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SL500
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56 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I've asked the question on a different forum, and I'm still a bit confused by the varied responses. I'm hoping to get a little better understanding on the ride difference when moving from 16" to 18" wheels on the standard (non-Sport) SL. Alot of people tell me that 17" isn't too much different than the feel of 18", and MB went to 17" as the standard in 99. I'm thinking of using Dunlop SP9000's on staggered 18" wheels on my 1994 SL500. Some people think the ride sucks with 18" wheels. What's been people's experience with this combination? When people say it's definitely firmer, is it teeth jarring or just a bit firmer? (I, myself, wouldn't mind it the car was a bit firmer.)

Has anyone had a first hand experience with this change?
 

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'99 SL500,'92 500SEL
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18 Posts
I think starting in 1997, 18

I think starting in 1997, 18" AMG wheels were offered with the factory Sport package on SL's, so 18's couldn't be that bad or MBZ would not use them. I have a '99 sl500 without the Sport package, and I retrofit it with the 18X8.5 and 18X9.5 AMG wheels offered with the '99 Sport package. The ride seems to be fine. The ride is firmer but not teeth jarring. The only time I feel a big difference is when going through railroad tracks or bumpy roads. I can feel some harshness from the rear tires. But I think this is normal since the rear tires are huge, 275/35/18, compared to the stock 245/45/17. However, depending on the tires you use, you may experience some road noise. gherman, if you are interested I have a set of 18X8 and 18X9 staggered AMG Monoblock II's for the SL. These wheels were from a '97 SL500 with the Sport Package. In 1997, the Sport Package cars came with AMG Monoblock II's.
 

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C320
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3 Posts
reply to your question on 18" wheels

I've only have my Benz now for about 2 weeks....it's a 2002 C320 that came with 16" wheels. I used to have a 1996 BMW 328i, and I loved the sporty ride and feel of that car...even with 16" wheels. Now the new Benz with the 16" wheels is an entirely different ride....it was too smooth, and not the sporty feel I was used to. I just got 18" wheels and rims, Lorinzers, and have them staggered. The ride is MUCH better. I can feel the car gripping the road, and while it's a bumpier ride, it's a sporty feel, not the smooth feel that you may be used to. I LOVE the ride and the feel of control when cornering with the 18" wheels....it's not teeth jarring at all, just a lot firmer.
 
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