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gromit said:
Will I be seeing too much of my dentist for filling replacement? I live in the Northeastern USA and the freeze/thaw cycles we have here cause some big potholes in our roads. I am definitely (already have $ deposited) getting a Cooper S but am wondering if the 17" tires and wheels are a bad idea for a daily driver. Anyone have any real-world experience with this aspect ratio in theit tires?
I used to have an old VW GTI but only ran 185/60's on it.
205/45 on 17"s is pretty unusual. Not very wide at all. I have had 225/45 on 17" rims and had two problems. The first was due to the profile and my wheel combination. The only thing protecting the rim is the "wheel" protector built into most 45 series tyres. This extended rubber ring close to the bead is supposed to protect the rim, but is not generaly substantial enough.
The other was my wheel design was too light for Australian roads and were prone to buckling. They were fixable on two occasions. The third wrote the rim off. If you go for the S-spoke 17"s they look very strong to me, and will be my choice. Rim damage however will be down to being careful where you drive it.
The run flat technology on the 16" and 17" tyres may help, as they must be VERY tough, and I suspect the rims would have to be especially designed for these tyres as well.
I had the same concerns as yourself on this issue, but i can't help myself.....those 17" S spokes are the biz and suit the simple lines of the MINI.

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