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Thread: 235/60-15 to 225/60-15 Tire Size Comparison

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    235/60-15 to 225/60-15 Tire Size Comparison

    I know that I saw on a few threads here when I was shopping tire choices that there was a lot of mystery to the downsizing of the rear tires to 225 vs. the stock 235 size. I saw mention of a few that had done so, but for some reason I could never find pictures. So here is my review of the difference.

    First off the tirs that came with my car had great tread on them, but I knew that they were not going to be my long-term solution if I wanted to drive the car on the highway. They were too old and had some issues. The fronts had flat spots that I could not get out with an overinflate and heat them up and the rears had shifted belts which was all probably effects of sitting for too long.

    The choices that I had found were:

    Michelelin Exaltos in stock front size and 225 rears
    Cooper Cobras in stock sizing, but discontinued and only NOS stock for fronts available
    Mastercraft Avenger G/T in all original sizing
    Falken Ziex ZE-512 in original front size and the 225's in the rear.

    I debated hard with the pros and cons of each direction and really wanted to stay stock with the size. The Exaltos were out because they were too expensive compared to the Falken Ziex's and didnt really bring anything to the table as far as I was concerned. The cooper Cobras were out because I didn't want to put old stock tires on since what you find is usually a few years old and were probably quality rejects. I liked the Avenger G/T's because they came in the right sizes and seemed to be available, but when I went to order them I found that every online retailer (and I checked over a half dozen) could not get the fronts. No one could say if they were discontinued or not, but no one could get there hands on them. This left me with the Falken Ziex's which happened to be the cheapest by far ($284 shipped from DiscountTire.com) and had an acceptable tread pattern. I wasn't happy with having to go down a size in the rear, but thems is the breaks.

    After checking what the actual tire differences were, I started to care a little less about the size difference. The 225 are about half of an inch smaller overall diameter and half of an inch thinner profile. Here are the exact specs from this great tool I downloaded Tire Size Comparitor.
    Tire Size Comparator.jpg

    Overall I am very happy. I can barely see the difference in the rears and the tires look good and function great so far. It still bother me a little that I know that the rears are down a size, but I have a feeling that lots of Jack Daniels can fix that. Here are some before after picts that I put together to try to visually show the difference. It is hard to see from pictures what the differences are, especially since my before pictures weren't taken with the comparison in mind. Hope this helps anyone who was having the same dilemma I was. I'll try to get overall car picts with the new tires soon and post them up as well.
    Tire Size Difference.jpg
    1988 4Runner Convertible (Daily Driver)
    1978 Corvette Indy Pace Car
    1987 Buick Grand National
    1981 Delorean DMC-12 (07190)
    2000 Buell X-1
    2008 Buell 1125R
    1999 Suburban 454SS (tow vehicle)

  2. #2
    One of those purists you keep hearing about. sdg3205's Avatar
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    I'm still hoping with enough badgering Coker will start selling the BF Goodrich Radial T/A's again.
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    I have exactly the same tyres (falken). I will have to replace the front ones because the steering wheel is vibrating very bad, and the tyre "mechanic" says there is nothing to do with balancing. The car was standing for some time (about a year with pauses, I mean sometimes it was used) and it seems this kind of tyre doesn't tolerate it well. The rear ones I'll keep for a while, the size difference is not of great concern.

  4. #4
    Junior Member Mike S's Avatar
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    Three months ago I purchased the Falken Ziex ZE-912 in original front size and the 225's in the rear. They ride great and look good. FYI...$363 at Discount Tire, after $100 rebate Vias card.

    Mike S.

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    Car Fanatic. Technical Novice. pezzonovante88's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdg3205 View Post
    I'm still hoping with enough badgering Coker will start selling the BF Goodrich Radial T/A's again.
    +1
    5875 - 1981/Grey/5-Speed/Grooved Hood

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    My friends think I'm nuts jawn101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by theMonch View Post
    Here are the exact specs from this great tool I downloaded Tire Size Comparitor.
    Tire Size Comparator.jpg
    That's a really neat tool! I ran some numbers through some online comparison site I found when I was shopping for my tires, it told me the same thing but didn't provide the very useful graphics of the difference. Of course in this case, the difference is so small you can barely even see it.

