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2010 2011 BMW 5 Series Forum F10 F10 Technical Topics Wheels / Tires / Suspension / Brakes 20s or 21s for my 535?
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      08-27-2012, 07:54 PM   #1
jbeemer13
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20s or 21s for my 535?

Hey guys,

I just got rid of my e46 330ci with 19" iforged flux rims. Now I have a stock alpine white 535 msport sitting in the garage and I am itching to get a set of rims. Hopefully within the next few months.


photo(10) by jphilipose94, on Flickr

I wanted to get input of others on weather to go 20s or 21s. I have been searching the forums for a while and checking out pics but still cant make a decision.

I'm thinking the advantage of going 20s is...
1. Ride quality will probably be better with bigger tires
2. Will be at less risk to bend a wheel on potholes. with more rubber
3. Assuming the wheels are tires are cheaper. BTW... the brands I am looking into are HRE, Iforged, and Forged1 wheels.

If I go 21s it probably has more of an aggressive look! However I am worried about the car ride quality and also it sitting too high. I plan on lowering the car with H&R springs. Is that enough of a drop so the car doesn't look like its 4X4ing. Or do you really need to have coilovers with 21s?

Any input or pics you have with 21s or 20s using H&R springs will be much appreciated.

Last edited by jbeemer13; 08-27-2012 at 08:52 PM. Reason: Added pic
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      08-27-2012, 08:47 PM   #2
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H&Rs on a 535 usually leave you with about a 2 finger gap all the way around, so I personally think 21s look better with coilovers.

21s increase the probability of bending, but 20s are still very susceptible... Ie I have a slight bent lip on one of my 20 forgestars. Bend was from the outward sidewall pressure from what looked to be an uneven transistion in the freeway - 880 north bound near Jackson in Hayward... Stay away from the 3rd lane.

Friend also had some barrel seal issues with his iForge - same thing, uneven freeway transistion over in SJ.
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      08-27-2012, 08:54 PM   #3
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Thanks for your input. I am beginning to think that 20s are the way to go without coilovers.
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      08-28-2012, 12:04 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbeemer13
Thanks for your input. I am beginning to think that 20s are the way to go without coilovers.
20'
21' are to big it'll look weird
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      08-28-2012, 10:16 AM   #5
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my 550 is lowered on H&R's with 20 inch rims and to me its a happy medium, not too big and not 4X4ing and i still have performance and great handling. H&R on 20's or 21 will be the way to go imo
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      08-28-2012, 02:59 PM   #6
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I have 21" Alpina wheels on my 535i and went through a similar internal debate before I got these wheels. I also had concerns about the ride and potential issues with potholes on the 21". After doing a bit of research I noticed that a few people had put 21" wheels with the slightly taller tires of the 7 series that come with 21" like the Alpina B7. When I got my wheels I made the decision to get the tire size of the B7 and once mounted I was pretty surprised to find that the ride was actually much better than the OEM 19" with Run Flat tires. Also, the car looked actually lower because the tires made the gap 1/2" smaller. The car itself was 1/2" taller, but the gap at the fender was 1/2" smaller.

A week ago I finally got around to lowering the car with a set of AC Schnitzer springs and the car dropped 1". Now the gap is even smaller and the car sits lower than stock but retains a great ride, still better than the stock with RFT. In my view this combination is perfect for me. I get a great ride, lower stance, great handling and do not scrape my bumpers anywhere. I live in downtown Washington, DC and have not had issues with the quality of the streets, which is not ideal. I have ridden in cars with H&R springs and did not want to get that bouncy ride they get. I take clients around and my wife and baby on weekends and nobody has even said a word about a rough ride.

If you are wiling to mess with the circumference of the wheel tire combination, I think the 21" with ACS springs can be a good combination if you get the taller tires.

If you want to see photos of my ride, check out my gallery. Those photos were taken only two days after the spring install and the car has settled a bit and sits about 1/4" to 1/2" lower by now.

I hope that helps.

