After Market Performance Camaro Wheels and Tires:Performance tires and wheels are chosen for the performance niche you are optimizing. Drag racers choose the widest tires for the power driven wheels (rear wheels on the Camaro) for ultimate traction and thin, low rolling resistance tires on the front to reduce parasitic drag. Road course and oval track racers prefer a balanced approach for lateral traction in corners requiring the same size tire on all four wheels or sometimes slightly wider wheels in the rear to improve rear wheel traction on acceleration. Gas mileage optimization introduces a trade off between wider tires which improve cornering and thin highly inflated tires which reduce rolling resistance.
The sidewall height is part of the ride and handling optimization. The higher the sidewall of the tire, the softer the ride. Lowering the tire sidewall height reduces the lateral flexibility, generally improving cornering but also introducing a harsher ride.
Wheels are not only upgraded for improved looks but also required when changing to a tire of a different width or sidewall height. Wheels can also improve handling by lowering wheel weight, lowering its inertia and allowing it to respond the road variances more quickly. A lower wheel weight also improves the vehicle's ability to accellerate by reducing the rotational inertial which the engine has to overcome to move the vehicle.
Largest Tire Table (body clearance):
Measurement in inches First Gen
1967 - 1969
1970 - 1981
1982 - 1992
1993 - 1995
Diameter Rim Front Rear Front Rear Front Rear Front Rear 15" Dia Backspacing 3.75 4.875 3.75 4.0 4.75 4.0 Rim width 7.0 8.5 7.0 8.0 7.0 8.0 Tire 225/55 28x10.5 225/55 245/50 245/50 265/50 16" Dia Backspacing 5.0 5.5 - 5.75 4.0 5.5 5.5 5.5 5.75 5.75 Rim width 8.5 8.5 8.0 9.5 9.5 9.5 8.0 8.0 Tire 245/50 255/50 245/45 245/50 255/50 255/50 245/50 245/50 17" Dia Backspacing 5.0 5.5 - 5.75 4.0 5.5 5.5 5.5 7.0 7.75 Rim width 8.5 9.5 8.0 9.5 9.5 9.5 9.5 11.0 Tire 245/40 275/40 245/40 275/40 275/40 275/40 275/40 315/35 Other Backspacing 5.0 5.75 7.0 7.75 Rim width 20x9.5 20x9.5 18x9.5 18x11.0 Tire 275/40 295/35
There is no shortage of wheel and tire options for the 1982 to 1992 Camaro.
The stock third generation '82-'92 Camaro wheel wells will fit 17"x9.5" rims with a 10mm offset (positive) with P275-40ZR17 in all four corners.
Front Offset Rear Offset 17x9.5 in 10 mm 17x9.5 in 10 mm
Wheel-Caliper Clearance:If using aftermarket racing calipers, one can measure the wheel clearance with the "X-Brake Factor" tool. This is a set of gages used to measure the caliper overhang from the wheel mounting pad to the outer most edge of the caliper to determine wheel to caliper clearance.
For gage and plus size guide see Wheel Consultants Inc: Plus Sizing Guide
Wheel well openings, ride height, tie rod ends (front), sway bar (limits front turn) and upper A-arms (1st and 2nd gen front) are the greatest constraints on tire and wheel size. By using smaller tubular upper A-arms, one can gain some clearance on first and second generation Camaros.
Wheel Rim Terms:
- Pilot: Diameter of center hole which fits over hub or axle.
- Rim Diameter: Diameter measured from the bead seat.
The CamaroTech project car uses a 17 inch rim diameter.
- Rim width: Width measured between rim flanges.
The CamaroTech project car uses a 9.5 inch rim width.
- Bead Seat: Position where tire rests on inside of wheel rim to seal air.
- Center line: One half of rim width.
- Back Spacing: Distance from extreme back edge of rim (not bead seat) to mounting pad.
- Offset: Distance of mounting pad from center line. Zero offset is a mounting pad located on the center line. A negative offset is one where the mounting pad is located inboard of the center line (wheel sticks out). A positive offset
positions the mounting pad outboard of the centerline.
The CamaroTech project car uses a 10 mm positive offset.
- Bolt Cirdle: Diameter of an imaginary circle drawn through the center of each lug hole or stud.
- Aspect Ratio: Ratio of the tire's cross section height to the cross section width.
Calculation: AR = (Height/Width) x 100
- Section Height: Vertical distance between the tire's bead seat and the the outer tread surface for a mounted and inflated but unloaded tire.
- Section Width: Tire's width from sidewall to sidewall when mounted and inflated but unloaded.
- Deflection: Difference between the tires natural radius and the loaded radius.
- Tread Width: Distance of the inner to the outer edge of the tread.
Metric Tire P-Sizes:For example: P275-40ZR17
- P: Passenger car tire.
- 275: Section width in millimeters.
- 40: Aspect Ratio
- Z: High speed rated
- R: Radial construction
- 17: Wheel rim diameter
Wheels:The lighter the better. A lighter wheel will lower the unsprung weight allowing the wheel to follow the bumps in the road. The lower wheel weight will lower the wheel momentum which will allow the suspension spring to press the wheel back upon the road after a bump and thus will improve road contact and thus will improve traction.
After Market Performance Wheel Manufacturers:
US: 15692 Computer Lane, Huntington Beach CA 902649
Savini Forged Wheels display (did anyone notice the wheels in the photo?)
The 1982-1992 Camaro can fit P275-40ZR17 tires on all four corners without wheel well or sway bar modifications.
After Market Performance Tire Manufacturers:
- Bridgestone / Firestone
- Coker Tire: Retro historical tires
- Continental Tire
- Falken Tire
- Fulda Tire - German
- General Tire
- Hankook Tire
- Hoosier Racing Tires
- Kenda Tire
- Mammon Tyre International - LingLong brand tires (China)
- Mickey Thompson - Street and Drag Strip
- Nitto Tire
- Nokian Tire
- Pirelli Tire
- Toyo Tires
Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS):
Tyredog: Inflation monitoring
(Typically used by heavy duty trucks)
MVP: Multi-Vehicle Protocol inflation monitoring
(OEM replacement sensors)
- Lug Nuts:
- Longacre Racing - Pyrometers, Tireliefs, Guages, etc
- SPD - Skulte Performance Designs: Wheel Adapters and Wheel Spacers
- Bead Locks:
- Champion - bead locks - drag racing
- ArbUsa.com - X-Jack exhaust filled jack bag.
- Tire Leak Self Sealing:
- Finixx - Tires constructed with self sealing layer.
Tire Wheel Mounting Equipment:
Corghi Artiglio Master: Note that this system is leverless and does not come in contact with the wheel.
Dynamic Wheel and Tire spin Balancer:
This Snap-on digital dynamic spin balancer can detect out of balance wheel-tire combinations, tire flat spots and impreoperly mounted tires.
Wheel and Tire Equipment:
- Vis Polish - Automotive rim repair and polishing