Wheel Estate

GUIDE TO Making your 86/BRZ faster


Wheels and tyres can make or break a tuned car w HEEL choice is particularly individual.

No two people are likely to agree on whether each car should have large or small diameter wheels, mega-dish or flush-faced lips; or chrome, polished, satin or painted finishes. All this, too, is before you get to differences in the actual design of the wheel face itself, too! And of those, there are more than a few options out there.

The standard 86 and BRZ wheel is a 17 x 7.0-inch cast alloy with 5 x 100 PCD and +48 offset. If your eyes just glazed over, here’s the quick info: 17.0-inches is the diameter; 7.0-inches is the width; 5 x 100 refers to the number of wheel studs or bolts (five) and the diameter of the circle they sit on (100mm), and that +48 refers to the offset, or how far in under the guards, or out towards the outside, the wheel’s face sits.

The 5 x 100 PCD is the same format Subaru has used on most of its cars since the early 1990s, which means there are rich pickings when it comes to wheel options. We spoke to Anthony Naughton, Sales Manager for TSW Wheels, for his take on wheel choices on ZC6/ZN6s.

“The 86/BRZ is definitely under-tyred from the factory, as any car with this much potential could really do with a wider wheel and tyre combination,” he says. “The 86/BRZ is really transformed with a bigger set of wheels and tyres. Offset is vital to getting w the right look on a ZC/ZN6, but thankfully there is a fair amount of room under the stock guards and you can squeeze a good amount of rubber under the car.”

Naughton is straight up when it comes to suggesting optimal wheel and tyre sizes.

“For the track I would recommend 18 x 8.0-inch wheels in a +35 offset with a 235/35 R18 tyre,” he offers. “For the street I would step it up to a 19 x 8.0- inch +40 wheel with 225/35 R19 tyre, as this will give you the aggressive look and the best in performance.

“Choosing the right wheel makes all the difference, as a larger 18.0- or 19.0-inch TSW Rotary forged wheel weighs less than the standard BRZ/86 wheels, and that can make a big improvement in the way it handles and stops. A lighter wheel means less unsprung weight and that means better braking and better cornering.”

For those considering spending next year’s rent on a set of three-piece motorsport wheels on their daily, Naughton has some sage advice.

“For an 86 or BRZ I would recommend a lightweight forged single-piece wheel. It will give you the tuner look most owners are after and still be strong, light and durable. The only benefit with a two- or threepiece wheel is the freedom of customisation of the wheel offset and width, and the variation in finishes.

But the 86 is a performance car, and I think it deserves a good lightweight forged wheel.”