How to buy wheels online – Fitment, Tire size, Offset + OZ Formula HLT unboxing

Blog_Cars_How to buy wheels online - Fitment, Tire size, Offset + OZ Formula HLT unboxing

I recently received my new set of rims from TireRack and it was an exciting day.  Partly because it was a little hard finding a set of rims that would fit the C450, was not out of this world expensive and also looked good.  Also important to me was the strength and lightness of these rims for performance reasons.

Everything came packaged nicely and securely so no worries about damage during shipment.

This is the fourth time I have ordered rims, tires or stainless brake lines from TireRack and I like using them as the whole process is seamless and you also get to visually see what the wheels looks like on your car when using their site.  If you are looking to get new rims and/or tires for your car that are not the stock sizes, I will also show you another site that has tools that can be used to calculate for offsets and more so look for that later in the post.  As with most our content, we want to share our experience and knowledge and so if you find these useful, please share with anyone else that would find it useful.  It will definitely help our site and YouTube channel grow and allow us to get more unique and helpful content out.

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Wheel sizing widget down below!

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These are the O.Z. Forumla HLT rims inspired by design and technology from Formula 1.  They are designed and manufactured in Italy and come in diameters of 17, 18 and 19”.  They are a 10 spoke design, one piece, manufactured with O.Z.s HLT technology, Low pressure casting process with Flow-forming and Heat Treatment.  The result is a wheel drum that has comparable strength, weight and performance to that of a forged wheel but at a more reasonable cost.

BBS pioneered this Flow Forming process but OZ has their version called HLT (High Light Technology).

Enkei also has this process they call MAT and Rays has Rays Cast-Flow Forming.  Even HRE also offers flow formed wheels.

These Formula HLT wheels are also available in 4 bolt, 8 spoke variants for those that need it but the ones I ordered are the 5 bolt 10 spoke pattern.  Mine are 18” in diameter and weigh in at 21 lbs each.  This allowed me to reuse the stock Continental tires that came with my car.

See these new wheels on the Mercedes-Benz C450 AMG down below!

It’s easy to order rims and/or tires from TireRack as they make sure that it fits your car and also give you all you need.  For example, you get a set of new bolts or lug nuts that will fit the new rims and, if needed, a set of 4 hub center ring inserts included with the purchase price.  You also have options to get metal valve caps and in my case, since my rims are black I had the option of getting black valve sleeves and caps.  This gives a more consistent look.  And if your car needs TPMS sensors, then get those added to your order too.

Even when ordering from Canada, shipping was fast (less than 1 week) and all customs fees, taxes and brokerage fees were collected by TireRack during ordering so that I don’t have to deal with that when my order is delivered to me.

This box contains additional accessories for this rim.  Inside you can find the OZ Central Lock Cap that includes a black carbon fiber center piece which gives it a nice clean and sporty look.  Also included is a tool to remove this cap without scratching the rim.  Alternatively, you can choose not to use the Central lock cap and use a traditional cap which is also provided. 

Make sure to order a set of wheel locks to protect your new investment.  They aren’t 100% theft proof but help to make it more difficult for a thief to steal your rims.  I have a video about wheel locks too so check it out if you haven’t already and need more info on it.  These are from a company called TPi and look to be high quality.  

Additionally, I will consider ordering a set of pattern style locking bolts as well to add more security by having two different types of locks.

Find out more about Wheel locks here.  Are they worth it and do they work?

Blog_Cars_Do Wheel Locks Work - Types of wheel locks Gorilla, McGard & more - What to know to protect wheels!
Read the wheel lock post here

As for ensuring the new rims will fit your car, TireRack already did all the work for me.  But if you need more information on the specifics or even how the rim may look on your car there are some resources online that can help.  These can be useful, for example, you want to know if the new rim will stick out further from the fenders than your stock rims.  Let me show you.

1010tires.com has a Bolt Pattern Guide that can provide additional information on the bolt/hub specs for your car.  This can be useful for ordering lock bolts, for example.

Enter the specifics of your car and hit calculate and now you have the specifics you need (If you are using this to buy locks bolts make sure the length of the bolt you get are the right length required for the new rims and not the stock ones.  Bolt length can also be measured using the new bolts that come with your new rims.  Measure from the base of the bolt where it will contact the rim to the end of the bolt in mm).  This is usually called the Shank length.

Next, if you need to know how much further your new rims will extend in or out and how much more or less inner clearance you have, use their Wheel Offset calculator.

Enter the Width and Offset of your original rims and enter the specs for the new ones and hit calculate.  You now have the Inner clearance and Outer position details calculated.

And if you need new tires and want to get different sizes use the Tire Size calculator tool to see if the new tires will affect your speedometer or not and if so, whether it is faster or slower.  This happens due to the different circumference of the tires that are in different sizes.  Even a small difference can make big enough difference in your speed.  It could lead to speeding tickets, if you know what I mean.

After entering the specifics of my car I can then select a tire size that I might be interested in.  Add a few if needed and then click compare.  Now you can view all the important differences, especially the Speed variance.

If you don’t want to worry about the nitty gritty details that I mentioned above and just want to keep things simple, just enter your car into TireRack’s site and it will return only the wheels and tires that will fit your car.

One other resource that I found to be very good is Wheel-Size.com (Not shown in the video).  It’s a very comprehensive site for checking on the Tire and Wheel size and knowing whether a set of wheels and tires will fit your car.  This is for those that want and, in some cases, need to get to the very fine details to ensure fit!

Give it a try below.

Wheel-Size.com

var widget = WheelSizeWidgets.create('#ws-widget-d1de61', { uuid: 'd1de6166a3f54be18a333b2dd8d23d44', type: 'calc' });

And there you go, most the tools you need to order a new set of shoes for your car!

Let’s see what the new tires look like on the car… Mercedes-Benz C450 AMG

To finish, take a look at TireRacks virtual image of my car with the OZ rims in comparison to an actual image.  Close enough, right?

1 thought on “How to buy wheels online – Fitment, Tire size, Offset + OZ Formula HLT unboxing”

  1. Pingback: Do Wheel Locks Work? Types of wheel locks: Gorilla, McGard & more – What to know to protect wheels! – Frakking Creations

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