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Does Lexus typically go with one tire mfg for all their vehicles?
No.

I haven't paid attention to every single Lexus model over the years, but I can discuss the two I'm most familiar with; the IS 300 and the IS F. The IS 300 generally came with either Dunlop SP9000 or Bridgestone RE040 tires (my old IS 300 had the latter) from the factory, while the IS F comes with either Bridgestone RE070s or Michelin Pilot Sport PS2s specially formulated for the IS F.
 

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What makes a car maker choose different suppliers for tires? Obviously price would be one factor.
I also think logistics are at play. For instance, carmakers depend on "just-in-time" delivery of outsourced materials (such as tires) to keep assembly lines moving efficiently, and more than one tire supplier may be helpful in this regard. Also, don't forget that in some parts of the world (such as Europe and Korea) manufacturers will hold strikes and work stoppages over the most trivial and stupid issues and, again, having a diversified supplier base helps.
 

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Does Lexus typically go with one tire mfg for all their vehicles?
No, they vary from Michelin, Bridgestone, Dunlop, Toyo, Goodyear and etc. The CT200h we see currently in Starfire has Michelin Primacy MXM4's in 215/45R17, the same size stock tire on the Gen 1 IS300 w/17" wheels.



 

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Stupid question but the tires that are shown with the car at auto shows...are they usually the ones that will come on the showroom models?
For the most part, yes. There may well be some exceptions, though. And then you have a case like the Lexus LFA where the carmaker is still so coy about revealing which specific tire they'll use that even the 3 or so pre-production prototypes out there have tires that are missing a bunch of info on their sidewall writing...
 

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What makes a car maker choose different suppliers for tires? Obviously price would be one factor.
I think that its mostly vehicle dynamics and ride quality. Cost and supply factors, as other have pointed out, can certainly affect the decision.

In some instances, a car company will have a special tire built, or an existing tire modified to suit their vehicle dynamics objectives. Obviously, this is only on higher end stuff.
 

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No, they vary from Michelin, Bridgestone, Dunlop, Toyo, Goodyear and etc. The CT200h we see currently in Starfire has Michelin Primacy MXM4's in 215/45R17, the same size stock tire on the Gen 1 IS300 w/17" wheels.



My CT manufactured in 2/11 came with the same Michelin tires. They are "Green" tires and use sunflower oil in the manufacturing process.

Primacy MXM4 | Michelin Tires
 

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Manufacturer's also have to look at supply. By having two suppliers, you don't run into production issues also. Its diversifiaction of parts supply.
 

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After having driven the CT for a little over a month now, I notice that the tracking on grooved freeway pavement here in Calif. gets a bit squirrely. I did not notice this on my last car or my other vehicle (both much heavier). I'm not sure if it's mostly a function of these tires or some combo of the tires / suspension / vehicle weight.
 

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After having driven the CT for a little over a month now, I notice that the tracking on grooved freeway pavement here in Calif. gets a bit squirrely. I did not notice this on my last car or my other vehicle (both much heavier). I'm not sure if it's mostly a function of these tires or some combo of the tires / suspension / vehicle weight.
What were your previous cars? I've notices that lighter, shorter wheelbase cars get that feeling on grooved freeways. My GTI did the same thing.
 
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