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Wheel/Tire Size, and Suspension Numbers. A Consensus..

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This is a work in progress and by no means complete!!! I am copy/pasting and paraphrasing from past threads as I have the time.

This is by no means 100% spot-on accurate considering the variables between cars (Rear spring pads, etc.). But generally speaking, this will be close, and a good reference for a starting point, per your build concept. Also, I am keeping with the more common sizes and combinations. If you are looking to go with anything bigger than 15" wheels, offset wheel widths front to rear, or real wide, you're on your own. Way too many combos out there!! But if you have something that works and want to email the ALL the details. I will be happy to add it to the list.. By all means.

\m/ \m/

Stock ride height:

Recommended struts/shocks: OEM or Bilstein HD.

Wheel diameter: 13"- 15"

Rim width: 4"- 7"

Offset: et 25-29 typical. Others >et25 may need spacers to clear suspension components. Others

Trusted tire sizes (23"+/- tire height)

13" - 165/80/13, 185/70/13, 195/60/13,

14" - 185/60-/14, 195/60/14

15" - 195/50/15, 205/50/15

1" drop:

Recommended shocks/struts: Bilstein HD or Sport

Wheel diameter: 13"- 15"

Rim width: 4"- 7"

Offset: et 25-29 typical. Others with spacers to clear suspension components.

Trusted tire sizes (23"+/- tire height)

13" - 165/80/13, 185/70/13, 195/60/13,

14" - 185/60-/14, 195/60/14

15" - 195/50/15, 205/50/15

Roll fenders as needed with the wider 195's and up.

1.25" drop"

Recommended struts: Bilstein Sport

Wheel diameter: 13"- 15"

Rim width: 4"- 7"

Offset: et 25-33 typical. Others with spacers to clear suspension components.

Trusted tire sizes (23"+/- tire height)

13" - 165/80/13, 185/70/13, 195/60/13,

14" - 185/60-/14, 195/60/14

15" - 195/50/15, 205/50/15

Roll fenders as needed with the wider 195's and up. Add fixed camber plates in the front.

Turbo Flares:

1.50"+ Drop"

Recommended strut options:

Fixed camber plates.

Fixed plates + bent tubes.

Shortened strut tubes and VW Rabbit Sport inserts.

Coilover front suspension.

Coilovers + adjustable camber plates.

Rear suspension treatments for managing negative camber created from lowering the car body:

Camber adjusting bushings in rear to remove negative.

Weld in camber kits in rear.

Roll fenders in the larger tire widths/offsets.

Turbo Flares:

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14" tire information per Tom Jones' post on the matter:

I used http://www.powerdog.com/tiresize.cgi to perform these calculations based on a a stock size of 165/80-13 tire.

Tire and Auto manufactures tell us to try and keep tire rolling diameters within 3% of original fitment for speedometer correction as well as many other factors.

Tire size choices for 14" wheels on '02s are... drum roll please..... :)

175/70-14: +1.1 Negligible diameter difference. A perfect tire size for those looking for a vintage look on Neue Klasse 14" wheels with hubcaps on an '02.

185/60-14: -2.8% A little short but gets the job done.

185/65-14: -0.3% Correct rolling diameter, but a slightly oddball size so fewer choices. Correct for wheels up to 6" wide. Another tire for a great vintage look with 14" wheels on an '02.

195/60-14: -0.8% The correct look for 14" tires on '02s and what most people use. The most common tire size as availability is concerned. The most popular 14" tire size for '02s.

195/65-14: +2.5% What comes on E30's as stock. Many people think these are correct but they are slightly tall for '02s.

205/60-14: +1.2% On wheels of 6" to 7" with perfect offset these would be ideal tires.

205/55-14: -2.2% There are quite a few R compound track tires available in this size. Great track wheel/tire size for 14" wheels on an '02.

Hope this helps you all in deciding what 14" tires to run on your '02s.

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Well yes and no......

Its even harder to find out how much of a drop a car will have on the EXACT same setup. I have Ireland Stage II springs and Bilstein Sports....Its lower than ALOT of peoples cars with the EXACT same setup. So the thing is these cars can vary alot. From old parts, bent parts, etc....so its a tough thing to say definitively what will work on one car and what will not work on another. There is some experimentation that goes into it all.

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Well yes and no......

... From old parts, bent parts, etc....so its a tough thing to say definitively what will work on one car and what will not work on another. There is some experimentation that goes into it all.

Hence, "recommended". -Based on published stock dimensions of the car and the parts as a starting point for expectation purposes. Then maybe beyond that, you're on your own to find out what actually works for your car..

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Offset: et 25-29 typical. Others et25 may protrude from the wheel well.

You have the signs swapped. Offsets >25 (greater than 25) will need spacers. Offsets <25 (less than 25) may rub.

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Offset: et 25-29 typical. Others et25 may protrude from the wheel well.

You have the signs swapped. Offsets >25 (greater than 25) will need spacers. Offsets <25 (less than 25) may rub.

thats funny, you don't know how long I stared at that, trying to remember which it was supposed to be..

Thanks.

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Here are my notes on 13" tire sizes as follows...

165/R13 + Stock on all '02s save the Turbos. The only size tire that will fit in the spare tire well, unless you build up the walls like a 2002Turbo or weld up a deeper well.

175/70-13: -3.2% Rather short for an '02 and looks that way on the car. There are just no proper height 175 13" tires made for '02s.

185/70-13: -.08% Perfect +0 fitment on all stock '02 wheels and most aftermarket up to 6.5" wide. Getting hard to find tires in this size, but the preferred period/vintage upgrade. Most offsets from et20 to et30 will fit these tires. These do fit 5.5" et18 E21 wheels on most '02s with a bit of fender rolling. Stock on 2002 Turbos.

195/60-13: -5.0% WAY to short on an '02 and looks that way. Big changes in speedometer readout! Looks "OK" on a radically lowered car.

205/60-13: -3.0% The preferred WIDE 13" street tire size. Great for that vintage autocross look. Fitment for minimum of 5.5" to 7" wide wheels. et25 works best. Do usually require fender lip rolling. These look best on lowered cars. There just weren't any 205/65-13 tires ever made... Theoretically they would be +.04%, oh well.

There are many wider, shorter 13" Racing tire sizes but those are not recommended for regular street use.

HTH

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Things may have changed lately, but a West Coast Chain, Big O, is showing quite a few tires available.

California - San Mateo

2160 S. El Camino Real

San Mateo, CA 94403

Phone: 650-212-2446

Product Line:

185 / 70 / 13

All Season Radial Passenger - limited supplies! P185/70R13 85S BLK $47.98

Epic Sport Radial 185/70R13 86S $55.99

Doral SDL 185/70R13 86T BLK $67.99

Sumitomo HTR T4 P185/70R13 85T BLK $71.98

Uniroyal Tiger Paw A/S 6000 P185/70R13 85S $81.98

Cooper Trendsetter SE P185/70R13 85S BLK $87.98

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