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Why Lightweight Wheels Are Good: OZ Superleggera Wheels

Jun 24, 2008
In today's world, many wheel companies claim their wheels are larger, new, improved, lighter, and better, along with other hyperbolic statements made to give old products a new label. Many car tuners, as a result, don't get what they expect when buying wheels.

Finding the best wheels requires drivers to consider the source of the wheel and make reasonable determinations based on the reputation of the wheel company, their history, other drivers' reviews on the wheel.

OZ Racing Wheels have an impeccable reputation among the world's racers, tuners, enthusiasts, and some car companies even choose OZ Racing wheels as their OEM wheels.

OZ Superleggera is an Italian word for super light. The Superleggera wheels add a new twist on the traditional racing wheel by applying advanced modeling and manufacturing techniques to make a strong and lightweight street wheel. Think of it as an updated version of the SuperTurismo wheels.

For our application, we picked the 8x18 inch OZ Superleggera wheels due to its style and construction. It fits the 225/40-18 Beetle tires and serves as an upgrade to the previous 17-inch wheels.

Many drivers are more concerned about the appearance of the wheels than their construction and weight, which is the wrong way to choose wheels. Basically, the smartest way to buy wheels is to know that weight should be as light as possible, fitment needs to be perfect, and construction needs to be good. Buying the wrong wheels can cost you a fortune in the long run.

Everyone knows that weight matters when it comes to any car parts. The unsprung weight has to be govern by the dampers through an up down motion. The rotational inertia is another factor that will make lighter wheels better. Driving a front-wheel car with heavy wheels will have a very noticeable negative difference than having stock wheels and tires.

What you need to know is that a 1 lb heavier tire will effectively add 8 lbs to the car because there are 4 tires and that adding a pound to the wheels will effectively add around 6 lbs to the car. Having heavy wheels is like the same as having an extra flywheel on each corner.

We took the 8x18 inch OZ Superleggera to the scale for a quick test. Including center cap and minus the stem, each wheel weighed 18.5 lb, which is very impressive.

As a comparison, we have seem some 8x18 wheels that weigh up to 29.4 lb! One 7x18 wheel weighted 35.6 lb, which was surprising. In all fairness, most wheels weight around 25 pounds or so and there are some wheels that would weight even less than the OZ Superleggera.

To explain why bad fitment is not recommended, unless a wheel has been TUeV certified for the vehicle, it doesn't belong on the car. This holds true for each and every wheel to use on race cars for a number of reasons. First, wheels should be tested to at least meet certain standards. Second, the handling is being disturbed by moving the point around which the tire turns on the ground.

Finally, the construction of wheels matter because they can flex when turning and hit the brake calipers, which would be extremely dangerous.

OZ engineers picked the right choice of metals for the Superleggera. To achieve a lightweight and strong wheel, OZ Racing used computer modeling and other advanced technologies to engineer the OZ Superleggera wheel. In addition, they added a special titanium-enriched alloy to the metal. The manufacturing process also includes a special method of heat treating and shot peening, which are used in aerospace manufacturing. The result is an OZ wheel that's very light, such as a 15 inch wheel that weights 11lbs or an 18 inch wheel that weights only 17.6lbs.

If you need wheels that live up to their reputations, the Superleggera is a much recommended choice. Available is satin titanium gray, also in white 7x17 4x100 pattern and gold.
About the Author
Please find more pictures and information on the OZ Superleggera or O.Z. Superleggera III on Direct Wheels and Tires.
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