Do Bigger Wheels Make Your Car Go Faster?


5 Answers

Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Okay, first we need to clarify the difference between "tire" size and "wheel" size. Tires come in various sizes but depending on the car's rim size you can end up with same exact wheel height by combining a large rim with a low profile tire as you would with a small rim and a tire with a wider sidewall to it, in which case they'd be no difference in speed since the wheel's diameter wouldn't change.  Thus when we're talking about bigger wheels what we're really interested is the wheel's height, or diameter (think of it as the difference in size between a dime and a nickel). That said, if switch to bigger (meaning taller) wheels your car will go faster because the distance covered by spinning the rotor one revolution (say from 12 o'clock to 12 o'clock) is greater the bigger the wheel is, which means you cover more distance per rotor revolution.  Of course this means that your speedometer will be skewed slower than your actual speed is when your driving down the highway (for example, if your speedometer reads 55 mph you actually might be doing 65 or greater depending on how much bigger the wheels are.  For this reason, taller wheels actually save gas, not waste more gas.  Think of it this way: If you compare two Dodge Caravans going down the highway both at 65 miles per hour - one with small wheels, and the other with bigger wheels - the one with the bigger wheels will require less depression of the gas pedal to make 65 mph than the one with the shorter wheels (since the speedometer will actually read less than 65 mph). And we all know the deeper you press your gas pedal the more gas you send into the engine and thus the faster you'll be burning up gas.  Thus bigger wheels use less power  than smaller wheels at any given speed when you compare two equivalent vehicles side by side.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Maybe, maybe not.

It is popular these days to have "wheels" that are as big in diameter as possible and have tires that are as thin as possible. What counts here is the diameter of the tire.

When done properly this "big wheel" style will keep the same diameter of the tire even thou the wheels are much bigger. This will keep the suspension geometry the same and make sure the tires to not hit the wheel wells.

So if the tires are still the same diameter the speed of the car will not be changed.

But if the tires are Bigger then before it is possible that the car would go faster IF it had the power to do so.

And this is the real answer: Since the bigger tire lowered the RPMs of the engine the engine would be lower in its torque band and in reality the car would go Slower!
Yes bigger wheels & rims will make the vehicle go faster but please make sure to have the speedometer recalibrated. :)
Jacquelyn Mathis Profile
No, you never want to use any tire other than the one that is supposed to be on the vehicle, because that causes you to use more gas other wise. Hope this helps.

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