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18" vs 19" wheels

18" vs 19" wheels

My final configuration decision is which wheel size to get. Going with midnight silver. Aesthetically--a purely subjective consideration, I know--I like the darker 18" wheel rims, especially with the aero caps off. But that's obviously not the only consideration. Thoughts, especially regarding performance and ride?

stevenmaifert | January 24, 2018

My 18"s on the Model 3 are Michelin Primacy MXM4. I also run the Goodyear tires on my Model S 19"s.

KP in NPT | January 24, 2018
Pkalhan | January 24, 2018

@ bodenalan "I will probably remove the covers, and maybe get the 18" powder coated matt black, I will live with them without covers for a bit to see how I like them."

This is what I am going to do also though I will powder coat them gloss black. If I do not like them, then I will purchase the 18" gloss black from T Sportline and just use the originals for winter. I was also thinking about buying the TPMS sensors from T Sportline also if I went that route, but did not realize they were $300. Is that the going rate for TPMS sensors?

stammit | January 24, 2018

Do both 18 & 19 inch set-ups come with run-flats?

KP in NPT | January 24, 2018

They are not run flats.

stammit | January 24, 2018

KP - weird, ok thanks.

lilbean | February 21, 2018

I really like the look of the 19 inch wheels but decided on the 18 inch because of the potholes in LA.

Gadge | February 21, 2018

I plan to stay with the standard 18" wheels with Aero hubcaps removed unless taking long trips. Light silver is my color choice for the Model 3 and the dark spoked wheels should contrast well. The best place to order lug nut & center caps is from a Tesla service center...far less expensive than the after market places.

djharrington | February 21, 2018

@bodenalan: did you see a change in efficiency on the S with the tire switch? Which Goodyear model?

lilbean | February 21, 2018

Good to know, @mlausie1. Thanks.

Webcrawler | February 21, 2018

19" look better while the 18" ride better and are more efficient. Only you can decide if the looks are worth $1,500 and a loss of about 10-20 miles of range and a rougher ride.

weluvm3 | February 21, 2018

Road and Track speculate that the 19" wheels will handle better. They were a bit underwhelmed with the grip on the stock 18" wheels when they tested the Model 3 on the track, and they speculated that 19" wheels would have better cornering and braking. They planned to test a Model 3 with the upgraded wheels next to confirm this.

However, it is possible that upgraded tires might also address that issue. My Bolt with stock tires has a distinct lack of grip, but I'm just too lazy (and cheap) to do anything about it until they need replacing. Others have claimed that the Bolt ships with crappy, ecco-tires designed to maximize range at the expense of everything else, and a Bolt with upgraded tires handles much better.

Does anyone know if the stock 18" tires that Tesla ships the Model 3 with might also be similarily improved upon?

tom8959 | February 21, 2018

To my eye, the 18's with aero caps are very strange looking, and the while I think the 19's look better, they're still a bit odd - I'm not paying $1500 to upgrade from strange to odd. I think the 18's without the aero caps look... ok.

My plan: go with the 18's, remove the aero caps for daily driving (I'll pop them on for road trips - I do appreciate their added efficiency), and buy set of 19" wheels and tires that I DO like at some point down the road.

Strange that the wheel choices aren't great for such an otherwise outstanding vehicle...

eeb9 | February 21, 2018

According to reviews at TireRack, there are some *very* nice high-performance tides for the 18” Rims on the Model 3. You trade better grip and handling for reduced range and a slightly firmer ride - all depends on your priorities

I’ll be getting the 18” rims and immediately swapping the tires for a set of BFGoodrich G-Force COMP-2 all-seasons ($152 each from TireRack)

shank15217 | February 21, 2018

19inch tires Tesla sells are apparently quieter than the 18in tire they sell. Also Bjorn did a highway drive with an M3 with 19in tires and he was able to reach 310 miles without hypermile-ing with 4% battery left.

Carl Thompson | February 21, 2018

@shank15217:
"... he was able to reach 310 miles without hypermile-ing with 4% battery left."

He drove a constant 9 - 14 MPH _under_ the speed limit. That closer to "hypermile-ing" than not in my opinion.

andy.connor.e | February 21, 2018

i would also consider "hypermile-ing" to be any adjustments in driving to increase efficiency/range. Driving under the speed limit falls under that category. Agree with @Carl

Frank99 | February 21, 2018

I'd dearly love to see someone:
1. Drive the same car down the same road with 18" and 19" wheels, and measure sound levels / report subjective sound levels. While they're doing that, also report on the firmness/harshness of the ride over the worst sections.
2. Drive the same car down the same road with the same conditions, and measure battery consumption (wh/mi) with 18" bare, 18" aero, and 19" wheels.

