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VW B5 Passat TDIs This is a general discussion about B5 Passat(>98 (2004-2005 in North America)). Non TDI related postings will be moved or removed.

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Old November 16th, 2013, 01:20   #1
twigan1015
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Default newbie question winter tires smaller then regular tires 195/65r15 blizzak?

im getting winter tires for my 04 passat wagon, the tires I have right now are 235 45r17 and the mechanic I go to all the time (for years) has had a lot of volkswagen tdi's, my question is because the width of the newer tire is smaller then my normal tire, wouldnt that affect turning and handling? please any help would be apperciated
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Old November 16th, 2013, 01:46   #2
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Going to a 195mm wide tire from a 235mm wide tire would have a small affect as far as handling. But what you're looking for in a winter tire is the ability to cut through the snow to the tarmac. The 195mm wide tire will do just that. In winter I'd be okay with giving up a little of the handling with a narrower winter tire. I don't see any decrease in the turning ability with a 195mm winter tire. My guess is the 195mm tire would in fact give better turning ability. Maybe others will chime in.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 14:22   #3
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FYI, 195 65 15 is the standard OEM tire size for 15 inch rims on the Passat.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 18:35   #4
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when I bought the car, the guy upgraded the tires, I figure more width of tire means more traction means better handling..... then again it probably would do with the tread thats on there, it just worried me, mabye im thinking of it in the wrong way, thats why im asking
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Old November 17th, 2013, 09:43   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twigan1015 View Post
when I bought the car, the guy upgraded the tires, I figure more width of tire means more traction means better handling..... then again it probably would do with the tread thats on there, it just worried me, mabye im thinking of it in the wrong way, thats why im asking
Wider tire = more traction, I'd say that's true. But there's a downside to that as well: poor fuel economy due to increased rolling resistance. With the stock size tires, you should get better fuel economy.
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Old November 17th, 2013, 14:49   #6
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Go with the 195 65 15 Blizzaks. The narrow profile is BETTER for snow. You do not want low profile tires for snow driving.

You will notice a loss in cornering performance with the 15" tires compared to the 17". I have gotten through Washington State Cascade Mountain passes without issue with up to snow depths that hit the bottom of the car. Only had some ice issues and stopping while longer was dead on straight with the VW antilock system and these tires.
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Old November 30th, 2013, 09:38   #7
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Ditto. Have pushed even deeper snow with ours. Of course winter up here means you don't really push the car hard anyway unless is the rare dry road situation.

Have the same 195 65s on ours for 5 years now.
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Old December 1st, 2013, 08:47   #8
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My summer wheels are 18 x 8 and just last week we got snow before I switched over to my Blizzaks and wow was it a handful to drive. We only had about 1/2" of snow in our neighborhood and I took a corner at about 12mph and I slid all the way over to the other side of the road.

That night I put my Blizzaks on which are 195 65 15's on steel wheels and it was a hole new car. I took it for a spin around the neighborhood as it was all packed down and slick. The car would go, stop and steer like it was on pavement. I've always told people who tell me that they have an SUV to feel safe driving in the snow that my FWD Volkswagens with good snow tires will go through just as much snow as their SUV and might even do it better.

To sum it up this car is a beast in the snow with Blizzaks, I will never drive in the winter again without good snow tires.
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Old December 1st, 2013, 08:50   #9
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Oh and I forgot that the mileage is much better too. We got 43.1 mpg on the way into my wife's grandparent's house for Thanksgiving. With my summer wheels the best that I've ever seen was 41 and the average is usually around 36-38 mpg.
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Old December 1st, 2013, 18:02   #10
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I just put on my second set of 165/65/R15 Hakkapelliitas and they work great.
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