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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I’m exploring options for moving from 19” to 18” wheels on my 2019 S60 T6 AWD and am curious about the appropriate load rating that I should be looking at. They seem to be all over the place, ranging from 1350 lbs or so all of the way up to 2000 lbs.

The original P-zero tires are rated 96 for 1565 lbs load rating. So, I’m guessing this should be the minimum load rating for the wheel itself (separate from the tire). Does anyone know the load rating of the original T6 Inscription wheels (5-spoke)? Is there any benefit in longevity or durability (resistance to becoming out of round?) for the wheel if I aim for ones that are rated at 1700 lbs or 2000 lbs?

Thanks for any insights!
 

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Man the tire specs make my brain hurt! We have 96 XL rated tires. 1565lbs, but that rating is at 41psi per XL spec. The tire pressure recommendation is something like 33-35psi from Volvo I think? The strange thing is that a standard 'SL" load tire, at that lower pressure, may be rated for a higher load, as SL tires are rated at 35psi. But it does seem XL tires will always be reinforced so it still might not be a good idea to go to an SL tire, a curiosity though that the XL is partly irrelevant unless you run the tires at 41 psi.

Anyways you asked about wheels, and I think some wheel mfrs do publish load ratings. Car mfr like Volvo probably doesn't. Although a load rating is good, I think there is more to wheel capability, handling shock loads and such that are far higher than just the weight of the car. OEMs typically have high standards for durability and safety. Not every aftermarket wheel will meet those type of standards, they are at odds with making wheels attractively priced, styled and lightweight...the things that wheel buyers care about. Certainly BBS, Enkei, and other well knowns, mfr OEM wheels, they probably apply similar standards. So all you really have is: Do you trust the mfr of the wheel? and that is going to be a subjective judgement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I've been finding all kinds of information and attempting to put it all into context is an interesting and imprecise exercise at best. I've not been able to find any info on Volvo OEM wheels other than for non-Polestar vehicles, they seem to be low pressure cast. I am unable to find any kind of load rating on these wheels.

Generic information that I've found is that you want wheels that are rated to handle half of the weight of the heaviest axle of the car (sticker inside door jamb). For my S60, the max load is for the front axle at 2645 lbs. Cut this in half and you have 1322 lbs per wheel. I've also found something in the Volvo online specs about the minimum load capacity for tires is code 94 which corresponds to 1477 lbs, or about 125 lbs more capacity than half of the heaviest axle, which seems a little backwards to me that the tires are "stronger" than the wheels - though air pressure probably introduces other differences here. The original P-Zero tires (235/40R19) have a loading capacity rated at 96, which is 1565 lbs each.

Then there are significant differences in wheel construction: gravity cast wheels (which are cheapest and potentially weakest), low pressure casting (more expensive and potentially stronger than gravity cast and also seems to be OEM spec for many cars), "rotary/flow forged" wheels (typically more expensive than cast, appear to have potential be to stronger than cast), and fully forged wheels (most expensive and strongest - mostly for track applications).

So, after countless hours of poking around and reading information and specs, I've found a variety of wheels that are flow/rotary forged (potentially stronger than cast), but have a load capacity of only 1350 lbs which just meets the "half of the axle" standard, but is also less than the load rating of the stock tire at 1565 lbs. I suspect these wheels are a bit lighter than the stock wheels as well, but this spec seems less important to my needs. It also seems odd to me to have a tire capable of supporting more weight than the wheel is rated for, but I'm just a noob at this. Maybe flow/rotary formed wheels have more resistance to impact/shock than cast wheels and might stay round longer, but I suppose generalization like this are had to come by because of the many variations in design... It is enough to make your brain hurt for sure!

