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Old 05-18-2013, 06:19 AM
tb30570 tb30570 is offline
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Location: Quad Cities
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 4
Mein Auto: 2008 BMW 335xi Coupe 6spd
Square or Staggered tires on 335xi?

I'm looking for performance summer tires for a 2008 335xi coupe. I don't have the sport package.

It looks like the sports package came with a staggered set-up....
225/40R18 front
255/35R18 rear
It seems the car pushes a little right now. Why did they go with a staggered set-up on an AWD car? Would it be better to stay with a square set-up in a different size?

If I go with a square set-up, what is the maximum size I can install on the front?
225/40R18 (25.09 OD)
235/40R18 (25.40 OD)
245/35R18 (24.75 OD)

If I go with a staggered set-up, can the drive-train handle a difference of 0.1" in OD between front and rear?
225/40R18 (25.09 OD) front
255/35R18 (25.03 OD) rear
235/40R18 (25.40 OD) front
265/35R18 (25.30 OD) rear

Other subject...Winter Tires! I'm planning on putting winter tires on the OEM wheels. I think the OEM wheels are 17x7.5...is that right? I'm looking at either a 215/50R17 (25.46 OD) or a 215/55R17 (26.31 OD). I measures the clearance around the front tire and it appears there is clearance for a 215/55R17 tire. The speedometer would actually be accurate with a 215/55R17 too because it's currently about 5% fast and it would give me another 1/2" of ground clearance in the winter. Has anybody installed 215/55R17 on a 335xi? Any problems?
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:37 AM
floydarogers's Avatar
floydarogers floydarogers is offline
Pedant and Curmudgeon
Location: Renton, WA
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 5,458
Mein Auto: 335d, 328d, Toyota T100
BMW goes with a staggared setup (even for awd cars) because they want to maintain the understeer conditions so that people (the vast majority) will be safe. You're perfectly ok choosing a square setup. It does make it handle a bit more neutrally, but will still understeer at the limits unless other suspension bits are changed.

The max size in the front changes a bit depending upon wheel size, but 235 will fit, probably not 245. The drivetrain handles the 225/40R18 - 255/35R18 just fine.

I believe the 17" wheels are 8" wide (check the stampings on the inside.) 225/45R17 is the correct oem size, ymmv. 215 is the narrowest you should put on that rim. Don't forget that snow tire sizes are more restricted (in general) than summer tires: the 225/45R17 is very common. Depending upon your needs, you can go non-speed-rated and get better winter performance than performance-rated snows. Michelin and Blizzak work very well, but Conti, Dunlop and Goodyear also make good tires (IMHO, Pirelli is too pricey for the name and is not as good as other winter tires). Lots of people like Nokkian Hakkapelita. For gods sake don't buy studded tires.

check out tirerack.com

Last edited by floydarogers; 05-18-2013 at 07:39 AM.
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