Originally Posted by jdmboy
ok here we go
bolt patterns are just circles 5x100=5 bolt spaced around a 100mm circle
as opposed to 5x114.3 which = 5 bolts spaced around a 114.3mm circle
this extra 14.3mm cuts down on the leverage that the wheel has on the hub. get it?
I'm not sure if what you said is what you meant. The bolt circle will have no effect on the hub in and of itself. Think if the wheel had no bolts and was glued on with some super duper glue. The forces to the hub and bearings would not change.
What does change is the lateral forces near the center of the wheel itself. The closer to the center of the wheel the bolts are, the more lever arm the tire cornering forces can exert on the wheel between it's outer edge and the bolts. Everything within the bolt circle has essentially zero force. So the farther out the wheel is bolted to the hub, the less force is exerted to "bend" the wheel.
The short answer is that the STi hub assembly is stronger. If you're tracking the car, the added strength will help. If the cost is exorbanant for a street car and you're buying aftermarket wheels anyways......it's probably not at all worth it.