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hello all, I'm wondering if I can go down to a 16" steel rim for winter tires on my 2011 Wrx hb? I've heard a cpl things may be issues like brake clearance and a less accurate speedometer. Has anyone got any advice on this? I need to do this fairly soon because here in Canada, I may have snow very soon.
 

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Cheeky Bastage!
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I have a 2009 wrx and my winter setup is a 205/55-16. There are no clearance issues and I didnt notice any real difference with the speedo. According to Tirerack your 16" alernative would be 215/55-16
 

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I ran a 16" (215/55-16)for my 2011 last winter.In fact it is the recommended tire size from tire rack as it is advisable to go down one tire size for winter tires.

No issues with brake clearance.And who cares about the speedometer,lol.
 

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Darn Brembos =P. I would have gone with a set of 15" rally wheels with huge sidewall tires if I could. Instead got a set of 17" gold enkei's... Can't go any smaller diameter wise apparently with an STi unless you change your brakes.
 

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Has anyone on here had any luck with the General Altimax Arctic Blackwall winter tires? How they under normal trying conditions as well as in the snow? Is there a lot more road noise then others?

I am also trying to put together a winter wheel set and the dunlops just seem like over kill for something i am going to only use for about 4 months out of the year.
 

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I have the General Altimax tires.In the snow they are fantastic.There is road noise ,a lot more compared to the stock Dunlops.In the dry they are not so great,straight line driving in okay,but while hard cornering there is not much lateral grip.But they weren't meant for hard cornering anyway.
 

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I have the General Altimax tires.In the snow they are fantastic.There is road noise ,a lot more compared to the stock Dunlops.In the dry they are not so great,straight line driving in okay,but while hard cornering there is not much lateral grip.But they weren't meant for hard cornering anyway.
Would you say overall they are worth purchasing? or should I just spend the money on a little bit better tire?
 

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Would you say overall they are worth purchasing? or should I just spend the money on a little bit better tire?
The way I always look at it is this:
Your tires are the only thing holding your ton and a half plus vehicle to the road and keeping you from driving into a tree. It's the last place you want to try and save money.
 

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Here is what I think.If you live in Alaska then they are great.Or maybe somewhere in the country side.Because they are great in the snow.But around here the snow is cleaned up pretty fast.I'm just not too excited about driving around with them in the dry.

Last year I had just purchased the car & I was on a tight budget with the tires.I found out that the summers were impossible to drive around in & had to make a quick decision.

Given a second chance I would have gotten a performance winter tire instead.
 

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Just remember, heavier and thinner is better for winter wheels (opposite of summer wheels :p)
 

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What are some other tires you guys would recommend for winter use?

I was just checking out these Pirelli Winter 210 Sottozero Serie II performance snow anyone have these?
 

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Cheeky Bastage!
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dunlop wintersport 3ds are good, i have used them a couple times...a lil cheaper, which i heard were good were the Continental ExtremeWinterContact, and Blizzaks of course they are about 150 and 100 cheaper from the dunlops, respectively
 

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After a few weeks of research I got the 16" dunlop sport 3d's. Although I can't comment on how good they are yet, what sold me was the huge amount of positive reviews from fellow WRX owners on tirerack. I got them with elbrus l03 rimms which have a very stock look to them. What sold me on those was a picture of Rage's WRX as he has those for his winter rims (or at least did last year), and they look pretty nice on a rex :)
 

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Thinking of the Dunlop SP Winter Sports as well. But a different set of wheels.
 

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Just remember, heavier and thinner is better for winter wheels (opposite of summer wheels :p)
Not true. A heavier wheel is never better unless it's for punishing duty where strength is most important.

And all the thinking that thinner is better is a bit flawed unless you live where roads don't get plowed. The purpose of a narrower tire traditionally is to cut through fresh powder to get to the packed snow underneath that gives you better traction. How many people here live where roads aren't regularly plowed? Personally I prefer a winter tire with a larger contact patch for packed snow.

dunlop wintersport 3ds are good, i have used them a couple times...a lil cheaper, which i heard were good were the Continental ExtremeWinterContact, and Blizzaks of course they are about 150 and 100 cheaper from the dunlops, respectively
Where are you looking that the Dunlops are $100 more than Blizzaks? Normally the price difference is maybe $20/tire. You have to compare apples to apples though too. There are many models of Blizzaks and the ones that are comparable in performance to the Dunlops are about the same price.

After a few weeks of research I got the 16" dunlop sport 3d's. Although I can't comment on how good they are yet, what sold me was the huge amount of positive reviews from fellow WRX owners on tirerack. I got them with elbrus l03 rimms which have a very stock look to them. What sold me on those was a picture of Rage's WRX as he has those for his winter rims (or at least did last year), and they look pretty nice on a rex :)
Thinking of the Dunlop SP Winter Sports as well. But a different set of wheels.
I've run Dunlop Winter Sports for over 10 years now on many different cars and hundreds of thousands of miles and I've never been disappointed. I got an 18" setup with them on black Enkei wheels from tirerack.com for my STI for $1700 I think. I run winter tires 7-8 months a year up in the mountains here so my winter rims are actually my nicer ones!
 

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Lando Calrissian
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If you are expecting heavy snow, or slow road crews (like in Pittsburgh) the General Altimax Arctic (had last year) are pretty good, as are the Nokian Hakkapeliitta R (what I am planning on for this winter). If the road crews are good in your area, or you do not expect much snow, then winter performance or all season performance may work for you.
 

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Not true. A heavier wheel is never better unless it's for punishing duty where strength is most important.

And all the thinking that thinner is better is a bit flawed unless you live where roads don't get plowed. The purpose of a narrower tire traditionally is to cut through fresh powder to get to the packed snow underneath that gives you better traction. How many people here live where roads aren't regularly plowed? Personally I prefer a winter tire with a larger contact patch for packed snow.
Sure was the case on most roads in Michigan.
 
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