I can't see why wheel size makes much difference to the ride quality. 16" or 17" with the same aspect ratio Tyres should be similar apart from unsprung weight which doesn't matter much on a road car. In fact larger wheels should smooth out road imperfections and speed humps better which is why they're fitted to off road cars and bikes. You can also get a trolley jack under without having to jack under the sills
..as many of us, particularly those who have long left their trackdays behind appreciate a more comfortable composure on potholed back lanes, would appreciate at least retaining the composure of 16s whilst using more aesthetically pleasing 17 or 18....just how a profile can we get away with on the bigger wheels?
I dont care two jots that we might be increasing the rolling diameter (any number of GPS / Satnav devices will compensate for de-synch speedo) ....provided it can be spaced to clear any potential wheel arch obstructions - ie can. say 50/55 profile be fitted to 18 wheels, with a little fine tuning to the offset - if not increasing the width (even reducing, cos of bigger footprint), perhaps a little more spaced offset may clear inner components whilst still clearing arch lips?
Be nice to find out if 205 55 18, suitably spaced would work as I imagine the ability to smother the bone shaking backroad potholes would be a worthwhile improvement - they will fit arches better aesthetically, and if offset more, the reduction to 205s would not be noticeable + prob less camber / torque steer pull
In addition to inc offset, a little fine tuning to steering lock limits and perhaps bumpstops may be necessary - I would trade a little parking lock for less violent crashing through potholes - tis only thing that spoils the GTV for me
I am running std 16 215s on a coupe, whilst I acknowledge that I have inherited worn budget tyres with the car, I cringe everytime I see an unavoidable pothole - I believe the suspension to be in fair order as the handling is very composed and quite firm with little roll or dive - I would love to make a significant improvement, whilst filling out the arches with some special wheels
What do folk think? 205 50/55 18 feasible if suitably spaced by offset, particularly if lock is reduced still further (not ideal, but fine with me - already need to do 3 point turns in car parks)
If the liners are the issue, presumably just the rear of the front ones? Could they be easily removed and modified or are they already hard up against the steel inner arch behind? - Finding another inch to the rear would help no end (the wheel being only 1/2 inch bigger in radius + whatever additional height there is on the bigger profiles, over narrower width of 205 section)
Anyone have access to a fitting bay to try some used tyres on their 18 rims and space out the wheels (washers if static testing?) - Need to allow for higher tread profile if using fully worn tyres
18 205 55 would certainly suit the arches aesthetically...and I cant help thinking would vastly improve isolating pothole shock - the length of footprint alone would help bridge the smaller ones - presumably the reduction of width whilst retaining asp ratio will also add a little to sidewall height.
Whilst I confess I am no mechanic, this at least sounds worth exploring