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1994 s600 coupe
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422 Posts
throwing speedometer accuracy to the wind,
the optimum tire for any car, would be one that is the tallest possible,
that would fit in the wheelwell,
and also the widest for handling,
without rubbing the body either on the top of the tire,
or on the sides of the tire, inside the wheelwell
the tallest, widest tire gives the best adhesion traction from a dead stop
and cornering capability, on dry pavement

the downside is, the taller the tire, the more it reduces the effective overall gear ratio.
my S600 V12 is already pathetically highway geared in 4th gear
a 2.65 ratio in the rear axle, when the trans is in 4th gear at 1:1
that is what's referred to as a "lame gear" in USA street performance lingo
at the minimum, you'd want a 3.00 gear ratio in the rear axle,
with a high trans gear of 1:1
i.e. you'd want a 3:1 final drive,
or at least the ability to achieve a 3:1 final drive,
with another overdrive gear after that, for open highway.
I drive the S600 V12 in 3rd gear, especially at part throttle for extended periods.
this is speeds of around 40-50mph.

high gear in the S600 with a 2.65 overall ratio in high gear,
can be looked at as an overdrive highway gearing of sorts...
even though it's not overdrive, it's only a 1:1 in 4th,
the end result is the same. it's really an economy/top end speed gearing.
that's how they got the 155-185mph top end speed potential from these cars.

if the factory tire was a 235/60 and the performance tire a 255/45,
what that's saying is the performance 255/45 tire is basically 20mm wider
i.e. just a bit under an inch wider, around .800" wider.
the first number is the actual tire width in mm, for anyone who may be wondering what it means. the 255/45 is also a tad shorter. so it will actually deepen the final overall gearing numerically.
 

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97 S600 Coupe. Former 83 300D, 97 C230, 93 400E, 92 500SL, a few others
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395 Posts
Daidnik and Thom are absolutely correct in their recommendations for both tires for 16s and what to do when you buy a new set.

My factory Euro market Eltanin 18s wear Pilot Sport AS/3, which is the only choice for rims above 17.
 
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