In the end, I just ordered a set of 18" BBS wheels (low pressure cast) that are rated for 1650 lbs each. This gives the same construction technique as my OEM wheels (so I'm not stepping backwards in terms of construction technique/quality), exceeds the minimum "half of the axle" load capacity by a comfortable margin of 325 lbs, and is rated higher than the load index of the stock tires by 125 lbs. An interesting element is that since BBS wheels are manufactured in Germany, they are subject to EU regulations concerning post-production quality specs and required testing protocols. It seems that there is no uniform standard for wheel production here in the US, which is not very much of a surprise at all. Europe seems to be ahead of the US in many areas that are actually important for consumers (pesticide use, food ingredients, cosmetic ingredients, safety standards, etc). Here in the US, we've recently stripped the Consumer Protection Agency of the teeth that they need to actually do anything useful for consumers. Go figure...

Thus, it does seem to come down to brand trust which is a daunting exercise in a field with countless players that the average noob like me has never heard of before. I'm hoping my new 18" wheels with 245/45R18 tires give me a somewhat softer ride and more insulation against bending rims than my original stock 19" wheels with 235/40R19 tires. The best part of this wheel/tire combination is the overall diameter is less than 1% different from the overall OEM wheel diameter. Since this difference in size is less than the difference of new/worn rubber on stock tires, it doesn't look like any reprogramming of the speedometer or stability control systems is necessary.
 

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This is what happens, you want to know the "real truth" you need to get into the weeds, wehre nobody else wants to go... I think the "load rating" of a tire is different than a wheel, on a wheel it's a rule of thumb, to know how big/heavy of a car you can put a wheel on. Volvo would not publish specs, since they spec the wheels themselves, for the cars, they already tell you what cars they are to be used on. I have a feeling that the static load specs don't govern actual durablity, resistance to bending, those are something you won't see published anywhere, just internal engineering standards to what the mfr thinks is appropriate. I see the tire load rating differently, like an absolute max, and dependent on pressure as well. A fine distinction, perhaps it's just in my brain lol.

But you can't go wrong with a BBS, trusted brand, long history, no doubt you get a quality product.

As an aside...to illustrate "there is always more to the story" at one time I got a set of the classic SSR Type-C wheels for my SRT-4, for summer/track tires. They are semi-solid forged, lightweight wheels, well known. After every summer I had to fix 1 or 2 of them that were bent. Why?? Turns out these are a sort of "racing" wheel. In racing it's preferrable to bend a wheel rather than crack a wheel. One holds the air and lets you finish a race, the other doesn't. Generally cast wheels can be more brittle, that can be a good thing since the overall resistance to damage may be higher than some other types of wheel, you trade that for a higher risk of catastrophically damaging the wheel when it does yield. Those light sort-of forged SSR wheels, were designed to bend a bit easier, trading that off for less chance of catastrophic failure.
 

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@EricSan which wheels did you get? Wonder if there is a manufacturer willing to do a group buy. I find a lot of the Volvo and other car manufacturer wheels designs to be variations on a theme. How many manufacturers are buying from the same wheel makers?

I think I want a set of 18” Ixions but have not found a seller with a set in good condition. The BBS wheels look nice, though my brainhurts from way too many choices and spec differences.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ah, I never thought about the bend vs break spectrum and the situations behind the desirability of each. This makes more sense now. Just another one of those “no free lunch” situations…. It’s a dizzying array of design considerations for sure!

As for choices, it took a while to narrow it down to two types from Niche (Vosso and Misano) and one from BBS (SR series). With the BBS, I spent a lot of time going back and forth between Anthracite finish and Volcanic Grey with Machined Face. I ended up with the machined face option, purchased from Tire Rack. Seeing them in person, I made the right choice for me. There is only one place that I found that offered the BBS wheels for less than MSRP (Howie Industries) but they have a bizarre business model. When you call, someone takes your name and phone number and they say you’ll get a call back. Well, after several calls and waiting for a week, there was never a call back. I’m thinking the person who takes your name and number is a filter to get rid of the one-offs so they can deal with larger volume inquiries.

I did see a seller on craigs list with a set of the BBS wheels, but given the problems I had with wheel wobble, I wasn’t interested in a set of wheels with an unknown past.
 

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Ah, I never thought about the bend vs break spectrum and the situations behind the desirability of each. This makes more sense now. Just another one of those “no free lunch” situations…. It’s a dizzying array of design considerations for sure!

