I have read your posts over on the Edmunds' site. You do have a literary way about you; always a pleasure to read. By the way, I too am in the Valley of the Sun. Where did you purchase? Aside from the tires, what mods have you added? On behalf of the 300C world, please post pictures!Tibbs said:We spent an entire afternoon putting the "20s or 22s?" question to a real world test. I took my 300C to a friend's wheelshop where we planned to swap spin, and drive with three different sets of wheels until we found the right look and ride combination.
I have to tell you that going in I was biased toward the 20s, I like having some rubber between the asphault and my wheel investment and the look of the 300C prototype was perfectly suited to my tastes.
Therefore we put a set of 20" Helo Wedge's on and took her round the block. WOW. The stock Continentals just plain suck, and unfortunately it takes the act of replacing them to truly realize what a pathetic waste of rubber tree plant they are. The handling was immediately improved, the up and down ride did not seem to change whatsoever. Very smooth. We saw some railroad tracks and accelerated (might as well!) and...OOOMPH...regretted doing so. Ouch. Yeah, you can feel the terrain alright. Still, the road divot to spinal column reaction was more than compensated for by the 100% improvement in steering feel. Did I mention the Continentals suck?
The 20s looked fantastic in comparison to the stock 18s. No contest. I was sold. Wrap em up!
But...for the sake of investigation, we put some tires on the 22 Helo Wedge's (by hand!) and after some blood, sweat and beers we had them up and mounted. Then we slowly lowered my black beauty back down to earth...
This is the moment when the heavens part, angels sing in harmony, and the entire service bay is showered in glowing light. Oh My GOD. That's MY car!?! There are moments in life when you know you've struck gold. Finding a ball with the sweet spot of the bat, feeling the laces hit your hands as you catch the game winning touchdown with two seconds to spare, or opening the mail and discovering you could be the winner of ONE MILLION DOLLARS! Yeah, it felt like that. In one act of brutal knuckle smashing effort, my vehicle vaulted in assumed worth by about twenty grand. This beast looked as if it had just chewed through its leash and broken down the gates of hell.
20s? We don't need no stinking 20s.
We immediately hit the street...literally...there is a 3" lip from the driveway to the street and we landed with the subtletly of an elephant bungee jumping on Saturn. Once on the road the car felt like it would take a crane, four story tall gorilla, or a violent act of God to dislodge the car from the pavement. Corners soon became the equivalent of yellow lights, just an excuse to accelerate. We approached an intersection where waiting for us was a dealer plated BMW 5 series. The two guys inside (I am assuming salesman and dupe) were so caught up in staring down this mystery vehicle next to them, they missed the light changing green.
So I don't count smoking them by a block length as any kind of race victory. But it felt great!
If acceleration and braking are affected by the 22s, I couldn't feel it. Frankly, even when the familiar railroad tracks repositioned my vertebrae and teeth, I was so blissfully ignorant, so awash in glory, so freakin excited about how the car handled and looked...who cares! I'll hire a chiropractor and get dental insurance. You only notice the "tha-thump" when you hit a bad pothole, exposed railroad track, or the 3" lip of a wheelshop driveway upon return. That one hurt.
The third set of rims was by MKW...I think they were MK-14s. We didn't bother with putting tires on them. Test over. SOLD! 22s it is. Helo Wedge. I'll have pics up in the next few days.
To give you an example of how drastically this alters the vehicle: We spent this past week in Sedona Arizona, just a hop skip and an hour's drive from our home. Beautiful red rock scenery, one of those rare places you can sit and stare at for hours on end...until I drive by in the Wicked Witch of the Southwest (as my children affectionately call it). We stopped to hike Bell Rock, and when we returned to the car there was a group of Japanese tourists taking turns getting their picture taken...with my car. Not the big red mountain, the evil black car. Blew my mind. But everywhere...and I mean EVERYWHERE we stopped, people approached and asked what kind of car it was, how dis I like it, "my God sir you are driving my dream".
The best moment of the trip (aside from hikes and such) was when I pulled into a parking lot and parked (intentionally) next to a shiny black CTS-V. The owner of which was coming out of the store as I exited my vehicle. I hear an "excuse me" from behind, and a nice man approaches and asks "is this the new Chrysler?".
"Why yes, it's a 300C".
"WOW"...and his jaw drops, spilling drool all over the pavement. He adds "It's about time an American car company made a car this badass".
Just then the Cadillac owner, who overheard the entire exchange I'm sure, meekly squeezed into his wedge box and crept away. Oh the irony.
Of course he did glance at the wheels with raised eyebrows! Bwoohoohahahahahahaha!