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15 / 16 inch wheels stupid question maybe !


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Hi all

I am running 265/75 16 tyres on 16 in rims I am more than happy with them but may go for slightly bigger tyres next time

I have noticed that 33 /35 /37 all come in 15 inch is this because of the way big tyres are designed or some other reason ?

It there any advantages of disadvantages between 15 and 16 in wheels ??

Many thanks Chris

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Probably because 15 inch wheels are popular on old american 4wds hence 33 inch, 35 inch etc

I'd second that. In the US, selection and price are better on 15" tires; I almost swapped from 16" to 15" on my NAS RRC. Almost...

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The main reasons for companies going to 16 and now 17/18/19/20/22in rims are bling (big shiny alloys for drug dealers and footballers to put on their RR Sports) and sidewall stiffness for on-road handling plus the fact later model vehicles have bigger brakes and you need a bigger wheel to fit them inside.

Off road a vehicle always suffers from bigger wheels and lower profile tyres due to less sidewall flex - so its swings and roundabouts - and though on-road the handling can be improved, it's not all good - Discovery 2s on 18s are horrible for tramlining in ruts on the road.

I run both 15in (31x10.50R15, 31x11.50R15, 33x12.50R15, 33x13.50-15) and 16in (265/75R16 on the 110 and 255/70R16 on the Discovery) on our various vehicles depending on what I am doing and the 15s generally give a better ride but slightly more wandery steering - but with decent radial tyres the difference is barely noticeable. Big flotation sizes are much more affordable in 15in but there are 16in sizes available like 285/75R16 (equivalent 33x11.50R15 approx), 305/70R16 (equivalent 33x12.50R15 approx) and 315/75R16 (about equivalent to a 35x12.50R15) just go to the toilet and then sit down before you ask the price of most of them...

Either 15in or 16in will be fine on a Defender just pick whatever is best for what you are doing. The only gripe I have is that I'd like to be able to have some choice in 15in alloys with Defender hubs but there is only one available in 8x15, all the other alloys are 16s. I've long since got bored of having to paint rusty steel wheels annually!

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