About the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport
Tires are one of the most important aspects when it comes to drag racing.
While you can have one of the most powerful muscle cars on the track, you will still need a means of transferring its power to the surface.
And if you don’t have a reliable set of tires, you will experience endless wheel spins and poor steering response.
The problem is, most of the best racing slicks are not usable on the road or they are not street legal.
So, you will need a set of tires that can deliver outstanding performance on the track but you can still use them on public roads.
And the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport is one of such tires.
The Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport is an extreme ultra-high performance tire, designed for racing enthusiasts, looking for the DOT-legal-street radial tires.
It’s built for sports cars, performance sedans, sports coupes and other performance-oriented vehicles.
Bridgestone has equipped this slick with some key design features, to maximize its traction, control, responsiveness and handling. They include:
New Tread Compound
Bridgestone has equipped this tire with a new tread compound, designed to increase the tire’s contact with the surface.
According to Bridgestone, this new tread design will also help to enhance the tire’s responsiveness and grip.
Directional Tread Design
The Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport also comes with a directional tread pattern, featuring a continuous center rib as well as large shoulder blocks.
These two features work together to provide better rubber-to-road contact, resulting in enhanced steering response and strong cornering grip.
Wide Circumferential Grooves
Bridgestone has further outfitted this tire with two wide and deep circumferential grooves as well as 7-shaped lateral grooves.
The circumferential grooves work in unison with the lateral grooves, to evacuate water away from the tire’s surface, resulting in superior wet traction.
Performance-Optimized Internal Structure
The Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport also comes with a sturdy internal structure, featuring a symmetric shape.
This unique internal construction plays a vital role in distributing the tire’s footprint pressure uniformly, especially during aggressive and speedy cornering.
Inside the tire are two wide steel belts, which have been strengthened with spirally wound nylon, to ensure ride stability, high-speed capability as well as durability.
The Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport has been marketed as a racing-inspired tire, which will deliver maximum grip for braking, acceleration and cornering.
Also, it should deliver outstanding dry and wet traction, whether you are on the track or the road.
So, does this tire perform as expected? I mounted a set of these tires on a 2019 Ford Mustang GT and tested them on several tracks and surfaces over a couple several months.
And I made the following observations, regarding various aspects of its performance such as grip, warm-up time, heat resistance and tread wear rate.
As an extreme high-performance tire, I expected this tire to deliver outstanding grip levels on dry pavement. And I was not disappointed.
When new, its grip feels like that of a premium R-compound tire. I was able to accelerate with ease, the braking was solid all through and the cornering grip was excellent.
But as the tire wears down, I noticed that it lost some of its grip. Also, the noise level increases as the tread wears down.
Its responsiveness in dry conditions is also outstanding. I didn’t experience any lagging or delayed responsiveness.
Overall, the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport will provide you with adequate amounts of dry grip.
Whether you are rotating the car, pushing it to the limits or navigating sharp corners, this tire performs as expected.
After the dry grip test, I then decided to give this tire a run on wet surfaces, to determine how it can perform in such conditions.
And I was not disappointed. Its grip on wet surfaces was almost similar to how it performed in dry conditions.
I didn’t experience any hydroplaning issues, thanks to the circumferential and lateral grooves on its tread, which help to channel water from beneath the tire.
However, I noticed some loss of cornering grip when I pushed my Ford Mustang GT to the limits.
So, it will be highly advisable to maintain lower speeds whenever you are driving with this tire in wet conditions.
It also lost some of its grip, especially when I came across water puddles or extremely wet surfaces.
And this is expected, considering that the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport is essentially a summer tire.
It’s also important to mention that this tire will not work when conditions are cold. Once the temperatures start dropping, they become hard and slippery.
Extreme performance tires usually need some warm-up time, so that they can provide better grip, over the course of the race.
The good news is, this tire only requires a few minutes to warm up and get up to speed. In fact, they had already acquired their optimum grip in less than a lap.
And by the second lap, I was able to push them to their full pace, without any noticeable loss of grip or control.
One of the biggest issues I have with performance, street-racing tires is their poor heat resistance.
Most tend to overheat quite fast, especially if you push the vehicle too hard. And when that happens, their performance levels will drop off significantly.
But with the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport, I didn’t experience such challenges. Their heat resistance is one of the best, compared to the majority of performance street tires.
Tread Wear Rate
The Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport is slightly cheaper than most of the R-compound racing tires on the market.
Unfortunately, it also comes with a higher wear rate, compared to other R-compound tires.
Driving at a maximum speed for around 4 to 5 hours on the track is enough to wear the tire’s tread significantly.
