Elantra Sport Forum banner
1 - 20 of 57 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So after two weeks of usage, I am very happy with the new SE. Other than some fairly minor quibbles, the biggest downside to me (and one that I was aware of prior to purchase) is the hard ride. I realize it’s a Sport model, and that handling and ride quality tend to be “pick one or the other; you can’t have both”, but that was the only way to get the turbo engine. Considering how well the car handles, I’d regard the ride quality as actually pretty good, but in absolute terms it’s a bit more firm than I think I want to live with for 10 years. This is primarily a commute vehicle, with a generous dose of fun mixed in. Although I like the looks of the stock wheels, I don’t really care about it that much. In fact, things which make the car more of a sleeper with less visual drawing of attention are desirable to me.

I’m thinking about going with smaller wheels/taller tires to provide a little more forgiving ride. From what I’ve read, lightweight wheels (it looks like I can shed about 10 pounds per corner for not too much money, offset by selling the stock wheels and tires) tend to allow the suspension to work a little better, as well as yielding a small improvement in acceleration and MPG due to the lower weight the engine needs to rotate.

Obviously, this will also lead to a lowering of cornering speeds. I’m not too worried about lowering cornering speeds, as this car corners more strongly than I can really claim to even need. I used to race go-karts, so I’m a fan of flying through turns, but I’m also not looking to smash up my new car. I’ve run some winding local roads and the ES cornered so well that I often found myself backing off the speed before the car was reaching its limits, because I was unwilling to go any faster, and wouldn’t have gone any faster no matter what car I was driving. Public roads are very different than race tracks, especially when dealing with blind turns.

I’ve never changed wheel sizes on a car, so I’m not sure quite what to expect by going to either a 225/50 16” or 225/45 17” setup. Unfortunately, actually fitting new tires/wheels to the car seems to be only way to know for sure. Is this something a tire shop would let you try out before committing to purchase, perhaps for a fee?

My plan: soundproof the heck out of the car and replace the sound system; smaller wheels to hopefully gain some of the advantages listed above; taller tires to soak up the bumps more effectively; getting tires with good all-around performance and noise characteristics in real-world California conditions. I am also open to upgrading the sway bar and/or chassis bracing if these seem to be warranted with the smaller wheels. The well-built ES chassis would appear to allow for a lot of options for change, whether for higher performance or higher comfort - I've been thoroughly enjoying seeing what a lot of you are doing with it to push the performance, and I'm looking to go the other direction, preferably with not too much loss of performance.

Any thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
84 Posts
I switched to 17's and it helped with the ride quite a bit. The highways in my area are really rough. With the 18's on, it just about rattled my teeth loose. With the 17's, the ride is still a lot stiffer than my wife's '14 Elantra GT, but that's the stiffer suspension on the ES.
16's will not work on these cars - doesn't fit with the larger brakes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you, sir. Rough roads here, too. What size/model tires did you fit?

There have been some other members posting that they were able to fit 16" wheels, although it's a tight fit around the brakes. And the spare is apparently 16", so I think it's doable, but I'll have to pay close attention to the clearance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,931 Posts
I live in AZ farm country, rough roads for days. Never really had a complaint about the ride, though I did purchase a sporty car so I live with it. Higher profile tires will help a little, but other than swapping out the suspension for something softer, it is what it is.

Fun fact: lighter wheels actually increase road noise and harshness transferred to the cabin. :)
 
  • Like
Reactions: CoolRonZ

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Obviously, this will also lead to a lowering of cornering speeds.
By making your suspension more efficient, by shedding unsprung weight, you will in fact have potentially better cornering, handling, braking and acceleration--based on whatever tire you ultimately choose.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Where do you live in California that has bad roads? I can think of a few but I want to get a good idea of what you're dealing with.
I'm currently in the Bay Area working on a project, but I live long-term in Long Beach. The streets in LB are generally pretty bad, lots of asphalt patchwork where there should be a resurfacing. The highways in the Bay Area aren't the worst I've seen, but they aren't smooth, either. Due to traffic considerations, it's quicker to take city streets instead of the parking lot known as Highway 880, and many of the streets in Hayward, Union City, and East Palo Alto leave much to be desired. My old Sonata, which doesn't handle nearly as well as the SE, was much smoother over the rough roads. I recognize this is a tradeoff; I'm not looking to equal the ride quality of the Sonata, more of a happy medium between the stock SE and the Sonata. The good thing is I have no doubt the SE will still handle better than the Sonata with identical tires/wheels, so I'm optimistic I'll find that sweet spot. But it's tough trying to figure out the best route, as I've never heard of a tire shop letting you try a set of tires and wheels to see how they work with your car. The "purchase and cross your fingers" way things are done means that no matter how much homework you do, you may still end up with an expensive purchase you don't want.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
By making your suspension more efficient, by shedding unsprung weight, you will in fact have potentially better cornering, handling, braking and acceleration--based on whatever tire you ultimately choose.
I'd be happy with a nice increase in comfort and a not too big sacrifice in handling ability.

