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Miata: Wheelz

You know...like how people say 'nice rimz, yo'.  I'd only say that if person in question was running deep dish or polished lip...and even then inwardly cringe/giggle insanely.


Finally sourced some spring/summer/fall wheels off my favourite shop, Kijiji (been searching "rota 15" for a month or so now).

Rota Slipstreams in 15x6.5", Full Royal Sport Bronze (FRSB), +40ET.  The pic does not do the colour justice...looks great in person, more 'bronzey' (as if to say, darker/richer in colouring).  Great price, too.

I am extra pleased with this acquisition because these wheels have been on my 'if I ever get a set of wheels' list since they came out.  I was working at Wheels Direct in Scarborough way back in the day (ca.2001-2?) and the Slipstream and Sub-Zero wheels came in from Rota.  Lightweight and reasonably priced...they also came in bronze and flat-black, two of my favourite wheel finishes (Subaru gold STI wheels are another of my favs).

Might end up doing a polished lip, but probably not.  Looks just fine as is.

As a side note, I already have 16" Mazda wheels (15.6 lbs), and 14" Mazda wheels (11.2 lbs).  These are 12.6 lbs, and 15" offers a veritable cornucopia of tire sizes.  14" has next to nothing for summer tires, and 16" has to go because it's too heavy (and poor tire choices).  15" has many tire options, and (according to the Miata internet) is the 'optimal' size for the chassis/suspension.

They will get something like a Dunlop Direzza DZ101 or Yokohama S-Drive - fairly cheap but still decently grippy.  The Yokohama is rated at 19 lbs in 195-50-15 size, so a total wheel/tire weight of 31.2 lbs ain't bad!  Interestingly enough, the 18" version of that same tire (same width) is only 2 lbs heavier...although a lightweight 18" wheel (that is cheap) will most likely weigh close to 20 lbs (16 is possible, but VERY expensive).  I only compare 15 to 18" wheels because 18 seems like a 'common' size nowadays.  Further, 18" wheels would not usually be that narrow, so add another 2-3 lbs to that total.

31.2 vs. 37-47 lbs!!  That's a huge increase in unsprung weight and rotational mass - a great argument against large wheel/tire combos.  A magazine I read a while back mentioned supercar manufacturers only moving to large wheels in order to fit large brake packages.  Consumer vehicles copied that fad to our detriment.  Bottom line - the less weight your suspension has to haul up and down...the better your car will handle.  (what 'handling' means is a whole 'nother story)


Fun fact...some people autocross Miatae with 15x10 wheels.  :D

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