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Old 12-13-2007, 09:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: 1000 Islands, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 22,451

Blackfly - '98 Geo Metro
Team Metro
Last 3: 70.09 mpg (US)

MPGiata - '90 Mazda Miata
90 day: 55.97 mpg (US)

Even Fancier Metro - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage top spec
90 day: 70.75 mpg (US)

Appliance car - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage ES (base)
90 day: 67.41 mpg (US)
Thanks: 3,983
Thanked 6,872 Times in 3,565 Posts mailbag: what about lightweight rims?

Got another one this week:

How about a lighter rim and tire combo? I know it will help all around performance, so it should also help fuel economy.

I have never heard of light weight tires (you could use a smaller tire - Metros came with 12" or 13" tires, but I don't think there are a lot of options there). So guess my question should just be limited to lighter rims.
Lightweight rims are a definite efficiency booster.

They're particularly good for city driving - or any situation where speed is changing frequently (pulse & glide, anyone?). All the "high performance" cars - at both ends of the performance spectrum - have 'em. Ferarris to Civic VX's.

Honda Canada just added the rims from its hybrid model as standard equipment on its non-hybrid 5-speed model (along with LRR tires, underbody panels and a deck lid spoiler) to lower the fuel consumption enough to earn an efficiency rebate from the government. (And now the non-hybrid looks identical to the hybrid).

Weight reduction in general is a favourite ecomodding tactic, but pound for pound, it's even more effective to take off rotating mass than static mass. I've read in various places that taking off 1 lb of rotating mass is the same as removing anywhere from 7 to 16 lbs elsewhere (there's the Internet for ya). [EDIT: this bit of fuzzy Internet fluff is corrected below.]

The problem for me is my car has an uncommon bolt pattern.

Whatever the Honda pattern is, it's not the Geo's! Ask me how I know.

When I was shopping for my first Firefly, I had a set of VX rims sitting in the garage waiting. Unfortunately, the closest I got to putting them on the car was in Photoshop....

If the Metros had an affordable, lightweight 13 inch rim option like the Honda people have, it would be on the Blackfly in a heartbeat.

And a heartbeat later, they'd disappear behind a smooth wheel cover.


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