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F30 / F31 / F32 / F33 (2012 - current)
The sixth generation 3 series, chassis code F30. 2013 model year 328i and 335i sedans now in production. Read the F30 frequently asked question thread for all your basic question and dive into all the details in the ultimate F30 information thread.

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  #1  
Old 04-05-2014, 10:56 AM
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Dave 20T Dave 20T is offline
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What's the best tire and wheel size to have?

I'm not convinced that larger wheels are better. Too large and they even look silly.

My impression was that larger wheels are desired because it allows larger brakes to be fitted. However, larger wheels tend to be heavier.

What's the ideal size for a F30? Could it be 17"? In Germany, there are F30's with 16" wheels.

What's the ideal size for summer tires? Could it be a square setup? Does the staggered setup with wider rear tires really help? Actually, I wish the F30 were fitted with 235/45R17 tires, not 225/50R17 tires. That would open up the possibility of getting some tire models that aren't made in 50 aspect ratios.
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  #2  
Old 04-05-2014, 01:55 PM
msej449 msej449 is offline
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17" / 18" / 19"

I've got 17" on my F31 330d xDrive and I'd say this is very much at the 'comfort' end, trading handling for a smooth ride over potholes and poor road surface. In retrospect, I'd trade some comfort for more certain handling with 18". If you're a handling fan then consider 19" but these might be uncomfortable on bad road surfaces. I don't think there's any 'right' answer and there's a lot of personal preference and journey type factors involved.
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  #3  
Old 04-05-2014, 02:15 PM
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http://www.caranddriver.com/features...d-tires-tested

This Car and Driver article didn't give a firm conclusion. It did note that bigger is not automatically better and, in some cases, worse.
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  #4  
Old 04-05-2014, 03:03 PM
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I decided to go with 18" on my F33 435i Vert. The reason is quite simple in a logical way: I like the look of the 441M better than the 19" 442M; I feel that road noise will be somewhat dampened by the added height of the tires, important in a Vert; and every time I hit a manhole cover with the 19" wheels of my E92, I cringed in pain! A little extra padding will work out great. The added bonus, the M-Sport Brakes will fill the wheel better given their marginally smaller size
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  #5  
Old 04-05-2014, 03:28 PM
Boxsterless_B Boxsterless_B is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave 20T View Post
I'm not convinced that larger wheels are better. Too large and they even look silly.

My impression was that larger wheels are desired because it allows larger brakes to be fitted. However, larger wheels tend to be heavier.

What's the ideal size for a F30? Could it be 17"? In Germany, there are F30's with 16" wheels.

What's the ideal size for summer tires? Could it be a square setup? Does the staggered setup with wider rear tires really help? Actually, I wish the F30 were fitted with 235/45R17 tires, not 225/50R17 tires. That would open up the possibility of getting some tire models that aren't made in 50 aspect ratios.
I am going with 18s on my upcoming 3er order. As the previous poster states, 17s may be a little too comfy, 19s a little too rough....it really depends on your local roads, wheel style you like, and how you want the car to perform. IMO, I would like to see bigger wheel wells on the Bimmers so they could put bigger wheel packages on the cars and you wouldn't have to drop to some ridiculously low profile tire to get a bigger wheel. The wheel wells and tire packages they currently offer look too small on these cars. My 2 cents.
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  #6  
Old 04-05-2014, 04:30 PM
jlukja jlukja is offline
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If you're going to upgrade the brakes then you'll need to go with 18" or bigger. The M brakes will not fit inside the 17" wheel.
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  #7  
Old 04-05-2014, 05:46 PM
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As for me, I like the 18-inch wheels in the staggered summer performance tire setup, for the superb handling.
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  #8  
Old 04-05-2014, 07:30 PM
gkr778 gkr778 is offline
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Like Nordique, I like the Style 398 18" wheels offered with Sport Package on the 320i because they include summer performance tires. Nevertheless, I would prefer 17" wheels equipped with summer performance tires - an factory installed OE combination that's sadly unavailable for U.S specification F30. The prevalence of so-called "all-season" tires (which should be categorized as "always compromised" tires) as OE fitments in the U.S. market is irksome, IMO.

To answer you questions Dave 20T:

What's the ideal size for a F30? 17"x7.5"

What's the ideal size for summer tires? 225/50R17 front and rear. Tire Rack shows 34 different summer tire offerings in this size.
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  #9  
Old 04-05-2014, 07:33 PM
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Are they all RFT's?
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  #10  
Old 04-05-2014, 08:32 PM
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17" tires come in run flats and non-runflats.

I'd like to try the Michelin Pilot Super Sports but they don't come in BMW 17" sizes. The Continental ExtremeContact DW does. If I went with runflats, maybe a Continental Contact SSR (not the exact name)

Getting the Michelins would mean a roughly $1900 expense because I would have to get new wheels. However, I could use my 17" wheels for winter tires.

I haven't decided whether to switch to 18" summer tires or 17" summer tires, but I will probably use the stock tires for at least another year. I could also use the stock all seasons only during the winter and only when it not snowing. I have access to a X3 with excellent winter tires for now.

