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post #1 of (permalink) Old 04-18-2004, 08:55 AM
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Need help on tires, rims, and suspension


I have recently purchased a 1997 Geo Tracker 4 door for my wife. This vehicle spent its first life as our departmental community police vehicle. It has only 24K and is running strong. I am currently re-doing the body and paint and looking for new tires and rims which has been a little confusing. I noticed that the its twin vehicle sidekick shows a 16" rim and larger tires on the sport model. Was there a different suspension or will these tires sizes also work on the Tracker like most things they share. I am looking to put some SCS (Sears) Chrome rims either 16" or 15" not looking for anything radical just a little more sporty look. Also can you suggest suspension upgrading for street and highway improvements.

NOTE: This vehicle will be used in the city for shopping kid transport...ect. Location Detroit Michigan burbs
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 04-18-2004, 10:28 AM
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Re: Need help on tires, rims, and suspension

Nice Buy!

The Sport model Sidekick actually has a bit different chassis/suspension than your Tracker or a standard Sidekick.
The wheels will certainly fit, not sure if they have similar backspacing or not. For strictly street use the 16 inch tire/rim combo will give a slightly more responsive feel but it will probably ride a bit harsher because of the lower profile tires. Not sure what you should do to a 24K Tracker for onroad thing about the lower profile/wider tires is they have less traction/steering in snow.

Both tires have a 27" diameter so you could go to the 16s and not affect your speedo or gearing.

One thing to check pretty close is the backspacing on aftermarket's too easy to get wheels that "stick out" further than stock, may or may not be what you want.

I'm a firm believer in dedicated winter and summer tires on all 4 corners for road driven vehicles for best handling/safest driving but most people aren't.

In your case I'd lean toward some late model stock alumimum wheels (2000-2003) from a Tracker/Sidekick and some good handling allseasons.

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 04-18-2004, 02:58 PM
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Re: Need help on tires, rims, and suspension

yeah..what toyguy said with this addition:

if you are going with aftermarket wheels for street use, go with a lighter wheel, aluminum or an alloy instead of steel. Racers know about "unsprung weight" negatively affecting handing. It's probably not even worth thinking about, but there are advantages to having lighter wheel/tire comobs on the street.

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post #4 of (permalink) Old 04-18-2004, 06:01 PM
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Re: Need help on tires, rims, and suspension

Reducing unsprung weight is free performance...good point [img]images/graemlins/goodpost.gif[/img]

One reason I like using OEM aluminum wheels if you can find some you like is you know they'll fit.

Another is you can change the look of the truck, people notice a difference but can't quite put a finger on it. This is my 2000 Silverado with 17" OEM Avalanche wheels. Right after I got them on I had it at the Chevy garage...they loved the look, most couldn't figure it out til I told them the difference.

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