these tires are much thicker than many of the alternatives. This means removing the standard engine and installing something much more extensive and stronger into your Skyhawk than what is already in there.

  • Section Width: 205 to 225
  • Max PSI: 35 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: 112mph
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inches to 17-inches

Kenda Karrier St175/80r13 C

The Kenda Carriers ST175s are perfect fits for Buick Skyhawks from the 1970s or early 1980s, with a thinner tire allowing you to fit them directly onto most classic rims. They will help you keep the car under control when driving in everyday conditions while also allowing it to keep the classic look.

It should be noted that, as with all tires smaller than 180s, they are primarily meant to be used with car trailers instead of cars. The smaller tires used in the 1970s require that you have these tires fitted as you will not find other tires that easily fit the classic rims of the Buick Skyhawk.

We usually suggest using these tires if you are going to be driving your Skyhawk and when you will be using it as a show car. Further, you will notice that while this tire is meant to be driven in most weather conditions, it does not provide the same level of traction as many other tires on the market.

Basic Facts About The Kenda Karrier St175/80r13 C

This can be considered one of the most standard sets of tires you can use on your Buick Skyhawk. Many people use it simply because it is affordable and easy to find at most tire shops, with most Skyhawks already having the required rims to use these tires.

Further, you will notice that these tires are not meant to last long, especially as they are not technically meant to be used on turning axles. For this, we recommend prolonging the life of the tires by only turning the wheels while the car is moving.

  • Section Width: 185 to 235
  • Max PSI: 50 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: N/A
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inches to 16-inches

Power King Towmax Str Ii St185/80r13 94/89l C

{{tire-info-with-links="/tire/power-king-towmax-str-ii"}}

Some tires need to be fitted to cars that will be used at shows, and the Power King Towmax ST185s are nearly the perfect solution to this. Meant for vehicles that won't ever travel faster than 75 mph, they allow you to keep the car on the road while keeping everything classic.

We recommend getting a set of these when you prefer to drive your Buick Skyhawk to each new show instead of towing it on a trailer. With the tread meant to handle most weather conditions, the only thing that you will need to be careful about is driving through snowy conditions.

We always recommend that you have at least one set of snow tires when you live somewhere it snows during winter. It will ensure you can continue to drive when conditions worsen, but it may also save you when things in your local area become too difficult to power through simply.

Basic Facts About The Power King Towmax Str LI St185/80r13 94/89l C

At only 75mph, these tires are not meant to be driven in any other conditions than rain, mud, or snow. With many people using them on their smaller trucks, they are a unique choice to add to your Buick Skyhawk; we always recommend keeping them ready.

Further, many people have learned that these tires will not last long when using them on tarred roads. This means that if you are living in a city with a lot of traffic and proper snowplows, you may not need to use the tires at all, as the clean tarred roads will damage the wheels over time.

  • Section Width: 175 to 235
  • Max PSI: 50 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: 75mph
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inches to 16-inches

Hankook Vantra Trailer St01 St185/80r13

Hankook Vantra Trailer ST185s is an excellent and affordable alternative to many other tire solutions that you can find on the market for your Buick Skyhawk. Slightly more significant than the standard tire that the Skyhawks have, this tire will fit onto most cars built after the 1980s.

We recommend getting a set of these if you know you will be driving the car regularly, with the max recommended speed being 87mph. Further, because the tires are so small, they are much lighter than others, allowing your Skyhawk's overall mileage per gallon to stay the same.

While the labeling does say that these are meant for trailers, they are still perfect for most Skyhawks as they have a good tread and are capable of handling the car's load. We recommend getting these if you have a Buick Skyhawk that needs to look almost perfectly stock.

Basic Facts About The Hankook Vantra Trailer St01 St185/80r13

These tires have a more complex rubber compound than regular tires, which means they can handle significantly more than other tires. Further, the tires are meant to be used with heavily loaded trailers, which means that the heavier Skyhawks from the 1970s are not a problem.

You will find that these tires are also significantly more affordable than most other tires. Still, with the slower top speed they have, you won't use them on or near tracks. Further, the shape of these tires makes them fit in better for Skyhawks, which will be show models rather than daily drivers.

  • Section Width: 175 to 255
  • Max PSI: 50 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: up to 87mph
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inches to 16-inches

Carlisle Radial Trail Hd 185/80r13

{{tire-info-with-links="/tire/carlisle-radial-trail-hd"}}

The Carlisle Radial Trail HD 185s are available in several sizes and are preferred when you want your Skyhawk to be driven both on and off the tracks. Allowing you to drive as you want to in most weather conditions without stress about ice or water on the road makes things difficult.

The tread has been made to handle multiple surfaces without too many challenges, allowing you to drive your car all year comfortably. However, it should be noted that the tire is only meant to handle speeds up to 81mph, with the predicted lifetime of everyday driving being just over four years.