Therefore, this tire will not be ideal for endurance racing events, which may last for up to 9 hours per day.
On the other hand, if you will only be driving with a set of these tires occasionally on the street, then their wear rate will be just about average.
Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport Warranty
The Potenza RE-71R Sport only comes with a single warranty. And that’s the Bridgestone materials and workmanship warranty.
So, what is covered under this warranty? Let’s take a closer look:
Workmanship and Materials Warranty
Under this warranty, Bridgestone commits to replace your Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport tire, if it’s removed from service due to materials and workmanship defects.
For the replacement, Bridgestone will either replace it with a comparable new tire or replace it on a pro-rata basis.
If your Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport tire is removed from service due to materials or workmanship defects within 3 years from its purchase date, the company will replace it with a comparable new one, free of charge.
Bridgestone, through an authorized dealer, will also take care of the tire’s mounting and balancing costs.
And as the buyer, you will be required to pay for all applicable taxes, disposal fees, valve stems and other additional service charges.
If your Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport tire is removed from service after 3 years from the purchase date due to materials or workmanship defects, Bridgestone will still replace it.
However, you will be required to pay a pro-rated charge, which will be applied at the time of the tire’s replacement.
An authorized Bridgestone tire dealer will determine your pro-rated charge, which you will pay for the tire’s replacement.
Your pro-rated replacement cost will be determined by multiplying the original usable tread worn off the tire by its current selling price.
For instance, the tire may be removed from service due to materials and workmanship defects after 4 years from its purchase date.
And this point, the tire may only have 25% of its original usable tread remaining, meaning 75% has already been worn off.
Assuming the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport is currently selling for $200, then your pro-rated replacement charge will be $150.
Besides paying for the replacement charge, you will also be responsible for its mounting and balancing charges, together with applicable taxes and other service charges.
While your tire may be removed from service while it’s still within the warranty period, Bridgestone may not replace it, depending on various circumstances.
For instance, if the tire is removed from service due to improper or insufficient maintenance, it may not be eligible to be replaced.
Also, if the tire is removed from service due to damage caused by weather cracking, chemical degradation, as well as improper repairs, Bridgestone will not replace it, regardless of the percentage of the remaining tread.
Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport Sizes and Fitment
Bridgestone produces this tire in several sizes, ranging from 16 inches to 20 inches. It’s available in V and W speed ratings. Some of the vehicles it can fit include:
- Acura RL, TSX, ILX, TL, RLX and TLX
- Chevrolet SS, Cruze, Malibu, Corvette, Sonic, Corvette and Camaro
- Kia Seltos, Forte5, Cadenza, K5, Optima, Forte, Niro, Rio5, Stinger and Soul
- Ford Mustang GT, Fusion and Focus
- Dodge Dart and Avenger
- Jaguar XE, XKR, F-Type and XK
- Lotus Exige, Evora and Elise
- Buick Regal, Verano, LaCrosse and Regal Sportback
- Honda HR-V, Clarity, Accord CR-Z and Civic
- Ferrari FF, 458 Spider, California, 458 Italia, and Portofino
- Cadillac CTS, ATS, CT5 and CT4
- Volkswagen Golf, Passat, Golf SportWagen, Jetta, Golf Alltrack, Beetle and Arteon
- Toyota Matrix, Camry, GR Supra, Corolla, C-HR, Prius, Avalon, and 86
- Lexus GS Turbo, GS460, GS300, GS200t, ES300h, GS460, and RC350
- Hyundai Elantra, Ioniq, Azera, Genesis, Accent, Veloster, Kona and Sonata
- Nissan Versa, Altima, Juke, Cube, Sentra, Versa Note, Maxima and GT-R
- Subaru Legacy, BRZ, WRX, Impreza, BRZ and WRX STI
- Porsche Cayman, 718 Cayman, 911, Boxster and 718 Boxster
Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport Price Range
The Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport is currently retailing at around $113 to $450, depending on the size that you choose.
So, if you were to install a set of four tires, you will spend approximately $450 to $1800, based on your vehicle’s wheel size.
- Outstanding cornering grip
- Fast and precise steering response
- Great high-speed stability
- Excellent traction for drag racing
- High tread wear rate
Should You Buy the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport?
Overall, the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport is a good choice when it comes to time trial setups and occasional street driving. It will deliver sufficient wet and dry grip while responding fast and accurately to your driving commands. So, if you own a performance vehicle and you are looking for a set of extreme ultra-high performance tires that you can be using occasionally at the track, then the Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Sport deserves a look.
About The Author
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