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Old 09-26-2009, 07:42 PM   #1 (permalink)
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OEM Near-Aero Wheel Covers

I have a continuing but non-urgent desire to mount good looking aero
wheel covers on my Gen II Touring Prius, 16 in. alloy wheels.
Note: They come with dorky OEM wheel covers which I have removed.

I want something with a little more shape than a flat pizza pan or Coroplast
disc. Well, they don't have to be 100%, certified aero. Near or semi-aero
will do as a start. I figure an OEM wheel cover has a good chance of staying
on without additional screws, hook and loop tapes, elec ties, etc.

Yesterday I was stopped at a light next to a clapped out late-80s Olds Ciera.
Total boredom, until I saw the wheel covers:

Click image for larger version

Name:	Olds Ciera '83-'88.jpg
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Pretty good looking (I'm confident the Olds logo is easily removed.)

I was taken aback to find out that these are "14 inch."
Is this true, the Olds Ciera has 14 in. rims, and great, fat, sausage tires?
Or do Japanese car makers have a different measurement algorithm?

In my clumsy web searches, I've only been able to search for wheel
covers by make, model, and year. It's fairly time consuming/wasting. Is
there a better way to find only 16 in. covers for any make/model quickly?

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Old 09-26-2009, 11:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Rokeby -

I'm not answering your question, but I use tirerack.com to figure out OEM tire sizes. A 1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera had 185/75-14 tires. I googled "oem hubcap" and eventually ended up here for the Ciera :

Oldsmobile Ciera hubcaps, Olds Ciera wheel covers. Hubcap Heaven and Wheels

Question: How are you going to fit hubcaps onto your alloys? I thought hubcaps were only for steelies.

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Old 09-27-2009, 12:21 AM   #3 (permalink)
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...wonder if the same design was available in 16" diameter?

Last edited by gone-ot; 01-11-2010 at 05:43 PM.. Reason: corrected 15" to 16"
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Old 09-27-2009, 12:31 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Tele man View Post
...wonder if the same design was available in 15" diameter?
Here's a 15" Oldsmobile hubcap that is close :

Olds Delta 88 and 98 Regency hubcaps. Hubcaps Heaven and Wheels


If you spend enough time on the website, you may find something.

Here's a hubcap for a 13" Oldsmobile Calais (for a Metro?) :

Oldsmobile Calais hubcaps, factory Calais wheel covers. Hubcap Heaven and Wheels



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Old 09-27-2009, 06:45 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfg83 View Post
Question: How are you going to fit hubcaps onto your alloys?
I thought hubcaps were only for steelies.
cfg83/CarloSW2,

That's what you'd think... but then there's the Prius.

Prius Gen II 5-spoke 15 in. Standard wheels and 7-spoke 16 in. Touring
wheels come with OEM plastic wheel covers. The silver covers are moulded
to cover the spokes. Most non-Prius folk don't even realize they are there.
And Prius folk argue whether they are primarily "curb rash" preventers
(they do that) or aero aids (nobody really knows). If they are the latter,
any contribution is quite small and hard to quantify with conflicting reports
of +/- 1 or 2 MPGs.

Maybe Toyota put them on just to mess with peoples minds.

In either case, the covers are secured to the wheels with what looks to the
same mechanism found on steelies: a detent all around the wheel near the
edge, and little protrustions on the cover that when mounted are tensioned
into the detent by a ring made of heay wire.

I'm hoping that the critical measurements for the Prius alloy wheel and an
American wheel cover are the same.

And thanks for the pix. Both of those covers are what I've got in mind.
I like in 15 in. Olds Delta 88/98 covers. I guess I could always go to 15 in.
wheels. I think the 15 in. steelies from the Matrix have the right dimensions;
offset, bolt pattern, etc
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Old 09-27-2009, 01:53 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Mercury Cougar.



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Old 09-27-2009, 03:25 PM   #7 (permalink)
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After more 'net surfing, I've come to the conclusion that there are no 16 in.
OEM near-aero wheel covers that meet my desires.

But all is not lost. Perhaps others, especially those with 15 in. wheels can
profit from what I've found.

The best sites I found for searching are:

Olds Delta 88 hubcaps. Hubcaps Heaven and Wheels (Posted by cfg83.)
Oldsmobile (Cutlass, Achieva, 88, 98, Ciera) hubcaps and center caps
Buick Classic Hubcaps, Buick Antique Wheel Covers and hub caps - Hubcaps.com
Hubcap Capitol .

During my searches the term "racing discs" and "Full Moon covers" kept
coming up. Essentially these are the same, and are slightly domed
aluminum or stainless steel full whel covers.

Racing covers are available in both screw-on and snap-on versions. The
screw-ons require taping 3 holes into the wheel itself. The snap-ons mount
with spring steel tabs that mate with the detent/ridge on the outside of a
wheel that originally came with OEM wheel covers. Racing covers are
available for wheel sizes from 13 in. to 17 in. from different vendors.

Although many vendors offer racing covers, there appears to be only three
manufacturers. The difference between them being the number of spring
steel tabs that secure the cover to the wheel. Although I can't be 100% sure,
it appears that none of the three have a heavy wire ring to tension the tabs
for greater holding force. Different vendors carry the different covers and
you have to look closely at their photos to see the difference in the tabs.

Here are some typical sites: (Prices for 16 in. covers. Check sites for prices
on other sizes)
Universal 16 inch Hubcaps (4 for $99.99)
Racing Disc Hubcaps (Pop-On). Vintage, Kustom Wheel Covers (4 for $99.99)
Full Moon Racing Disc Hubcaps, Stylish Look, AutoAmenity.com (4 for $124.50)
Stainless Steel Racing Disc Full Moon Hubcaps 16" (4 for $93.97)

The originator of the racing disc is MOON. They carry both the screw-on and
snap-on covers. The 15 in. size go for $128.00 for 4. However, 16 inchers go
for $202.00 for 4. Why? I simply don't know, although they are "no coat"
whatever that means

Specialty Equipment Manufacturer Mooneyes Online Store

There is also a smooth surface, high domed full cover called a "Smoothie:"
Smoothie Hubcaps, Baby Moon or Moon Hubcaps Wheel Covers (4 for $149.00)
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Old 09-29-2009, 05:32 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Rokeby -

I've always liked these :

16" Truck/Van '88-91 (#CHV185)


However, I don't know if the wheels on trucks are different from the wheels on cars. What I mean is, I don't know if the hubcaps are interchangeable.

I found them here :

Chevrolet Truck Hubcaps, Chevrolet Truck Wheel Covers and hub caps - Hubcaps.com

CarloSW2
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Old 09-29-2009, 06:30 PM   #9 (permalink)
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...that Ciera cover looks best--simple elegance without complexity.

...just wish it came in 16" dia.

Last edited by gone-ot; 01-11-2010 at 05:44 PM.. Reason: corrected 15" to 16"
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Old 09-29-2009, 06:38 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Do hubcaps work on ANY steel wheel, including ones that never came with hubcaps? For example



Not sure if the lip is enough for a hubcap to clip on to

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