However, it should be noted that the tires may not last as long, with multiple people that have them as daily drivers experiencing a reduced lifetime. This is because the tires are worn out from the heavyweight of the Skyhawk and the lack of power steering, increasing the wear on the front wheels.

Basic Facts About The Carlisle Radial Trail Hd 185/80r13

These tires are meant for highway driving, handling cruising speeds that the Skyhawk would have been used to when first launched in the 1970s and 1980s. Further, we recommend using these tires every day because the tread is much thicker and more profound than some other tires.

If you want to use the tires on track, we recommend having an extra set, as the tires will most likely degrade much faster when constantly being driven at high speeds. However, because the tires have such a thick sidewall, they have some resistance to curbs and other impacts from the side.

  • Section Width: 175 to 235
  • Max PSI: 50 to 95 PSI, depending on section width
  • Speed Ratings: 75mph to 81mph
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inches to 16-inches

Falken Azenis RT660 195/60r14

{{tire-info-with-links="/tire/falken-azenis-rt660"}}

The Falken Zenis RT660 195s are meant to be used on Buick Skyhawks that will spend their entire lives on the race track. They have a much smoother surfacer but are not yet racing slick, allowing you to drive the car in the rain or on most wet surfaces while still reaching top speeds.

The tire will be functional as your main tire when doing drag racing or can be used as the only tire you are using when driving around a track during sprints or endurance races. These tires are meant to be used on the track; their speed limit is also significantly higher, at 130mph.

Because the tire is meant for racing, it can stop your Skyhawk at a much shorter distance than most other tires. With a dry climate stopping average below 100 feet, wet conditions naturally cause the stopping power to be much weaker.

Basic Facts About The Falken Azenis RT660 195/60r14

The Falken Azenis set of tires is meant to be used for racing, with the tread being thinner overall and with several flat spots to increase grip on tarred surfaces. They are much wider at standard than the other tires we have chosen and will increase your mileage simply because of their size.

With a lightweight design compared to other models, the tires are focused on giving you a greater top speed, letting the Skyhawk use less energy to turn the wheels. However, because of the lack of treads, the tires will not work well as everyday tires and may become a danger with changing weather.

  • Section Width: 195 to 315
  • Max PSI: 51 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: 130 MPH
  • Tire Sizes: 14-inches to 19-inches

Dunlop Winter Maxx 2 175/70r13

{{tire-info-with-links="/tire/dunlop-winter-maxx-wm02"}}

We recommend that anyone that drives their Buick Skyhawks throughout the year have a set of Dunlop Winter Maxx 2 175s in the garage. These are best described as all-terrain tires that will ensure traction and control even when you are driving through puddles of mud.

However, it should be noted that as these tires have so much more traction, they will negatively affect your overall mileage. Fortunately, you can use the tires up to speeds of 118mph, which means that you can use the most power from your Skyhawk without worrying about damaging your tires.

However, it should be noted that we have seen very few Skyhawks that are stable on the road when driving faster than 100mph. Those capable of driving at that speed have specially added aerodynamics and drastic weight reductions across the body.

Basic Facts About The Dunlop Winter Maxx 2 175/70r13

While these tires can go at high speeds, we would recommend never driving faster than a few miles below the speed limit when you have them. This is because you will only be using these tires on your Skyhawk if it is raining or constantly snowing in your area.

The tires can also easily be used when you are living on or near mountains to help you drive on dirt roads. Because of the deep tread depth of 11, you cannot drive too long with these tires during summer conditions; this will cause the tire to degrade much faster.

  • Section Width: 175
  • Max PSI: 44 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: 118 mph
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inches to 16-inches

Westlake Rp195/70r13

Westlake RP18 195s give us the most average tire out of all the tires we can choose from, with multiple sizes and all meant for high-speed travel. We recommend getting these when you want to take the Buick Skyhawk from your garage to the showroom and then the track.

The tires can usually last up to 45000 miles and ensure that you can quickly and comfortably use your car for anything. However, we have found that some of the older Buick Skyhawks cannot use the tire as it is too large to fit without requiring some modification of the fenders.

Requiring 44PSI to be fully inflated, the max suggested load capacity of these tires meant for most driving is 103 pounds. You can use them on the Skyhawk and then continue to use load more onto the car, even allowing you to tow some small trailers or caravans.

Basic Facts About The Westlake Rp195/70r13

The tire is meant to be used throughout the year and will work with most seasons, allowing you to keep the same tires for as long as you need. Further, the tires do not have the telltale sound that most tires have when driving on regular roads, which most all-terrain tires have.

We recommend that you get these tires when you know that you will need something that can last for more than 40 000miles. While this is not our top pick, it has some of the best overall capabilities and will ensure that your Skyhawk stays roadworthy.

  • Section Width: 155 to 235
  • Max PSI: 44 PSI
  • Speed Ratings: 130mph to 149mph
  • Tire Sizes: 13-inch to 16-inch

Why Can You Not Use Old Buick Skyhawk Tires?

