Smaller but full spare tire (Michelin 195/60/15) vs. donut spare for Camry 215/60/16 tire

toyota
camry

#1

I bought a set of four new Michelin tires (size 195/60/15) three months ago for my 1993(!) Volvo 850 that still runs and I thought would last for a while longer but unfortunately didn’t pass inspection and mechanic says not to put any more money into. The Volvo also has a full tire spare. I just bought a used 2011 Toyota Camry that needs new tires (size 215/60/16) and only has a donut spare.
From reading many posts, I know I can’t use the smaller size tires for the Toyota as regular replacements, but I’m wondering if (1) I can use and (2) would be safer using the full tire, though smaller, spare from the Volvo instead of the donut?


#2

Have you tried to mount it? I wonder if the rim would clear the rotors on your brakes. Also, is the bolt pattern the same? It’ll take you about 15 minutes to find out.


#3

It probably won’t fit the lug pattern, or clear the brake caliper and rotor properly. But even if it does , it’s not going to stow nicely under the fiberboard cover that stows your dummy spare away. Then you’ll crack it trying to cover a wheel that’s too big. Keep the dummy spare with the car, if the Volvo wheel DOES fit, keep it in your garage as an emergency backup. The dummy spare was developed for your car, the Volvo wheel wasn’t. Dummy spares are called dummies bc we see people driving 70mph on them for much longer periods than they should. The dummy spare has it’s purpose: Get you to where you can get you flat fixed or replaced. That’s it. Not a fifth wheel. Cheers.


#4

First, the bolt patterns are different - 108mm vs 114.3 mm. So the wheels from the Volbvo won’t fit the Camry.

Second, if you use the Camry spare wheel (is it a 15"?) then the wheel will be too narrow for the Volvo size.

So, this sounds like a No-Go!


#5

Those tyres are not intended to daily use. They are designed to get you to the nearest shop. where you get a real tyre.


#6

Thanks for all your replies. It appears I’m not going to recoup any of my outlay on new tires for my old Volvo whose engine problems have become to expensive to justify repairing. It’s because I know that donut spares are only intended for a short limp to a nearby garage that I was looking to provide myself with the same extra measure of safety as I’ve had with two Volvos. To its credit, Volvo provided full tire “spares” that were intended to be cycled into the regular tire rotation (of course factoring that into the purchase price) so as not to leave owners limping on a donut in case of emergency when there might or might not be a nearby repair shop or an open repair shop, possibly far from home. I’ve had two Volvos, one for 15 years, this one for 20 years, but high average cost of repairs fof the Volvos and good reliability and lower average repair cost finally drove me to Toyota.


#7

Volvo does not offer spare tires on new cars. You get a tire repair kit, just as most manufacturers provide. This is not as big a deal as it used to be, though. Volvo does offer roadside assistance, and auto insurers offer roadside assistance at an attractive added cost. My insurer does, anyway. So, use the fix-a-flat stuff or get roadside assistance with your cell phone. That is probably safer than the space saver spare anyway. And don’t expect to see spare tires of any kind make a comeback. Auto manufacturers want to save weight any way the can to increase gas mileage, and deleting the spare tire is an excellent way to lose 30 or more lbs.


#8

The two tire sizes you indicated would not have the same outside diameter. They should not be used even if the rims fit and the bolt patterns were the same. With different outside diameters on the rear, it woukd handle much worse then if they were the same, and on the front, it could wear your differential substantially and cause braking problems. Donut spares, even if more narrow, should have the have similar outside diameter when inflated as the other 4 wheels in use on your Camry.

Buy the four new tires as you must and continue using the given donut spare. It is perfectly safe and tougher then most think in use under their given restrictions. Just keep it inflated to the indicated and don’t worry about them in use if you drive as instructed. They actually last much longer then you think if you drive conservatively (slowly) and DONOT suddenly implode after 50 mles. Even if you had a real full size spare with tread that doesn’t match, you should change back to repaired originals, asap. I don’t see a big problem with them ( donuts) on compact cars !

Do not use other size tires then those on the Camry ! DONOT mix tire sizes especially with different outside diameters !