Wheels and tires are usually the first upgrade or modification people do when modifying their cars. It was definitely at the top of our list as the right combination can dramatically change the look of the car and how it handles. We were looking for a light weight wheel and a meaty, grippy tire combo for our Miata. We found both with this combo: 14x7 +19 offset Gold Enkei RPF1 Racing Series Wheel and Toyo's R888 205/55r14 meaty Proxes tires. The Miata previously had 15x7's with 205/50/15 tires so we wanted a tire that would end up close to the overall diameter of the 15" set up. The 55's worked well and were only about an eighth of an inch smaller than the 15" set up - though you can hardly see the difference. We headed over to Texas Track Works to get these bad boys on. When I arrived to Texas Track Works, I suddenly remembered I had no lug nuts other than the chrome stock ones that came with the car. Forrest dug through his used ones from previous track days... ...and found a complete set of used Vorshlag lug nuts. We traded valve stems as well. The gold RPF1 comes with red valve stems, Texas Track Works sells Enkei wheels so they had a black set. Will likely change the red Enkei sticker to black as well. We're still debating wether or not to paint the car once we have a good set up. What do yo think? Any color suggestions?.
Here's quick Vine of Kyle mounting the Toyo R888's. Make sure to follow us on Vine for more instal vids - search What Monsters Do.
The tires were mounted and balance...
...and it was time for the old wheels to come off. The tires on the 15" were in fairly good condition so we will save them for a rainy day.
Once the first one went on, I was instantly reassured we made the right choice. They looked tough! Forrest of Texas Track Works, who specializes in road racers, mentioned the Toyo R888 is the best bang for the buck as far as track/street tires go. As far as wheels, the Enkei RPF1 falls into the same category - Light weight, strong, and relatively inexpensive compared to wheels with similar quality. These RPF1's weigh just over 8lbs each. We purchased 2 sets - one gold and one silver.
The wheels were on but the car was pretty filthy so we took the car for a wash after leaving Texas Track Works then for a quick drive on some back roads.
I know... needs moar low. We will lower the car a little more once the BC Racing Coilovers are on but not much. The car will be tracked this summer so we want to make sure it not only looks good but handles well when put to the test. But overall, we're happy with both the Enkei RPF1 and Toyo Proxes. They look good and handle amazing on the car. I did noticed a little more noise but nothing extreme or over bearing, in fact, I thought they sounded better.
As far as handling, the car responded a lot better and had way more grip when taking a curve/corner. It is a night and day difference between the all weather tires and these Toyo's. Next up, BC Racing Coilovers and Whiteline suspension upgrades! - Alex
(Use code ROADSTER to save 15% off your Respect The Roadster t-shirt)
More Respect The Roadster posts: Project: Respect The Roadster – Overview