Understanding Rim Width and Optimal Wheel Size for Your Car!

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The car market in Pakistan has been climbing the ladder since past few years, and it wouldn’t be a premature judgment to say that with the induction of newer cars, competitiveness and the need for personalization has grown among car owners. While the government is busy widening up the roads and making it “signal free,” car owners belonging to a certain social class and age group have been cruising up and down these roads “Ridin Low.”  So without further ado, let’ have a look at some considerations that you need to know before you roll it like a superstar!   

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Vehicle modification’s first rule in Pakistan’s book is to bring the car down to modesty, closer to the ground by putting on big alloy rims with low profile tires.  Since modernity has placed aesthetic appeal above and over other aspects related to performance and quality, there is a need to educate drivers about upgrading the stock tires.   

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So without getting into the nitty gritty scientific details, here’s the basic rule.    

In general, larger wheels are heavier, and additional weight to the car hinders performance. A car owner must be familiar with the phenomenon that when larger rims are installed, side wall or the thickness of tires have to decrease in order to maintain the overall diameter of the wheel (same as before). The trick is to maintain the rolling circumference of a wheel while changing the size of the rims, or else the speedometer and the odometer readings will distort.   

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Next, up in the list comes the width of your rim, the narrower the rim is in comparison to the width of the tire, the tire will distort on fast cornering at high speeds. On the other hand, if you install very wide rims on a small car, it will give you a rough ride since the curvature of tire’s sidewalls isn’t enough to flex up a little when it hits potholes.   

What you gain with a bigger alloy and thin sidewalls is better handling and traction on smooth roads but a bumpy and uncomfortable ride over the potholes. Car’s suspension suffers considerably a lot more with the bigger alloy rims.   

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People have installed low profile tires on SUVs, this can give the car a better handling, but your SUV surely loses the off-road driving purpose it was built for.   

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Another important consideration is to learn about the offset of the car wheel which is to be installed; this is the distance the wheel rim and the line through the fixing face. You can have inset, offset or neither. This determines how the suspension and self-centring steering behave. Getting it wrong can mess up car’s handling. It can become too hard to turn or to light to keep it straight.   

What’s most apparent is that (imported) cars like Honda Civic, Range Rovers, and Mercs go through this transition more often. Whatever you like is for you to decide, but a little research over things mentioned above can save you from the wrong decision, in addition to all of that “where and how” you can make a lot of difference to your set of wheels.  

 

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