Boy, would that solve a lot of questions around here...

andy.connor.e | February 21, 2018

I wont do it with different size wheels, but theres a highway loop about 20 miles long in my area that i will be driving with Aero on and off and record differences in energy usage.

weluvm3 | February 21, 2018

@Frank99 Road and Track plans to test the car with 19" wheels and update their review. We will have more answers, then.

Personally, from what I've read, the 18" wheels and stock tires will be sufficient for my needs. If not, my next set of tires will probably improve upon them, anyway. No need to upgrade the rims, at least for my purposes.

And, yes, I actually LIKE the Aero covers. Besides, they will help protect my rims. I'm leaving them on.

Frank99 | February 21, 2018

It'll be interesting to see how well Road and Track can compare the two - hopefully it's not "These seem much better than how I remember the 18" wheels being when we tested them 3 months ago".

I like the look of the 19s better than the 18s, but I like the resistance to rim damage and softer ride promised by the 18s. My practical side is stronger than my aesthetic side, so it'll be 18s for me. I'm still on the fence about those Aero caps, though.

Bri | February 21, 2018

I’m just going to keep the OEM tires until they’re worn out. Won’t take long, Tires with less grip at lower speeds are more fun anyway, while they last.

the.videologists | February 21, 2018

Can anyone recommend a decently priced shop that does powder coating either in the SF bay or LA area?

weluvm3 | February 21, 2018

"Tires with less grip at lower speeds are more fun anyway, while they last."

Then you'd love the Bolt. 200HP, front wheel drive, with wheels that feel like they were coated with Teflon or something.

I spin my tires all the time without even trying.

andy.connor.e | February 21, 2018

rekt

nwfan | February 21, 2018

@the.videoologists I hope the 19” can be powder coated. Just noticed the plastic around the hub. Will have to check with my powder coated.

Bri | February 21, 2018

I drifted corners in the Leaf regularly, at least while it had the low rolling resistance OEMs on it. They lasted about 20k.

Norris.jarrod | February 23, 2018

Curious...has anyone thought of just getting the 19" upgrade just for the tires and switching out the rims to after market rims? It seems to me the $1500 upgrade is less than what you would pay for new 19" tires alone.

Carl Thompson | February 23, 2018

@Norris.jarrod:
"It seems to me the $1500 upgrade is less than what you would pay for new 19" tires alone."

What kind of tires are you buying that the pedestrian 19" size of the Model 3 wheels would cost you $400 each?

lilbean | February 23, 2018

@Norris, I thought about it but I need the 18s because of all the potholes in LA. There are aftermarket turbines available. I am trying to decide between gray and silver for my blue car.

Pkalhan | February 23, 2018

I everyone, I plan on getting the 18" Tesla wheels but will also be getting after market wheels so that I can use the Tesla 18s for the winter and the newer after markets for the spring through falls seasons.

I have going been back and forth between the 18" T-Sportline and the 19" T-Sportline. I like the 19s better but the 18s would be the smarter move because I could use the OEM tires and just buy winter tires for the original wheels. I was wonder if anyone would have a good estimate of the range difference between T-Sportline 18s and 19s? I am sure the 18s would be better but if it is not be a great margin, I may just get the 19s.

Thanks in advance!!

sanjayrks | February 23, 2018

I selected 19” wheel, it looks more attractive as compared to aero wheel IMHO.

deemo | February 23, 2018

I ordered 18". I think the 18s look better in person than they do in pics. I figured could go aftermarket if dont like long term.

denkav2 | February 24, 2018

I love the look of the Model 3 but cannot stomach those aero wheels (caps on or off). I’d like the 18” wheels since they should give a softer ride, the tires will last longer and be cheaper to replace than those on the 19” wheels.

All other car manufacturers release cars in this category with great looking wheels. Tesla urgently needs to release an additional 18” wheel option that also looks great.

bjoern | February 24, 2018

aero wheels will look great if you wrap the car in Matt black foil ;-). Getting close to the one proto they had at the reveal. My thinking: Save 1k on paint and 1.4k on wheels. Wrap the car in foil for 2.5k.
Reserved before the reveal online.....so still waiting

dgstan | February 24, 2018

denkav2 - Have you seen the bare 18" rims in person? I thought they looked much better when I saw them IRL. I like the looks of the 19" better, but not enough to offset the disadvantages (ride, replacement cost, initial cost).

I think the best course of action is to go with the stock wheels and see what kind of aftermarket options are available when the first set of 18" tires wear out. If there are nice 19" options, get them and sell the original rims to help offset the cost of the new wheels.

Wattsm309 | February 24, 2018

I ordered a white 3 and pre order the turbines in 18 for $1000 with delivery

prsist | February 24, 2018

I just can't figure out why Tesla is not making 18" sport wheels available just like they are making the 19" sport wheels available!!!??? Now that is an option I would pay for.

denkav2 | February 24, 2018

Bjoern, thanks for your suggestions. But I am not a fan of dark coloured wheels and I have never felt the need to wrap a new car in the past. I much prefer chrome or partly chrome wheels.

