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Full Version: Mk3 Zetec-S With 18" Wheels - How's The Ride?
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I'm thinking of maybe selling my Fiesta towards the end of the year when it's 3 years old, and although it's a long way off yet I'm already considering a new Focus Zetec-S (or maybe even an ST). Something I'm wondering though is how is the ride with the 18" wheels? My Fiesta Zetec-S with the 17" is quite harsh and crashy (plus there's a few rattles which get set off by bumps!) and although I know the Focus is a higher quality car, from looking at pictures there isn't much in the way of sidewall so I'm guessing it's not great in comparison?

Comparing my dad's 2003 Focus LX to my car there's a huge difference in comfort, speedbumps are so much smoother in his and don't sound like they're causing damage! I assume the new Zetec-S isn't anything like this though and only models with much larger tyres have the extra smoothness?

Your pretty much right, if your wheels only have elastic bands for tyres its always gonna be a choppy ride. The focus will probably be smoother than the fiesta due to its extra weight, but it ain't gonna be no Rolls Royce for comfort lol. Hope you've got deep pockets if you opt for the ST, they love petrol stations, take no notice of official MPG figures, they are way out compared to real life driving :-)
My titanium x has the 18s and the rides really good but I don't have the sport springs so the zetec s maybe a bit harder and then the st would be harder than that.
I picked my Focus ZS up a couple of weeks ago which has the 18" alloys on it..the ride is really smooth and doesn't feel much different to what my fiesta did with 16s on.
My Focus ST obviously has 18s alloys on it and is far more comfortable to be in than my other halves Fiesta ST on 17s. The slightly longer wheelbase will help.
Loz Cheung
Yeah i find the ride on mine perfectly acceptable. its firm but compliant. However i found my fiesta on 17"s perfectly fine too so its all personal- compared to my mk6.5 fiesta zetec s anything is better ever since for me!!
Hi, I have them on my car and although the ride is firmer I prefer them to the standard wheels. I drove a Mk3 estate with the 17" wheels and it felt a little less controlled and not as 'pointy', but it isn't bad at all. I suggest you test drive both if you can as it is a matter of personal taste...
i have 19's and the ride is fine as i have standard suspension. when i upgrade to eibachs i guess it will be firmer but not to hard that it makes my fillings fall out!
Jay Ali
Iv got 18's on my mk2.5 it's on standard suspensions n it's good as gold
But iv got the st springs waiting to go on I presume it'll b tad bit more harder
Jay Ali
[quote name='Jay Ali' timestamp='1357908575' post='225790']
Iv got 18's on my mk2.5 it's on standard suspensions n it's good as gold
But iv got the st springs waiting to go on I presume it'll b tad bit more harder

From 16" lol
I have 18's on mine , ride is fine , as the seats are great , only thing i find is they tramline a little at low speed
Cheers for all the replies guys, sounds good to me! I'll certainly be test driving a couple of different ones when it's time to change, though the Zetec-S is the only one I want appearance wise :D. Hopefully the Sony radio will be an option by then (or Sync with the bigger screen like the US one)!
HI, as far as I understand the MFT sync with the bigger screen isn't available until autumn at the earliest. As the version in the states has had numerous issues we can only hope Ford have sorted them all out by then. [url=""][/url]
I've got the 18" wheels on my Tit-X and can confirm that the ride is quite acceptable although it can be caught out with some patches where there are ridges in the road surface like where repairs have been undertaken.

Something you should be aware of though is that the larger wheels reduce the turning circle which has to be factored in when manoeuvring in tight spots; that said, I've not had any problems - yet!

Best thing is to try it out for yourself and if possible, do a back to back comparison
one thing to note: summer tyres may not perform as well as winter/all season tyres so in the current climate you may find traction a little les so be careful! you may realise that you have summer i found out this morning...stopped just before the kerb...less than 2" of snow :unsure:
All things considered (looks and performance) would you recommend 18s on standard suspension?
..or 17, or either and lowered?

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