My 2005 Volvo 6T came with 18" wheels. I am experiencing frequent tire damage due to the many potholes on I80. My understanding is that if I change to 16? wheels, the road damaged should be significantly reduced. However, the standard wheel size for a ?6T? is only 17? or 18?. I have two questions: 1) is my assumption about the reduced tire damage correct; and 2) what will be the effect of using 16? wheels on a car the lists 17? or 18? as standard?
Yes you assumption is correct.
You may not be able to use a 16" wheel if there is not a 16" wheel available that will clear the brakes. In other words they may not fit.
The 17 in wheels would be an improvement and may be enough. Try to keep the circumference of the tyres the same size as current and make sure the tyres meet the weight and speed ratings for your car.
Just to clarify something. Are you experiencing tire damage or WHEEL damage?
Tirerack.com shows this vehicle uses 60 series on the 18s and 65 series tires on the 17s and normally that’s enough sidewall to protect the wheels unless the pothole is actually a crater.
Changing to 16s and using a 70 ot 75 series tire (more sidewall height) could possiby be done but the outer diameter would need to remain about the same as the original wheels. A 75 series might be a real stretch though.
The pros would be a softer ride, more sidewall height, and cheaper tires. The cons could be possibly a very slight loss in handling ability or interference problems between the wheel and the brake rotor/caliper assembly. The latter would mean that it would have to be known for a fact the wheel would not drag on the caliper or rotor.
Any decent tire store or tirerack.com should be able to determine this.
Check out tirerack.com in the winter tires section for winter packages of rims and tires and looking for minimum size there. Sometimes 16" wheels fit just fine. Or simply call them and ask.
A friend of mine just bought a Scion with 17" wheels and 45 series tires. The car rides like a fork-lift. “Performance Option”??? 4 cyl econo-box Scion?? Give me a break! This is what happens when stylists have veto authority in car designs. They don’t CARE about ride quality, road hazard damage or replacement cost. They just want it to to “look good” based on THEIR standards…The consumer is left holding the bag…
I was in a local tire store about 4 or 5 months ago and while waiting got to looking at some of those extremely low profile tires that were on display.
These were actually 35 series tires and the sidewall was about 2 inches high. Can you imagine the ride harshness and wheel damage that is going to occur with those?
What little sidewall there was could not even be moved by hand.
Why not just laminate the alloy wheel with a tread layer like a recap tire and call it good. It’s the same thing.
Um…I have a Scion with 17" wheels and 45 series tires. I love the ride. I bought it in 2005 and have driven it over 70,000 miles including on Boston roads. It rides far better than my 2005 Corolla did.
I’ve owned cars for over 40 years. The Scion tC is one of the favorite cars I’ve owned. For $17.8K delivered price including an automatic tranny it’s one heck of a lot of automobile.
But it’s a “taste” thing. I like a sporty car with high reliability and a cheap price. You may have different tastes.
By the way, how does your friend like his tC???
The stores make a lot of money on those thin tires mounted on BIG wheels.
I am experiencing tire damage. Usually, after hitting potholes, the tire has a bubble. Since I bought the car in Jan 07, I replaced two tires, but I see a new bulge on one of the new tires. The wheel shows no damage.
I talked to the Volvo dealer and he assures me that a 16? will fit. I called Tiretrack.com and they told me that the 16? is OK (although at first he thought the break would interfere). Well, I went ahead and bought a 16? package from Tiretrack. It will be installed next week. I?ll let you know how it works out, including the resulting handling.
I did call Tiretrack, and bought a 16" package. See my answer above.