Can You Put 16 Inch Tires On 17 Inch Rims?


Sometimes, car owners have practical reasons to change their tire or rim size. One of these reasons is finding the correct wheel size in your area. For others, it may have to do with their car aesthetics. Whatever the reason is, can you put 16 inch tires on 17 inch rims? This article will explore the effects of driving with an oversized rim and also answer the question—will a 17 inch tire fit on a 16 inch rim?

Keep in mind, as an experienced automotive technician with over a decade of practice, I’ll be sharing my insights on this topic. Disregard any information that says otherwise.

can you put 16 tires on 17 rims

Can You Put 16 Inch Tires On 17 Inch Rims?

As a professional vehicle expert, I can confidently say no — you can’t put 16-inch tires on a 17-inch rims. The outer diameter of the 17 inch rim is 1 inch bigger than the inner diameter of the 16 inch tires.

However, when I say you cannot put 16 inch tires on the 17 inch rims, I mean you should not do it. A 16 inch tire can enter 17 inch rim, but it’ll result in a lower tire height and directly impact on tire thickness while driving.

As mismatched tire and rim sizes will compromise handling and lead to fitment issues and safety concerns. Use compatible rims and tires to enhance vehicle handling and prevent safety issues.

Can You Put 17 Inch Tires On 16 Inch Rims?

No, you cannot put 17-inch tires on 16-inch rims. Tire and rim sizes must match to ensure proper fit, safety, and vehicle performance. A 17-inch tire is designed to fit on a 17-inch rim, and a 16-inch tire is designed to fit on a 16-inch one. Using mismatched sizes can lead to tire failure, loss of vehicle control, and potential accidents. If you’re considering changing tire sizes, using the correct size rims for those tires is essential.

Another thing to keep in mind is that installing 17-inch tires on 16-inch rims may cause fitment issues—which could cause accelerated wear on the suspension and brake components.

Can I Use R17 Rim Instead Of R16?

Manufacturers recommend the size for your car based on the size of the rim. However, you can change your tire size by replacing the rim to fit your desired size. R17 and R16 mean the rim size of a vehicle tire. For instance, the R16 tire is designed for 16 inch rim, and the R17 one is planned for 17 inch rim. Can you put r17 tires on r16 rims?

Yes, you can use an R17 tire instead of an R16, but you need to choose a tire with a similar width and the same diameter as recommended. For instance, if the manufacturer recommends a 215/60/R16 for a 16 inch rim, you can install a 215/55/R17 for a 17 inch rim. This is okay in most cars. However, you should seek professional advice for a personalized vehicle.

What Tires Can Go On 17 Inch Rim?

If you enter a store looking for a tire to buy, the salesperson will first ask, “What size?” The question may throw you off guard if it is your first time purchasing a tire.

Your car may have a stock 17-inch rim, or you may want to customize the wheel by upsizing or downsizing. If you are shopping for a new tire for your vehicle with a 17-inch one, you want to know the variety of available choices.

Here is the list of the most common tires for 17 inch rims.

  • 315/35R17
  • 285/40R17
  • 275/55R17
  • 265/40R17
  • 255/55R17
  • 255/45R17
  • 245/55R17
  • 245/50R17
  • 235/40R17
  • 225/35R17
  • 205/70R17
  • 175/55R17.

If you don’t see your size or don’t know what size you need, use an online tire selector to help you find the right size for your vehicle.

Is It Okay To Change Tire Sizes?

Automotive manufacturers designed your car tire to run with a specific rim size for optimal performance. If you change your wheel sizes incorrectly, you are compromising the vehicle’s safety and performance. So, for whatever reason you choose to change the sizes, only do that after researching the options available and calculating the differences.

Whether changing the tire size to give your car a sporty look or raising or lowering your wheels, it’s safe to do so as long as you do your calculations well.

Tire Size Meaning

If your car originally comes with a tire size of 205/55R16, where:

205 is the width of the tire in millimetres.

55 is the aspect ratio, which is the height of the sidewall as a percentage of the tire’s width.

R16 indicates that the tire is designed to fit on a 16-inch rim.

Do Bigger Rims Affect Ride Quality?

Swapping your wheels to bigger rims is one of the accessible mods for your baby ride. Installing bigger rims can give your car the aesthetic feeling you desire.

However, while larger rims improve your car’s aesthetics, they can affect the vehicle’s handling and fuel economy and increase noise. Plus, it also increases the wheel’s rolling resistance, makes the car feel every impact on the road, and increases the weight of the vehicle while reducing acceleration.

Final words

If you have been reading to this point, you will no longer ask: can you put 16 inch tires on 17 inch rims? Though I recommend against putting 16-inch tires on 17-inch rims, there are instances where upgrading from 16-inch tires to 17-inch rims or downsizing from 17-inch tires to 16-inch rims will be necessary.

As I have explained above, proper tire fitment and compatibility play a crucial role in ensuring appropriate vehicle handling, speedometer accuracy, braking, and overall vehicle performance. When upsizing or downsizing, ensure the tire width remains the same while maintaining a similar diameter. Follow the illustration in this article for a proper guide.

Solomon Osuagwu

Osuagwu Solomon is a vetted auto mechanic with over ten years of experience in the garage and five years of experience as a service writer. He prides himself in writing accurate information on professional repair guides, DIY repair guides, buyer’s guides, comparisons, and car reviews. If he’s not in his repair garage, he’s writing automotive blogs to help car owners and fellow mechanics to troubleshoot and proffer solutions to several car problems.

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