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I keep my tire size the same (175-70-13) on my 94 Sentra. I figure the tradeoff is in not reducing the contact patch on ice and on dry pavement. I also do some winter road rallies with it and haven't had a problem. Usually by the time I get to a road (sometimes 50 cars back from the first) it's been swept clean of snow so I can use the extra rubber on the road.

If you're in an area that gets huge amounts of snow all the time, or you run studs, reducing width can be a benefit as the tire is able to bite through all the snow and get down to the surface underneath, which, with any luck, isn't ice. Also, if you have really wide tires, you should go with something more narrow in winter for sure.

Those WRC guys are running God's own set of studs and actually need to dig away all the snow to bite into the ice or gravel, thus a much narrower tire is more effective.

Edit - wait a minute, just how much snow are you getting in Miami Beach?
 

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The Alpins are slightly better on ice, but the Blizzaks own snow. The Blizzaks wear more quickly than most other winter tires though. It's a tough call to make, but you have to decide what winter driving you do most and how fast you want to be on different surfaces.

BTW - an informal survey of a stage rally I was at this past weekend had most cars on WS-50s or Yoko F720s (series sponsor). Very few Michelins.
 

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The trade in sounds like a good deal and Talon is a sponsor of our local club, a lot of our people from Ottawa get tires there.

Are you getting your car undercoated? With all this salt and only being one winter in the great white north, you might want to consider it. Salt + Japanese cars = instant rust.
 
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