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Old 02-10-2006, 03:52 AM   #1
ControlFreak
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Default Will 18's make my car slower??

Ok so heres the deal, I've had my 06 wrx for a few months now and I think its time to get her some new shoes. I can't afford forged wheels, which is ultimatly what I want so I was thinking something like the Work Emotions ( I know, kinda trendy )

Anyway I ran this by a buddy of mine and he said no way bad idea. He went on to tell me that the bigger wheels could not only throw off the wheel speed sensors and the speedometer, but also will make my car alot slower. Somewhere in the area of 1 to 1.5 seconds. He's reasoning for the change in times is that the bigger wheels will have an adverse effect by changing my gear ratio's.

I need to know.. is all of this true? Should I stick with 17's?
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Old 02-10-2006, 06:10 AM   #2
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With the correct tires you should not notice any difference. Handling should improve some.
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Old 02-10-2006, 07:22 AM   #3
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Yes, IMO you should stick with the stock 17s until you can afford some good forged 17s or at least some light & strong cast 17s.

Boxerboy is right, if you get the correct sidewall your gearing won't be wrong.

In general cast wheels are heavier than forged, 18s will be heavier than 17s, and more of the weight is farther from the center of the hub, and that additional rotational mass will make the car slower.

If you can find some very, very light 18s (and they will be $$) they shouldn't have too much of a detrimental impact or may actually be lighter than the stockers (no idea what the '06 rims weigh) but still, the same wheel in a 17" would be lighter.
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Old 02-10-2006, 07:51 AM   #4
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Your buddy doesn't know what he is talking about, or he is confusing larger (taller) tires with larger wheels. At the most, heavier wheels will cost you a tenth or two in the quarter mile.

If you want 18s for the looks and don't care about race results, then get them.
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Old 02-10-2006, 11:01 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pkd^R3x
...the bigger wheels could not only throw off the wheel speed sensors and the speedometer, but also will make my car alot slower. Somewhere in the area of 1 to 1.5 seconds. He's reasoning for the change in times is that the bigger wheels will have an adverse effect by changing my gear ratio's.
1. It's true that you can make your car slower with a larger/heavier wheel/tire combo.
2. 1 to 1.5 seconds (I'm assuming you mean in the ¼) is not accurate at all, think more like 1 10th.
3. The gear ratios will not be affected if you keep the overall diameter the same.

When shopping for a new wheel/tire combo you really want to ask yourself a few questions first, like what you will use them for, and if a 10th will bother you.

I'll use myself and my new wheel/tire combo choice as an example.

Car: '05 STi
OE tire: 225/45/17
Overall diameter: 24.9"
Weight: 27 lbs
OE wheel: BBS forged
Weight: 19.2 lbs
Combo weight: 46.2 lbs

New tire: 245/35/18
Overall diameter: 24.7"
Weight: 24 lbs
New wheel: WORK Emotion CR kai cast
Weight: 23.3 lbs
Combo weight: 47.3

I've increased my weight at each corner by 1.1 lbs, and pushed that weight out farther from the hub because the WORK is an 18" wheel, but I've increased the torque to the wheels by going with a slightly shorter tire. All in all, I should get almost the same performance from the WORK combo as I do with the BBS combo.
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Old 02-10-2006, 11:28 AM   #6
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It really doesn't just have to do with weight. An 18" wheel that weighs the SAME as a 17" wheel is going to make your car slower. It has everything to do with the placement of the weight, not so much the weight itself.

An 18" wheel that is lighter than a 16" wheel probably is still going to wind up making you car a hair slower...
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Old 02-10-2006, 11:28 AM   #7
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Ok so I think I understand the deal here. I just have to keep the same overall diameter.
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Old 02-10-2006, 11:50 AM   #8
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So what size tires do you guys recomend on an 18" subzero?
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Old 02-10-2006, 01:20 PM   #9
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225/40/18 is the closest to OE size.
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Old 02-10-2006, 01:35 PM   #10
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Does hud centric mean the weight is center balanced or something else?
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Old 02-10-2006, 01:55 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by REX8
An 18" wheel that weighs the SAME as a 17" wheel is going to make your car slower.
Wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by REX8
It has everything to do with the placement of the weight, not so much the weight itself.
Right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by REX8
An 18" wheel that is lighter than a 16" wheel probably is still going to wind up making you car a hair slower...
Wrong.

I'd take a hub-heavy 18" over a rim-heavy 17" any day. Some wheels are designed with most of their weight towards the outer edges, others are not. Beyond the obvious weight issue, this is what needs to be looked at with regards to absolute performance.
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Old 02-10-2006, 01:56 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by khail19
225/40/18 is the closest to OE size.
It depends on the specific make/manufacturer of the tire, all 225/40's aren't created equal.

