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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone have direct experience using touring tires (e.g., Continental Extreme Contact DWS) on a C7 Z51? My objective is a smoother less stiff ride on long trips.

I have a Z51 with the stock 19 front and 20 rear wheels and enjoy driving the car on the many twisting back roads we have in Northern California. However, instead of switching to race tires on track days, I want to switch to cruising tires on the occasional 350 mile trip down I5 between San Francisco and Los Angeles to visit grandchildren. On these occasions I would like to install the non-Z51 wheel size 18 front and 19 rear. This allows a tire fitment with an extra ½ inch in sidewall height, which will give more tire flex. Then, going with a cruising tire with a more flexible sidewall should provide a less stiff ride. Comments on direct experience doing this would be appreciated.
 

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that sounds like a good idea, you would need new wheels, but you could buy a z rated tires cheep, like G.Y RSA, if its for road trips those tires are good for around 20k miles of hard driving and they are a for cooler temps, The DWS are fantastic tires as well even better but if money is no prob go w DWS
 

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You might check to be sure that the smaller diameter wheels will clear the brake rotors on a z51 car.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You might check to be sure that the smaller diameter wheels will clear the brake rotors on a z51 car.
Cyberay -- Thanks. I didn't think about that huge front caliper. You just stopped me from doing something very stupid. Oh well -- I guess I drive the Lexus for these 5 hour aim the car down I5 drives.
 

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Does anyone know for sure if 19" will work on the rear of a Z51? My thinking is use 19" all around for all season runflats if possible.
 

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I don't worry about run flat tires. I've switched every car I've owned from run flat to no run flat tires. Including a few C6 Vettes and two CTS-Vs. I just carry a small air pump and a plug kit from Stop and Go International - Tire Repair and Inflation Products. You're other option instead of the plug setup is some TPMS safe slime. Put the pump and plug kit or slime in the rear storage compartment and you're good to go.

Also the non run flats will ride much better because of the sidewall characteristics. That's a big reason to go to them.
 

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I have had multiple flats that were long cuts, not simple punctures. A plug flat repair would not have worked. So I prefer runflats for cars with no spare.

My question is still, will 19" rims work on the rear of a Z51?
 

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Previous generation Corvette run flats resulted in serious compromises in ride and handling. Those days are over.

Starting with the Michelins for the C7's, the run flat weight penalty was reduced to less than a pound, and the ride penalty characteristics were also reduced by a huge amount. For example, the inside sidewall and the outside sidewall are now much different thicknesses -- to both maximize handling and safety.

The entire C7 suspension system was finally re-calibrated after the final design/version of the Michelin run flat tires was received, and the C7's suspension (shocks, springs, etc), tailored to the exact run-flat tire characteristics -- both for the Z-51 and the regular suspension car.

Changing to a different tire, with its different characteristics is not something I would not want to be a "beta tester" for.
 

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Unfortunately over 6 months of the year where I live will have below 40F. So I need all season tires that are presently not made in runflat for the Z51 size. And as I noted I want runflat tires.

So once again so the question is not lost, can 19" rims fit on the rear of a Z51 car?
 

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I have had multiple flats that were long cuts, not simple punctures. A plug flat repair would not have worked. So I prefer runflats for cars with no spare.

My question is still, will 19" rims work on the rear of a Z51?
Yes, the issue us the front with the larger calipers. BTW, there was on thread about someone who put 18's on the front of a Z51 and it was so close he head to change the position of the wheel weights to keep them form hitting the caliper. I think the wheel itself will be the big issue with 18" fronts. I think it's doable but you need to find a shop with the exact wheels in stock to trial fit them to make sure they clear.

I did a quick check and surprisingly the 285/30x20 tires are cheaper than the 285/35x19's, at least for the Michelin's and Continental all season tires. If you insist on a lower performance tire for the longer distance travel then I would buy a set of TSW 19'/20" rims and a set of proper sized 19/20" Conti's or Michelin all season (or no season as I call them because they do nothing well) tires. You won't be saving much dropping down 1" and I also doubt the ride on the 18/19 setup would be all that much better.
 
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