Question about 2004 Ford Focus

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Rough and noisy ride with 16 inch Nokian Wr tires on 04 focus

I recently purchased an 04 Focus ZTW with 16 in Alloys and Nokian WR tires. It was extremely noisy and rough with lots of vibration at high speed and low speeds when coming to a stop. Checked the wheel bearings and the passenger front had to be replaced, and the passenger rear hub and bearing assembly also. It was only slightly better afterreplacing them. I put on the steelies with 195/60/15 winter tires that I picked up cheap second hand and what a difference in the ride and the noise level. After looking closely at the Nokians, I see that there is some cupping, and cracking on the outer edges between each tread on the two wheels that needed the bearings replaced. My question is can I expect any kind of decent ride with better 16 in tires, or should I get rid of the 16's and go 15 for both winter and summer. Also is the reason the bearings are going prematurely because of the low profile tires ? There is only 80, 000 K on the car and this is the second time they were done. I must admit I do like the looks of the Alloys and would prefer to keep them, but I also want some comfort on the highway.
Thanks,
Brian

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  • yadayada
    yadayada May 11, 2010

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Almost any 60 series 15" tire will ride better than a 60 series 16" or lower. Rule of thumb: as the sidewall gets lower the ride gets worse, but handling is better. Living room couch or NASCAR....you decide

Posted on Sep 14, 2009

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