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      12-02-2019, 11:44 PM   #1
doyler
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Winter setup advice for first timer

Looking for some advice as I've never bought a winter setup before. I got a 2016 435i ZHP edition for my first BMW and first RWD car in the spring of this year. I love it but it's mounted with PSS tires. I live in the Washington DC area and, while we don't get much snow, temps are pretty frequently anywhere from 20F to 40F throughout winter. Seems driving the PSS year round in these temps is anywhere from just frowned upon to basically a death sentence depending who you ask. My current (stock) setup is:

Front:
BMW #398 18x8 ET34
PSS 225/45/18

Rear:
Bmw #398 18x18.5 ET47
PSS 255/40/18

My questions are really around the wheels as I think I've found my answers for the tires by searching. Can I go to 18x8.5 on the front also without changing anything else (excluding tire size)? I think this is a yes but would like some reassurance.

Offset is all new to me and is really where I'm struggling. Finding wheels in these specs has been difficult. I am looking at 18x8.5 ET30 for the front - is that 4mm difference an issue?

The rear is giving me more trouble, 18x8.5 ET47 does not seem common. Could I just buy the same ET30 for the rear and add a 15mm spacer? If i just went 30 or 35 I'm guessing my calipers won't fit anymore and I need something about 47mm?

My other option is to just replace the PSS on my current wheels with a UHP AS like the PS A/S 3+ but I really love the PSS, although I have nothing to compare it to. Don't think my previous SUV and Tacoma tires really help me here. Any thoughts on just running a UHP all- season tire for some normal highway commuting and occasional spirited weekend driving?

This process overall has been frustrating for a first-timer so help with the above or other recommendations would be much appreciated.
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      12-02-2019, 11:59 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doyler View Post
My questions are really around the wheels as I think I've found my answers for the tires by searching. Can I go to 18x8.5 on the front also without changing anything else (excluding tire size)? I think this is a yes but would like some reassurance.

Offset is all new to me and is really where I'm struggling. Finding wheels in these specs has been difficult. I am looking at 18x8.5 ET30 for the front - is that 4mm difference an issue?

The rear is giving me more trouble, 18x8.5 ET47 does not seem common. Could I just buy the same ET30 for the rear and add a 15mm spacer? If i just went 30 or 35 I'm guessing my calipers won't fit anymore and I need something about 47mm?

My other option is to just replace the PSS on my current wheels with a UHP AS like the PS A/S 3+ but I really love the PSS, although I have nothing to compare it to. Don't think my previous SUV and Tacoma tires really help me here. Any thoughts on just running a UHP all- season tire for some normal highway commuting and occasional spirited weekend driving?
regarding offset, the higher your positive offset is means the wheel is more tucked in. if you put et30 in the rear and add a 15mm the effective offset will be ET15.

are you buying dedicated set of winter wheels and tires? or changing just the tires to AS3+?
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      12-03-2019, 09:52 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alohasurftoad View Post
regarding offset, the higher your positive offset is means the wheel is more tucked in. if you put et30 in the rear and add a 15mm the effective offset will be ET15.
Yep, I had that wrong. So it seems like spacers can only lower the effective offset so there's no way to turn a +30ET wheel into an effective +45ET right? So if my OEM wheels are +47ET I need to find a wheel built similar to fit the calipers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by alohasurftoad View Post
are you buying dedicated set of winter wheels and tires? or changing just the tires to AS3+?
Initially wanted a separate set so I can keep my MPSS outside the winter but am also considering going just A/S 3+ year round instead of a separate winter setup. I'm not tracking the car and will keep it off actual snow so I think the A/S 3+ would be fine and, while obviously not on par with MPSS, performance in warm dry conditions still seems very good.
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      12-03-2019, 10:56 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doyler View Post
So if my OEM wheels are +47ET I need to find a wheel built similar to fit the calipers?

Initially wanted a separate set so I can keep my MPSS outside the winter but am also considering going just A/S 3+ year round instead of a separate winter setup. I'm not tracking the car and will keep it off actual snow so I think the A/S 3+ would be fine and, while obviously not on par with MPSS, performance in warm dry conditions still seems very good.
Offsets lower than ET47 will clear calipers. There may be other clearance issues depending on the widths, offsets and tire size chosen.

If you were to buy a 2nd set, personally, I'd make the oem 398 the winter set (because they're heavy) and summer set a quality, lightweight, flowformed or forged from the aftermarket.

AS3+ is on your 398 is the practical and least costly compromise. I recommend increasing the front from 225/45/18 to 245/40/18(max on 18x8). Your car will handle much better with more grip up front. Of course stock size of 225/45/18 up front is fine also.
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      12-05-2019, 12:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alohasurftoad View Post
Offsets lower than ET47 will clear calipers. There may be other clearance issues depending on the widths, offsets and tire size chosen.

If you were to buy a 2nd set, personally, I'd make the oem 398 the winter set (because they're heavy) and summer set a quality, lightweight, flowformed or forged from the aftermarket.

AS3+ is on your 398 is the practical and least costly compromise. I recommend increasing the front from 225/45/18 to 245/40/18(max on 18x8). Your car will handle much better with more grip up front. Of course stock size of 225/45/18 up front is fine also.
I think I will go with the MPS A/S 3+ on my current wheels with 245/40/18 on the front and same 255/40/18 on the rear. Maybe separate setups for summer/winter in the future but not now. I think the A/S 3+ will offer adequate winter performance where I live without sacrificing too much summer performance vs the MPSS I have now. Also much cheaper option I think I will add some 10-12mm spacers to the front and 15mm to the rear to sit a bit more aggressive while I'm at it. Any thoughts on ECS vs. Burger? Don't want to go eBay and risk cheap metal. Both ECS and Burger are aluminum but looks like ECS only offers 10 or 12.5, no 12mm, so might go Burger.

This would lower the effective offset to 22et on the front (assuming 12mm) and 32et on the rear. This doesn't seem too aggressive so I don't think I would have clearance issues. Car already sits a bit lower with the track handling package.
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      12-05-2019, 01:11 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doyler View Post
I think I will go with the MPS A/S 3+ on my current wheels with 245/40/18 on the front and same 255/40/18 on the rear. Maybe separate setups for summer/winter in the future but not now. I think the A/S 3+ will offer adequate winter performance where I live without sacrificing too much summer performance vs the MPSS I have now. Also much cheaper option I think I will add some 10-12mm spacers to the front and 15mm to the rear to sit a bit more aggressive while I'm at it. Any thoughts on ECS vs. Burger? Don't want to go eBay and risk cheap metal. Both ECS and Burger are aluminum but looks like ECS only offers 10 or 12.5, no 12mm, so might go Burger.

This would lower the effective offset to 22et on the front (assuming 12mm) and 32et on the rear. This doesn't seem too aggressive so I don't think I would have clearance issues. Car already sits a bit lower with the track handling package.
245/40 shoulder is 10mm further out than 225/45, something to consider regarding "flushness"

the 0.5mm difference between a 12mm and 12.5mm spacer is nothing, really.

both are reasonable brands, i believe burger is cheaper. i have turner which is a grade up but a bit expensive.

i recommend getting your tires first and determining your spacer thickness afterwards. from a practical standpoint, i'd also wait on the spacers until spring/summer, when the weather is better, since pushing the tires out slings a lot more crap up the side, especially when the roads are contaminated with water, slush, mud, etc.

you may also consider a stud kit. although i don't think it looks as nice, it makes installing/removing your wheels/spacers much easier.

Last edited by alohasurftoad; 12-05-2019 at 01:33 PM..
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