Jo
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      08-28-2012, 04:30 PM   #7
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jftoha
Those rims are sick, but Im afraid they wouldn't last here in LA. Ive already destroyed 2 tires and 1 rim with stock 19 inch sport rims.

550i with Alpina 21's (Alpina B7 Biturbo type wheels), modified shock absorbers, lowering springs, quad exhaust, black painted calipers and black painted 'diffuser'.



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      08-28-2012, 05:49 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gatoman39 View Post
jftoha
Those rims are sick, but Im afraid they wouldn't last here in LA. Ive already destroyed 2 tires and 1 rim with stock 19 inch sport rims.

550i with Alpina 21's (Alpina B7 Biturbo type wheels), modified shock absorbers, lowering springs, quad exhaust, black painted calipers and black painted 'diffuser'.



I am sure in the right pothole, any wheels can get destroyed. I am pretty careful when I drive any car and tend to avoid most potholes all together. Still, I have hit a couple with the 21" without any consequences so far. Keep in mind that the tire size I have has the same side wall height as what most people have in the 20" tires, that certainly helps me. Also, by now everyone knows that the OEM 19" run flat tires can cause wheel damage due to their stiff sidewalls. Sometimes if the pothole does not get you, your run flat tire can do the damage. I hate those freakin tires!!

Not one good word will come out of my mouth regarding the RFT of today.
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Last edited by jftoha; 08-28-2012 at 06:27 PM.
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      08-31-2012, 10:30 PM   #9
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jftoha and gatoman39.... loving your guys wheels. 21s really look nice on your cars. And from the pics it doesn't look like the car is 4X4ing which i was worried about. Thanks again for sharing the info and pics
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      09-01-2012, 02:33 AM   #10
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When i bought mine i was not sure if i would go for 22" og 21" But i went for 21". 20" IS TOO SMALL for these cars!!!!!!!!!

If someone think this look weird they need to see a shrink!!!



This sits on Ac Schnitzer springs, but im going to lower it 1/2" more.

I have 255/30 and 295/25 and it does NOT ruin the ride quality.
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      09-02-2012, 12:11 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArneR. View Post
When i bought mine i was not sure if i would go for 22" og 21" But i went for 21". 20" IS TOO SMALL for these cars!!!!!!!!!

If someone think this look weird they need to see a shrink!!!



This sits on Ac Schnitzer springs, but im going to lower it 1/2" more.

I have 255/30 and 295/25 and it does NOT ruin the ride quality.
Sick Ride! I really like the look of the seven mesh wheels. Actually they are one of the ones I am considering. 21s look really good on your car. I'm still worried that if I go with 21s the car will sit too high. Looks like you want yours lower too.
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      09-03-2012, 04:25 AM   #12
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Yes, im lowering it as low as this one. This is the same wheels i have

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      09-03-2012, 04:59 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArneR. View Post
Yes, im lowering it as low as this one. This is the same wheels i have
How are you gonna lower it more?
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      09-03-2012, 07:37 AM   #14
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For the rear i made some adjustable rods for the self levelling system. For the front i have to remove the springs, and im going to apply heat to the last two "rounds" on the spring so it gets shorter. Ive done this a couple of times, and find it to be the best way to do it. If i cut it, the handling get worse. I heat it slowly and let it cool down slowly so the spring dont get damaged and might break.
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      09-03-2012, 09:18 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArneR. View Post
For the rear i made some adjustable rods for the self levelling system. For the front i have to remove the springs, and im going to apply heat to the last two "rounds" on the spring so it gets shorter. Ive done this a couple of times, and find it to be the best way to do it. If i cut it, the handling get worse. I heat it slowly and let it cool down slowly so the spring dont get damaged and might break.
Hardcore!
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      09-10-2012, 01:55 PM   #16
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As a 20" owner I'll tell you: GO 21" from the start!


You will love 20" in the begining since stock wheels look so ridiculously small on the car. But as time goes on and you get used to it, you'll realize even 20" look small in this huge 7 Series-ish car lol.
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      09-10-2012, 01:58 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jftoha
Quote:
Originally Posted by gatoman39 View Post
jftoha
Those rims are sick, but Im afraid they wouldn't last here in LA. Ive already destroyed 2 tires and 1 rim with stock 19 inch sport rims.

