Torque Shop

I am considering buying a Toyota Wish. But I notice that its standard wheel size is 15 inches with 195/65 tyres. This seems small. Is this wheel size safe and stable for this relatively big car, especially when making turns? Is it necessary to change to a bigger wheel size? My main priority is safety and not aesthetics.

Usually, wheel dimensions are considered as part of a vehicle's total package.

They factor in things like efficiency, ride, handling and, of course, safety. Cost also plays a part - to achieve a competitive price position.

The wheels for the Wish are optimised for economy and comfort. The vehicle may be a seven-seater, but it is no larger nor heavier than a compact sedan.

As a family car, it is not expected to be driven sportily. For normal usage, the tyres will serve the car adequately.

But you can change to slightly wider tyres if you want more grip, and to higher-profile tyres if you want more comfort.

Switching to lightweight alloy rims will also improve economy and performance.

Since aesthetics is not your concern, forget about overly big wheels (which actually reduce performance) and low-profile tyres (which often compromise comfort).

In any case, whatever investment you make for wheels and tyres will be minute compared with the overall cost of the car.

Hence your decision to buy a car should not hinge on wheel size.

Christopher Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 07, 2017, with the headline 'Torque Shop'. Print Edition | Subscribe