    FWIW, I got the Falken ZE512s - they were new, in stock locally, the right price, and as close to the right size as I was gonna get. I am happy enough with them - good traction, low noise. However, when you park 2 D's next to each other, one with 225s and one with 235s, you can see the difference. On paper it's very small but you can totally see it in the way the tire fills out the space between the outside of the wheel and the oil pan when viewed from behind.

    But here's a question I don't remember seeing anyone ask before - I got matched tires because that's just what I've always done. I thought it would look weird having two different types/brands on the front and rear. But that probably isn't true in reality. What are some combinations of front/rear that would give us the correct sizes and not look bizarre?

    Also, one note - the Falken 512s are directional treads. Between the different size front/rear and the directional pattern, you can't rotate these tires. Not really a dealbreaker but worth noting.
    Jon
    1981 DMC-12 #02100. July 1981. 5-speed, black, grooved w/flap.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by jawn101 View Post
    That's a really neat tool! I ran some numbers through some online comparison site I found when I was shopping for my tires, it told me the same thing but didn't provide the very useful graphics of the difference. Of course in this case, the difference is so small you can barely even see it.

    FWIW, I got the Falken ZE512s - they were new, in stock locally, the right price, and as close to the right size as I was gonna get. I am happy enough with them - good traction, low noise. However, when you park 2 D's next to each other, one with 225s and one with 235s, you can see the difference. On paper it's very small but you can totally see it in the way the tire fills out the space between the outside of the wheel and the oil pan when viewed from behind.

    But here's a question I don't remember seeing anyone ask before - I got matched tires because that's just what I've always done. I thought it would look weird having two different types/brands on the front and rear. But that probably isn't true in reality. What are some combinations of front/rear that would give us the correct sizes and not look bizarre?

    Also, one note - the Falken 512s are directional treads. Between the different size front/rear and the directional pattern, you can't rotate these tires. Not really a dealbreaker but worth noting.
    Yes, forgot to mention the rotation downfalll of the Falkens. I actually was willing to go off brand and style if I could get something somewhat similar and keep the proper sizing. I could not find anything that was the correct size speed rating and load rating. The Mastercrafts came close except for the speed rating. Even the BFG Radial T/A's are the wrong speed and load rating.

    Quote Originally Posted by jawn101 View Post
    That's a really neat tool! I ran some numbers through some online comparison site I found when I was shopping for my tires, it told me the same thing but didn't provide the very useful graphics of the difference. Of course in this case, the difference is so small you can barely even see it.

    FWIW, I got the Falken ZE512s - they were new, in stock locally, the right price, and as close to the right size as I was gonna get. I am happy enough with them - good traction, low noise. However, when you park 2 D's next to each other, one with 225s and one with 235s, you can see the difference. On paper it's very small but you can totally see it in the way the tire fills out the space between the outside of the wheel and the oil pan when viewed from behind.

    But here's a question I don't remember seeing anyone ask before - I got matched tires because that's just what I've always done. I thought it would look weird having two different types/brands on the front and rear. But that probably isn't true in reality. What are some combinations of front/rear that would give us the correct sizes and not look bizarre?

    Also, one note - the Falken 512s are directional treads. Between the different size front/rear and the directional pattern, you can't rotate these tires. Not really a dealbreaker but worth noting.
    Yes it has been very helpfull over the years, especially with speedo recalibrations, etc. And it's free too!
    1988 4Runner Convertible (Daily Driver)
    1978 Corvette Indy Pace Car
    1987 Buick Grand National
    1981 Delorean DMC-12 (07190)
    2000 Buell X-1
    2008 Buell 1125R
    1999 Suburban 454SS (tow vehicle)

  8. #8
    Car Fanatic. Technical Novice. pezzonovante88's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jawn101 View Post
    But here's a question I don't remember seeing anyone ask before - I got matched tires because that's just what I've always done. I thought it would look weird having two different types/brands on the front and rear. But that probably isn't true in reality. What are some combinations of front/rear that would give us the correct sizes and not look bizarre?
    I've got Cooper Cobra GT Radials on the back and Prodigy (can't recall the model off hand at this hour) on the front. Its totally unnoticeable unless you actually go up and read the sidewalls. The tread pattern is similar enough and of course, they are the correct sizes. I always hated the idea of mixing tire brand/model, but since I was essentially forced to, I did and its not bad at all.
    5875 - 1981/Grey/5-Speed/Grooved Hood

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