As for choices, it took a while to narrow it down to two types from Niche (Vosso and Misano) and one from BBS (SR series). With the BBS, I spent a lot of time going back and forth between Anthracite finish and Volcanic Grey with Machined Face. I ended up with the machined face option, purchased from Tire Rack. Seeing them in person, I made the right choice for me. There is only one place that I found that offered the BBS wheels for less than MSRP (Howie Industries) but they have a bizarre business model. When you call, someone takes your name and phone number and they say you’ll get a call back. Well, after several calls and waiting for a week, there was never a call back. I’m thinking the person who takes your name and number is a filter to get rid of the one-offs so they can deal with larger volume inquiries.

I did see a seller on craigs list with a set of the BBS wheels, but given the problems I had with wheel wobble, I wasn’t interested in a set of wheels with an unknown past.
I agree. The BBS SR in Anthracite are pretty good looking wheels! I have had these ones in my cart for a few days. Can you share some pics of your car with them on? Thx for the thoughts here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
NOW the car rides like it's supposed to!!!!

There is an immediately obvious difference in overall ride quality between 18" and 19" wheels. I'm much happier with 18s than 19s! There is a pinch more body roll on corners, but not nearly as much as I was expecting. The difference is VERY small. The overall tradeoff of a tiny bit more body roll on corners for a MUCH softer overall ride is totally worth it to me. I really like not feeling every damned pebble on the road, this is a nice change for sure!

After swapping out the wheels, I could tell the difference even before I got out of the driveway. The ride is WAAAAAY softer with a taller profile tire (245/45R18) and the original rubber was definitely out of round from the previous owner driving around on bent wheels for an undertermined number of miles. I probably need an alignment now - the dealer performed an alignment with three bent wheels on the car before I purchased it :rolleyes:. There was still pretty noticeable wheel wobble even after straightening three of them. That was a waste of money... I should have gone straight for new wheels as soon as I confirmed they were bent.

Anyhow, here are the 18" BBS SR in Matte Graphite with Machined Accents (sorry, they're not Anthracite as I previously indicated). My TireRack invoice indicates "BBS SR MGDC." I'm REALLY pleased with my wheel choice AND the softer ride with more rubber and no wobbles! The first two images are fairly high resolution, so if you open them in a new window, you'll get a larger image.

Wheel Tire Car Vehicle Window



Wheel Tire Car Vehicle Automotive tire



They shipped with 63.3mm hub rings, retainer clips, and new lug bolts. Before mounting the wheels, I cleaned them several times with an IPA spray and installed some GTechniq Wheel Armor ceramic coating. It took nearly two full 15mL bottles to coat the inner barrels and outer faces on all four wheels.

With the wheels installed, I have about 3-4mm of clearance between the balancing weights and the 345mm rotors & calipers on the Inscription model. My only (minor) complaint with TireRack is that they mounted silver weights on a dark wheel. Otherwise, everything was awesome! With a warehouse within 250 miles or so, my wheel/tire package arrived within 24 hours of placing my order. Overall, I'd call that a 9.5 out of 10. The 0.5 deduction is for using silver colored weights.

I found a great color spray paint at Walmart that is a near perfect match to the Graphite color. It's Rustoleum "Metallic Charcoal" and it matches both the original Volvo lug bolt caps and the new BBS wheels. Maybe I'll use a small brush and spread some of this paint on the balancing weights...

Finger Material property Font Electric blue Thumb


Font Eyewear Electric blue Art Jewellery


Tire Motor vehicle Automotive tire Hood Hubcap


Next, I need to find a set of moose center caps in 2 1/8" size...

Very pleased now!😃
 

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Wow those wheels look awesome! Thanks for posting the pics and write up. I concur about the center caps. At the least you could cut some Moose stickers, though hope you find the right center caps.

