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What Advantage Do 20-Inch Wheels Have Over 18-Inch?

by Justan Brandt

In the automotive world there is a concept known as “plus sizing” of wheels. The concept is basic, if you have a vehicle with 18-inch wheels, plus one would be a 19-inch wheel and plus two would be 20 inches. Moving to a 20-inch wheel from 18 inches can provide several advantages.

Visual Appeal

A 20-inch wheel has less tire sidewall and more wheel showing than an 18-inch wheel, which can be more visually appealing.

Handling

When swapping from an 18-inch wheel to a 20-inch, a tire with a smaller sidewall will be required. This smaller sidewall will provide your vehicle with improved handling characteristics but will also come at the cost of a harsher ride.

Weight Savings

If you have 18-inch steel wheels, upgrading to 20-inch alloy wheels could save weight, which improves the steering response and cornering of the vehicle. The lighter rotational weight also could provide a small increase in acceleration.

Cooling of Brakes

Alloy wheels act as an excellent heat conductor and can help brakes dissipate their heat more efficiently. Cooler operating temperatures can reduce brake fade and improve the responsiveness of the brakes under extreme conditions.

About the Author

Justan Brandt became a journalist and writer who specializes in automotive coverage in 2009. He has been a student at Bob Bondurant’s School of High Performance Driving and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in technology commerce.

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