Weight of Wheel/Rims vs. MPG

Discussion in 'Prius c Fuel Economy' started by 88Keys444, Aug 31, 2019.

  1. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Thanks for wanting to keep us in the loop... This is a question PriusChat has been trying to get an answer to for a long time... And just because the wheels are wider, you can still use the standard size tire... Some shops will refuse to mount if the specs don't match, but we've all seen plenty of low riders obsessesed with the narrowest tire on the widest possible rim.
     
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  2. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Anything to help out my fellow prius drivers. God I hate that wide look lol

    I really just want weight reduction. My local Discount Tire said they'll do it with no issues, which is a relief. I'm hoping for a nice smooth ride still, just a boost in mpg
     
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  3. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Just went on a little trip to Chicago with my buddy in his C. He has the 2013 as well, but with the 15 pound alloys. He got 56 MPG without even trying :cry: I have to put in so much effort just to get over 50. Each wheel on his is 4lbs lighter than mine. I wonder what'll happen when I go from 19lbs to 11lbs. I'm so excited!!!
     
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  4. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Just an update:

    I was supposed to get the wheels today, but the shop called me and said only three wheels were delivered. Now I have to wait for the other one. So I might have to wait another week:cry: They're giving me a nice discount now because of it, so I guess I can wait lol
     
  5. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Apollo has new wheels!!!!!



    IMG_20190917_180613.jpg


    Just got them installed a few hours ago.

    Here are some of my immediate observations:

    1. Acceleration is SIGNIFICANTLY better. I drive in Eco Mode 24/7 and rarely go in the red (I believe it's called Power Mode) and now it seems like I never really have to.

    2. Slight bumpier ride - I was expecting this and it's not unbearable. Usual bumps seem a bit more noticeable than with the stock wheels. However, road noise is the same. At least that's what it seems as of right now. Will have to drive more to confirm.

    3. EV Mode is more responsive - If I'm driving under 43 and I coast, Apollo immediately goes into EV Mode, which did not happen to me. It would take a couple tries for it to respond.

    4. Battery charge lasts longer- This was the biggest reason I got the wheels. Most of my driving is done in residential areas, so coasting and staying in EV Mode is HUGE for my MPG. As I was driving through the neighborhood going 25, I noticed I didn't have to be as cautious with accidentally turning the engine back on. In fact, I had more juice to use. I got up to 35 easily and much quicker.

    5. Battery charges quicker - Seems like less unsprung weight allows more power to go into the battery, rather than using it to turn the wheels. Makes a lot of sense to me.


    As I've stated earlier in the thread, it's pretty difficult for me to get over 50MPG. Here's my history:

    IMG_20190917_180024.jpg


    I hover around the higher 40's, which is obviously what the average MPG is for the model. However, here's what I got one on the test drive:

    IMG_20190917_175743.jpg


    This is pretty unbelievable to me. I did NOT, I repeat, I did NOT drag EV Mode until it went empty. I did not drive around going 5mph. I went on the highway for a bit, went up to 64mph, drove around busier streets at around 45ish, and through residential areas going 20-30mph.

    So a 10mpg increase is pretty insane. Since acceleration has improved, it is not necessary for me to turn on the engine to accelerate quicker. I can get up to 15mph in EV Mode while MOVING WITH THE SPEED OF TRAFFIC. That's huge for me.

    The efficiency in the battery has helped substantially. Allowing me to coast more is a huge boost in fuel economy as well.

    Here's a closeup on the wheel, fitting with the 175/65/R15 tires:

    IMG_20190917_180623.jpg



    Here's a side angle to show you the "stretch".

    IMG_20190917_180643.jpg



    I'm going to update this thread more as I get more data. Overall, it appears my hypothesis about the wheels was correct. I'm not going to get too excited yet, but I'm feeling very optimistic.
     
  6. Lightning Racer

    Lightning Racer Active Member

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    Looks like you need to get a stud replaced. Otherwise, nice!
     
  7. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Nice catch! Especially important on a car with a 4-lug setup.

