A standard wheel design is usually adequate for day-to-day driving duties, but the addition of larger, more powerful wheels can make a dramatic difference to your 4×4’s capabilities.
autocraze 4×4 wheels are designed to take the higher loads imposed by off-road terrain, and their unique construction means they can offer greater strength at reduced weights. This makes them ideal for fitting to 4WDs that are required to be used both on the road and in difficult off-road conditions.
1) Wheel Size Matters
Standard wheels are designed for typical street use, which does not involve heavy-duty or off-road applications. When you start adding extra weight to your vehicle, whether it be passengers, luggage or equipment, you require thicker-walled rims that can withstand the extra forces.
The diameter of the wheel is also important; if you are towing or regularly carrying large loads, then it is possible that your standard wheels will not allow sufficient clearance. It is advisable to check with your 4×4 manufacturer to ensure they support max load requirements for suspension and brakes before fitting larger wheels.
2) Wheel Construction & Design
It’s important to consider the construction method used when choosing a set of new alloy wheels as well as the design elements such as lip depth and offset. There are three popular methods used in manufacturing 4×4 alloy wheels: forging, casting and billet machining (also known as semi-forging). Each process has its own unique benefits, which vary depending on the alloy wheel design, but generally speaking, forged wheels offer the very best strength to weight ratio with knock-on benefits for the cost.
3) Wheel Finishes
One of the most important factors when choosing your next set of 4×4 alloy wheels is its colour or, more specifically, ‘wheel colour’. You should take into consideration that if you are planning to match a specific colour, then it is important to ensure that other parts of your vehicle, such as trim and bumpers, also share this finish. In addition to solid colours, alloy wheel manufacturers also offer a wide choice of finishes, including painted designs, chrome plating and custom powder coating. The great thing about going with a coloured finish is that they can be easily resprayed if you ever need to make a minor touch-up.
4) Size and Strength
Before fitting a new set of 4×4 alloy wheels, it is important to ensure they are compatible with the suspension system fitted as every vehicle manufacturer designs their suspension to accommodate a specific wheel size range. If you put larger wheels on your vehicle, it’s possible that clearance will be reduced, which can cause problems such as rubbing on adjacent components, brakes becoming less efficient or increased tyre wear due to incorrect alignment angles.
5) Wheel Cost vs Benefit
For most people, the main reason they upgrade their factory standard rims is for style, and this is fine but if looks and style alone will not justify replacing your current wheels, then consider how the upgraded wheels will benefit the way you drive. Ask yourself if you spend a lot of time off-road or towing large loads; the answer will help determine the type of wheels best suited for your vehicle.
Wheels are an important design component that can have a significant impact on the way your 4×4 performs. The next time you are planning to upgrade or replace them, ensure you follow these helpful tips before making your final choice.