Telsa is being offered with a 19 inch rim with all season tires, or a 21 inch rim with performance tires. I live in Seattle, and we have a lot of rain, and in the winter some snow.

I like the way the 21's look, but I would like to hear from those out there that have thoughts and experience with these two types of tires. Don't want to crash my car, or be one of "those guys", stuck in 1/8th inch of snow.

Supergreekster | September 15, 2012

They do have tire chains available in accessories section, thoughts?

dahtye | September 15, 2012

Correct me if I'm wrong but aren't both 19" and 21" tires 245 width? If yes then the width has no bearing on the decision. Certainly tread pattern and rubber softness are important for winter driving.

jkirkebo | September 15, 2012

You only need one jack and one jack stand to rotate tires. Jack up one wheel, put jack stand under and remove jack. Remove wheel. Jack up next wheel, remove wheel and put on previously removed wheel. Lower jack and repeat with next wheel twice. Then put last wheel on where the jack stand is, jack up there and remove jack stand. Lower jack. Done.

Timo | September 15, 2012

You probably can rotate rear wheels in front and front to back but not right to left, unless you also change rims in them (those 21 inch tires have rolling direction, changing right to left would reverse that, which would be bad).

Volker.Berlin | September 15, 2012


those 21 inch tires have rolling direction, changing right to left would reverse that

I remember that there was a discussion of this issue and maybe at that time the outcome was that the "turbine fan" has opposite/symmetric direction left and right. Looking at recent images of production cars (Get Amped tour, pics from first owners, galleries in online reviews) I no longer think it's true. There seems to be exactly one version of that rim, and as a result the "fan blades" are reversed on the left vs. right side of the car.

If you double check, ensure that you look at actual, natural photos. Any images that are touched up for marketing material are bogus (e.g., they may be flipped/mirrored to make the car look into a certain direction).

Volker.Berlin | September 15, 2012

Sorry -- where's edit?!

Timo, you were talking about the tires, not the rims. With regard to the tires of course you are 100% right. Actually, I assume that all tires have a rolling direction, so the problem would be standard with any wheel rotation, wouldn't it?

jerry3 | September 15, 2012


Unless the tires specifically say they have a rolling direction, how you rotate them makes no difference. Either the front to back or criss-cross method is fine. The "radial tires must be rotated a certain way" is one of the pieces of FUD left over from when the tire manufacturers that didn't make radial tires were trying to slow (or better yet stop completely) the adoption of radial tires.

There are two types of rolling directions:

1. Tread pattern: Tires with tread pattern rolling directions always have sidewall markings with the words "rolling direction" on them.

2. Casing rolling direction: These tires do not have "rolling direction" markings on the sidewalls, only arrows. The arrows need to point to each other on the top if the car is rear-wheel drive or away from each other if the car is front wheel drive. That is the drive tire needs the arrow to be pointing in the traveling direction and the free rolling axle needs to have the arrow pointing in the braking direction. These kinds of tires are typically motorsport and DOT motorsport tires.

Mark E | September 15, 2012

I haven't purchased non-directional tyres in over 20 years. It's been so long that I'd assumed all had gone that way.

It may have something to do with always driving performance cars.

Rotating tyres on my current cars means having the shop take them off the rim - front and rear are different sizes, so side to side swaps only.

jerry3 | September 15, 2012


Most of the better tires today are either asymmetrical, directional or both. Asymmetrical tires aren't necessarily directional although many are. A very few are asymmetrical and casing directional. With those you purchase two "A" and two "B" tires because one type only goes left-front right-rear and the other goes right-front/left-rear (Where A type or B type goes depends on whether the car is front or rear wheel drive).

Mark E | September 15, 2012

Yep - most (all) of the asymmetrical tyres that I've purchased have been directional. Haven't looked at anything for front wheel drive, as I refuse to own one.

Michael23 | September 16, 2012

I'm looking at the pilot sport ps2 online and judging from the pics it does not look like we can rotate them at all given the tread is different on outside vs indside and we have different sizes on front than back.

jerry3 | September 16, 2012


If the tire does not have directional arrows (and from the pictures, it doesn't appear to), you can rotate them from side to side, because the outside is the outside whether it's on the right or left side of the car.

