How Much Difference Does Tire Weight Make? Tire & Rim Impact

Many car owners are well versed in the parameters of tires and rims. But, few take into account such a norm as the total weight of the wheel. But from the mass of tires and rims, the driving performance of the car changes significantly. Next, we will tell you how does wheel weight affect performance or how much does tire weight affect mpg and which rims and tires are less damaging to the suspension.

how much difference does tire weight make?

Car owners know that their loaded car consumes more fuel. This is true because the engine needs to generate more energy in order to maintain the high-speed mode of a heavy machine. A similar situation, only on a smaller scale, occurs when driving a car with heavy tires and rims. The total mass of the car will increase, which causes increased fuel consumption.

However, almost all drivers pay attention to the fact that after installing alloy wheels on the car, the engine consumes less fuel. To this it is worth adding that the movement becomes more comfortable, and the car pleases with dynamics. This effect actually appears as a consequence of the reduction in the weight of the unsprung mass. To this, it should be added that the light weight of the wheels prolongs the operation of the suspension and steering mechanisms. This can also be attributed to the savings factor.

Wheel weight varies with internal air pressure. An empty tire contains atmospheric air, the mass of which at normal pressure is 20 grams (m=V*p=3.14*0.14^2*0.9*1.25/4=0.02kg). As for the full cylinder, the density of compressed air increases by almost 3 times. From this it follows that the difference in mass will be 20*3-20=40 grams

Do you want to know Tire Weight By Size?

does tire weight matter?

The wheel consists of 2 separate elements: a tire and a rim. The mass of each of them is individual. 

In the first example, we will analyze the feature of the tire. It can be of different sizes and different seasons. The weight of the rubber depends on these appointments. For example, low-profile tires and standard tires weigh differently because a low-profile tire has less rubber.

For the second example, let’s take winter and summer tires. Winter tires are heavier and bulkier. Its design uses a soft rubber compound, which makes the product heavier. Off-road tires with a deep aggressive tread and multi-ply cord are also heavier than their road counterparts.

Modern automakers equip crossovers with reinforced tires made using Run Flat technology. On such a tire, you can move even after the complete depressurization of the wheel. But, for this option, you have to pay for increased fuel consumption. Run Flat rubber weighs 1.5 times as much as stock pneumatic tires.

how does Rims weight affect performance?

Today, the market offers car owners a wide selection of wheels. Depending on personal preferences and financial capabilities, it is possible to buy: steel, alloy, or forged wheels. The structure of the wheels is significantly different, which directly affects the driving performance of the machine.

  • Steel wheels are the heaviest representatives of the wheel family. But thanks to the simplified manufacturing and relatively low cost of mild steel, iron rims are the most affordable option for most car owners. In addition, “stampings” are easy to repair.
  • Alloy wheels is another type of popular wheel among the population. Manufactured from die-cast aluminum. In addition to being lighter weight by 20-40% compared to steel counterparts, these wheels are beautiful and widely represented on the market. The main disadvantages: price and non-repairability.
  • Forged wheels are lighter than “stamping” and “casting”. However, they are also made of aluminum. However, different production technology is used here, which lightens the weight of the product by up to 50% in relation to the steel rim and 20-30% to “casting”. It should be added that forged wheels are the most durable. They can be operated to serve the weight of the vehicle’s lifespan.

Consider an example:

how the weight of a sedan wheel with different rims on summer tires 185/65 R15 will change. Tire weight 7.9 kg. The weight of the R15 steel disc is 9.56 kg, light alloy 7.32 kg, and forged 3.69 kilos. Now add the masses of the tire and disks, and we get:

  • weight with “stamping” 17.46 kg;
  • weight with “casting” 15.22 kg;
  • weight with forged wheel 11.59 kg.

If the car owner prefers to use pneumatic chambers, then the mass of the wheel will increase by an average of 1 kg, which is how much 1 chamber weighs.

Do you know How Long Can You Drive With Low Tire Pressure?


The weight of the wheel depends on the size, seasonality, and type of tire, as well as on the type of rim. Heavy wheels are the cause of increased fuel consumption and rapid wear of the suspension. Light wheels and tires provide the car with dynamism and efficiency, and the driver comfort on the move.

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