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Staggered tires are when the tires and the wheel, are different sizes in the front of the car compared to the back. Often times, staggered tire setups are ran on performance vehicles like Nissan 350z’s, BMW’s, Mercedes AMG’s, Porsches and more. The staggered tire setup helps achieve a comfortable handling balance, but the purpose isn’t solely for grip and performance. Staggered tires also encourage a level of handling safety and security, which is something drivers admire. It’s important to note that the tire width isn’t the only thing that differs. From the factory, some cars have different diameter wheels, for example, 18-inch on the front and 20-inch on the back. The rear wheels almost always have the bigger surface area, which gives your tire more surface to grip the road with, resulting in better traction!
With staggered sizes, the rear tires tend to wear out faster than the front, and this happens especially with powerful rear-wheel-drive cars. When this does happen, the safest bet is to replace all four tires, even if the front ones are still okay. If you don’t replace them all together, you may experience uneven tread wear, which can decrease the lifespan of your tires because there is a bigger chance of bursts or leaks in the worn-out areas.
When comparing staggered to square tire setups, there are many differences. A square setup often reduces understeer, neutralizes, and optimizes handling. Along with producing more front-end grip when making sharp turns, a square tire setup can also help influence high-speed stability. On staggered fitments, the front wheels are almost always the smaller size, and the wider wheels at the back also contribute to quicker take-off from standstill. Overall, having staggered wheels or wider tires means more grip on acceleration, and from an aesthetic point of view, larger lips.
The main reason car manufacturers go with staggered setups, is because it improves traction in rear wheel drive vehicles. The wider tires at the back ensure that you have more traction at the rear without compromising front-end grip. It’s important to remember that staggered fitment tires can only be rotated from side to side (if the tires aren’t directional), and if they are directional, they’ll have to be dismounted and reinstalled facing the opposite direction. Non-staggered tires are rotated front-to-back. Because the front and rear tires are different sizes in a staggered setup, you can’t really rotate them. So, they might not last as long as they would in a square setup, which could cost you more money in the long run.
Although square tires have front-rear tire rotation and better tire longevity, there is no “right answer” when it comes down to picking your tire setup. Simply put, it’s recommended you try running both staggered and non-staggered tire setups, so you can find out what you like better for yourself. Some people prefer the aesthetic the staggered-setup brings, as it can make a car look much more sleek and powerful. Others do not really care about the looks, and are more concerned about getting from point A to point B; it all depends.
To learn more about staggered tires and wheel packages offered here at TIRECRAFT, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your local dealer. Our trained technicians and service advisors would be pleased to help assist you with your unique needs and wants!