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Discussion Starter #1
came across a new tyre size recently...... 225/50 18. So a ever so slightly deeper side wall than the recommended 225/45 18.

So is it worth having the speedo run slightly out to have the slightly softer ride?..... or will the ride improvement be so marginal as to be unnoticeable?.

Thoughts please?:confused:
 

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Don't do it. The 225/45/18's are already 4% larger than the 205/55/16's on the "plus" models, essentially making the overall gearing 4% higher. Going to the smaller diameter makes the car both faster and more agile.

They "may* actually fit, to check, you'd want to take the stock wheels/tires and turn the steering wheel to full lock, measuring to see if you have another 1/4" or so of space to play with. Do that turn with the suspension loaded (like climbing the end of a driveway) just to be sure. Turn both ways.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
In the UK the Diesel Tempest has the 225/45 18 as standard and is geared accordingly (speedo is very accurate). The space round the tyres will accomodate this new 225/50 18 size.... its just whether is worth bothering to do it in terms of ride improvement. My Seat Altea has has 205/55 16 tyres and it rides so much better than the Soul.

What are the implications of just replacing the front two tyres?.... would the slightly increased rolling distance (diameter) of the front tyres conflict with the slightly smaller rear tyres and muck up the ABS ESC Control and calibration in an emergency?

I would imagine the ride improvement is minimal..... just wondered if anybody had ever done such a minor change in the past and noticed it?
 

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What are the implications of just replacing the front two tyres?.... would the slightly increased rolling distance (diameter) of the front tyres conflict with the slightly smaller rear tyres and muck up the ABS ESC Control and calibration in an emergency?
Yes. I stand by "don't do it", and not at all because of speedo error (who looks at them anyway <wink> ), but because it makes your gearing higher (slowing down the car) as well as moving the center of mass of the already-too-heavy 18" wheel-and-tire combination even further out, making the "unspring weight" higher and the ride worse.

From what I'm reading, a 16" with a 215/55/16 tire may be the "best" compromise between looks and handling overall, next would be a 17" with a 205/50/17 (highway tracking) or a 235/45/17 (cornering grip). The 18's are too big and heavy, and the contact patch too short and wide. The 15's are light and will perform very well, but the sidewall height may be a bit tall for some folks' eyes.

In the end it comes to preference. The 18's are "good enough" performance for most, and look great, with the tradeoffs of twitchy limit handling and high weight. The 17's balance slightly more toward "performance with some nice", the 16's are "nice with performance", and the 15's may trade more performance for being really "nice". You definitely will notice the difference behind the wheel when you get a lighter tire/wheel combo on the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for that. Was just looking for an easy way of improving the ride slightly. Will see if can run to all new lightweight and smaller wheels and tyres when the current tyres do wear out. Not really bothered about massive cornering grip - just want a comfortable day to day ride. Will rotate the tyres so they all wear out at the same time and take it from there.
 

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Yeah, I'd go with either really light 17's or even-lighter 16's, but in a 7" or so wheel width. Hmmm, those dark grey 17" Mitsu EVO wheels oughta bolt right up... same bolt pattern, offset, and centerbore as ours! These weigh <19lb, 17x7, $109, Sport Edition D5:

These are <17lb ($255, 17x8) Enkei PF01:

...and these are awesome (14.6lb, $233, 17x7) Enkei RPF1:
 

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Personally I'd go as big as you can without interference. I've got an auto and it runs 3krpm at 70MPH(67) with the 205/55/R16's the speedo is also 3mph over actual checked by GPS so I'm guessing the 225/45/18's are the actual diameter they should be and the 16's are alittle undersized. When these tires wear out I'm gonna go with the biggest diameter and thinnest width(also better mileage with less rolling resistance(smaller contact patch) and air drag). If you want better acceleration then yeah smaller tires are better and 45 side wall gives the best performance. It'll be kinda hard to get a smooth ride with torsionbar rear suspension. It's a bit like driving a truck.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
your car looks fab with the big wheels on it...... but it wouldnt last 10 minutes on the roads i regularly drive on..... and you would find bits of dashboard regularly falling on your lap due to the vibration. I went away this weekend into a much more remote part of the country.... the roads were beautifully smooth and well surfaced..... it was like driving a totally different car...... really enjoyed it.
 
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