If losing unsprung weight actually buys back some of the loss in cornering from the taller tires, I'll be thrilled.

Anyone have any idea what I can get for my stock wheels/rims with under 1,000 miles on them?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
I'd be happy with a nice increase in comfort and a not too big sacrifice in handling ability.

If losing unsprung weight actually buys back some of the loss in cornering from the taller tires, I'll be thrilled.

Anyone have any idea what I can get for my stock wheels/rims with under 1,000 miles on them?
The stiffness associated with short sidewalls helps in steering response, relatively speaking. But so does the unsprung weight. The best handling in a car will come from the smallest diameter wheel that clears the brakes, mated to the widest, stickiest tire that fits in the wheelwells. That said, it's not often possible to get the proper diameter tire on a smaller wheel, while keeping the desired width and tread compound/speed rating. But the ES, a 225 can be had in 16, 17 and 18...and 7.5 to 8" wide wheels are available too. 225/50-16, 225/45-17 and 225/40-18 will all work. Assuming the same model tire and wheel width, the 16" car will accelerate, brake and slalom better--it's basic physics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The stiffness associated with short sidewalls helps in steering response, relatively speaking. But so does the unsprung weight. The best handling in a car will come from the smallest diameter wheel that clears the brakes, mated to the widest, stickiest tire that fits in the wheelwells. That said, it's not often possible to get the proper diameter tire on a smaller wheel, while keeping the desired width and tread compound/speed rating. But the ES, a 225 can be had in 16, 17 and 18...and 7.5 to 8" wide wheels are available too. 225/50-16, 225/45-17 and 225/40-18 will all work. Assuming the same model tire and wheel width, the 16" car will accelerate, brake and slalom better--it's basic physics.
Thanks. Those are the tire sizes I'm looking at. I figure the only way to really know about the fit is to bring the car to some wheel shops and have them test fit wheels on the front. I assume if a wheel clears the brakes on one side of the front, it will fit on the other, and anything that fits on the front will fit on the rear, as that will speed up the process.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Thanks. Those are the tire sizes I'm looking at. I figure the only way to really know about the fit is to bring the car to some wheel shops and have them test fit wheels on the front. I assume if a wheel clears the brakes on one side of the front, it will fit on the other, and anything that fits on the front will fit on the rear, as that will speed up the process.

The only concern on the fronts (for 16") is that if you use tape weights, they can't be next to the inner face of the wheel, or they may hit the caliper. There is about 1/4 to 3/8 clearance--at least that was what I had on the FD wheels. But as long as it clears, it clears...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The only concern on the fronts (for 16") is that if you use tape weights, they can't be next to the inner face of the wheel, or they may hit the caliper. There is about 1/4 to 3/8 clearance--at least that was what I had on the FD wheels. But as long as it clears, it clears...
Thank you, sir! I hadn't thought about that, but I can see where that would be a key thing to take into consideration.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
84 Posts
Thank you, sir. Rough roads here, too. What size/model tires did you fit?
I mounted 225/45R17, which is what's on the regular Elantra Limited.

There have been some other members posting that they were able to fit 16" wheels, although it's a tight fit around the brakes. And the spare is apparently 16", so I think it's doable, but I'll have to pay close attention to the clearance.
Keep in mind that the spare is a donut, so it's nowhere near as wide as a regular rim. I mounted a set of 16" rims from a 2015 Tucson that I use on my wife's 2014 Elantra GT. They fit, but you couldn't fit more than a couple of pieces of paper between the caliper and the rim. Any internal balancing weights would sheer off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26 Posts
The Australian and Malaysian cars come with 17" wheels (17x7J) and 225/45/17 tires. A wheel around 17x7J ET45 will fit perfectly. Plenty of space to clear the stock calipers too. Hope that helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
1 - 20 of 57 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top