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"I’ll admit, looks played a substantial role. I thought to 453 might grow on me. It hasn’t. IMO, the 453 was a “one step back” after two steps forward. 450->451"


Hmm, can't really agree with that assessment. This after leasing/owning four 451's including a Brabus Edition (I was a Smart Manager in Oregon, so they were too inexpensive to just say no').


Between the two cars there is NO comparison. The 451's 'automated manual' killed more sales then any other reason. The 453, has both a manual transmission or a real automatic transmission with paddle shifters. Along with a JBL upgraded sound, a navigation option, handfree Bluetooth phone and the ability to stream music. Is twice as quiet as a 451 and has standard power steering & alarm system and a wider stance for stability (cornering) and 'cross wind assist'. It's really no fun getting tossed around by the wind in my 451 Brabus. Plus, I pay $35 more a month on my lease then the 451's. All this goodness for so little...
 

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Yes, tow hook cover is notorious for falling out. Mine did a year or so ago. Haven’t yet replaced it but did cut a piece of styrofoam to wedge in the opening to keep out crud.
Lol , yeah lost mine in a deluge during a thunderstorm and high winds . Got two replacements but didn’t color match them . Saw no reason go thru the trouble only to see it missing again .
 

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Hands down 453 is far better than the 451's
I would love to get my hands on a 453 stick shift, convertible in white or matte finish almost anything other than black. It's going to take a few years for the price to come down to what I'm willing to pay.
Almost three years ago I bought my 09 convertible with 47,000 miles for less than $4300. What I consider to be a disposable or used motorcycle price. That's the criteria for my toy car.
 

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Tire noise. The stock Conti's are Loud.
I changed out the stock rims pretty quickly with softer 300 QTOG Yokohamas; now I notice with the windows down I hear the tires from the Tesla next to me :)


If I kept the stock (16") rims, I would mount quieter tires on them.
I went for the look and put on a 16/17" combo.
Thanks for detailed post, Mailman! I'm curious from your picture, it looks like you have two different type tires under the Yokohama brand. Is that causing any driveability issues? It's usually recommended to stay with the same type of tire, even if the wheel sizes are different. My 453 has the stock 16" Conti's, but I'd like to tamp down the noise.
 

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Thanks for detailed post, Mailman! I'm curious from your picture, it looks like you have two different type tires under the Yokohama brand. Is that causing any driveability issues? It's usually recommended to stay with the same type of tire, even if the wheel sizes are different. My 453 has the stock 16" Conti's, but I'd like to tamp down the noise.

The rear tires are 225/35/17s. That size is now discontinued by Yokohama.
The rear rim is a 17x8.5j... There just aren't many tires period that fit in that diameter and width.
I'm not a fan of 'stretching' a tire to fit a wider rim - I work within the manufacturer's recommended rim widths.


So I had to get That rear tire size (300 UTQG AA A), and then match the stock front tire size

185/50/16 (23.4" Diameter), where I found there aren't many tires period that are the stock tire size!
Luckily, the front tires I found were the same softness and similar traction (300 UTQG A A).


With the car designed for understeer not only in the front and rear camber as well as narrower front / wider rear tires, there are no drivability issues -- ie. the car dosen't have enough torque to break the rearend out :)



I have taken a turn very sharply and have gotten the TCS light to come on, throttle cut (aw, no more fun), but the narrower front, wider rear plus negative camber and throttle cut kept the car perfectly drivable.


If I was in your shoes and wanting to replace the conti's on stock rims, and the car doesn't see snow, I'd get again the stock size 185/50/16 (for rim widths 5-6.5") for the front

https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Yokohama&tireModel=BluEarth-A+AE50&partnum=85HR6AE50&vehicleSearch=false&fromCompare1=yes


and again match the 300 UTQG rating, with wider rear tires 205/45/16 (for rim widths 6.5-7.5")
https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Yokohama&tireModel=ADVAN+Fleva+V701&partnum=045WR6V701XL&vehicleSearch=false&fromCompare1=yes


Yes, there aren't many tires available in the stock sizes, and yes, these are the softest / quietest tires you can get without going into autocross tires that wear out in a few months.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
The rear tires are 225/35/17s. That size is now discontinued by Yokohama.
The rear rim is a 17x8.5j... There just aren't many tires period that fit in that diameter and width.
I'm not a fan of 'stretching' a tire to fit a wider rim - I work within the manufacturer's recommended rim widths.


So I had to get That rear tire size (300 UTQG AA A), and then match the stock front tire size

185/50/16 (23.4" Diameter), where I found there aren't many tires period that are the stock tire size!
Luckily, the front tires I found were the same softness and similar traction (300 UTQG A A).