If the wear problem is that the inside shoulder of the tire is wearing faster than the outside, then during the rainy season have the tires mounted with the side that is normally inside out. This actually gives better rain performance. (and get the alignment fixed). Note that I'm not a fan of mounting and demounting tires because every time you do you risk damage to the bead area (and mostly I can't stand to watch people work on tires), but in the case of this kind of wear the additional life is worth the risk.

The point of rotating tires is so that all four tires will wear out at the same time. If the tires are different front to rear, as on the Roadster, there is little point in rotating them unless a wear problem that can be solved by sided to side rotation crops up. However, it's better to keep an eye on the tires and get the car aligned before the wear on the tires becomes bad enough that rotation is required.

phb | September 16, 2012

Pilot Sport PS2s are great in the rain. You'll be fine with them (and probably the OE Continentals) if you drive in the rain and it doesn't get too cold.

Michael23 | September 16, 2012

Thanks.for clarifying Jerry!

Sofie S. | October 3, 2012

Hi there, Imight have found a possible solution if you want to have better grip and stay on the road in the wintertime.
For me it is essential to have real wintertires due to the fact that I live in Sweden an at my homelocation we'v got aprox. 40inches of snow every year and a lot of rain.
So i have been studding the internet and found turbin-looking rims at 19" and along with the tire Nokia Haaka 7, i feeling much better about driving during the wintertime.
As i have been reading at this forum, i saw that some of you have the same thoughts that i have got.
What i found was turbin-looking rims at 19" sutable for MB or BMW, depending on the distans between bolt's and ET-value.
The Nokia tire is only available in 19" and in special cases, up to 20", but not for 21".

Homepage adress for the turbine-looking rims is:

Is there any one who is sertain about the boltsdistans, number of bolts and the ET-value?

You can google the name of the rim:


Fälgspecifikationer = rimspecifications

Bredd: 8,5" = width
ET:45 = impressiondepth

Hålavstånd: 5x112mm = 5 bolts and distance 112mm

Teoatawki | October 3, 2012

Those are nice looking turbine style rims. I even like the non-silver ones.

Sofie S. | October 3, 2012

So do I.
By the way, just realized the word wasn't -looking.
It was -style....

dborn | October 3, 2012

Softie s- are the prices for those rims for 1 rim or a set? If for one they are very reasonably priced compared to what Tesla is charging for turbine wheels. I assume the exchange rate is approx 6 Kroner to the dollar?

Sofie S. | October 3, 2012

The price is for 1 rim each. You can order how many you'd like, ex 1 or 4 or 8. The price differs from day to day on the site due to the exchange value of the Euro towards Swedish kroner. At the moment the exchange rate (FOREX) is almost 7 Kroner to the dollar (6,94).
Notice that they ad administration fee (1 rim-99 kroner, 4-rims total 180 kroner). I dont knew if they can deliver to the US but you can ask them.

You can also notice that the silver one's are spec. winter treated - they won´t get uggly beacause of salty roads.

mrspaghetti | October 3, 2012

@Sofie: It's perfectly acceptable to use the word 'looking' as you did (at least in the US...)

Sofie S. | October 3, 2012

New website from the factory who make the one's I wrote about earlier:

The prices from the Swedish site are including Swedish tax of 25%! If you importing them you souldn't pay the swedish tax.

ben | May 20, 2014

My S is eating tires, especially in the rear. I've found a means where if I commit to buying at least 24 tires (6 cars' worth) I can get us each 4 original equipment 19" 245/45R19 Goodyear Eagle RS-A2 (rated UTQG: 440 A A) for a total of $650 ALL IN (tires, taxes and shipping to an installer of your choice).

If you have an interest, email me at Please don't beat me up--I am NOT a tire salesman--just a Tesla S owner who is interested in a deal if it doesn't take too much effort. If I can't get enough interested parties no worries. I'm just trying to help myself and at least five others save some bucks.

rwelch | June 3, 2016

21" wheels look great but when you pay $4k to replace two wheels / tires on your loaner my 19" wheels look pretty darn good.