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I know wider tires and/or rims will improve lateral grip. But how well did it help cure the light and almost vague feedback of the stock steering set up? I'm looking for answers from those who have actually swapped the stockers on the MPS specifically. mods, please don't move as I'm not looking for a theoretical answer or opinion otherwise i would have posted this in the general wheel and tire forum. Any help is much appreciated, thanks.
 

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The RAYS mazdaspeed forged wheels are lighter, and 1/2 in wider than stock. I had my car delivered with these wheels though, so I never drove with the stockers on. I love the way my car feels on the road though. Turn in is great, and I always know what the front wheels are doing. I will have some snow's mounted on the stockers for the winter - I will see how the car changes with that in a couple months.
 

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The RAYS mazdaspeed forged wheels are lighter, and 1/2 in wider than stock. I had my car delivered with these wheels though, so I never drove with the stockers on. I love the way my car feels on the road though. Turn in is great, and I always know what the front wheels are doing. I will have some snow's mounted on the stockers for the winter - I will see how the car changes with that in a couple months.
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Do you have a pic of these on your car. I had searched but none came up.
 

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I'm running 18x8 RX8 wheels with 235/40 General Exclaims. Steering effort went up a bit and the car feels a little less "tipsy". IE, it feels like it's sitting on a wider base, which it actually is, as track has increased by 10mm (due to 5mm less offset on each wheel) and outer sidewall to outer sidewall by about 30mm or 1.2 inches (10mm extra width on outside per tire, x 2 tires, plus 10mm increase in track).

However turn in was slightly less crisp than with the stock 215/45 RE050s. The General's have been accused of having soft sidewalls to give good ride comfort; I was aware of this and figured going with the 235/40 (which has a slightly smaller sidewall) on 8" rims would balance out of some of this softness. But, I chose this combination because of the looks, weight savings/cost ratio (RX8 wheels and Generals are pretty inexpensive), overall traction based on weather conditions we get, and overall durability (didn't want to keep tires that would need to be replaced next year). Going with this combination saved almost 5lbs (about 4.7lbs) per corner, with the tires accounting for about 2/3 of that weight savings.

Other than the above overall steering feedback didn't change much. Keep in mind that "turn-in" crispness is different from steering feedback, where the steering wheel loads up as the tire loads up and changes in slip angle are telegraphed back to the steering wheel. The MS6 doesn't transmit back to the steering wheel what the front tire patches are doing, and what the road surface is like, as well as some other cars I've driven.

Would I like more steering feel? Yes, but there's only so much that can be done with wheels and tires. The steering system has to be engineered to provide this feel, and as noted above, personally I find the MS6 steering less communicative than other cars I've owned ('97 Probe GT, '93 Integra, '86 Audi Turbo Quattro, '84 GLi - mostly front drivers other than Audi). The new wheels and tires didn't make any noticeable difference in passing on what the tires are doing in relation to the road surface. They just feel different than stock. The two cars I remember having good feedback were the old '84 Jetta GLi and the Probe GT. The steering in the MS6, on stock wheels/tires or RX8 wheels/Generals, never "talked" to me the way they did. Well, can't have everything.

But, overall I'm happy with the new tires and wheels. The car just looks a lot more muscular and "purposeful", and the handling/ride comfort/traction/durability tradeoffs balanced in a way that I can live with.

For others reading this, please don't start a flame war over how mis-infomed I am, or how "good" the MS6 steers. This is just my opinion based on my experiences with my MS6 and other cars I've driven.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
well my friend is willing to let me use his stock RX-8 wheels until he gives the car back off lease next year (hes' rockin' 19" Volks). I figure i would just use them with the factory rubber till he needs them back and see what kind of a difference it makes for myself. If i had the money i would throw some 235/40's on them but i think i'll stretch the 215/45's on em and see how much life and can get out of them first. The RE050A's really are some of the nicest factory tires i've seen. They replaced the S-03's from what i was told.

For those running 18 x 7.5's is that with the factory rubber or wider?
 

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I'm running 18x8 RX8 wheels with 235/40 General Exclaims. Steering effort went up a bit and the car feels a little less "tipsy".

But, overall I'm happy with the new tires and wheels. The car just looks a lot more muscular and "purposeful", and the handling/ride comfort/traction/durability tradeoffs balanced in a way that I can live with.

For others reading this, please don't start a flame war over how mis-infomed I am, or how "good" the MS6 steers. This is just my opinion based on my experiences with my MS6 and other cars I've driven.
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You opinion is indeed valuable. I used the standard tyres on the RX8 wheels and the stiffer sidewalls gave remarkable improvement in steering feel and response. I alway wonder about tyre ratings. The RE 050as are supposed to be brilliant handlers, they are I suppose but they never have the feel and grip of the Toyo T1Rs I run on my RX8. As you say these are subjective "feel" but I don't like Bridgestones they are noisy soft and wear out very quickly and to top it off they are very expensive.....now that's my opinion and I'm entitled to it! I will be using the Toyos on the MPS when the Bridgestones are no more!
 

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What's the offset on those 18x8's?

Also, do the tires rub against the tire well at all?

I'm not a big fan of the stock wheel's so I'm def interested in getting some new one, I just wish I knew the "safe" dimensions for the car so I knew what my options were.
 

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The RX8 18x8 rims are 50mm OS, which is 5mm less than stock MS6 (55mm OS). This means the center point of the rim is 5mm further outboard, towards the fender lip. Adding the addtional width (half an inch, half of the overall width difference), moved the outside rim edge even further, so the net effect is more like 17mm (about 2/3 of an inch) closer to the fender lip. This doesn't mean that the tire sidewall will automatically move that same amount. It will depend on the size and model of tire used.

Some people run 235/40s on the MS6 and claim no rubbing with no fender roll. Others had rubbing and had to roll the fender. I think it will depend on tire model choice and production variations from car to car. I rolled my fenders by choice before putting on the wheels and tires just in case. I think if you used 225/45 or the stock 215/45 there would be minimal risk of rubbing.
 
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