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Old 01-21-2012, 11:57 AM   #1
tiggrdj
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2001 SL2
Default 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"

Hello All
I have seen on a number of posts that people are stating that they have removed their 17" wheel & tire packages because they were "slow". I would like some feedback on just what would cause the 17" to make a car slower if the overall tire diameter remains the same as stock but with a lower profile. I suppose if the overall weight of the wheel/tire package was substantially heavier it would result in a higher rolling weight but that is the only reason I can think of for slowing the vehicle down. Your thoughts??

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Old 01-21-2012, 12:26 PM   #2
AlexofNazareth
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Default Re: 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"

Using a wheel/tire combo that results in having a larger over all radius/diameter than a stock setup has the same effect as gearing up the car. Acceleration is reduced if you're starting in 2nd gear as opposed to first. The same applies with larger wheels.

That's just the torquing aspect. Larger wheel and tire combos are heavier as well which would reduce acceleration as well

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Old 01-21-2012, 01:04 PM   #3
Tom92SCm
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Default Re: 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"

If a 17" wheel/tire package has the same overall diameter as a 15" wheel/tire package the 17" package will be slower- even if they weigh the same weight. It has everything to the moment of inertia. The 17" package has a higher moment of inertia (moment of inertia is the tendency to resist motion). And as a result, the 17" package won't slow down as easily once it is moving.

This is of course nominal. There could be instances where a 15" package could have a higher moment of inertia than the 17"- but it's unlikely.

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Old 01-21-2012, 01:19 PM   #4
Montreal300
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Default Re: 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"

Given an equal overall diameter over the tires. A 17" wheel combination weighs more than a 15" combination. Steel or castings are just heavier than rubber. The moment of inertia is higher as wheels get larger in diameter. Check out the serious drag racers in any class. Everyone runs the smallest wheel possible.

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Old 01-21-2012, 04:26 PM   #5
Blacktree
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Default Re: 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"

What the guys above are hinting at is that with a larger wheel, the outer rim is further from the center of the wheel. For example, with a 14" wheel, the outer rim would be 7" from the center of the wheel. But with a 17" wheel, the outer rim is 8.5" away from the center of the wheel.

And the further the outer rim is from the center, the more rotational inertia it has (i.e. takes more force to speed it up or slow it down). This is true, even if the larger wheel has exactly the same overall weight and overall wheel diameter (including the tire) as the stock one.

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Old 01-24-2012, 10:13 PM   #6
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Default Re: 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"

Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggrdj View Post
Hello All
I have seen on a number of posts that people are stating that they have removed their 17" wheel & tire packages because they were "slow". I would like some feedback on just what would cause the 17" to make a car slower if the overall tire diameter remains the same as stock but with a lower profile. I suppose if the overall weight of the wheel/tire package was substantially heavier it would result in a higher rolling weight but that is the only reason I can think of for slowing the vehicle down. Your thoughts??
i have no idea what, exactly, makes the 17" wheels slow. i DO know that i was able to prove that it was slow. repeatedly. in every autocross i entered. until i went back to 15" wheels. went from mid-pack finishes to a 3+year unbroken podium streak. undefeated locally. a combined total of 5 regional championships.

i stopped asking myself "why" a long time ago. i also decided that i'd go to a 13" wheel if i ever got the cash and opportunity to do so. i'm convinced it would go even faster...


s3aturnr

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Old 01-25-2012, 02:51 AM   #7
93SC2'in
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Default Re: 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"

of course you dont want to auto x with 17's but on a DD they are fine i've ran mine for about 2 years now with no problems i don't think my car is slow or hard to stop i went directly from 15" sawtooths on bfg g-force sports to 17"s on the same exact tire and it was night and day the 17"s felt a lot better smoother ride and better grip. if you plan to race your car then stick with the 15"s or if looks are important and you dont want it too heavy go in the middle and get 16"s

...
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Old 02-07-2012, 04:52 PM   #8
HStockSolo
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Default Re: 17" wheel & tires "SLOW"



It is mainly wheel and tire width that is beneficial. I have 17x9s with 245/40s for the front. I already had the tires, and I needed winter tires for cold weather compound. Other than Star Specs most of the warm weather tires suck at low temperatures. I am pretty sure these UHP winters will clobber the Star Specs.


245/40s on 17x9s verses 225/50s on 16x8.


225/50R15 V710 on left--skinnier than 225/50R16s on right?

There isn't a lot of wide tires in 15" or 16" wheel diameters anymore. There certainly isn't anything wide in UHP winter tires in those diameters.

It is pretty certain that 255/40R17s are faster than 225/50R16s on at least some cars. I ran my 205/50R15s and 205/50R16s on my 325i last year, and found that car to considerably slower than my SC2 on the same tires. I'll be running those 225/50s on it this year mainly due to class limits and budget.

...
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Last edited by HStockSolo; 02-07-2012 at 05:00 PM..

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