Tyre sizes for Excel SE

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ferox
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Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by ferox »

Ho folks, I haven't been on here for ages, the car has been stuck in the garage for over a year now while I have been trying to find the time to fix it up after it's last MOT failure. It's time to bite the bullet now and get it back on the road but I'm having difficulty in finding tyres to match those already on it.

I last replaced the tyres 4-5 years ago (I don't get out much) with 215/50/15 which were the same as those i was replacing. They were Dunlop SP9000 and I seem to remember they were less than £100 each, my trusted local dealer found them without too much difficulty. I am looking around now and all my local tyre places either tell me they are unavailable at all, or that there's a couple of brands available at about £250.

I am trying to do this on a budget, that is to say I want the cheapest possible since the car is really just going to be used for commuting for the time being and performance is very much a secondary concern.

from other threads on here I gather I could go for combinations of 205/215/225 and 50/55, what are the relative merits of these sizes and combinations, and what is most likely to be commonly available and reasonably priced?

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Hawaiis0
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by Hawaiis0 »

most go down to 205/50/15 TOYO Proxies are popular. 225 can go on the rear but will rub on lock on the front IIRC.

However, if you want spec 215's you can get them made at £200 a corner.

Stick to 205's at that cost.
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

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Johnwindwood
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by Johnwindwood »

We use 205/50s- Uniroyal Rainsport 3. Excellent tyres.
Kind regards

John

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Lotus-e-Clan
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by Lotus-e-Clan »

I agree.

205/50/15 front or back are the most straight forward replacement.

My personal take on the merits of the smaller 205/50 tyre compared to going even bigger that std ie - to 225/50.
  • 1) Your car WILL accelerate slightly quicker on the smaller diameter. :lol:
    2) You will feel like you have more torque within gears if you replace the rears with 205/50 as against less torque if you went to 225/50.
    3) The ride height will be slightly lower so your car will be more aerodynamically efficient on higher speed commutes - this would offset any fears about using more fuel because the revs/mph are higher.
    4) The narrower tyre will also offset fuel concerns of the higher revs/mph (lower gearing) in terms of less rolling resistance too.
    5) The contact patch will be more focussed and so grip should be unaffected despite (in theory) less rubber - as long as you don't over inflate them
    6) Turn-in on the physically smaller sidewall height is potentially better than std and definitely better than going 225/50 on the front.
    7) 205/50 will weigh less than the 225/50 etc.
    8.) PAS will feel better on 205/50 compared to 225/50 on the fronts.
    9) 205/50 are a better physical size match for the relatively narrow Excel 7J rims.
    10). They actually look pretty good on the car too! 8)
I would pay attention to the shoulder shape of the 205/50 tyre you buy. I prefer the rounder shoulder on the Bridgstone Potenzas compared to the square-shouldered Toyo T1R's (I've had both). The side wall of the T1Rs are stiff - they are stiffer than the original Goodyear Eagle Spec - Modern tyres are generally stiffer this days- mainly because modern cars are a lot heavier than in the 1980's.

Downsides of 205/50 (compared to std or 225/50).
  • 1 Potentially less speed bump clearance
    2 Harsher ride
    3 More prone to pots and kerbs
Just my take! :)
Peter K

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ChrisJ
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by ChrisJ »

I have 205/55 15s Vredestein Sportrac 5s on my Excel.

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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by MrCoolA »

I’ve tried just about every combination of thin and fat tire on the XL from 205 to 225s on the back to 205s on the front in the end I elected for 215s on the front and the back, this for me has been the best compromise . 225s on the front do scrub on full lock and I found the 225 on back and 205 on front tended to tramline. I now run 215x45x15s toyos never had any issues both on road and track in the wet or the dry; and before anyone mentions the speed and rolling radius , this isn’t an issue as I have an electronic speedometer so is set up for tyre size changes.
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ferox
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by ferox »

Thanks guys for taking the time to post a lot of really helpful replies. It has been very enlightening to get a cross section of opinions on the subject. There seems to be a general concensus on 205/50 and my local tyre place will be fitting a pair of Wanli 205/50/15 tomorrow for the grand price of £55 each. Some of you may rail back in horror, but as I explained in my OP economics were paramount in this instance and I'm sure they wil be more than adequate for plodding through rush hour traffic. In a few months time when my work circumstances change, money is less of a restriction and I need to replace the other two I will reconsider your specific recommendations.

