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Old 02-12-2012, 10:06 AM   #1
stokey
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Opinion on 16 vs 17 wheels

Looking for opinions on ride & handling differences of 16 vs 17 inch wheels/tires.


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Old 02-12-2012, 10:22 AM   #2
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16's will be softer riding and quieter at the cost of grip and responsiveness

17's will be more responsive and grip better at the cost of ride harshness and noise.

Of course it all depends on what kind of tire you get.
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Old 02-12-2012, 10:22 AM   #3
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i don't think theres noticeable difference
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Old 02-12-2012, 10:28 AM   #4
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My 17" polished alloys ride well enough and corner very impressively with the stock Conti's. I'd take the 17's in a minute. The factory 18's change the spare tire space set up so you lose storage on the floor of the hatchback.
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Old 02-12-2012, 10:30 AM   #5
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Generally AND relatively speaking. With a goal of keeping the overall tire diameter the same...

16" allows you to put a fatter tire on and should have a good ride, not so much handling.

17" still allows a good amount of tire to smooth out the bumps. Maybe not as good a ride, but handling will improve.

18" you might have to be satisfied with handling because the tire will be thinner. Expansion joints on the highway can sometimes pound like a drum. So noise and ride can be compromised. If you want ride quality here, you'll need to get more opinions. Which I hope will come with this thread.

Each of the above generalities can be compensated for from tire to tire. Example, the 16" low rolling resistance tires put on the SFE have a harsh ride and don't handle well. Or you might find an 18" tire that rides great, but there's usually a compromise somewhere. Or you can put a low profile tire on a 16" and improve it's handling.

So there's my opinion, clear as mud!
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Old 02-12-2012, 10:33 AM   #6
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The smaller the tire the less roational mass so in theory you get more power/mpg out of smaller tires than larger....not sure how much but the less weight that has to be moved the better.

Plus as mentioned the 16's should be chepaer to replace when the time comes.
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:03 AM   #7
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I think that 17" tires should be enough on foci, the best bet will be to put 17" rims now on tires not togo too low like 2053017 but like 20540(or 45)17 but here will need some suspension modifications so the tire does not hit the fender or some, at least that's what I'm planning to do, here you will have a pretty smooth ride, good handling, not too much rotational mass short said in the middle of everything. That's my opinion.

Correct me if I'm wrong.
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:18 AM   #8
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Hey, I have an 09 Focus and wanting to trade out the stock 15in alloys for some 17in black. Can someone tell me what sizes are acceptable for the wheels and tires or the combination of both? I'm not too familiar with the specs for this type of thing, so please give it to me straight, and explain. Please!


Any suggestions on the rim brand (light weight yet affordable and tires size)?



Thanks,
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:28 AM   #9
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I had the 17" with the normal tires on during my test drive, and it was very comfortable ride with good handling. They were quite quiet, but not as quiet as the 16" would be.
I would choose 17" again in a heartbeat!
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:34 AM   #10
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What other factors are ther?
Price an issue?
Are you going to run Winter tires?
Are you going to do spirated driving on back roads around salem?
How important is handling?
How Important is ride comfort?
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