With the car designed for understeer not only in the front and rear camber as well as narrower front / wider rear tires, there are no drivability issues -- ie. the car dosen't have enough torque to break the rearend out :)



I have taken a turn very sharply and have gotten the TCS light to come on, throttle cut (aw, no more fun), but the narrower front, wider rear plus negative camber and throttle cut kept the car perfectly drivable.


If I was in your shoes and wanting to replace the conti's on stock rims, and the car doesn't see snow, I'd get again the stock size 185/50/16 (for rim widths 5-6.5") for the front

https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Yokohama&tireModel=BluEarth-A+AE50&partnum=85HR6AE50&vehicleSearch=false&fromCompare1=yes


and again match the 300 UTQG rating, with wider rear tires 205/45/16 (for rim widths 6.5-7.5")
https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Yokohama&tireModel=ADVAN+Fleva+V701&partnum=045WR6V701XL&vehicleSearch=false&fromCompare1=yes


Yes, there aren't many tires available in the stock sizes, and yes, these are the softest / quietest tires you can get without going into autocross tires that wear out in a few months.
Excellent info.
 

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If I was in your shoes and wanting to replace the conti's on stock rims, and the car doesn't see snow, I'd get again the stock size 185/50/16 (for rim widths 5-6.5") for the front

https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Yokohama&tireModel=BluEarth-A+AE50&partnum=85HR6AE50&vehicleSearch=false&fromCompare1=yes


and again match the 300 UTQG rating, with wider rear tires 205/45/16 (for rim widths 6.5-7.5")
https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Yokohama&tireModel=ADVAN+Fleva+V701&partnum=045WR6V701XL&vehicleSearch=false&fromCompare1=yes
Thanks again, Mailman. Yep, there aren't too many sizes available in that staggered configuration. I've had good experiences with Yokos in the past, so that would be my likely choice. As much as I love this little machine, it can be a drone monster over course asphalt. I believe that's largely due to the NVH attributed to the ForTwo, but any amount of reduction would help. I may even remove the interior plastic panels next to the tridion frame and line it with some dyno-matting... or even spray some sound-deadening foam. I don't need Lexus quiet, just knock a few decibels off that drone.
 

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I'm 6'5" and I fit very well in my 453 Passion. My legs are long and I can pretty much extend my left leg straight next to the dead pedal. I owned a 451, and while I did fit, it was much tighter.

The 453 is so much more superior to my base level 451. The shifting, power, space (although the cargo area is a tad smaller), noise, handling, AC...pretty much everything is better.

I do 3 hr drives in it and am very comfortable

When I bought it in OR and drove it down to CA, I dragged a 6'2" buddy along for the ride. We fit our lanky asses in the car along with all the camping gear we needed in the back -- granted, the cargo area had every inch filled, but it worked.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
I'm 6'5" and I fit very well in my 453 Passion. My legs are long and I can pretty much extend my left leg straight next to the dead pedal. I owned a 451, and while I did fit, it was much tighter.

The 453 is so much more superior to my base level 451. The shifting, power, space (although the cargo area is a tad smaller), noise, handling, AC...pretty much everything is better.

I do 3 hr drives in it and am very comfortable

When I bought it in OR and drove it down to CA, I dragged a 6'2" buddy along for the ride. We fit our lanky asses in the car along with all the camping gear we needed in the back -- granted, the cargo area had every inch filled, but it worked.
@Mr. Pink thanks for chiming in here. Since the steering wheel doesn't telescope, do you find yourself having to scoot up more to the steering wheel than you normally would if it telescoped out more?
 

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@Mr. Pink thanks for chiming in here. Since the steering wheel doesn't telescope, do you find yourself having to scoot up more to the steering wheel than you normally would if it telescoped out more?
I must say, I wish the steering wheel telescoped a bit because I have the seat ALL they way back. That being said, the driving position is pretty comfortable for long trips.

I forgot to mention that I bought one of the retro fit arm rests that slot into the center console cup holder. It's a little flimsy (due mainly to the stock center console construction) but serves its purpose very well! It is quite fatiguing to have your arms unsupported on a long journey so an armrest was a MUST
 

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Discussion Starter #31
I must say, I wish the steering wheel telescoped a bit because I have the seat ALL they way back. That being said, the driving position is pretty comfortable for long trips.

I forgot to mention that I bought one of the retro fit arm rests that slot into the center console cup holder. It's a little flimsy (due mainly to the stock center console construction) but serves its purpose very well! It is quite fatiguing to have your arms unsupported on a long journey so an armrest was a MUST

@Mr Pink, since your seat is all the way back do you have to position your shoulders forward (frankly how I see most men and women walk & sit but another topic for another day) or are you able to have your shoulders back? (how we should all be sitting/walking)
I ask cause I drive a BMW i3 and I have my seat all the way back but the steering wheel is VERY telescopic and it allows me to have my shoulders where they should be (back) instead of hunched forward like most people (like I use to sit/walk)
I fly out Tuesday to pick up my 453. Thanks for the insight from a tall person.
 