I may not be far behind you on these! There is a delivery center near me in Delaware....
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yep, mine shipped from Delaware - I'm in central PA. The UPS delivery guy commented on how big the tires are. He wanted to know where the truck was that they went to... Tires are Vredestein Quatrac Pro 245/45R18. It was either those of the CrossClimate2 - but those are backordered just about everywhere right now. The tires poke out just a bit more (5mm) than the original 235/40R19s. My mudflaps don't seem to be quite as wide now as they should be. Ooops... :)

I looked up a few tire pressure charts/calculators (Tire Pressure Charts by Tire Size - TirePressure.com and Tire Pressure Calculator ) that seem to indicate 235/40R19 at 38psi (driver's door sticker) has a load capacity of 1442 lbs. Looking at the same load capacity for 245/45R18 tires seems to fall somewhere near 33psi. I inflated them to 34psi and they seem to ride nicely. After about 10 miles on the highway at 80mph and 90+ degrees, the tire pressure warning popped up. I reset it and drove home and everything seems good now.

It was a bit of a gamble at $2500 for new wheels and tires, but it solved my wheel wobble and added the luxury ride that I thought this car was missing. TOTALLY worthwhile! When I was looking for this car, I wasn't able to find an Inscription with 18" wheels. They seem to be pretty rare as everyone wants 19s.
 

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Are the wheels 18x8 or 18x8.5? 18" x 8" would seem slightly narrow for 245 mm wide tires?

Do keep us posted and the Quatracs. They seem to be one of the few properly spec'ed all-season/ all-weather tires available in 215/55R18 (recommended size for the stock 18x7.5 wheels on V60 CC).

I think my ideal tires would be Michelin Cross Climate, but would be willing to give the Quatracs a try.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
BBS SR wheels are 18x8 (SR015 model). As the diameter moves from 19" to 18", the wheels get CLOSER to the vertical suspension arm in the front wheel well of the S60. With the 19" wheels, I could get up to the middle knuckle of my pointer finger between the metal of the wheel and the suspension arm. With the 18" wheel diameter, I can't get much past my finger nail before the first knuckle. This probably translates to about 6-7mm of clearance with the 18s. One of the other wheels I was looking at is BBS Chronos (a rotary forged wheel with a 2000lb capacity), but they are 8.5" wide and will definitely need a spacer to mount on the 2019 S60. I didn't want to introduce more variables (spacers) at this point, so I stuck with 8" wide wheels. Mounting 245 width tires over the stock 235 also gives a bit more of a buffer zone between the tire profile and that of the wheel, so it should be a bit more protected against curb scrapes as an added bonus. Under the "specs" tab on TireRack site for any particular tire, they provide the width range for the wheel width that will match the tire. For the 18x8 BBS SR wheel, 245/45R18 is the recommended tire size.

You can check the variety of approved wheel sizes for your V60CC here: List of standard wheel sizes. It looks like 7.5" wide might be as wide as you can go with 18" wheels. But this is with an offset of ET50.5mm. This is 8mm closer to the suspension than the ET42 wheels that I purchased. With ET42, you are pushing the wheel further out away from the suspension by 8mm. To then use a wheel that is 12mm (about 1/2") wider "might" fit. You'll be 3.5mm closer to the suspension overall. See if you can get your finger in there to get a ballpark measurement of the available space.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
As an added bonus, I no longer get any pulsing under hard braking. Guess that too was an artifact of having bent wheels and unevenly worn rubber... This day just keeps getting better and better!

I'm super stoked with these improvements!! (y)
 

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NOW the car rides like it's supposed to!!!!

There is an immediately obvious difference in overall ride quality between 18" and 19" wheels. I'm much happier with 18s than 19s! There is a pinch more body roll on corners, but not nearly as much as I was expecting. The difference is VERY small. The overall tradeoff of a tiny bit more body roll on corners for a MUCH softer overall ride is totally worth it to me. I really like not feeling every damned pebble on the road, this is a nice change for sure!