Again, tirerack is your friend.
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Old 02-10-2006, 03:13 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovesmysuby04
Does hud centric mean the weight is center balanced or something else?
…“hub centric” typically refers to a wheel that has a center bore that is an exact fit to your hub (the protruding portion in the center). The load is carried on the hub rather than the studs. The wheel can be specifically designed/milled to fit or “centricity” can be achieved by means of an adapter ring. Either way, you need to make sure the wheels you get are hub centric (or can be made so with an adapter).
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Old 02-10-2006, 05:01 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UltimateLurker
Wrong.

Right.

Wrong.

I'd take a hub-heavy 18" over a rim-heavy 17" any day. Some wheels are designed with most of their weight towards the outer edges, others are not. Beyond the obvious weight issue, this is what needs to be looked at with regards to absolute performance.
Actually, your answers are more accurately:

Depends

Right

Depends.

And the original title, "Will 18's make my car slower??" a good answer is:

Usually, but not always.
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Old 02-10-2006, 05:57 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chimchimm5
Actually, your answers are more accurately:

Depends/Right/Depends
His statement about a larger wheel being the same weight but making the car slower was an absolute, so it was wrong. His statement about a larger, but lighter wheel "probably" making the car slower is not an absolute, so yes, it depends.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chimchimm5
And the original title, "Will 18's make my car slower??" a good answer is: Usually, but not always.
A better answer is they may make your car minutely slower in the ¼, and they may not, but they'll probably make your car quicker in the corners as a result of a smaller/stiffer sidewall.

You're such a post whore .
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Old 02-10-2006, 06:58 PM   #16
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Ok so I think I'm starting to understand.. So I guess my question now is..

Are getting the 18" work's a good idea? And also what tire would I need to run to not lose to terribly much in the quarter mile times. Is there anyway to get close to the same diameter while mainting a sidewall that makes the ride still semi-comfortable?

I think the 18" works that fit the wrx are 18 x 7.5?
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Old 02-10-2006, 07:25 PM   #17
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Wait... do you want 18's for the bling or the wider tires and stiffer sidewalls you can can put on them?
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Old 02-10-2006, 07:55 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pkd^R3x
Ok so I think I'm starting to understand.. So I guess my question now is..

Are getting the 18" work's a good idea? And also what tire would I need to run to not lose to terribly much in the quarter mile times. Is there anyway to get close to the same diameter while mainting a sidewall that makes the ride still semi-comfortable?

I think the 18" works that fit the wrx are 18 x 7.5?
If you go with 18's at least get 18x8. I have 225/40/18 the ride is fine.
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Old 02-10-2006, 08:50 PM   #19
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One other thing many people fail to realize when they buy 18" rims is you have to be more careful on rough roads. The shorter your sidewall the easier it is to damage your tire and/or rim on a pothole, railway crossing or rock. And don't even think about going down a gravel road with an 18" rim.
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Old 02-10-2006, 10:03 PM   #20
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And all of this depends on your goal/purpose.

I am buying a set of Enkei 15 rally gravel wheels in order to get real rally-style rubber on them. The 17's are really not good for the off-pavement driving I like best. I expect to change between the 15's and the 17's fairly often.

I would never go to 18, but everybody's goals are different.
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Old 02-11-2006, 08:23 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by airprakken
And all of this depends on your goal/purpose.
You said it.


Put these things in order of importance and I'll tell you what wheels to buy.
  1. drag racing
  2. autocross/track
  3. appearance
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Old 02-11-2006, 08:47 AM   #22
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I went from stock wheels on my '02 WRX, which weighed 36 lbs with pirellis, to rota formula mesh with BFG KDW2, 225/40/18, 42lbs. Noticeably slower, very noticeably faster in turns. Less than expected improvement in braking.

I was going to try to get the '04 BBS setup, but that RE 070 makes up the difference for how light the rim is.
Being that my combo has an overall weight lower than the '04 Sti, I don't think one should just focus on the aloy part of the weight. I am starting with a heavyer rim and ending up with a lighter wheel.
I think also that all those tests about Pirellis where people are "not that impressed" with some of the P zero are missing the weight of the P zero.
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Old 02-11-2006, 09:13 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by airprakken
And all of this depends on your goal/purpose.

I am buying a set of Enkei 15 rally gravel wheels in order to get real rally-style rubber on them. The 17's are really not good for the off-pavement driving I like best. I expect to change between the 15's and the 17's fairly often.

I would never go to 18, but everybody's goals are different.
That's exactly what I was saying. My local Subaru club has backroad cruises all the time and occasionally guys come out with "Show" or "Track" cars with 18" rims and low profile slick tires, and they expect they can keep up with the "Rally" guys on the rough roads. Most of the time they end up cursing us for taking them down some god-forsaken gravel goat path.

If you're setting your car up for track/show you're making a trading off with it's abilities as a fun backroad car. Be aware of that.
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Old 02-11-2006, 05:41 PM   #24
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I weighed my OEM 04' STi stock 17" BBS rims at 15.5lbs each. It's hard enough to find another good looking 17" rim that is equal to that.
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Old 02-11-2006, 05:42 PM   #25
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don't worry about it
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