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Congratulations to our partner, LIQUI MOLY!
It’s starting to become a habit: For the fourth and, in part, the fifth time in a row the readers of Motor Klassik, Auto Zeitung, Auto Bild and Auto Motor und Sport have voted for Liqui Moly as the best brand of oil in Germany.
With 6.4 million readers, these four magazines are supported by a huge enthusiast group in Germany. This is the fifth time in a row that Auto Zeitung and Auto Motor und Sport have awarded Liqui Moly top honors; and the four time in a row for Motor Klassik and Auto Bild. This voting record shows that it is indeed possible for a small David to contend with international oil corporations. Car owners know that they can depend on Liqui Moly’s products.
The validity of these reader polls is proven by the large circulation of the periodicals as well as the uniformity of the results. In all these magazines Liqui Moly takes the lead, followed by Castrol and Mobil in each case.
Maintaining the lead so long is the best proof of the trust car owners place in Liqui Moly. Give Liqui Moly a try in your BMW or MINI and join BavAuto® in agreeing that Liqui Moly is indeed the best motor oil!
Ever try to lift the spare tire out of the rear on your BMW X5 (or put it back in)? What’s with that strap and handle? Watch our DIY video and see the easy (and proper) way to handle the spare tire on your E53 X5.
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When comparing wheels and fitments on a given vehicle, the common points to be concerned with are the diameter, the width and the offset.
Diameter - the diameter size of the wheel. This represents the actual diameter of the wheel’s tire bead mounting surface, not the absolute outer diameter of the wheel’s bead flange (or lip).
Width - the inside width of the wheel’s tire bead mounting flange. This represents the width between the wheels inner tire bead mounting flanges, not the outer measurement between the inner and outer flanges (lips).
Offset - The distance that the wheel’s hub mounting flange is from the actual center of the wheel (inner to outer). If the hub mounting surface is more toward the outside of the wheel (from center), this is a positive offset. If the hub mounting surface is more toward the inside of the wheel, this is a negative offset.
The diameter of the wheel is actually the least important measurement in determining if a wheel will fit a particular BMW or MINI (of course, this is not to say that it is irrelevant). Since our main concern in reference to diameter is the overall diameter of the complete wheel and tire package, we can typically use multiple different diameter wheels and adjust the overall diameter by using tires of a different aspect ratios (taller or shorter sidewalls). The tire’s size and aspect ratio will determine the final overall diameter. For example; a 14″ wheel with a 195/60/14 tire will have a similar overall diameter as a 17″ wheel with a 215/40/17 tire. Therefore, when going to a larger diameter wheel, as long as we can install an appropriately sized tire, the diameter is not a first concern in regards to the question; “will it fit?”
The width of the wheel and the offset are interlaced in a way that we really can’t talk about one without the other. Changing the width or the offset (or both) changes the way the wheel fits within the vehicle’s wheel well and the clearance to suspension and body parts. This is the area where most enthusiasts start to get confused. We can’t just say that one 8″ wide wheel will fit the same as another 8″ wheel, nor can we say that one wheel with a 30mm offset will fit where another wheel with a 30mm offset fits fine. We can only compare different widths if the offset is the same for each of the wheels. Similarly, we can only compare offsets if the widths of the wheels in question are the same.
Let’s look at an example:
* We have a wheel on the vehicle that is 8″ x 17″ and it has a 25mm positive offset. The tire on the wheel is 245/40/17.
* We what to know if a 9″ x 18″ wheel, with a 35mm positive offset will fit the vehicle.
* We have found that it’s easy to understand the differences between two different wheel sizes if we have a visual representation. We do this by drawing the two wheels in direct comparison on a sheet of graph paper, as follows:
- Our drawings will be set-up to represent the inside of the wheel on the left side of the drawing and the outside of the wheel on the right side of the drawing.
- Draw the representation of the current wheel (the one that is on the car, or known to fit), first.
- Make a vertical mark that will represent the center of the wheel width. Label this mark as the center-line (CL).
- Draw a horizontal line that is the length to equal the width of the wheel (8″), with the center of the measurement at the CL mark (from step-2).
- Measure to the right (horizontally) from the CL mark, the distance that equals the wheel’s offset (25mm) and make another vertical mark. Label this mark “25mm”.
- Draw the representation of the new wheel that is in question.
- Below the drawing for the first wheel, make a vertical mark directly below the offset mark of the first wheel. Label this mark, 35mm.
- Measure to the left, horizontally, the offset measurement (35mm) and make another vertical mark. Label this as the Center Line (CL).
- From the center line mark, measure the distance that equals the wheel width, centered on the CL mark (9″).
- Compare the inner (left side) and outer (right side) edges of the two wheels to directly see what the differences in inner and outer clearances are. In this example, the inner bead lip of the wheel will be about 7/8″ further inboard than the original wheel and the outer bead lip will be about 1/8″ further outboard.
- Obviously, we the new wheel would be fine for clearance at the vehicle’s fender lip, but the inboard clearance could certainly cause issues and requires verification that there is this much room available, compared to the original wheel.
- If the clearance to the inside is a problem, wheel spacers can be used to push the wheel outboard (as much as is needed). However, we would then need to be mindful of the outer clearance with the fender lip.
- As for the larger wheel diameter, if our goal is to keep the same overall outer tire diameter, We would typically go to one size lower in the aspect ratio. For example; original tire is 245/45/17 … we would consider a 245/40/18 for an 18″ wheel. If the wheel is wider and allows (or requires) a wider tire, we can look at tire sizing and specification charts to choose a width and aspect ratio that gives us the diameter that we need.