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Mini S wheel/tire alternative?

Discussion in 'R53 Cooper S (2001-2006)' started by 190192, Jun 24, 2012.

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    I have a 2003 Mini S with 205/45 R17 84V tires. My problem is I have had several flat tires since changing from run-flats. My tire man at Firestone (who I have made wealthy since I am there so much) said it is due to the design of the car and there is really no way to circumvent the problem. He said the tires have no reinforcements because they are so small and this makes them very vulnerable to all the potholes. True?

    I don't know of any way to solve the problem but to possibly replace the wheels/rims with smaller ones that would take larger, stronger tires. Any solutions or advice would be most appreciated. Thanks!
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    Umm.. yah... tires with a aspect ratio of 45 are going to be vulnerable on the street, you're perhaps lucky if you haven't been bending rims. Runflats have sidewall reinforcements to make them, uh, runflats, but I don't suspect that makes same aspect-ratio runflats any less damage-prone. I'd say call the Tire Rack and ask if they have any info on whether downsized rims are possible - obviously, you need something that will clear the brake assemblies, while otherwise being a proper fitment. If you have 1/2" of clearance between your caliper and the inside of the wheel, you may not have an option there. Tire Rack is pretty conservative, they probably would not recommend just sticking taller tires on the stock rims, but depending on wheelwell, strut, inner & outer fender, etc. clearances, that might be possible. You might lose some speedometer accuracy, although it seems often, BMW speedometers read a little low than true speed - perhaps the same is true for Mini. That's not much of a sacrifice though, compared to expensive tires or wheels, assuming there's no damage or other problem potential from taller tires.
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    steven s

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    We got rid of our 17s for 16s on our MINI.
    Hated the ride of the 17s along with the sport suspension.

    I have 235/40/17 on my hatchback and other than bending an occasional wheel, I haven't had flats.

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