Alloy wheels are being increasingly used by car manufacturers and owners these days.
The preference for alloy wheels is mostly due to the superior performance and visual appeal which they offer.
Most car manufacturers are now factory fitting their cars with OEM alloy wheels. Alloy wheels offer the following benefits:
- They provide a better look and enhance the visual aesthetics of your car.
- Alloy wheels provide better heat dissipation and hence improve the braking performance of the car. It also prevents braking failures due to heat due to improved heat dissipation.
- They provide much better ride quality, handling, and comfort to the drivers and passengers.
- As alloy wheels are much lighter than the regular steel wheels, they help to improve the fuel efficiency of your car.
- It provides better tire longevity due to improved heat dissipation.
The current article provides a detailed insight into the factors which you should consider before buying the ideal set of alloy wheels for your car.
Considerations for Choosing the Best Alloy Wheels
Alloy wheels are quite popular among motor enthusiasts.
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There are different types and models of alloy wheels available in the market for you to choose from.
You must not buy these wheels only on the basis of their visual appeal and looks. You should assess their suitability for your car before buying them.
As a car owner, you can consider the following factors which will help you to buy the best possible alloy wheels for your car:
Buy from Reputed Sellers
You should always buy aftermarket alloy wheels from reputed dealers only.
The wheels are an important part of your car’s safety and comfort and buying poor quality or ripped off alloy wheels can compromise your drive quality and safety considerably.
The following are the dangers of buying poor quality alloy wheels from shady dealers:
- The rim can crack easily if it goes into a pothole at high speeds. This can also cause tire bursts which can be dangerous while driving at high speeds.
- Poor quality rims can also lead to air leaks over time. This can cause tire bursts which are risky for you while driving.
- You may end up buying replica or fake alloy wheels which can put you and other fellow passengers in danger while driving.
Wheel size is a key element for ride comfort. There is a general tendency of purchasing the biggest wheel size without considering its pros and cons.
Bigger alloy wheels look better and attractive which is the reason why most customers prefer it. They may also fetch you a better resale price also which is also an important reason for their popularity.
However, buying oversized wheels is not a good idea and it can severely impact your ride comfort.
Larger wheels come with thin tyres and hence, there is a lesser tyre area to take the impact during the ride. Thus, larger wheels generally decrease the drive and passenger comfort.
Some of the car manufacturers provide larger wheels with sport-tuned suspensions, which also negatively impacts ride quality and comfort.
If you are planning to buy only the alloy wheels and use the existing tyres, then purchasing the right wheel size becomes even more important.
If you were using a 16-inch diameter steel wheel, then you should ensure to buy only a 16-inch alloy wheel for your tyres to fit ideally.
If you go for bigger sized wheels than what was fitted earlier, it will degrade your ride quality.
In addition, you will most likely also have to buy new tyres if you go for bigger alloy wheels than your previous wheel to ensure a safe and comfortable ride every time.
Rim width is an important consideration before you decide on which alloy wheels to buy for your car.
There are a general feeling and temptation of buying wider rims among customers.
It is also commonly known as the two-plus-one rule which means that you can go up to 2 inches in diameter and up to 1 inch wider. However, you must ensure that the rim width of the wheel is not too wide for the tyres.
If the rim is too wide, then you may have to end up buying new tyres which will be an unnecessary expense.
It is also unsafe and risky trying to fit tyres into wheels which are too wide for it considering that the tyre’s sidewalls are load-bearing structures which are designed to work at 90-degree alignment to the wheel.
When a tyre is stretched to fit on wider wheel than normal, then this angle can reduce up to 45-degrees which compromises the structural strength of the tyre.
It can also lead to the tyre suddenly coming off the rims which can be extremely dangerous while driving.
Alloy wheel rims which are too wide for the tyres can also degrade your riding experience and can create issues with steering rods or suspension parts of your car.
If a wheel comes with the reading of 5J, then it means a width of 5 inches and J is the shape of the rim lip.
Pitch Circle Diameter (PCD)
You may come across many beautifully designed alloy wheels in the market. However, it is difficult and not recommended to buy them only based on their visual appearances.
You should check the PCD of the alloy wheels before buying them. PCD is the distance between the wheel bolts from the center of the wheel.
A PCD of 4×100 indicates that the diameter of the wheel rim is 100mm and it has 4 equally spaced mounting holes.
It is easier to calculate the PCD on a 4-lug wheel but for a 5 or 6 -lug wheel, it can become tedious to calculate the PCD.
Knowing the PCD helps you to buy the ideal and best-fitting alloy wheels for your car.
For measuring the PCD, you need to measure the distance between the centers of the opposite bolts.
PCD measurements help you to get the perfect fitting alloy wheels which can enhance the performance and drive quality considerably.
An ill-fitting alloy wheel will not only waste your hard-earned money, but it will also cause other problems with the drive quality and suspension elements of your car.
