205/60/16 Front 225/50/17 Rear

205/60/16 Front 225/50/17 Rear

by Passion0217
(Star City, WV)

Previously, i posted a thread with 205/60/16 front and 205/65/15 on a 2002 Camry. You guys said it is OK.


I have four 205/60/16 winter tires. I am thinking about putting two on the front of the Camry and two on the front of a 2006 Fusion SEL V6, which requires 225/50/17.

The good thing about the 16 and 15 tires is that they were the same width with 20.5cm. However, the 17 tires are significantly wider (22.5cm vs 20.5cm) even though the total difference is only 0.7%. Will this pose a problem?

Of course, the 15, 16, 17 have the same bolt pattern (5x114.3).


Mixing tires:

Considering the overall diameter of the tires both the 16 and 17 inch tires are extremely close in size. This would provide a minimal risk in terms of performance or mechanical difficulties as a result of the change.

That being said, I believe you are potentially complicating your life by mixing tire (and wheel) sizes on your vehicles if it isn't absolutely necessary.

Having narrower tires means that you have a smaller contact patch on those wheels and the size of the contact patch is largely what provides the traction which the tires have. Smaller patch = less traction.

The difference of 0.7% you mention refers only to the operating diameter of the tires, not to the size of the contact patch, or difference in width. There is almost 9% difference in the width and contact area.


TG


Comments for 205/60/16 Front 225/50/17 Rear

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Narrow tires more traction in winter
by: Passion0217

Yes. I have heard that narrower tires will grip ice and snow better. I have four winter tires, i just do not want to waist them.

Your choice of snow tires
by: Wheels Etc

I would like to add my two cents in that the narrower tire will be more responsive in snow because it tends to but more load per square inch than the wider 17" tires. That said the previous advice was directed to dry road driving and greater surface contact does lend to better traction. Not in every case but generally speaking the wider tire would be less like to understeer in an emergency situation. On the other hand when severe braking is required with anti-lock brakes the greater load per square inch comes into play and the tires are less likely to skid regardless of the width. The vehicle in this case weighs the same regardless of the width of the tread and the same load is distributed to the surface contact so if the surface contact area is larger it also means there is less load per square inch.

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