New Car...New Wheels?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by CRyan, Oct 24, 2002.

  1. CRyan

    CRyan Screenwriter

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    Well, I have a new Accord Coupe EX V6 that has around 1600 miles on it. I thought when I bought the car that I would eventually put new wheels on it when I needed new tires. Unfortunately, one of the tires has split (supposedly due to something I ran over). Anyway, this crap tire is going to cost $200 to replace.

    So now I am thinking about going ahead and getting new wheels and tires now instead of waiting. I hate the idea of spending $200 on something I really do not like.

    The stock wheels are 16" and I would really like to get 17" with a somewhat lower profile tire. Will this greatly effect the handling of the car? Is this a bad idea?

    Also, I do not want ultra low profile tires. I understand that they do not wear as well and the ride would be less smooth.

    So is there a brand of wheel that I should look for. Nothing exotic and overly pricey, but something well made. I mean I need them now as the car is currently on the spare. So something I would probably be able to find locally.

    I guess I will probably buy the wheels at one place and the tires at Sam's, unless someone has a deal on a wheel/tire set.


    Thanks for any input,

    C. Ryan
     
  2. Tim Johnson

    Tim Johnson Agent

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    17" X 7 " wheels are going to run anywhere from $150 on up per wheel. I can't help you with those, as they are more a matter of personal taste than anything else. If you want chrome you will be spending at least $250 per wheel.

    These will change the way the car handles, it will be a slightly rougher ride, but you will have increased handling due to the shorter sidewall and the overall sportier characteristics of a low-profile tire (better grip, stiffer and shorter sidewall, better tread pattern)

    As far as the tires go I would go for 215/50-17 to keep the overall tire dimensions as close as possible to te stock wheels and tires. This way your spedometer won't be off as much.

    I have BF Goodrich G-Force T/A KDWS tires mounted on my Pontiac GTP. They are a high performance all season tire which is a rare find, and they actually do very well in the snow. On dry pavement they grip very well athough with the extra horsepower I have added I can still break them loose and smoke the tires when need be. They are also a very quiet tire with very little road noise.
     
  3. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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    C., (can I call you C.?[​IMG] )
    Check all the literature with your owner's manual. When I bought my 1995 Accord EX, it came with a tire warranty, including road hazard (Michelin MXV4's), right from the factory (at least, that's what the dealer told me). I got the same sort of offer on my new '02 Acura TL-S.
    Look into it, if you haven't.
    BTW, there's no way those tires should cost $200 each. Tirerack.com shows a max of $133 for 205/60-16 VR rated Michelin MXV4+. Costco is usually in that ballpark.
    Finally, you may want to look into some 17" TL-S or CL-S rims, that someone has taken off their car, for sale. I see them in the neighborhood of $600, including tires (typically with
     
  4. CRyan

    CRyan Screenwriter

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    Ok thanks. Well the ties are warranted against manufacturer defects only - not roadhazard. Says so in my warranty booklet. Pisses me off. Also, the cost of the tire is $198 installed. I am sure it could be had a little cheaper at Sam's, but I took it to a Michellan authorized dealer since I was hoping to get it pro-rated.
    I will have to look in the local listings as you mentioned. You and I are on the same page in regards to wheel style. I want something more stylish than the factory wheels but still want it to look factory.
    C. Ryan
    "C" is cool. I have been called worse. [​IMG]
     
  5. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    If you shop around, you can find 17" wheels for less than $150 ea. The last set of 17s I bought were Elite Pismos, chrome plated, new from the distributor. Paid $95 per wheel. The tires were Parnelli Jones and cost $90 ea.
    Don't get hosed by the dealer. The factory Yokohama tires on my Celica list for $160 ea. from Toyota, but can be found for around $115 at a local speed shop. The tires I put on recently (Federal 565s) are a much better handling, better looking, longer wearing and more quiet tire and only cost $65 ea. (Frankly, I was tired of paying over $100 per tire for the Yokohamas only to have them blister and come apart within 15k miles. I have 74k miles on my car now - you do the math.) When going to a plus size tire (which is what you will need to do if you take the step up to 17s) will actually keep the speedometer and tach accurate. Once again, correct tire size is critical. Check with your local speed shop or tire store and see what size the tech recommends. They should not only have a cross-reference chart showing plus sizing, they should also have the formula to figure it yourself.
     
  6. brentl

    brentl Cinematographer

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    I am decidedly anti-"bling-bling"
    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  7. Aurel Savin

    Aurel Savin Supporting Actor

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    Having dealt with them personally, I would recommend you www.tirerack.com for honest, reliable information. I bought from them about 2 years ago 4 wheels with 4 High Performance Bridgestone tires for less than $800 shipped.
    They seem to have pretty much anything you desire available at much better prices than local dealers. Actually I found out that most of my local wheel dealers buy their wheels from them and mark it up substantially.
     
  8. Andrej Dolenc

    Andrej Dolenc Stunt Coordinator

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    A second plug for Tirerack, they used to have (and I presume they still do) have a section on their website where you pick what car you have, then basically put on different wheels to see what it looks like. Pretty slick application.

