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What Changes When You Upsize Your Wheels

Upgrading your vehicle's wheels can have a big impact on its performance. Although there are many advantages to this, like better torque and a larger contact patch for a stronger grip, but it, unfortunately, comes with some downsides as well. Upsizing wheels can often lead to reduced fuel economy since larger wheels require more energy to move them.

Vehicles are complex mechanical systems and any change made to one part of the system can have a ripple effect. So when you upgrade your wheels, although you may expect improved performance, this can also lead to increased load and wear on other components such as brakes and suspension. This is because larger wheels require stronger components to support them, leading to higher fuel costs due to their additional mass. If you want to customize your vehicle in this manner, you need to do some research, dig up some information on the custom wheel specifications you are looking for and how they can impact your vehicle in the long run.

Positive Effects of Wheel Upsizing

Generally, people opt for larger wheels for two purposes: to give their vehicles a more aggressive look and increased functionality. Larger wheels can give your vehicle a sportier appearance by changing its stance and making it look meaner, sleeker, and faster. What is really important is that you cannot get the look and keep the same performance.

Larger Wheels Look Awesome

Bigger wheels can instantly make your vehicle look fabulous. Larger wheels can immediately make a vehicle look more stylish and aggressive. They come in a variety of styles, finishes, and details to suit any taste. Upscaling your wheels gives you improved traction, fuel economy, and exterior appeal - making them the go-to for those wanting an easy and effective upgrade for their car or truck.

Increased Grip

Upsizing your tires means installing wider sizes which provide a larger contact patch with the road, allowing for improved weight distribution and stability even at high speeds. The additional grip and cushioning of wider tires give drivers improved braking power and increased safety, particularly in wet or slippery conditions. In essence, upsizing your tires can be a great way to boost the overall performance of your car while also providing a safer driving experience.

Improved Braking Performance

Wider tires provide a larger contact patch with the road, giving them more grip and leading to improved braking. They sometimes, but not necessarily, have higher air volume, providing better cushioning and absorbing shock, which helps keep the vehicle stable during braking for improved safety.

Their performance gets even better in wet or slippery conditions due to their superior grip on the road, making them great for use in inclement weather. In summary, wider tires are a great safety feature as they provide better handling and increased braking power.

Top-Notch Cornering

Upsizing your tires increases the width and reduces the sidewall height of your tires, which keeps the car's center of gravity low and its wheels more firmly planted. Taller sidewalls generate more flex than shorter sidewalls, making the car feel unstable at high speeds. Upsizing reduces this risk by providing a larger contact patch between tires and the road, giving drivers better traction and stability even when cornering quickly.

Negative Effects of Wheel Upsizing

You simply cannot have your cake and eat it too. Wheel upsizing can have some unintended consequences you should look out for. Therefore, it is important to look at all aspects of wheel upsizing before investing in it and assess both its benefits and drawbacks.

Impact on MPG

Wider tires offer improved traction, resulting in better vehicle handling, but can come at the expense of increased fuel economy due to increased rolling resistance. This leads to higher fuel consumption, especially in frequent stop-and-go traffic. It is important to consider this trade-off before purchasing larger wheels and tires, as it may have a significant impact on running costs over time.

Extra Load on Crucial Parts

Larger wheels and tires can place extra load on crucial parts of a vehicle, leading to faster deterioration rates. This can include suspension components, steering components and drivetrain components such as axles and joints. The increased weight of larger wheels puts a greater strain on these parts and reduces the efficiency of the whole system, so it is important to be aware of the potential for increased maintenance costs when choosing bigger rims than standard.

Worse Steering

Drivers of cars fitted with upsized tyres should be aware that the additional mass from wider tyres and wheels can cause a heavier steering feel, which reduces precision in handling. When making the choice to upgrade your car's wheels and tyres, it is important to factor this change into account as it will significantly alter how you experience driving.


Oversized tyres add a distinct flair to your car, yet they can easily scrape against the wheel arches if you drive over uneven surfaces. This could result in costly repairs and diminish your cornering clearance when making tight turns. Moreover, these larger tyres have the potential of scraping along curbsides as well. Consequently, it is important that you consider all of these factors before installing upsized tires on your vehicle.

How to Pick Bigger Wheels Safely?

Investing in larger wheels and tires can be an important decision when it comes to upgrading your vehicle. Here are some tips on how you can pick the right ones that will enhance, not endanger, your safety:

Compatibility: Prior to purchasing new wheels, ensure that they are compatible with your vehicle's requirements such as bolt pattern, offset and center bore measurements.

Load Rating: It's vitally important that the new wheels you purchase have a load rating that is no less than your original set; this guarantees your vehicle will be adequately supported and remain safe.

Tire Size: When selecting new tires for your wheels, make sure the aspect ratio (height) and section width (width) adhere to the manufacturer's guidelines. That way, you can ensure that these will be just the right size for your vehicle.

Speed Rating: Make sure the new tires have a speed rating that is equal to or greater than the speed rating of your original tires. This will ensure that the new tires can handle the high speeds your vehicle is capable of.

If you adhere to these simple guidelines, you can upgrade your wheels and tires while still keeping the security and dependability of your vehicle intact.