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17's? 18's? what you got? ride quality better or worse? ive read that 17's help the handeling with some good rubber, what about 18's. bc from my expierence bigger rims make the ride alot rougher. help me out. Thanks
 

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Not sure if you know this or not, but in Australia, our stock WRX comes with 17".

I just changed to 18", for me personally, I think it feels more precise, the handling and turning. Or maybe thats due to the new rubber.

But my car has got lower springs, and some suspension work done on the car.

Anyway, for me, going from 17" to 18" doesn't look too much different at all, probably for you, if you go from 16" to 18" than there will be quite a big difference.
 

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well they can improve or decrease your performance. excess unsprung weight will kill acceleration so if your going to upgrade rims/tires and want to keep good acceleration you want to try and keep weight at or below the weight of stock rim/tire combo. cornering response can of course increase when you go to a stiffer sidewall/more aggressive tread pattern. BTW, stock rim/tire weighs in at about 38lbs... I have exact figure at home as i weighed before and after going to SSR comp 17x7.5's with 225/45/17's which ended up each weighing 1lb less than stock setup.
 

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I always used the physics approach on this one. Bigger radius to turn means that the engine has work harder to get the same movement from the car. Weight is also a big issue as twinz said. Of course, I could be wrong (I usually am). I'd stick to 17's or 16's with some good shoes on the feet rather than 18's.
 

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According to car & driver on there long term test of the wrx, they said when they upgraded to 17's the ride got alot harsher. Anyone who upgraded to 17's or 18's from 16's experience this ?. Is it noticable ?.
 

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I went to 17" wheels. Ride quality feels the same, the only issue I have is the road tends to pull me laterally sometimes. But that might just be bad alignment (or the tread pattern of the Azenis?), I'm gonna have checked since it often seems to pull to the right slightly.

Also I went with 225/45/17 tires, so the overall diameter and circumference of the wheel/tire is about the same as stock.
 

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As for unsprung weight and acceleration it matters how far the extra weight is from the center, if a afetermarket wheel is 1lbs lighter but most weight is farther from the center than stock it will be harder to accelerate.
 

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I've found that I can tell the difference between 16s,17s, and 18s. I got the chance to drive all three in one day.
The most noticeable difference is that the larger tire widths tend to track with abnormalities in the road more (grooves, slopes, etc). This isnt a bad change. It gives me the impression that I can feel the road much better. Secondly the smaller sidewall gives less over bumps. This could be interpretted as harsh. 18's gives significantly less than anything smaller, but only to the point where you feel it. 17s arent bad at all. Lastly, the tire noise goes up with less sidewall and wider width, also tread pattern and tire compound. These are my opinions.

I've got ssr comps in 17x7.5" with Kumho ecsta supra 225-45vr17s

Evan
 

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hmmm ok...i'm a newbie, but i think i have something to say about this....rims are rotating mass (go figure lol). as a general rule, added weight of rotating mass is about the equivalent of adding FIFTY times the added weight of each wheel to non-rotating mass.
another general rule...every 100 lbs you shave off your ride is good for .1 sec better in the 1/4 mile, and obviously vice versa.
this means that seemingly small weight gains to go from a 16'' to 18'' rim is like multiplying that by 200, putting that weight in lead in the passenger seat and expecting to have better performance. this of course does not take tire quality into consideration, but it's worth thinking about. extra wheel weight is a BIG sacrifice.
ok there's my 2 cents :)
~jade
 

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Good info here so far. I think that mentioning tire pressure is pretty important. A set of 16" rims on our car will feel "harsh" with higher pressures. My 17's with 32psi all around are much different than what I normally run @ 38f/36r. Tires will make a big difference also, since different sidewall stiffnesses make a big difference in road feel and handling.

tcc
 

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My 18's helped a lot in the handling. But I think it is because of the strengthened sidewall on the 40 series tire, not because of the 18" diameter wheel. The reason why I bought 18", is that it is noticeably larger than a 16" rim. IMO, 17" rims look just as big as 16" rims.

But I started to get into drag racing, and I have found that my 18's feel twice as heavy as my stock 16" rims, when comparing the two by actually picking them up. And in drag racing, the lighter the rims, the lighter the mass being pushed down the track, the faster you'll go. I have also have found that there is not many tire manufacturers that are out there that make snow or all season with Mud and Snow specs for 18" rims.

My next set of rims are going to be 17" rims. I will look for the lightest possible rims. But I got my eye set on OZ Superleggra's in gold. I really love those rims.

Hope this helps.

