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Old 01-09-2001, 10:50 AM   #1
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 2135
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Chicagoland, IL, USA
2002 WRX

Post WRX 17 inch rims... Autocrossing

Do you folks think that the WRX 17 inch rims will be an option or simply a dealer-installed add-on. The reason I ask is for SCCA Solo II Stock class autocross purposes....

I'd definitely rather run a 17x7 rim than a 16x6.5!

Also, I'd like to hear some conjecture as to the widest wheels we can shoehorn on the WRX. I believe the RS could run 245/45R16 (with slight rubbing) on the front and 225/50R16 on the rear.

I would LOVE to hear that the WRX might be able to run my 245/45R17 Kumho's all around.

Tire: 245/45/17
% Speedo Error: 3.228
Top Speed 1st: 39.7
Top Speed 2nd: 70.43

Tire: 245/45/16
% Error: 0.791
1st: 38.16
2nd: 67.69

% error: 0
1st: 38.46
2nd: 68.23

So the gearing favors the 245/45/16 in terms of quickness, but the 245/45/17 will yield more overall grip due to the extra 1/2 inch of rim supporting the tire...Bradley Lamont ran 245/45/16 Kumho's on his stock class GSX (16x6.5) and he seemed to get some sidewall roll.

My other concern with 245s (both 16 and 17 inch) would be heating the tires... the WRX is ALOT lighter than my previous steed (GSX also), and although I didn't have problems heating the tire with my 16x8 245/45/16 street prepared rim/tire combo, the WRX is at least 200 pounds lighter. There might not be enough time to get the tires up to optimal temp. In this case, 225s might be the best option.

Lets think about this!

-- ConeMasher
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Old 01-09-2001, 11:06 AM   #2
Travis R
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 153
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Austin, TX
'07 Mazda CX-7, '91
BMW 535i & '06 Ninja 650R


I think the 17" rims are going be considered a dealer installed option. So stock will have to run the 6.5" rim.
Why not run the 225/50-16 Kumho. What will your speeds be in each gear for that tire?
I'm going to go straight into SM, so I'm wondering if a 15" rim will fit over the brakes.
I'll be at a disadvantage anyway though(for auto-x), since I'm getting the wagon.
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Old 01-09-2001, 11:07 AM   #3
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 477
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Vancouver
GC4 -> GGA -> GM6
Yeah, that's about right.


So uhh.. dumb question, what is the difference between an "option" and a "dealer installed deelio"?

If you mean that the "option" is a factory item, supplied at all SOA dealers versus just some sales manager's decision to put chrome 3-piece wheels on the car and mark em up, then yes, the 17" BBS wheels are an option. I bet they would be somewhere in the $1K range, not cost effective IMHO for wheels of questionable quality and probably RE92 rubben too. But will SCCA stock classes let you run another aftermarket wheel of the same size? Then great! 215/45R17 is the stock size in the rest of the world so we know it will fit.

It may be all a moot point, anyway, if SCCA sticks us into AS or maybe even BS. Sure we may have 230hp and AWD, but we also weigh 3100lbs. Not competitive with the RX7s of the world.

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Old 01-09-2001, 11:15 AM   #4
Scooby Guru
Member#: 442
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: RI/SE Mass
17 OK Sport
00 S2000


RX-7 is in SS, right? Against the Vettes.

I would think the 17" rims would be shod with 215/45-17 rubber, not 245.

Have you seen the cost of tires are available in a 215/45-17?

According to tire rack, they are generally a bit more expensive (From about $50 to $200 per 4 tires) than the 205/55 counterpart.

And there's no competition rubber in a 215/45-17 size.


[This message has been edited by KC (edited January 09, 2001).]
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Old 01-09-2001, 11:23 AM   #5
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 2135
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Chicagoland, IL, USA
2002 WRX


Why would you be buying 215/45-17 inch rubber for your 17s??? I'd be tossing those RE92s faster than you can blink, and forgetting anything that tiny. You see, KC, you can run whatever tire size you can shoehorn on your stock rim. Who cares if there's no competition rubber in 215/45/17... throw the 225s or 245s on there (if they fit!).

Yep, any rim with with stock width and offset +/- 1/4". So if the 17 is considered an option from the factory (and not the dealer), then we've got the charter to find the lightest 17x7 rim on the market

-- ConeMasher
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Old 01-09-2001, 11:29 AM   #6
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 1994
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: "Teh Hebro Town"
2013 Impreza WRX


uhh... their BBS wheels aren't they? Questionable quality?
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Old 01-09-2001, 12:06 PM   #7
Gary (gg)
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 179
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Wichita, KS
98 2.5RS
Rally Blue


I ran the 245/45R16 and 225/50R16 combo. The advantage of running autox R compound tires is that they heat up quickly. By the end of my first run they were up to temp. Here is what I would do if I intend to autox the WRX, assuming with the limited aftermarket parts the first year that most buyers will run stock class:

If the car comes with 205/55R16's on 7"x16" rims, I would run 225/50R16's and pay close attention for clearance. If there is no rubbing anywhere, then move to 245/45R16's.

If the WRX comes with 7-7.5" x 17" as an option with 215/45R17's, 225/45R17's all the way around and then switch to 245/40R17's if no rubbing with 225's. I don't think Kuhmo makes a V700 in that size though.

Personally, I would run 16" over 17" because:
1. 16" RS rims are available as a second set, (cheap)
2. Weight for 16" and 17" tires/rims differ by about 1-2 lbs per corner in favor of 16"
3. The 16" autox tires are cheaper.
4. The autox tires have very stiff sidewalls, to get better handling from the tires will be a matter of finding the right tire pressure. The lower aspect ratio will not help a tire handle better.

Don't forget the alignment.
The WRX may qualify to run stock class at Nationals this year because I believe it is being released early enough and 1,000 will be available in the first 12 months since its release if not by Nationals.
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