It is also important to note that the PCD measurements should be considered in combination with the offset measurements of the wheel.
Wheel offset is the distance between the centerline of the wheel and the mounting face of the hub.
It is measured in millimeters. Wheel offsets can be positive, negative, or zero. Zero offset means that the hub mounting surface is directly even with the center of the wheel.
A positive offset is when the hub mounting surface is towards the front of the wheel. Positive offsets are the most common types of offsets which you will come across in today’s cars.
Negative offset is when the hub mounting surface is towards the back or brake side of the wheel.
Negative offset is generally observed mostly in trucks or off-road vehicles where the wheels stick past the fenders.
Most customers buy alloy wheels based on the looks and stud patterns and ignore important considerations like offsets.
If the offset of your new alloy wheels is too low, then it will hit your fenders, while if the offset is too high, then it will hit the inner suspension components.
When you decide to change the wheel width, then you should consider offset for an ideal fit.
It is important to consult a technician for understanding the offset before buying the best alloy wheels for your car.
When you want to go for upsizing your tyres, then you should consider buying wider allow wheels to accommodate the tyres. However, it is not recommended to change the diameter of the wheels.
Changing the diameter of the wheels will not only hinder your drive comfort and ride quality, but it can also seriously impact your speedometer and odometer settings if it is not done properly.
This is also known as the rolling diameter which pertains to the height of the wheel and tyres and the distance traveled by it.
Most of the speedometer and odometers take into account the wheel rotation to determine the speed of the car and the distance traveled by it.
These figures are consistent with the fact that circumference of your tyres aligns with the specifications laid down by the manufacturer.
If larger wheels are used for the same tyre profile, then the diameter and circumference of the tyre will become larger and this will impact the speedometer and odometer settings as the height of the wheel and tyre combination has increased.
The larger the diameter of the tyre compared to the original ones, the lesser will be the speedometer readings. This will lead to you driving faster without realizing it on the speedometer.
You may end up breaking speed limits and drive faster than usual which can be unsafe too.
Similarly, with a larger circumference, the odometer will also show lesser distance than what has been actually covered. This can also impact your car’s recommended service intervals.
In some countries, government regulations may prohibit you from upsizing your tyres beyond a prescribed limit.
Hence, you should also check your local regulations before upsizing the tyres and wheels. Ideally, you should always reduce the tyre profile size for every increase in tyre width size.
Best Alloy Wheels to Buy
As discussed, the market is flooded with different types of alloy wheels. It can become difficult for you to buy the best wheels for your car. You can consider the below-mentioned alloy wheels for your car:
GTV01 Flat Black Wheels
The GTV01 Flat Black Wheels provide an optimum blend of performance and quality.
This 5-spoke alloy wheel has been made from a single block of aluminum. It uses flow forming technology which provides a sturdy wheel which uses fewer materials.
The flow forming process used during manufacturing means that these wheels are much stronger than the cast wheels and makes it suitable for all-terrain use.
It also retains high strength properties which are a trademark of all alloy wheels from SSR.
These wheels are available in sizes ranging from 17-inches to 19-inches diameter with varying offsets.
BBS Super RS Gold Wheels
These wheels are one of the most stylish and elegant looking alloy wheels you can consider buying for your car.
It is uniquely manufactured as the aluminum stock is not cut but forged which maintains the strength and durability of these wheels.
These multi-spoke alloy wheels are available in 19 inches and 20 inches size.
These wheels are manufactured by applying up to 18 million pounds of pressure to a billet made from high-grade aluminum or magnesium alloy.
These BBS Super Gold alloy wheels are designed with an optimal stiffness-to-weight ratio for reducing the unsprung weight and providing excellent driving comfort and safety.
The wheel is priced at $1,270.
American Racing Torq Thrust Wheels
The American Racing Torq-Thrust wheels are made from a single piece cast aluminum alloy.
The 5-spoke alloy wheel features a tapered parabolic design which helps to decrease the unsprung weight and enhances brake cooling.
The wheel is available in a wide variety of sizes ranging from 14 inches to 20 inches. It has a 5-lug design with a center cap.
They are also available in different combinations of bolt patterns and offsets, providing you plenty of options to choose from.
These wheels are also supported by a lifetime warranty which is indicative of their quality.
Forgeline Motorsport DE3C Concave Wheels
These wheels come with an 8-spoke mesh pattern that extends all the way through the center rim’s register. It also features a deep flat reverse lip on the outer rim shelf.
The unique concave design of the wheel gives it a distinct look and also helps to enhance performance significantly.
The design is also a signature of the Forgeline brand and offers a muscular look to the wheels.
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They are available in both the deep concave profile and shallow concave profile.
These wheels are assembled using hidden stainless-steel ARP fasteners and Heli-Coil inserts. It is a custom made to order alloy wheel made from high-quality aluminum alloy. It is priced at $1,455.