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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by Hawaiis0 »

ferox wrote:Thanks guys for taking the time to post a lot of really helpful replies. It has been very enlightening to get a cross section of opinions on the subject. There seems to be a general concensus on 205/50 and my local tyre place will be fitting a pair of Wanli 205/50/15 tomorrow for the grand price of £55 each. Some of you may rail back in horror, but as I explained in my OP economics were paramount in this instance and I'm sure they wil be more than adequate for plodding through rush hour traffic. In a few months time when my work circumstances change, money is less of a restriction and I need to replace the other two I will reconsider your specific recommendations.
100 years ago when I bought my first boneshaker, I bought a set of fredsteins/fredstains/verdensteuns, cheap tyres and they turned out to absolutely exceptional. Dont let a name put you off until the pudding is eaten.
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by Lotus-e-Clan »

Yes you have more brand choice with 205/50/15. Let us know how the Wanli's feel.

I like the idea of the even smaller diameter 215/45/15 so I had a look on the net ...not easy to find but found that Demon Tweeks stock them which makes sense as they are more Motorsport oriented. But as if the Toyo T1R 205/50 I had weren't already too stiff in the side wall for my tastes -the latest TR1 215/45/15 have even stiffer side walls than the T1R predecessor according to Demon Tweeks (new tread pattern looks good mind and price (£73) is good too)....
Demon Tweeks Toyo 215/45 TR1

Increased stiffness they say for better cornering stability for the latest, even heavier, moderns! Flippin' moderns - soooooo ungreen :shock: ! Long live the light weight classics! :)
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by MrCoolA »

I got my 215x45s Toyos TR1for £55 a corner plus fitting a couple of years ago, just depends on how many are in the country I presume, their prices do fluctuate a lot.
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ferox
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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by ferox »

The new Wanlis are going on the back, the Dunlop 215/50s still on the front have a bit of life left in them but will probably be replaced with 205/50s when the time comes, depending on what's available at the time. In the meantime we'll see how that combination works and I could end up swapping front and back. I have to say that with the Dunlops on the back the car was a bit prone to losing traction on corners on wet roads, there were a few hairy moments. It will be interesting to see what happens with the Wanlis and if after a couple of months trial they turn out to be turkeys and I end up replacing them at least I will have learned something but at £55 quid I reckon they are a reasonable gamble.

I have had Vredsteins on other cars (albeit just family runabouts) and have had no cause for complaint. I gather their performance and durability for the price make them a favourite with taxi drivers. They are certainly something I will bear in mind next time round.

Thanks again guys for all the replies.

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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by KevW »

My Excel still has OE sized Dunlop 215/50x15 on all wheels. I find them fine during the warm seasons but they struggle to cope with even a small amount of ice and they are a joke in snow.

As I use my car all year round I've just had four Maxxis AP2 all season tyres fitted after hearing and reading some very good things about them. I've gone for 205/55x15 which gives a 1cm increase in diameter compared to OE. I'm hoping the slightly taller sidewall will bring benefits in ride comfort and ground clearance over the winter months. The Maxxis don't look out of place on the car and although I've not a had much chance to try them out they seem to perform well in the wet so far.

I went for all season rather then full winter tyres as in my neck of the woods we have relatively low year round precipitation and it doesn't stay below 7c much during the winter, 7c being the point at which winter tyres are supposed to operate properly. In fact I have snow tyres for my daily driver but most winters don't bother fitting them as the weather doesn't warrant it so the all weathers seemed like a good compromise.

I'll report back on how the Maxxis all seasons perform if/when we get some snow.
Kev W no.282

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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by CHRISYD »

ive just bought 4 205/50/15 nexen tyres ready to put on when I get my car back!!! ive had that brand before and dont remember any issues. £185 delivered.
I REALISED YOU CANT LIVE WITHOUT A LOTUS!!!

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Re: Tyre sizes for Excel SE

Post by KevW »

KevW wrote:My Excel still has OE sized Dunlop 215/50x15 on all wheels. I find them fine during the warm seasons but they struggle to cope with even a small amount of ice and they are a joke in snow.

As I use my car all year round I've just had four Maxxis AP2 all season tyres fitted after hearing and reading some very good things about them. I've gone for 205/55x15 which gives a 1cm increase in diameter compared to OE. I'm hoping the slightly taller sidewall will bring benefits in ride comfort and ground clearance over the winter months. The Maxxis don't look out of place on the car and although I've not a had much chance to try them out they seem to perform well in the wet so far.

I'll report back on how the Maxxis all seasons perform if/when we get some snow.
Well having had not a single flake of snow or even as much as a hard frost where I live so far this winter I can't say much about my Maxxis all seasons winter performance. I am happy with them though, they perform well in the dry and on greasy roads. The slighty higher ground clearance is noticable on ramps too.
Kev W no.282

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