Dgstan, no I have not seen the car or wheels in person and won’t until 2019 at the earliest as I am in Australia. Although many people have proposed “swapping out” the wheels etc, I find it hard to believe that a current day manufacturer would present a new car with ugly (as expressed by many reservation holders) wheels and then expect the owners to change them over on delivery.

Wattsm309, again I don’t think swapping out something on a new car is something that I should need to do to make it visually acceptable.

Prsist, I could not agree more. Yes they would be less aerodynamic but with a long range battery, range would still be fine.

Panny | February 27, 2018

Keeping my options open...
I've decided with midnight sliver, to stick the 18 Aero. I'm going to get the caps and nuts so I have the option of the caps off or on. I can see how I feel about them in a few weeks. If I hate them, I can the 18" from Tsportline or when the tires wear and I'll need to replace them, I can get the 19" from Tsportline and new tires.

jeffrey | March 6, 2018

I have no real desire to mod my car, but I want the 18" tires and can't stand the look of the standard aero wheels (covers on or off). Any thoughts on these in Brilliant Silver to go with the Deep Blue Metallic Model 3? https://evwheeldirect.com/products/evt-wheel-for-tesla-model-3-18-inch

I figure I could have the OEM tires placed on these rims and balanced for $100 locally and then sell the OEM Aero Wheels. Any downsides I'm missing?

Wattsm309 | March 7, 2018

I was guessing that the 19 where low profile. And anyone driving in Nj knows the roads here are in a condition of a third world country.

Randkthorn | March 7, 2018

Saw my first Model 3 yesterday in Columbus Ohio at the Tesla store. It was an out of state customer’s car, red with aero wheels. Unfortunately, the wheels just don’t work for me aesthetically. Mine will have the 19 inch.

parkerdial | August 13, 2018

Do the 19'' wheels have any benefit other than asthetics? They are called sport wheels so I assumed they gave better acceleration or handling.

Zero Z | August 13, 2018

I recently ordered white awd with 19 rims. They look awesome on white. I do like more of a sport ride so 19s are no big deal. My Audi has 20s, I also think it looks nicer that your car on the touch screen is displayed with the 19s and not the Aeros. If you remove the covers , the image will still have covers I assume.

Pkalhan | August 13, 2018

i ordered my AWD with the 18s as I was concerned about the ride quality, but i am kind of regretting it because i really like the look of the 19s. i called Tesla to ask if I could make the change without a delayed delivery since i do not have a vin and my car has not gone into production. they said that even though it is a simple wheel change, they can't guarantee that my delivery won't be pushed back a month. that is a chance i dont want to take as i am currently in Sept to Nov. Getting into Dec gets me very nervous for tax credit purposes. kinda sucks, but i made my bed, now i have to lay in it.

i did ask my service center today though that at delivery, instead of taking the car after paying for it, if i could pat the $1500 for the 19s would they just take the 18s back, they seemed open to that possibility. will see what happens.

gcklo | August 13, 2018

Some guy did a noise test and found that 19" wheel on average is a couple of decibel noisier.

neptunesfinest | August 13, 2018

Just say no to hub caps on a $50k car.

jacklondon413 | August 13, 2018

I'm getting the 18" wheels on a Performance model 3. I don't like the 20" style rims enough to get them. I'm planning to see if the 18" wheels grow on me, but most likely I'm planning to get either the EVT Turbine 20" wheels in matte black (staggered) or the Tsportline wheels.

FastGTR | September 24, 2018

Seriously considering a model 3, torn on the trim level. Was leaning towards performance, but being in WI, don't want to have to swap out winter/summer setup. Turns out that Model 3 does not support TPMS switching like Model S, so removed performance edition from list of possibilities....

jacklondon413...how are you getting 18" on a performance...if I had that option, would have already ordered one.

Same question about 18" vs 19". I've seen a few aero wheels driving around, not all that bad looking reminds me of when the honda insight first came out with a half covered rear wheel. So unique, such an unmistakable mistake.

Per tsportline 18" wheel - 21.6 lb, with aero cover - 23lb, 19" - 25lb. So a little more un-sprung weight. Obviously, the 1.4lb is made up for my reducing drag.

Both the 18s and 19s should just come with aero covers as an option. So that just as one would extended charge the battery for a long trip, they could slap on the aero covers for long trips otherwise have them off for in ton driving And the aero covers should have different colors/ tines to look better contrasted with body colors. Perhaps even a bling-ed out version :-).

I like the michelin options on the 18's for cost, comfort and snow handling, the Continentals on the 19 don't have much for review. Not sure why Tesla didn't stick to the Michelin's. Likewise if they offered the 20" performance edition with all-seasons, I would have done that in a heart beat....just don't have the will power to keep a summer/winter set for yet another car.

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