What is Wheel Offset?

Thursday, May 9, 2013 by Zig Ziegler

One of the most common questions when purchasing wheels is: "What is wheel offset and how do I know which is right for my vehicle?" Tire Rack takes the guess work out of shopping for wheels. One simple trip to our Upgrade Garage will allow you to enter the year, make and model of your vehicle, and view wheels that properly fit your vehicle.

The offset of a wheel is the distance from its hub mounting surface to the centerline of the wheel. It can be one of three types (measured in millimeters): positive, negative or zero.

  • Zero offset - The hub mounting surface is even with the centerline of the wheel.
  • Positive - The hub mounting surface is toward the front or wheel side of the wheel. Positive offset wheels are generally found on front-wheel drive cars and newer rear-wheel drive models.
  • Negative - The hub mounting surface is toward the back or brake side of the wheels centerline. "Deep dish" wheels are typically a negative offset.

If the offset of the wheel is not correct for the vehicle, the handling can be adversely affected. When the width of the wheel changes, the offset also changes numerically. Tire Rack has test fitted thousands of vehicles and our extensive database allows us to offer the proper fit for your vehicle.

To view the full list of wheels specifically offered for your car, shop by vehicle and upgrade the look of your vehicle with confidence.

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