View Full Version : Wheel Guide?

02-22-2006, 11:02 AM
Greetings -- first time poster here. Is there a handy way of knowing which BMW OEM wheels would fit my 2005 e46 ZHP? It came w/ 18"s shod with Bridgestone summer tires. I take it that I can't just buy any bmw 17" or 18"s off craigslist and bolt them on due to offset?

I'm thinking about getting 17" rims w/ dedicated winter rubber. My understaning is that 16s won't fit due to brake caliper sizes.

02-22-2006, 12:26 PM
There used to be a site that contained all of this lovely information, but BMW made the guy pull it from the site.


You are correct that 16s will not fit on a e46 330 or ZHP. These cars require 17s or larger with a +40mm offset.

02-22-2006, 12:26 PM
If I'm not mistaken, any 17" E36 or non-M E46 wheel will fit.

02-22-2006, 01:08 PM
Too bad about the site, but many thanks for the info. I didn't know about the compatibility w/ e36 wheels, so that helps.

02-22-2006, 06:32 PM
Call Sam at Radial Tire he can set you up with a set of used wheels to fit your E46 at a reasonable cost and also set you up with winter tires. Vredsteins. If he doesn't have something in the warehouse he can find something for you.

Dave Apker and the collies

02-23-2006, 03:04 AM
Having winters on separate wheels is the way to go.

For winter use, I run the smallest diameter wheels possible maximizing sidewall for the more compliance and traction. Elected to keep the fronts and rears the same size (not staggered) and I rotate season to season. I also run Dunlop Winter Sport M3s and recommend such (also heard good things on Vredestein). For comparison, check out http://www.tirerack.com and view the survey results.

I too prefer BMW OEM styled wheels. I believe BMW’s design folks best know how to select wheels to compliment the body style. I feel any other design cheapens the car. The E46s came with many different OEM styles. Check out http://www.realoem.com/bmw/select.do and navigate to ‘wheels’ to see the OEM line-up and offsets. I use (17 x 8 OERs) style 71 on my 330Ci for the winters.

I have used OERs (replicas) for winter use. They are very close to the OEM styles (different enough to not mix OERs and OEMs), somewhat heavier (but then so are winter tires), may not be as strong (not going to be pushing them hard anyway), and most appreciable cheaper (save the money here - they are only on the car 2-3 months a year). I also look for styles that are easy to clean. I have bought two (I have an E39 too) winter sets of OERs with tires mounted and balanced from http://www.lakeshorewheelandtire.com and am pleased.


02-23-2006, 09:25 AM
Yeah, I've drunk the Kool-Aid on the dedicated winter tire notion. I'm totally w/ you on the OEM/OER rationale, and was planning on getting a non-staggered 17x8 set. I ran Blizzaks on steel wheels on my last car, a '96 A4 Quattro (probably overkill, but handling was absolutely impervious to weather). All I have to do now is keep my eyes peeled on craigslist for some kid looking to ditch his stock rims after upgrading to "chrome dubs" (not that there's anything wrong with that).