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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a new XC90 T8 Inscription coming in - the dealer ordered it with 21 inch wheels. The car has air suspension. My question is: do the 21" wheels have a harder ride? Does the tread last as long? Advantages vs disadvantages? I am more interested in the ride -- then the looks of the wheels. Should get them changed to the standard 20" wheels? Comments. I have looked at the other posts - but only 1 comment on the ride and none vis a vis tread wear.
 

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Hey Cactus Gary. I have the same car, without the Air Suspension. It has 21 inch Rims, ride is a 7 on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the best. My Winter set, on aftermarket Rims are 19 Inches, and the ride is very nice, probably a 8 to 9, deu to the extra cush of the tires. I'm in the GTA also, so familiar with the roads your on. Also, I did not buy the XC90 for performance and such, its a family cruiser/hauler. If I had the choice, I would have asked the Dealer to trade to the 20" rims, and maybe get a $400 rebate for other Volvo stuff. (the 21's are more expensive than the 20's) The only thing I would be concerned with is the Air Suspension during the winter months, I heard the Air Susp gets a beating from our potholes and SALT. Not sure if they use salt in Sweden. Anyways, happy motorings.
 

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Congrats on your new Volvo!
Does the tread last as long?
All other things being equal (especially tire outer diameter), tread wear is likely the same.
I am more interested in the ride -- then the looks of the wheels.
Assuming everything's the same especially the same tire (outer) diameter, the smaller rims will theoretically always ride better with respect to bumps because of more (radial) rubber - how noticeable can be up for debate to some folks. However if you're a speed racer and like to swerve then the higher radial rubber for smaller rims will negatively impact your handling (ie more flexible rubber rather than more stiff rim metal) - how much is up for debate in this 2.5 ton family hauler.
Smaller rims makes tires much much more affordable and less susceptible to curb damage and pothole damage (ie bent rims).
We have a 2019 T8i with 22" rims (for both winter and summer) and air suspension - but I'm biased to the looks as long as the ride isn't compromised. No ride problems with that at all here in the pothole filled northeast so far, but I drive like a hypermiling grandma . . . Good luck!
 

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In addition to the poorer ride quality, the 21" tires are about 100$ more expensive per tire than 20". I have 21" and wish had 20".
 

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20" are all seasons.

22" are summer only.

not sure about the 21"...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
TX my '17 has the air and so far no problems. This car is coming from out west (i.e., no hybrids available in Pearl around here - so the car has the 21" Diamond cut alloy wheels - I simply like the standard ones better and do not want a harsh ride - I only use 1 set of tires - retired - so if it snows, I stay home and have a martini - dealer says Volvo will not let them change the wheels so I have asked Volvo Canada to comment
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
In addition to the poorer ride quality, the 21" tires are about 100$ more expensive per tire than 20". I have 21" and wish had 20".
Thanks
 

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I have a T8 with the Air suspension and the 21” rims with Pirelli tyres. Ride is excellent; some harshness at times but I believe it is as much to do with the air suspension as opposed to it just being the tyres. I have 20K miles on these original Pirellis and they will take me through to next winter when I’ll replace them with Michelins. The Michelin’s alone will produce a better ride and handling balance than the Pirellis, that’s almost guaranteed. The 21” wheels are very good looking on the car btw.

Bish
 

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Have a Rdesign with 22" summer and 20" winter tires. I couldn't wait to get the 22" back, even though the 20" had a softer ride.
 

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20s are too small a wheel for the xc90's wheel well. I have the 21" diamond cuts and wish I got the 22"s...

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I think the standard Inscription 20's look good and are plenty big enough for the wheel openings. I just bought a T6 Inscrip with air suspension and 21's, the dealer would not change them, so I bought a set of 20's from a dealer who sells take-off's at a very reasonable price. To each his own, but I think the ride with the 21's is too harsh over small irregularities like concrete seams, RR crossings, etc. I'm not going to autocross this thing, so the handling benefits of 21 or 22" are irrelevant to me. Plus, as someone else already mentioned, the cost of 21" tires is significantly more (today) than 20" -- however, by the time I have to replace the OEM tires in 2 or 3 years, prices on 21's may come down since many OEM's seem to be moving to larger wheels.
 

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I have a set of 20” rims with the OEM tire and don’t drive like a mad person (I think). I have less than 17,000 miles and need new tires soon. Anyone recommend something beside Pirelli?




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I have a set of 20” rims with the OEM tire and don’t drive like a mad person (I think). I have less than 17,000 miles and need new tires soon. Anyone recommend something beside Pirelli?
I would get the Michelin Sport A/S 3 or the Continental Extremecontact CWS 06, ultra high performance all season tires.

As a meh option you could look into the Michelin Premier LTX with similar performance and thread hardness as the Pirelli but a bit better.
 

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I have a set of 20” rims with the OEM tire and don’t drive like a mad person (I think). I have less than 17,000 miles and need new tires soon. Anyone recommend something beside Pirelli?




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Same boat here... 22k and my original Pirellis are toast. I am also considering the Continentals or Michelins listed above. Tire Rack shows good ratings for the Contis DWS 06 in snow so that might be my choice.

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20s are too small a wheel for the xc90's wheel well. I have the 21" diamond cuts and wish I got the 22"s...

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FWIW the outside diameter of the tire is exactly the same between 20's, 21's and 22's. The difference is shorter sidewalls, but they fill the wheel well exactly the same.
 

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FWIW the outside diameter of the tire is exactly the same between 20's, 21's and 22's. The difference is shorter sidewalls, but they fill the wheel well exactly the same.
I said wheel not tire. The wheels are really what fill the gap since the tires are black and blend right into the gap. In hindsight I wish I went with the 22s.

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