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16 or 17 alloys

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Hi,

At the moment I have 16" alloys, I defnitely don't want 18s, but I'm wondering if the 17s will be a good upgrade, looks wise they will look better than 16s but will the ride, handling and comfort be worse, if so how much, considerably? I have a 2013 Titanium Focus.

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Ride comfort will be worse on 17s, but it's a very personal preference thing, it's too hard for some people...other people think 18s are comfortable...  

You'll lose a little MPG but handling should be slightly better.  Tyres are quite a bit more expensive on the 17s though.

Personally I need a very smooth ride due to health issues, I like 17s but they are too rough riding for me.

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I have factory 18's and factory suspension (which is probably a bit harder than a regular focus) on my ST and I'd argue it's a comfier and quieter than my mk7 Fiesta that had both 15's and 17's fitted. Though I reckon the seats take soften a lot of it. They are really comfy to sit in for long periods.

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I've gone from 16 to 17 and now to 18 on my mk2.5, for what it's worth my experiences are as follows:

 

 Running 16" (205/55/16) was comfortable and very cheap. Not excessively soft by any means with a mixed bag of tyres and then I upgraded to the Michelin CrossClimates. What a tyre they are... The grip is nuts! However they were a tad on the wallow-y side for me when brand new. Absorbed everything, mind! But these are currently sat waiting for snow or muddy days.. Too good to sell on imo but I wanted the aesthetics.

My old mk2 was written off, enter the mk2.5 with 17 as standard as part of the sport pack.

205 50 17 to be specific, I found these okay, but surprisingly susceptible to tramlining (tyres..) and quite loud when compared to the 16s, I was happy with the looks but the tyre availability or lack of was a killer, I ended up with Goodyear EfficientGrip on the back (Great rubber, quiet but not cheap!) And in a rush I ran Falken ZE914 up front. The Falkens were WAY heavier and louder than anything before, and I regret those. I did run all 4 Goodies for a bit until two had to be replaced, and I couldn't fault them but ***** hell 205 50 17 is a hard tyre to buy, and seriously not cheap.

I looked at dropping back to 16s when I found the I had a slightly warped front left, but 'browsing' I chanced across some DIRT CHEAP 18" Mondeo rims that i couldn't pass up. No tyres, and needed a refurb but all 4 and refurb cost me less than one same style used 17 so I pulled the trigger.

Tyre wise, much much more selection for 225 40 18, and a hell of a lot cheaper than I thought. I found a very well rated (quiet) Roadstone Eurovis Sport SU04 listing online cheap and then realized that's actually how cheap they are.. Did slot of reading up here, I like my brands but I also like bargains, and after reading these were worth a punt. Basically a rebadged Nexen N'fera, which in turn is a pattern very very similar ( if not just an old one) used by Michelin some time ago and back then was rated very highly as well, all the same factory and what not so figured why not. At £38 a corner I expected not alot at all, but something to get by on and wow I was wrong. 18 on these is very very nice. Great grip, and surprisingly very quiet, especially more comfortable than my 17s, but with so much more bite. The extra width makes so much difference I couldn't believe it, and overall the 18 come in a shade LIGHTER than my 17s with Falken on, and just over even compared to the Goodies.

 

Overall the ride quality in general is harsher if the roads are bad, but that's to be expected. They don't accelerate as well as a 16, but good lord I'll take them over my 17s any day. As I said, much more grip (dry and wet) than I was anticipating and a surprising quietness to them, but dont take that as gospel, I haven't had a chance to run anything else on the 18s yet, I'm about 9k in on the tyres and about to rotate, and still have over half left up front so it could be a while..

 

But yeah, 16 is great, and cheap. Very common tyre sizes to boot, 17 are a pain and to me at least, weren't worth it despite looking a lot better overall. I'm sticking with my 18s now though until a bad winter comes in at least, these are great for me and suit both the car and my driving style very well. I dont miss the slightly lesser acceleration to be fair either, it hasn't made too much impact, but I know where it is and isn't present so just adjust gears to suit.

 

Lengthy, but hope that helps someone.

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I had 16s on my old mk2 and when I got my 2011 mk3 titanium it had 18s fitted.

The handling on corners is a lot better on the mk3 although the turning circle is a lot bigger. You do feel the bumps on the road with the 18s but it is still comfortable. It is still easy driving on a long drive.

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10 hours ago, WireyWhenWet said:

Roadstone Eurovis Sport SU04

I'm running the exact same tyres, bought on eBay January 2018, done approx 14000 miles, no problems what so ever and only £38 per tyre plus fitting, which I payed £7.50.

I am too much of a tight git to buy branded tyres, I've only ever used budget tyres on my cars, and I've been driving 35 years this year and never lost control and crashed a car yet (touch wood) 🤞🤞🤞🤞

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