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Re: wheels/tires for Coupe GT

>> you'd want a little bigger tire than stock to improve appearance as well
>> performance.
>No. What you get with 195/55s is a slightly lower sidewall height,
>which means a lower profile(desireable!) tire, and I believe a very,
>very small increase in the tread contact patch(also desireable!), so one
>actually does "improve appearance as well as performance" when changing
>the stock 185/60s to 195/55s. Also, 195/55 tires are almost always
>either "V" or "Z" rated, so the performance gains are tangibly real!

185-60-14 vs 195-55-14:
Lower sidewall height = smaller tire diameter than stock.  Period.  
Also means just a tad more air around the tire in the wheel well....
To me improved appearance means a fuller wheel well.

>traction. If one switches to a 195/55 "Z" rated tire then I think the
>performance gains would be at least on par with the visual gains. Has
>any CGT owner done this?

My summer tires are 195-50-15 Z-rated Dunlops. Definite performance gains.
With these, visual gains are more related to wheel offset than tire size.

Tire size      diameter 
195-55-14 = 570.1 mm
185-60-14 = 577.6 mm
195-60-14 = 589.6 mm
195-50-15 = 576  mm

>From a performance standpoint, there is no question: a Z-rated, lower profile
tire will perform better.

>From an appearance standpoint, to appear to fill the wheel well better you
need more diameter, or a different offset to push the tire out.
195-55-14's on the stock wheel offer neither (diameter or offset), although
there may be a perceived difference due to a squarer shouldered tire.

Ed Kellock .......... Lansing, Iowa
91 200qw .............. 87 Coupe GT currently with 195-60-14's