One of the most common questions we receive concerns the difference between a regular steel rim and a stylish alloy wheel. There are several differences you should know about before deciding what to buy.
A steel rim with the same dimension as an alloy wheel is a lot heavier. Reducing weight on wheels will translate into better vehicle performance and improved gas mileage. If performance and fuel economy are priorities for you, we suggest alloy wheels, specifically for diameters of 17 inches and more where the weight difference will be significant. If you are looking for the lightest alloy wheels available for a sports car or on the track, then the Flow Form alloy line is a good solution, offering very light wheels for a low price when compared to forged alloy wheels.
Steel rims are made of two pieces welded together (barrel and face), as opposed to alloy wheels that are usually a one-piece casting. Alloy wheels are generally stronger than steel rims; however, steel rims are easy to repair if they get damaged. Most alloy wheels will be very difficult and costly to repair.
Steel rims are usually the same design from one model to another, and they are normally black. The only way to change their style is to install plastic wheel covers (hub caps). Alloy wheels, on the other hand, are available in a wide variety of designs, colours and finishes; from a matte black wheel with milled accents to a glossy red wheel with a machined lip, you can find pretty much anything you want.
If you are looking to spend as little as possible for replacement wheels, winter wheels, a full-size spare wheel, or a damaged OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) wheel, steel wheels will be a perfect choice for you. The “OE” or “Replica” line of wheels is also a great way to replace an OEM alloy wheel at a fraction of the dealership price. If you want to personalize your vehicle, from plus size to a bigger diameter, or get a different wheel design, then alloy wheels are the ideal choice.