Any tires originally made for Buick Skyhawks would have expired by now, as all rubber tires have a set amount of years that can be used or stored. Rubber expires; when unused, it becomes brittle, easily cracking and shattering as your try to use the tires.

Further, when it has been used for a while and is then stored on a vehicle, even in a proper storage warehouse, the rubber hardens over time. This is why you can only push a car out of storage and then have to immediately get a new set of tires fitted to the car.

We recommend that you keep this in mind if someone tells you that they can provide you with original Buick Skyhawk tires. Any tires that were made for them will have long expired, as the last models of the Skyhawk were made in 1989, which is nearly 40 years ago.

How Long Can Tires Last On A Buick Skyhawk Used For Shows?

Many people are shocked to learn that when a set of tires are only used on a showcase Buick Skyhawk the tires only last around two to three years. The tires' rubber needs to be heated, used, pressured, and deflated for the rubber to last much longer.

When a car is used as a showcase, it will usually not be driven to these showcases, which means that the Skyhawk's tires would only be used when it is rolled into position. Many people have assumed their tires would last forever if they were just provided with tire care.

However, even if you apply tire cleaners and tire food every week to the tires, they will start to crack if the tires are never used. Instead, it is better for your tires if you drive the Buick Skyhawk between shows, allowing the tires to do the work they were designed for.

How Long Do Tires Last When Used To Drive?

When the tires on your Buick Skyhawk are used for everyday driving, they can easily last up to four or five years, depending on the mileage. If you are racing on a track or making drag sprints, the tires will usually only last one racing session, as you will be applying a lot of pressure to them.

People who drive their cars at least once or twice a week will find the best possible mileage on their tires as they are not being abused or overused. Further, you may find that your car tires are just getting worn out if you're doing several thousand miles every week in your Skyhawk.

Another factor to consider is the overall weight of your car and the registered weight of the tires you have on your Skyhawk. If you have a standard Skyhawk with thinner tires, the wear will be higher than when you have a lightweight Skyhawk while using thicker tires.

How Do You Get Tires To Last Longer?

The best way to get your tires to last longer is to never do bad things to them, like burnouts or taking corners at extremely high speeds. Further, you can apply tire sheen every few weeks, ensure they only get sun when driving, and not overheating the tires.

You should not drive on curbs or close to the curb, as areas with less traffic are more likely to have dangerous materials such as nails. We recommend only driving the car where you know the road is safe and won't cause random things to stick to it.

Tarred surfaces that see regular traffic are always the best surface to drive on, with many people that drive Buick Skyhawks disregarding this. Simply because the car is slightly higher than most other muscle cars does not mean that it is a good idea to drive it like a truck.

Does The Brand Of Tire You Are Using Matter?

Generally speaking, the brand of tire you are using will depend on what you will be using the tire for, as different brands have different types of tires. An excellent example of this is comparing Hankook tires to primary Power Max tires, where Hankook is focused on racing, and Power Max is focused on everyday driving.

We always recommend getting the brand that fits your pocket rather than the brand with the best possible flash for you to show off to others. Cheaper and more affordable brands often have solutions that fit classic cars better than some more prominent brands.

These smaller unknown brands offer tires a more comprehensive selection of tires to keep themselves as relevant as possible. More prominent brands need to ensure that they have the proper range of available tires, whereas smaller unknown brands know their niches.

Do New Tires Make A Difference?

One of the most significant immediate differences you can experience in any car is going from an old set of tires to a new set of tires. The new tires offer a much smoother ride overall, but you may also find that the new set of tires allows you to drive in ways you could not have imagined before.

We always recommend that you keep this in mind when you are going to be getting any car, as a simple new set of tires can make something transform entirely. We have seen many people complain about their cars when the tires they have on them are as old.

When getting a new set of tires, it is always a good idea to get a set that matches the old set, ensuring that the stress on the internals is not too much. Older cars can have rust build-up on the shocks and axles that can quickly worsen by fitting a new set of tires that drive differently.

How Long Should Tires Last?

Generally speaking, tires should last your Buick Skyhawk for around three to five years, depending on your driving conditions. Many people who have multiple sets of tires find that their tires last much longer than those driving with only one set.

We recommend that you keep this in mind when you are getting tires for your Skyhawk. Having a set of all-terrains for the snowy season will mean that your racing tires or daily tires will last you over five years in total.

However, if you are driving with your Skyhawk, the tires will not last as long, no matter the weather, the day, or the speed. Instead, you may find that the tires are losing their tread after three years, as they have been appropriately used, and you need to get a new set fitted.

About THE AUTHOR

Charles Redding

Charles Redding

I've spent many years selling cars, working with auto detailers, mechanics, dealership service teams, quoting and researching car insurance, modding my own cars, and much more.

Read More About Charles Redding