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Borbets and Bentleys (long)

Just thought I'd fill you all in on some recent decisions.

The Bentley manuals (3 volume set) are now available for the 92' and newer
models 100/A6/S4/S6. The price is $275 USD. I decided that since I will most
likely keep my current car until the wheels fall off, or decide to upgrade
to an S4/S6, I will need the manuals. I figured that with them, I can
probably save the big $$ asking price. I ordered them last week, and expect
to receive them this week. Once I get them, I'll let you all know what I
think of them.

Remember my post about whether to upgrade rims and tires? I also decided to
venture forward with that as well. I decided to go with the Borbet Type H
rims, in 15x7 (i.e they look a lot like the BBS Moda M1 rims, but a lot less
expensive). They are at a 35 mm offset. I paid $600 for the set of four.
They should be coming in within the next coupla' days.

Here's the story. I was "on the fence" about what to do. I have 195/65/15
Pirelli P4000 SuperTourings with plenty of tread left on them, on the OEM
rims. I was thinking of just getting the new rims, and putting the 195s on
until they wore out. Then I would try 215/60 on the new rims.

Then I said, nah... just get the whole package from the Tire Rack, and use
the 195s in the winter. I called the Tire Rack, and for $800, I could get
the Type H rims with Comp T/A HR4s, in 215/60/15. But the rep says that they
can't guarantee that size on that car. They do not have it listed as an
approved fitment in their computer. Oh... so if I order them, and there is a
problem, I can't return them. Yep, that's right. D*mn... now what do I do??

When I had put the 215/60s on the 15x6 OEM rims, I had no problems. Possibly
'cuz it was a 45 mm offset instead? Perhaps with the 35 mm offset, it will
rub on the frontedge or backedge of the wheelwell?

I decided to go to NTW, where they could order the rims for me as well. The
price differential between them and TireRack was about $58.00, for just the
rims. I figured that this difference would be eaten up by balancing
etc....(i.e. if I bought them from the "Rack", I'd have to pay for the
balancing here locally).

I already had lifetime balancing for my tires that I had bought at NTW last
year (althought the NTW guy TRIED to charge me for lifetime balancing for
the new Borbets, claiming that this was a different tire and rim combo, so I
had to re-pay!! Sorry... NOT!!), and a 12 month/12,000 mile alignment
warranty still in effect, so... they got my business.

NTW also said that they would be willing to test-fit a 215/60 for me, to see
if there was going to be a clearance problem. I thought that was a nice
gesture on their part.

So, to make a long story longer, I went with the 15x7s in the interest of
$$$ (i.e rim cost and able to get the useful life out of my current tires),
and to be conservative with the upgrade (i.e. what if I hated the 16 inch
low-profile upgrade for $1200!!?? ARGHH!!).
I know, I know... I probably disappointed several listers with that
decision, but....

Between the Borbets and the Bentleys, I am now about $900 poorer.... it's a
good thing I don't have a "Significant Other" to explain THAT to!! And I
guess it's a good thing my boss will be giving out the bonus checks in about
a month!!

Thanks for listening, and I'll give you all my impressions soon.

Take care.

                             Jim Griffin
                        Maryland, USA
   "Perception is often stronger than reality!"
                               '92 100S