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@Mr Pink, since your seat is all the way back do you have to position your shoulders forward (frankly how I see most men and women walk & sit but another topic for another day) or are you able to have your shoulders back? (how we should all be sitting/walking)
I ask cause I drive a BMW i3 and I have my seat all the way back but the steering wheel is VERY telescopic and it allows me to have my shoulders where they should be (back) instead of hunched forward like most people (like I use to sit/walk)
I fly out Tuesday to pick up my 453. Thanks for the insight from a tall person.
I must say, that is the only comfort issue I have. When I sit with shoulders back and elbows on arm rest - the most comfortable position, my fingers just reach the steering wheel so I can actually drive a straight road like that. But it means i have to lift one or the other elbow off the rest and extend my arm a little if I want a full grip on the wheel. Not the end of the world because for long drives, it helps to have a variety of positions.

I have found that the window sill makes a pretty good armrest too. It's big enough so you don't have to smudge the glass.

If I have both hands on the wheel, I can do so with both shoulders back
 

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Regarding tires, I have another thread somewhere here about my "experiment" with putting $30 tires of the correct size but different brand on the front (back still had plenty of tread). The 453 did NOT like that setup at all. Felt like it wandered down the freeway and gave me a few scares going around corners. The ONLY variable was the tires so I took them back (thanks to the awesome America's/Discount Tire) and traded them for the stock tires.
 

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Kind of late to the party.... but just wanted to share my input on two things i've read.

1) the black grille with white tridion: It's the one thing i'm NOT a fan of on my Prime. I have a 2016 with blue panels and a white tridion. The upper grille is white, the lower grille is black. I keep thinking about one day taking the front panel off so i can remove the grille piece, and plasti-dip either the top one black or the bottom one white.... but at the same time don't want to risk ruining something since i've never taken that panel off before.

2) 3 oil changes in 42,000 miles? I'm sorry, but how is that catastrophically bad to some people? Oil changes are recommended every 10,000 miles. Yeah, there was a bit of a lapse in some of those that he was told, and it should probably have another one done quite soon.... but i don't think i'd say it's HORRIFIC to see that. There was a time or two where i neglected to follow the 10,000 mile mark to a T.... but I just recently crossed the 70,000 mile mark and, knock on wood, have had zero engine trouble so far. I'm thinking i should maybe look into changing the spark plugs sometime soon.... but that's a different story.

All in all, I love my 453.... just as i loved my 451 Brabus coupe. On a side note, the 453 sounds pretty nice without a muffler :p
 

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Discussion Starter #35
I must say, that is the only comfort issue I have. When I sit with shoulders back and elbows on arm rest - the most comfortable position, my fingers just reach the steering wheel so I can actually drive a straight road like that. But it means i have to lift one or the other elbow off the rest and extend my arm a little if I want a full grip on the wheel. Not the end of the world because for long drives, it helps to have a variety of positions.

I have found that the window sill makes a pretty good armrest too. It's big enough so you don't have to smudge the glass.

If I have both hands on the wheel, I can do so with both shoulders back
Regarding tires, I have another thread somewhere here about my "experiment" with putting $30 tires of the correct size but different brand on the front (back still had plenty of tread). The 453 did NOT like that setup at all. Felt like it wandered down the freeway and gave me a few scares going around corners. The ONLY variable was the tires so I took them back (thanks to the awesome America's/Discount Tire) and traded them for the stock tires.
Kind of late to the party.... but just wanted to share my input on two things i've read.

1) the black grille with white tridion: It's the one thing i'm NOT a fan of on my Prime. I have a 2016 with blue panels and a white tridion. The upper grille is white, the lower grille is black. I keep thinking about one day taking the front panel off so i can remove the grille piece, and plasti-dip either the top one black or the bottom one white.... but at the same time don't want to risk ruining something since i've never taken that panel off before.

2) 3 oil changes in 42,000 miles? I'm sorry, but how is that catastrophically bad to some people? Oil changes are recommended every 10,000 miles. Yeah, there was a bit of a lapse in some of those that he was told, and it should probably have another one done quite soon.... but i don't think i'd say it's HORRIFIC to see that. There was a time or two where i neglected to follow the 10,000 mile mark to a T.... but I just recently crossed the 70,000 mile mark and, knock on wood, have had zero engine trouble so far. I'm thinking i should maybe look into changing the spark plugs sometime soon.... but that's a different story.

All in all, I love my 453.... just as i loved my 451 Brabus coupe. On a side note, the 453 sounds pretty nice without a muffler :p
Thank you for the input guys :)
 
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