    @88Keys444 I’m surprised the shop let you leave with it like that. (assuming it was like that at the time you left, anyway)
     
    #47 Leadfoot J. McCoalroller, Sep 18, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
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  8. roadrunner

    roadrunner His (blue) and hers (black).

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    Now that you have the steel wheels w/o the tires you should weigh them. I don't believe they are 19 lbs each.
    What tire pressure are you currently using?
    Congrats on the increase in mpg.
     
  9. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Wow I wouldn't have even noticed if you hadn't pointed it out! I will definitely go back today.
     
  10. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    You were right. Just weighed them and they were 15.4lbs
     
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  11. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Spotting credit goes to @Lightning Racer

    I just amplified it a little.
     
  12. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Another great drive IMG_20190918_163802.jpg
     
  13. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Lots of highway driving. 70mph average on the highway. Still fantastic mileage 15688694787392011614713417747205.jpg
     
  14. Mambo Dave

    Mambo Dave Member

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    Pretty cool.

    I did this with my truck. Same size, very nearly same width, wheels, but each wheel was 10 pounds lighter than the one it was replacing. Mounted to those wheels were same-size, but somewhat heavier-tread, new tires.

    I did do it in part for fuel economy (it was my biggest excuse), but the improvements to acceleration could not be denied, so how I ended up using them was mostly for speed. 0 to 35, only someone who really knew the truck would notice. 35 to 60 mph, noticeable improvement in acceleration. 60 to 90 mph, very noticeable improvement. That 395 HP truck shocked a lot of folks when entering from an on-ramp and such.

    Thankfully the 4th-gen Prius came with seemingly lighter wheels. Haven't weight one yet, but I'm most likely not going to change them out for something that gets damaged too easily by potholes (which is a danger with thin-walled aluminum wheels).
     
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  15. Mambo Dave

    Mambo Dave Member

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    "haven't weighed one yet" - again, the Edit feature isn't active. I think I wrote, then altered, that statement, and didn't catch the 'weight' vs. 'weighed.' Or I'm an idiot who doesn't know how to spell.
     
  16. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    I definitely agree with less wheel weight increases acceleration. It might be a slight change, but if you've been driving on the same wheels for a few years, then switch to lighter ones, the feel of the ride is very different. The acceleration helps me not get out of EV mode, so the mpg increase has been 15-20%.

    My buddies have been tellin me the wheels won't pay for itself in fuel economy, which is fine with me. This was mainly to personalize the car, but a solid increase in mpg is pretty awesome too(y)
     
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  17. Mambo Dave

    Mambo Dave Member

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    Without going back, I'm not sure how much you paid for the wheels. Also not sure if you're typically a long-term owner.

    Some lighter aluminum wheels can be bought for as little at $89 to $99 (for some American-vehicle applications). Over the course of 150,000 miles, they very well could pay for themselves with something like a Hemi V-8 (were the V-8 owner somehow able to keep their damned foot out of the fun - but that isn't possible). Probably much harder to get the pay-back from a Hybrid, but with a rough calculation, were you to save 2.1 MPG (that might be a bit high for a hybrid, but certainly possible with a larger car getting less rotational moment-of-inertia) by going from 45 MPG to 47.1 MPG, that would be about $375 in fuel savings ($2.50 per gallon) over 150k miles. (I used 45 MPG as a start because that's what my 2019 Prius gets)

    The problem with super-light wheels is that the rim-surface is much weaker, and many of them get ruined by potholes, unexpected debris/branch roll-overs, etc. So, in the end, many of them end up costing the owners more. But that still doesn't detract from the fun and enjoyment had while one was rollin' with 'em.
     
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  18. 88Keys444

    88Keys444 Junior Member

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    Just an update:

    MPG seems to be sitting in the mid 50's no matter what. The overall drive doesn't seem that much different in terms of comfort, ease of turning, etc. Maybe a bit bumpier, but that's really it. Residential drives get me about 60mpg, mid 50's for the highway. Huge improvement. If you're looking to improve MPG and upgrade the look of your prius, or any car for that matter, definitely get these. I do not regret getting the wheels at all:D
     
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