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I have a 04 Cooper and the 17" wheels and runflats. The ride is too hard for me and sometimes feels like it's rattling my teeth out!

I know very little about the make up of cars and was wondering whether I or my dealer could do anything to make the ride softer without affecting the handling?

Comments would be appreciated.
 

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Just replacing the tyres with non run flats is meant to make quite a difference.

Tigger.
 

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Lighter wheels will help a lot. When you hit a bump, the lighter wheel transfers less up-and-down energy to the car. Also, when you are buying light wheels, get them in a 16-inch size. The overall diameter must remain the same, so the smaller wheel will give you more tire depth between the road and the wheel ==> More energy absorption by the tire, less by the car.
 

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I have thought the same thing about my car, then i realised how much fun i have in so i didn't worry lol, i know where your coming from though, sometimes i just want a nice gentle ride.

I can just imagine everyones idea of running the non run flats would help. Or get some 16's? But thn it wont look as good.
 

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Yeah, i love it when my fillings in my teeth start to loosen up !! I run 17's with run flats and SS+ and i had to go to the docs with a bad back which i think was caused by the suspension !!! :eb:
 

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Superseal

Hey Max, Can you give me more info on the Superseal? Is this available here in the U.S.?

I've got a mini on order and am planning on getting rid of the runflats when they wear our or replacing them immidiately. Not having a spare make me a little nervous. But I would rather have an "S" :D
 

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I don't know who at BMW said not to use regular tires since the Cooper's standard 15 in. wheel comes with a non-runflat tire. That is the setup to use for the best ride, and it performs quite well as it is also the lightest combo. The heavy runflat tires and wheels, even in 16 in., really detract from the comfort and performance of the car IMHO.
 

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Depends on How Much $$$

You have a few options, most of which have already been discussed:

-Smaller Wheels with Non-Runflat tires (16 X 7 wheels with 205-55(50?) R16 are popular)

-The other real option is to change out the suspension components for something with adjustable damping or just better valving

Minimania has two that I like: LEDA street package ($1795) or the Bilstein Coilover System ($2695).

Either one will improve the handling as well as improving ride quality. You should replace the rear antiroll bar while your at it, that helps handling only...They are pricey, but its astounding how much they change the character of the car!

ciao
RMout
 

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The worries about replacing runflats, or even the need for a spare, are exaggerated by the industry. Road debris (and maybe chuckholes) is the modern worry, not tire failures. Our family has nearly always recovered the annual costs ($53-85/yr) of AAA from services delivered for maps, battery jump starts, gas, or towing. I haven't changed a tire along the road in years because we've had no flats.

We use dedicated sets of wheels for each intended use. This has worked very well. 15x5.5" R81s for the weekday commute (sidewall compliance gives a smooth ride and better fuel mileage), 16x6.5"/Falken for huge grip in track days, and we've even got a dedicated set of mounted directional snow tires (on R81s) which turn our MINI into a tractor in the snow, and working just fine in the mostly wet commute here!

dukesantos said:
I don't know who at BMW said not to use regular tires since the Cooper's standard 15 in. wheel comes with a non-runflat tire. That is the setup to use for the best ride, and it performs quite well as it is also the lightest combo.
dukesantos is quite correct here. It's important to add that the Cooper carries a full-size spare under the boot.

Also, with very carefully choosen tires, I'd be surprised if any of the standard Cooper S wheel/tire combinations would accelerate more quickly than the R81 15" wheel on the MCS; no question they're faster in the Cooper. As dukesantos says, it's the lightest combo (and a well-kept secret?).
 
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