After swapping out the wheels, I could tell the difference even before I got out of the driveway. The ride is WAAAAAY softer with a taller profile tire (245/45R18) and the original rubber was definitely out of round from the previous owner driving around on bent wheels. I probably need an alignment now - the dealer performed an alignment with three bent wheels on the car before I purchased it :rolleyes:. There was still pretty noticeable wheel wobble even after straightening three of them. That was a waste of money... I should have gone straight for new wheels as soon as I confirmed they were bent.

Anyhow, here are the 18" BBS SR in Matte Graphite with Machined Accents (sorry, they're not Anthracite as I previously indicated). My TireRack invoice indicates "BBS SR MGDC." I'm REALLY pleased with my wheel choice AND the softer ride with more rubber and no wobbles! The first two images are fairly high resolution, so if you open them in a new window, you'll get a larger image.







They shipped with 63.3mm hub rings, retainer clips, and new lug bolts. I found a great color spray paint at Walmart that is a near perfect match to the Graphite color. It's Rustoleum "Metallic Charcoal" and it matches both the original Volvo lug bolt caps and the new BBS wheels. Before mounting the wheels, I cleaned them several times with an IPA spray and installed some GTechniq Wheel Armor ceramic coating. It took nearly two full 15mL bottles to coat the inner barrels and outer faces on all four wheels.

I have about 3-4mm of clearance between the balancing weights and the 345mm rotors & calipers on the Inscription model. My only (minor) complaint with TireRack is that they mounted silver weights on a dark wheel. Otherwise, everything was awesome! With a warehouse within 250 miles or so, my wheel/tire package arrived within 24 hours of placing my order. Overall, I'd call that a 9.5 out of 10. The 0.5 deduction is for using silver colored weights.



View attachment 163422

View attachment 163423

Next, I need to find a set of moose center caps in 2 1/8" size...

Very pleased now!😃
While I totally prefer bright lug nuts/wheel bolts, I really like what you did. Nice custom/unique look, that is far better then just using black, or black caps.
 

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BBS SR wheels are 18x8 (SR015 model). As the diameter moves from 19" to 18", the wheels get CLOSER to the vertical suspension arm in the front wheel well of the S60. With the 19" wheels, I could get up to the middle knuckle of my pointer finger between the metal of the wheel and the suspension arm. With the 18" wheel diameter, I can't get much past my finger nail before the first knuckle. This probably translates to about 6-7mm of clearance with the 18s. One of the other wheels I was looking at is BBS Chronos (a rotary forged wheel with a 2000lb capacity), but they are 8.5" wide and will definitely need a spacer to mount on the 2019 S60. I didn't want to introduce more variables (spacers) at this point, so I stuck with 8" wide wheels. Mounting 245 width tires over the stock 235 also gives a bit more of a buffer zone between the tire profile and that of the wheel, so it should be a bit more protected against curb scrapes as an added bonus. Under the "specs" tab on TireRack site for any particular tire, they provide the width range for the wheel width that will match the tire.

You can check the variety of approved wheel sizes for your V60CC here: List of standard wheel sizes. It looks like 7.5" wide might be as wide as you can go with 18" wheels. But this is with an offset of ET50.5mm. This is 8mm closer to the suspension than the ET42 wheels that I purchased. With ET42, you are pushing the wheel further out away from the suspension by 8mm. To then use a wheel that is 12mm (about 1/2") wider "might" fit. You'll be 3.5mm closer to the suspension overall. See if you can get your finger in there to get a ballpark measurement of the available space.
Thanks for the helpful info.

You know, with the subpar way posts are indexed and everything (can't even find some of my own posts from a few months back), I've literally copied and pasted your post into a document I wrote up on maintaining my car.

Following up on the offset, would I be correct to assume that for a wheel 8" wide, I'd need an offset ~55-60 mm?

Also, say I get the 42 mm offset wheels you have, would it be possible to bring the wheels within the chassis by using a spacer? The concept of spacers is a bit confusing to me, as I assumed that they'd always kick the wheels further outward of the chassis.
 

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I have been wondering the same. @EricSan The way that you described your ability to measure with your hand was lessened with the 18's. Would adding a spacer to push the wheel out towards the fender compromise any stability or safety? Also a n00b with spacers, etc.
 
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