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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there,

I am thinking of getting a new set of tire and rim for next year. If I am to get a set of 15*7 and 16*8, what setup would be easier to drive on the track?

205-50-15 & 225-50-16 RE71R or can i get 205-50-15 & 245-45-16 R888R? Not sure if 245 is too wide for my rim? or is 225-50-16 would be a better choice?

Thanks,
Thomas
 

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Mike
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I have chosen 15 x 7 front and 17 x 8 rears. 16" tires don't provide a good selection. I suggest Nitto NT-01 or Maxxis RC-1 tires. 205/50/15 and 235/40/17. I tried some 245 R888 on the rear but they rubbed and I needed spacers. You can also use 225's on 8" in the front and 235's on 9" in the rear. Team Dynamics makes a good set of wheels for a reasonable price.
 

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He's on fire!
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if you're going to use re71r or r888r anyway, i'm not sure why you'd not just use stock forged wheels. I'd expect you to change the wheel setup if you wanted to use a tire other than a brand/model which already fits.

As far as your question goes, I think your suspension setup and alignment will have a larger affect on "how easy the car is to drive" than tire selection. (at least for the tires used in OP)
 

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The sizes shown in the image below work well. I am a fan of the Toyo RA1 and R888Rs. Our ETHOS wheels fit perfectly and are designed with offsets for performance on track. If your car is naturally aspirated, I don't see any major advantage in going with larger rear tires.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you all for the input. My car is an 07 Exige S 220. Trying to get a set with lower weight.
 

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Get a 1/8" spacer front and 1" rear and run miata wheels. 15x8 and 15x9 then you can run 225 front and 245 rear. Wheels weigh like 11 and 13 lbs and cost $130 each shipped. Rival S makes a good 200 TW tire in these smaller sizes. Unfortunately re-71R does not. The shorter rear tires help gearing too. With a large wing and splitter I am faster in 5th with a 23" tire then a 24" becuase I don't make enough HP to overcome the drag with the 24"
 

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I have chosen 15 x 7 front and 17 x 8 rears. 16" tires don't provide a good selection. I suggest Nitto NT-01 or Maxxis RC-1 tires. 205/50/15 and 235/40/17. I tried some 245 R888 on the rear but they rubbed and I needed spacers. You can also use 225's on 8" in the front and 235's on 9" in the rear. Team Dynamics makes a good set of wheels for a reasonable price.
+1
 

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I'm late to this party but... I'd go with 195 or 205/50-15 fronts and 225/45 or 50-16 rears if running 15/16 (a setup I ran for many years). 245s are just a bit too wide for 8" wheels. Same with 225s for 7" wheels.

If you're going to run all 15s, note that a 15x8.5 needs to be spaced out to +20 to clear the control arms in the back. A 15x9 would need to be at least +15, and probably a couple millimeters more. I'm running a 15x8.5 in the rear as 15x9s would not fit under the stock Elise bodywork. Exige mileage may vary.
 

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I am going to throw another factor out there to consider. Damage control.

I used factory sized Team Dynamics (16-17) wheels for a while. They were great, but my track will periodically develop ruts right off the curbing on track out. I am sure this does not happen anywhere else :)

What happens is, I will drop one of my back wheels off the curb every so often. That is not a problem in and of itself but coming back on track means that I am hitting a sharp 90 degree concrete curb with the inside of my tire/wheel. I destroyed one wheel/tire, replaced it, then bent the new wheel the next weekend. Because of the way that Team Dynamics wheels are made you cannot "repair" a bent wheel. Technically they can make it straight again but will not certify it to be safe at 90 mph.

I switched to 15-16 Ethos wheels because they provide about an extra inch of rubber over the rim. The overall package is also lighter. The Ethos wheels were the lightest per strength/dollar. I did not weigh them but they are noticeably lighter than my previous setup and seem to be better at handling my semi-off-road driving style. I have never bent one after numerous "drop-offs". They balance easier than my Team Dynamics. They are also a bit shorter so the gearing is a bit lower and the car sits lower which also helps handling.

My setup
15-16 Ethos
205 Toyo RA1 fronts
245 Toyo RA1 rears

My prior setup was:
16-17 Team Dynamics (now my street wheels)
195 Toyo R888 fronts
235 Toyo R888 rears

My lap times are better with the new setup but it is not an apples to apples comparison. I am a much better driver now and the car has other upgrades so comparison is not relevant.

I am also not claiming that everyone should switch to this setup, I have other modifications which make this setup a better option for my car and my skill level (or lack of skill as it may be).

The Ethos wheels are lighter than the Team Dynamics, price is comparable, and the Ethos seem to be stronger. I realize that I have about an extra inch of rubber but many major spins etc have not resulted in the slightest bit of damage or imbalance in the wheels. That was not a trait of my Team Dynamics wheels. Obviously this could be luck and it is definitely influenced by the tire/wheel ratio... which is my primary point.

I would consider buying the Ethos for street wheels on style points as well. Would be cool if you could get them in different finishes but I like the flat black. I think I might prefer gloss or satin finish for street wheels but flat hides the fact that I was at the track over a month ago and have not found the motivation to clean the car yet. Am I right?

The five spoke design is super easy to clean. Which is a big deal for me, I am not an auto detailer, it is just not in my blood. I want something easy to maintain.
 
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