BMW Winter Tires...Square Set-Up or Stagger?

"My BMW comes with wider tires in the rear. Should I stick with the wider rear tires for winter or use a set-up with the same size at all four corners?"

A square set-up (the same size tires at all four corners) has the following advantages:
  • Better winter snow traction from a more narrow rear tire
  • Ability to rotate the tires for longer wear
  • Simplicity of installation with all four tires being the same
  • A generally lower in a more common front tire size
For example, if you drive an E90 or E92 BMW 3 Series with sport package, you can use 225/40R18 on both the front 8" wheels and the rear 8.5" O.E. wheels with no problem. This is actually very common to do. Eliminating the stagger in this way works very well for winter and results in better winter traction.  
RIAL SalernoIf you minus size to 17", the RIAL Salerno is a popular, high quality wheel choice:

To view more information on BMW winter tires, BMW winter wheels as well as wheels and tires for almost any make and model of car, begin here.


Friday, December 14, 2012 by Forrest Anderson

Interesting that you were saying you could go 225/40R18 on an M3. Now BMW does not recommend this. However I do think the 225 would give you more traction in snow. Would this compromise the M3 in anyway. Thanks and your thoughts on the Michellin PA3 tire.
Monday, December 17, 2012 by Gary


The recommendations in this particular blog apply to 325i, 328i, 330i, and 335i E90 and E92 vehicles. As you correctly pointed out, the M car uses taller tires. BMW recommends 235/40R18 all around on the M car. We also suggest size 245/40R18 all around as an alternate size. The PA3 is an outstanding performance winter tire choice.

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