    What has been said about going to 17" tires is all true, however there are some caveats. When you go to a 17" wheel & tire, the tire itself will be a fair bit lower profile than that of a 16" tire. What this results in is far less tire to absorb the impact of hitting a pothole or something of the like. Hit a pothole hard enough, tire does what it can, then it's up to the wheel to survive the pothole impact. End result can be bent rims.

    Bent rims aren't the end of the world, and can be fixed without replacing the entire rim (depending on the severity). But it can and does happen.

    Andrej
    '97 M3 with 17" tires and a handful of bent rims
     
  9. Tim Markley

    Tim Markley Screenwriter

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    I also recommend using Tirerack.com. You can find out what fits on your car and even see how the wheels look. They will also ship the tires/wheels directly to a local installer so you can just drive over and get them installed.
     
  10. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    You can find cheap semi-used wheels off ebay with tires in great condition. For example some guy might be putting new wheels on his Acura or Nissan, both of which have great looking stock wheels (and both have a 5-lug pattern if I'm not mistaken). Try ebay, you might even find a seller in your area.
     
  11. BrianWoerndle

    BrianWoerndle Supporting Actor

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    Be very careful when buying new wheels that are not from a source that can verify that they will fit.

    Things to watch for:
    Overall height of the wheel and tire should be the same as stock, otherwise you could have a vast majority of problems.
    Lug parrern and spacing.
    Backspacing. This is the space from the centerline of the wheel and the mounting point. If this is different the tire will sit in a different place and could affect handling and could rub fenders.
    Brake clearence.
     
  12. Ron C

    Ron C Stunt Coordinator

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    Despite what others say, 17x7 will give worse handling unless you get light wheels (which are very expensive). Bigger wheels are heavier and more fragile, and will give a much harsher ride. You should get wheels no heavier than 16lbs each - even that is pretty heavy. Cheap 17x7 can get up to 25-30lbs, which will kill handling and acceleration. My advice would be to get some nice 16x7 rota or konig (around $150 each) wheels with minus sized tires for the lower profile. You speedo might be off a little, but that is a much better sacrifice than putting extremely heavy wheels on.

    Tires are a trade off also. Generally, if you want higher performance tires, you have to sacrifice mileage, cost, and forgot driving them in the winter. For my miata, I have 2 sets of wheels with higher performance tires for summer use, and winter tires for winter use (also a set with r-compounds too :p ). Of course, an accord isn't exactly a high performance car, so you wouldn't need the highest performance tires available or two sets of tires. However, I wouldn't suggest getting pep boys brand either. I would suggest either Bridgestone, Michelin, Pirelli, Dunlop, or Yokohamas brands. They all make comparable high performance, all season, and winter tires. Tirerack.com sells some good wheel/tire combos for cheap and even have previews of what the wheels will look like on your car.
     
  13. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    I disagree. Unless you are racing on a circuit, the extra weight of a larger wheel will make no difference in handling and a lower profile tire (which will usually be a bit wider than your factory tires) will substantially increase your traction because it will have more contact patch.
     
  14. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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  15. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    16 lbs wheels is for guys who take their cars to the track. 20-25lbs wheels are fine for a 1.5 ton car. The bigger the wheel the slower the acceleration since more mass has to be moved, and a smaller circle completes 1 revolution faster than a bigger one.
    As for the low-profile "bling bling" look I think it's a matter of taste. My friend has 18" wheels (NOT chrome) with smaller tires and it looks very classy. You can't tell me this looks tacky. [​IMG]
    Link
     
  16. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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  17. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Ajay, what I am trying to get across is that a heavier wheel will not decrease handling, but a lower profile tire can increase it, and added traction may be a bonus (but then we're getting into different rubber compounds, etc...) I just think I worded it a bit funky in my previous post. When I think about traction and handling, I think about stopping distance when I hit the brakes and whether the tires chirp whan taking curves and corners. I also think about quick responsiveness of the car when you have to suddenly turn sharply to avoid the old lady who just backed out of her driveway into the highway 50' in front of you when you're sliding along at 55mph.
    About contact patch, it is basically the area of the tire which meets the pavement. If it is wider, then wider = better. An 8" wide tire will have more contact patch than a 5.5" pizza cutter tire. You can raise and lower the air pressure all day long, but it is unrealistic to do so. To an extent, if there is more tire on the pavement, it is a good thing.
     
  18. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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    Lowering/raising air pressure is the only way to change the actual amount of contact patch without adding weight to your car. So if your tires are over-inflated, you will have less rubber on the road. If your tires are under-inflated you will have a larger contact patch (but you could also have big problems if the tires are under-inflated to a dangerous level). But go to an auto-cross and watch the big-guys playing with tire pressures, 1-2lb difference in pressure can change a car from over-steering to neutral (changing the contact patch).
    Andrew
     
  19. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Agreed.
     
  20. Chris Moe

    Chris Moe Screenwriter

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    Ron C, when I started reading your thread I said this guy sounds like a miata driver, then low and behold you are one. You on Miata.net? I am Moe over there. 2001 Miata sport package.
    Lighter the wheel the better. Chrome=heavy=bad.
    Miata.net has a great tire size calculator, http://www.miata.net/garage/tirecalc.html
     

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