550i with Alpina 21's (Alpina B7 Biturbo type wheels), modified shock absorbers, lowering springs, quad exhaust, black painted calipers and black painted 'diffuser'.



I am sure in the right pothole, any wheels can get destroyed. I am pretty careful when I drive any car and tend to avoid most potholes all together. Still, I have hit a couple with the 21" without any consequences so far. Keep in mind that the tire size I have has the same side wall height as what most people have in the 20" tires, that certainly helps me. Also, by now everyone knows that the OEM 19" run flat tires can cause wheel damage due to their stiff sidewalls. Sometimes if the pothole does not get you, your run flat tire can do the damage. I hate those freakin tires!!

Not one good word will come out of my mouth regarding the RFT of today.
Really, RFT are horrible! When I put the 20" with Invo tires, it felt like going from track car to a Toyota Camry in ride confort LMAO. RFT are waaaay too stiff.


And yes, 20" really arent any better if you hit a pothole...
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      09-17-2012, 09:56 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jftoha View Post
I have 21" Alpina wheels on my 535i and went through a similar internal debate before I got these wheels. I also had concerns about the ride and potential issues with potholes on the 21". After doing a bit of research I noticed that a few people had put 21" wheels with the slightly taller tires of the 7 series that come with 21" like the Alpina B7. When I got my wheels I made the decision to get the tire size of the B7 and once mounted I was pretty surprised to find that the ride was actually much better than the OEM 19" with Run Flat tires. Also, the car looked actually lower because the tires made the gap 1/2" smaller. The car itself was 1/2" taller, but the gap at the fender was 1/2" smaller.

A week ago I finally got around to lowering the car with a set of AC Schnitzer springs and the car dropped 1". Now the gap is even smaller and the car sits lower than stock but retains a great ride, still better than the stock with RFT. In my view this combination is perfect for me. I get a great ride, lower stance, great handling and do not scrape my bumpers anywhere. I live in downtown Washington, DC and have not had issues with the quality of the streets, which is not ideal. I have ridden in cars with H&R springs and did not want to get that bouncy ride they get. I take clients around and my wife and baby on weekends and nobody has even said a word about a rough ride.

If you are wiling to mess with the circumference of the wheel tire combination, I think the 21" with ACS springs can be a good combination if you get the taller tires.

If you want to see photos of my ride, check out my gallery. Those photos were taken only two days after the spring install and the car has settled a bit and sits about 1/4" to 1/2" lower by now.

I hope that helps.

Jo
What size tires are you running on your 21s?

Thanks!
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      09-17-2012, 12:12 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArneR. View Post
When i bought mine i was not sure if i would go for 22" og 21" But i went for 21". 20" IS TOO SMALL for these cars!!!!!!!!!

If someone think this look weird they need to see a shrink!!!



This sits on Ac Schnitzer springs, but im going to lower it 1/2" more.

I have 255/30 and 295/25 and it does NOT ruin the ride quality.
Can you please tell me offset of your rims?
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      09-17-2012, 09:52 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tgrin24 View Post
What size tires are you running on your 21s?

Thanks!
I am running Alpina B7 tire sizes in my car. I know they are not necessarily the right size, but I wanted to minimize the chance of wheels damage when hitting a pothole and also maintain better ride quality. With the tire size I have I add about 1/2" to the ride height, but I also cut down the fender gap 1/2". I am very happy with the results and with ACS springs the ride and handling is very good. My tire sizes are as follows.

FRONT 245/35ZR -21
REAR 285/30ZR -21

Here are a few shots of the car with the 21" and the tires listed above.
Attached Images
    
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      09-17-2012, 10:05 PM   #21
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I'm all for 21's and I notice all the forum members that have 21's run coils.
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      09-18-2012, 02:46 AM   #22
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i runs 20's and love them, but i do plan on going up to 21's eventually.
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