Kurlee Daddee
(THE ORIGINAL)
 

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My car had 17's on it (215/45R17) when i bought it. Compared to my 2.5 with the stock 16's, it felt like I was tossed around quite a bit more - ruts grab and toss me side to side just shootin straight down the road.

Ride is a tad rougher, but nothing serious. Hardly noticeable.

I just put a pair of stock 16's on with snow tires and now the car seems to stay on a straight line better, but the steering isn't nearly as responsive as with the 17's. I really think this has more to do with the width than the diameter. The 16's are running 205/55R16's.

It's really hard to notice a difference in size between the 16's and 17's standing back and looking at the car though.
 

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I felt a big difference in my wheels went i went to 18"ers. Better handling, but just a tad bit slower on the steering. That's probably due to the larger width of the tires I got. I went with a 220x40zr18. My wheel and tire combo are the exact same weight and diameter as the tock wheels and tires. My new tires are just a tad wider.

Wheels though, aren't then only thing that would affect your ride. The type of suspension you have also affects your ride especially with a bigger wheel. Just my $0.02.
 

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I have P1 17" w/ lowered Eibach Prokit springs. Moving from 16" to 17" rims did not really make much difference in ride quality, but once lowered springs were installed, ride became harsher and every bit of bump could be felt. However, lowered springs made huge difference in handling. I highly recommend lowered springs if you want that "finished" look and improved handling w/ your WRX.
 

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Mostly the only reason I want new rims is to get the wheel offset so it doesn't look so sucked into the center of the car. I like the almost flush look of the drop and new rims.

Can I choose a wider tire to fill this horizontal void? I'm hesitant on lowering my car knowing that i'll PROBABLY be keepin the stock rims because of the weight factor (and well...the money factor of course) but i dont' want the car to be lowered and then have the stock wheels sucked into the body. :( I like the flush look that the more offset wheels have. :-/ Is that fixable wtih wider tires on teh stock rims??
 

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O-wood said:
I felt a big difference in my wheels went i went to 18"ers. Better handling, but just a tad bit slower on the steering. That's probably due to the larger width of the tires I got. I went with a 220x40zr18. My wheel and tire combo are the exact same weight and diameter as the tock wheels and tires. My new tires are just a tad wider.

Wheels though, aren't then only thing that would affect your ride. The type of suspension you have also affects your ride especially with a bigger wheel. Just my $0.02.

What wheel/tire setup are you running??
 

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Damon said:
I always used the physics approach on this one. Bigger radius to turn means that the engine has work harder to get the same movement from the car. Weight is also a big issue as twinz said. Of course, I could be wrong (I usually am). I'd stick to 17's or 16's with some good shoes on the feet rather than 18's.

if you get the correct tire size to keep stock diameter, then the radius should be the same (I think). Correct me if I'm wrong but if that's the case a bigger wheel doesn't affect anything negatively unless the wheel/tire combo weighs more than stock.
 

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ebr0t said:
17's? 18's? what you got? ride quality better or worse? ive read that 17's help the handeling with some good rubber, what about 18's. bc from my expierence bigger rims make the ride alot rougher. help me out. Thanks

im glad you can speel better now.

3 years later.
 

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I run 225, 40, 18's. Yeah they slow you down a bit, cus now i have my steel rimmed 16's with snow tires on, and its faster. 205, 55, 16. but you feel alot more roll with smaller rims, most rally subarus use a 17 inch on tarmac and 16 on gravel/snow. So race tested says 17's work best, 19's look best though, but every bump with crack your teeth, hahaha. I was thinking about those for looks with a 235, 35, 19, looks so good, rides so harsh! I will prob just get some 17in Motegi Trac lites, or Rays Gram lites. If you have the money HRE's or racing hearts are teh shiz!
 

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The info in this thread is absurd!
i might be assuming too much but, none of you kept with the re92's for your 17's or 18's, so how can you be objectively comparing stock vs. new wheels with different tires? It makes absolutely no sense :screwy:
There is no doubt that heavier rims will slow you down and physics is working against you as you move the weight further away from the axis. However, running low profile tires does reduce this.
The increase in ride harshness is entirely related to the sidewall height and stiffness. In fact, larger rims decrease the angle if impact, which should make bumps even less harsh. Compare the way a bmx bike handles bumps in contrast wit a mountain bike. Even without suspension the larger tires, the mountain bike runs over bumps much smoother.
the briliant team at C&D also probably forgot to factor that in (why people value their opinion is beyond me :barf: )
 
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