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The Real Stig

Rear tire alternative

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The original speciefied tire dimension for the Esprit S3 rear tires are 235-60-R15W alternatively 225-60-R15W.

Both dimensions are hard or impossible to find.

 

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I have managed to find an alternative by going to 16” rear rims with 245-50-R16Z.

There are more options in Tire brands – especial in the States, where this size is used on Corvettes and Camaros.

 

The diameter is 1,75% smaller.

 

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In Europe it seems as if this size is used by SUVs as most of the available tires are for heavy loads. I think the Corvette/Camaro arena can help source some better tires from the States.

 

The ride is a fraction more hard which causes a little more rattle in the cabin. Response has improved. I need to test the grip at some convenient time.

 

I know from others, that Esprit S3 does not work well with 17” rims and lower tire profiles.

 

For track use, there is also an interesting option: Toyo R888

Front 205-50-R15

Rear 245-45-R16

 

How to do

Lotus shares wheel pattern with BMW’s old 5 Series. I chose a Remotec pattern which is design related to the original BBS in the size 16x8,5. The center pieces are painted gold. Offset is 20. Therefore I installed spacers. You need a centering ring of 0,9 mm thickness, which is not available. Instead I used 3 x  0,9 mm metal spacers with 120° separation.

The outside rim face is positioned 3 mm wider now.

 

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Vintagetyres.com list two tires in 235 15 60 - Pirelli P600 and Kenda (?) - so they might be available? - but  I am not sure whether you can get matching fronts...

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I also have relatively fresh P600 at the rear, but this is 20 year old technology. A lot happened since.

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