Tire upgrade or plus sizing has become really popular, especially among younger drivers. This involves upgrading the original tires and/or wheels on your car for bigger, wider versions. This offers a unique and sporty look. The problems come when drivers just buy whatever looks good to them without checking their performance first.
There are basically two ways to plus-size:
- Plus 1, 2, 3, etc.
- Plus Zero
Tire Upgrade: Plus 1, 2, 3
With Plus 1, 2, 3, etc. you go up one or more sizes from what is standard. For instance, if your current tires and wheels are 14 inch, then you go up to 15 or 16. The trick here is to make sure that you can still maneuver and your car will continue to corner well. Work with an experienced tire shop pro who understands all the fine points and you can count on much better results.
Tire Upgrade: Plus Zero
With Plus Zero, you leave your wheel size the same but upgrade the tire. You can go with a wider tire or a more narrow tire, whichever look you’re going for. Wider tires will grip the road better and give you a smoother ride.
Tire manufacturers are careful to engineer an optimal combination of ride quality, grip, road feel, tire wear and noise control. When drivers start messing with this, they can sometimes wind up with tires that squeal around corners, don’t hold the road properly or wear out too quickly. Do adequate research before upgrading and ask a few tire experts what they think of any combination you may be considering.
Related Post: How To Select The Right Tire Size For Your Vehicle
Consider Your Driving Habits
You should also take into consideration your own driving habits and normal road conditions where you do most of your driving. According to Popular Mechanics there is a “Sweet Spot” that you can achieve where you’ll get the amazing visual appeal you’re after while still maintaining good performance.
Tire Upgrade Cautions
Realize that manufacturers have spent a great amount of time testing and approving multiple wheel diameters, and take advantage of their research on any sizing needs, questions or problems. With some combinations your stability system, anti-lock brakes, and speedometer may not work properly.