Have a 2003 Nissan Pathfinder. Changing from 16" to 17" wheels and trying to decide on running 265/65-17 or the smaller 245/65-17. I like the larger tire but it only has an additional 1/8" clearence. Wheel turning and cornoring are fine with either tire. Opinions?
www.carbibles.com has a calculator that will tell you exactly how much of an effect the new sizes would have on your odometer and speedo. The best thing would be to get the size with the closest rolling circumference to your OEM size.
I assume you are not planning any off roading with those new rims.
Sure. My 1992 Pathfinder that I drove for 15-years had 235/65-17 wheels, but the 2003 seems to be built a little lower to the ground, heavier, and slightly smaller wells. Why the question?
The 265 tires should be more expensive. The 245 is big enough and will weigh less.
If you’re going to wheel it, smaller rim + larger tire sidewall is the way you want to go. You want more sidewall as a buffer between the rim and the ground. If you go to a larger wheel, not only are you limiting the amount of sidewall that you can have, you’re increasing weight. If you keep the 16 and get a taller tire, it’ll be more competent off the pavement.
Before you do this fitment, you should check with someone who has actually tried this out. Tires not only go through the entire range of suspension motion (fully turned, fully compressed is the worst case), but they also deflect due to the forces applied.
For example, during cornering, we are all familiar with the tire being pushed a bit sideways due to the cornering forces. But is everyone aware that the top of the tire compensates by moving the opposite direction?
So these things have to be done with a lot of care to prevent a sudden deflation in the middle of a turn - very dangerous.