Last edited by Dave 20T; 04-05-2014 at 08:38 PM.
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  #11  
Old 04-05-2014, 08:42 PM
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I've had Continental ExtremeContacts on my previous bimmer; terrific tires, to my mind.
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  #12  
Old 04-05-2014, 08:55 PM
namelessman namelessman is offline
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My old E39 had Michelin PS A/S and Bridgestone RE970AS PP, both were great shoes for that car(the Pirelli P7 A/S feels similar to the RE970AS). The PSS is always on my mind, it is too bad they don't have 225/50R17 for F30.
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  #13  
Old 04-06-2014, 03:20 AM
glangford glangford is offline
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I like the 17 in. standard wheels that came on my 328d. Good enough handling and rough pavement is smoothed out. I thought I'd hate runflat tires, but I don't.
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  #14  
Old 04-06-2014, 04:49 AM
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The most determinant factor IMO is the tire height.

To the answer, I would have answered 17" for the E90. Their 18" had a profile of 225/40 and I had a lot of issues with bent wheels.

I answer 18" for the F30. They have a 225/45 profile, the same tire height as 17" on E90.
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Old 04-06-2014, 06:07 AM
namelessman namelessman is offline
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Does anyone know the weights of OEM Style 393, 397, and 400M rims?
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Old 04-06-2014, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave 20T View Post
What's the ideal size for a F30?
Ideal for what? Looks? Weight? Street performance? Gas mileage? Comfort? Steering/suspension Feel? Track performance? Snow? Dry? Rain?
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Old 04-06-2014, 10:38 AM
gkr778 gkr778 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by namelessman View Post
Does anyone know the weights of OEM Style 393, 397, and 400M rims?
Style 393: 10.43 kg
Style 397: 12 kg
Style 400M: 11.78 kg front; 11.80 kg rear

Source 1, Source 2
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Old 04-06-2014, 10:40 AM
vishal500 vishal500 is offline
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19s or 20s for me. my car is a weekender so i go for looks vs practicality.
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Old 04-06-2014, 12:04 PM
namelessman namelessman is offline
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Originally Posted by gkr778 View Post
Style 393: 10.43 kg
Style 397: 12 kg
Style 400M: 11.78 kg front; 11.80 kg rear

Source 1, Source 2
Thanks for the info. The E39 M5 Style 66 8x17 will look really cool on F30(and fits 235/45R17), unfortunately the ET is 20.
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Old 04-06-2014, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chiefneil View Post
Ideal for what? Looks? Weight? Street performance? Gas mileage? Comfort? Steering/suspension Feel? Track performance? Snow? Dry? Rain?
For me, the overwhelming criteria is safety. Performance is safety. As far as looks, too many wheels look ugly because they are too big. Just a decade ago, too many wheels looked ugly because they were too small.

I think the best are either 17 or 18". Could be 17" to my surprise.
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  #21  
Old 04-06-2014, 12:49 PM
pflau pflau is offline
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Sadly with the road around NYC I would not go anything larger than 17".
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Old 04-06-2014, 02:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave 20T View Post
For me, the overwhelming criteria is safety. Performance is safety. As far as looks, too many wheels look ugly because they are too big. Just a decade ago, too many wheels looked ugly because they were too small.

I think the best are either 17 or 18". Could be 17" to my surprise.
A couple inches either way doesn't make much difference in safety if you're talking about how well the tires will stick to the road. If you're talking safety of the wheel itself from cracking in potholes, then definitely smaller is better.

I would guess that a pro could hustle a car around a track with almost no difference in lap times with 17" vs 19" wheels, given the same rubber.

Personally I think 18" are a good compromise in terms of looks vs weight. I only got 19's because BMW increased the sidewall height of the 18's and I didn't like the look on the m-sport. The new M3/M4 comes with 18's, I believe.
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  #23  
Old 04-06-2014, 02:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pflau View Post
Sadly with the road around NYC I would not go anything larger than 17".
Again, the F30 18" tire height is the same as the E90 17".
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  #24  
Old 04-06-2014, 04:07 PM
msej449 msej449 is offline
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My understanding is that you need to keep the rolling radius of the wheel+tyre the same (i.e. the total diameter) as much to preserve suspension dynamics as consistent speed/kilometre readings. Given that, then as previously observed, the greater the wheel diameter, the smaller the sidewall. The upside is it's easier to turn. The downside is increased aquaplaning, apparently. If you also widen the tread width (which is almost always the case) then you usually increase the tread:road surface area. Given the total vehicle weight is the same, the second downside is that the weight per unit area is reduced. So, counterintuitively, grip is poorer. Which is probably not why you opted for wider wheels originally. It seems to be a trade off.
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Old 04-06-2014, 05:38 PM
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Originally Posted by vishal500 View Post
19s or 20s for me. my car is a weekender so i go for looks vs practicality.
Mine's a DD so for me the 18s. Had 19s on my E46 M3. Never again.
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