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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need some help. I'm trying to get information about the 17" wheels which nobody has been able to answer. I will be racing a Cooper S here in the states and I'd like to get a head start on some research.
Here's the info I need:
- Will a 225/45R17 (or 225/50R16) fit in the wheel well on the stock 17" wheel? If it doesn't, where's the problem?
- What is the offset of the 17" and 16" wheels? The 15" wheel is 45mm. My guess is that the 17's are around 38-40mm but I don't know exactly. Can you measure it, I can explain how.

I can reimburse you for expenses you spend.

For example, take your MINI to your local tyre shop and ask them if they'll mount a 225/45R17 (or 225/50R16) tyre on a front and rear wheel. It needs to be this size because that is what the race tire is available in. Put them on the car and turn the wheel lock-to-lock. Check to see that the clearance is fine in front and rear. Do one tire at a time, front first. If the front doesn't fit, don't bother checking the rear.

I know this is a lot to ask, but I can't get the answers any other way and waiting puts me "behind the ball".

I can send you money via Paypal or any other method. I was thinking around $30 would do for a quick mount and dismount.

Any takers?
 

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The other thing we need..

If you have the 17" wheels can you pull one off, lay it face down and measure from the hub to the top of the rim? This is the offset, and may be marked on the inside of the wheel as ET, like 45ET or ET45.
 

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Garfield said:

- Will a 225/45R17 (or 225/50R16) fit in the wheel well on the stock 17" wheel? If it doesn't, where's the problem?
I think you would have to go with a lower profile to keep the overall wheel diameter down ... 225/40-17 (24.09") or 225/45-16 (23.97"). I don't know whether a 225 series tire would rub. You may only be able to fit a 215 series tire. I suggest you contact Steve McCrory at MiniMania for help.

- What is the offset of the 17" and 16" wheels? The 15" wheel is 45mm. My guess is that the 17's are around 38-40mm but I don't know exactly. Can you measure it, I can explain how.
Last week Tech Man at MINI USA sent me some wheel offset information. All the 15" wheels were ET45. Two of the 16" wheels (R83 and R84) were ET50 and one (R88) was ET48. One of the 17" wheels (R85) was ET50 while the other (R90) was ET48. Since the track on the 'S' is 0.2" (5.1mm) narrower than the Cooper, I would've expected all the 16" wheels to be ET48. I also found it curious that the 17" wheels both didn't have the same offset. I've asked Tech Man to confirm the offsets and also to provide me with wheel weight information.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
MINIAC, you must have missed this:
"It needs to be this size because that is what the race tire is available in."
If I am to run a 225, it must be a larger diameter (both 225 tire selections are .5" taller diameter), which may not be a bad thing as long as it fits. Also, there are no R Compound tires sold in a 215.

I've spoken with Steve, and he gave me what he had. He did feel a 215 would be the perfect size, but again, due to availability they're running the 205/40R17 ROAD RACE compound Hoosiers. The problem is, there's no 205/40R17 in an AUTOCROSS compound. There is, however, a 205/45R16 Kumho Autocross compound.


"Two of the 16" wheels (R83 and R84) were ET50 and one (R88) was ET48. One of the 17" wheels (R85) was ET50 while the other (R90) was ET48."

This is VERY valuable stuff, I really appreciate the information. But it sounds like you're saying it's not confirmed yet, is that correct?

Oh, and can you remind me what code goes with what wheel?

Thanks.
 

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Garfield said:
MINIAC, you must have missed this:
"It needs to be this size because that is what the race tire is available in."
Sorry, I'm missed that they had to be in the sizes stated.
"Two of the 16" wheels (R83 and R84) were ET50 and one (R88) was ET48. One of the 17" wheels (R85) was ET50 while the other (R90) was ET48."

This is VERY valuable stuff, I really appreciate the information. But it sounds like you're saying it's not confirmed yet, is that correct?
I had questions regarding the inconsistencies in the offsets and just wanted to double-check with Tech Man.

Oh, and can you remind me what code goes with what wheel?
I'll refer you to the FAQ on factory wheels on this one.
 

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Did you ever get your question answered?

I too am trying to find out if 225/50/16 works. I need to order tires on Monday. Did you get an answer to your question? Was Mini-Mania helpful?

Thanks,

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, I still haven't gotten my car yet, but it sounds to me after all the feedback and research I've done, you won't comfortably get a 225/50R16 on there, especially since the 215/40R16 is a tight squeeze and is a MUCH lower diameter.
 

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The engineer who designed the Minis front suspension said the following in CAR magazine (July 2001)

"The 17-inch wheels were an absolute nightmare to accomodate. There's meant to be 15mm clearance for tyres. Now there's actually a benign foul in extreem circumstances."

This is with the standard tyres. After reading this I would be wary of fitting anything larger.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes, but the difference is, I've personally run 205/50R15 on the standard 15" wheel, 205/45R16 on the standard 16" S wheel, and someone else has already run the 215/40R16 on the 16" S wheel. The issue with the last one was more of a mounting issue, than a clearance issue.

Trying to run very wide AND keep the standard rolling diameter is not going to work. But, if you're willing to live with the speedometer error, running a wider, lower diameter tire will work.

By the way, let me make it very clear again after racing a MINI Cooper with 16" S wheels and 205/45R16's on it, that to me, it is a necessary change in handling and gearing to run the lower diameter and live with the error on the speedo.

I even plan on lowering the diameter on my S, when it gets here.

Good Luck!
 
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