I'm looking for some 17" or 18" flat black wheels for my corolla. I want them to be all black no chrome anywhere any suggestions on brands and whether to buy online or a local rim shop will be very helpful. This is my first wheel buy so any tips are greatly appreciated
You can use TireRack to look through their selection and see if there's a style you like, but you have to cheat the system a bit. If you enter that you have an 03 Corolla it will likely not let you see anything beyond a 16x7 wheel because 03-08 never saw more than a 16 on the regular cars. If you enter in an 09 or 2010 Corolla XRS, though, you'll get tons of options that will still fit just fine, and they allow you to view them on the car. I know the 10th generation doesn't look quite like ours, but it's still close enough and will give you the general idea.
My 2 cents: If you enjoy the softness of your current ride, don't go past a 17. A bigger wheel and smaller tire sidewall makes the ride harsher over regular road bumps the bigger you make the wheel. You also run a higher risk for blown out tires and bent rims the bigger you go. Tires are cheaper for 17s than 18s, as well.
Another thing you can use TireRack's site for is to sort your choices by weight. You'll want to at least pay some attention to this, because some wheels look great but they're fat pigs, while others may be extremely lightweight, but have a high pricetag to match. It really depends on what you like and where your budget is that will help you decide, and remember to factor in an easy $500 worth or so of tire expense with whatever set of wheels you get to keep a tally of your grand total for the swap.
Of course TireRack's definitely not the be all-end all, and Discount Tire Direct is one of the sponsors on this site, so be sure to look in that section of the site as well to see what offers the sponsors of this site have for forum members. You may work yourself out a better deal.
Since you live in NC I know you're not completely exempt from the winter weather, so it doesn't hurt to keep your old wheels and just throw some inexpensive snow tires on them (they'll be pretty cheap for 15 or 16 inch wheels) just in case you have a period where you'll be getting a lot of snow. All season tires are better than nothing, but they still can't beat dedicated snow tires.
'03 CE Auto
Last edited by SaGa; 11-13-2012 at 08:20 PM.
You'll find stuff out there that's on its way toward 30lbs, and that's pretty heavy, I'd say, and that's even before you put a tire on it. I would say try to keep the weight in the mid 20s and lower if you can without it getting too expensive.
Another thing is to look into wheels from other Toyotas with the same 5x100 bolt pattern. You can also look at Scion or Lexus wheels and just change out the center cap with a Toyota one or a blank one. As hardtopte72 recommended this to me when I asked him for advice on wheel buying, he made a good point that you will know the wheels were meant to fit the car if they're Toyota OEM parts, and depending on how common they are you can find them pretty cheap. If you like the look of the wheel, you can always buy the set and then have them painted the color you want.
I've only got another set of 15s on mine, so it's not really all that different from normal. But hardtopte72 has the 17s from a Scion tC on his car that fit 100%, so you can take a look at his signature picture to get an idea of how those look. They're very common and cheap now, so they're easy to find, even with tires on them already, and the money you don't spend on getting them you can spend on getting them painted however you wish at a good shop.
Also plenty of nice looking 17's include 2003-2006 Matrix XRS 17's, 2009-2012 Corolla XRS wheels (2009-2010 in US), 2005-2010 Scion tC wheels, TRD optional wheels (though contrary to popular belief these are actually China made non Toyota wheels and are off poor quality; been there done that). I think the Matrix XRS 17's are the best looking wheels on a 9th gen but are rare and heavy. The Scion tC looks amazing as well (with 2 1/4 inch Toyota center caps) and is light weight, polished, and I think forged. Besides that you have plenty of aftermarket options but unless its BBS, Enkei, Rays engineering, or another OEM supplier with legitimate standards I will never put it on my car. Vibration issues that have taken hours/days to try and get rid of make me never want to do deal with that.
Here are some pics.
9th gen with Matrix XRS 17's
My 9th Gen CE with tC 17's
9th gen with 2009-2012 10th Gen Corolla XRS 17's (2009-2012 Matrix S/XRS wheels won't work as they use a larger 5x114.3 bolt pattern). This is a member here's car who's name I can't recall.
My Toyota List:
1982 Corolla SR-5 Hardtop 1JZGTE R154
2005 Corolla CE Manual 1ZZFE
2009 Camry LE Auto 2AZFE
If I helped out in any way please hit the blue Thanks button on my post.
Last edited by hardtopte72; 11-14-2012 at 03:44 PM.
While I get the feeling you're not going to be going out daily to show the other commuters your best impression of Marco Andretti and putting the wheels through some really strenuous paces, sometimes you get what you pay for. Every company out there makes something good and something crappy, and usually with a price to match, but I'd say look for other choices first before settling for something like Rota. Yes, the other option may cost more, but there's usually a good (quality) reason for that. There are plenty of companies that make that same style wheel (they all copy each other with whatever becomes popular), so you can very likely find the same thing from a better company.
I can almost guarantee that OZ makes a wheel identical or very close to that, and probably BBS too (but BBS is usually anything other than low price). But I again would say look around for some OEM Toyota wheels in a 5x100 bolt pattern, get them on the cheap, and have a shop paint them the way you want. You'll probably spend the same amount of money, but you'll have peace of mind tossed in along with it.
I have gun metal 17x8 Rota Boost on 225 45 17, used them on canyon carving fun runs and are DD too. They look 100% new still today on my modified c-xrs and plan to get another set; when purchasing my next vehicle...
Last edited by onemph05; 11-15-2012 at 11:36 AM.
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