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luke_vibert_uk
04-15-2012, 03:37 AM
Understandably you are all excited about your impending deliveries!

Not wishing to spoil your fun I thought I would share one of the problems of owning a 500 with the 17" SS type wheels.

I got the car out on Friday to give it a once over for the weekend and found this.

http://img192.imageshack.us/img192/6190/img0941sx.jpg

For the record it wasn't me but we wont go there but it now matches the NSR wheel as well....we wont go there either!

Anyway, the bead of the tyre has been damaged and needs replacing so a full matching set throughout has been ordered*.

The problem lies with the design of the wheel (is it a problem...I'd say avoiding curbs is the problem!).

The car is currently fitted with two pairs of matching tyres Michelin Sport Energy on the rear with in built rim protector and Yokohamas on the front without. Both wheels have suffered the same fate (for the record not by me!) and it is due to the exposed protruding edge of the alloy. The edge where the curbing has occurred sticks out quite a way from the bead of the tyre and is somewhat exposed even with tyres with built in rim protectors. Granted they are nothing more than a build up of rubber at the bead and only offer some protection, however having had them on flat faced alloys they did their job well. On the Abarth wheels they struggle and can only offer this as a warning to future owners...

This picture taken before any damage shows the exposed edges...

http://img88.imageshack.us/img88/4554/img0543ui.jpg

There are products on the market that offer rim protection (Alloygators) but to be honest I have read some horror stories about them.

*4 x Falken 452's fitted at 88.80 each = 343.20 ($544.04)
2 x Alloy Wheel Repairs at 30each = 60 ($95.11)
1 x day without the Abarth = Priceless :(

As a foot note the reason I have gone for a full set is that

a) there is not currently a matching set on the car and I'd prefer it if they were!
b) the rears are coming to the end of their useful life. Although I think they have been rotated off the front to the back they have had a good 18000 miles on them (not enough in my liking) (85% worn).
c) the dealer fitted and supplied with the car Yokos on the fronts which are terrible and the sooner they are replaced the better. I had an unrepairable puncture in one about a year ago and replaced it for the same tyre and wish I hadn't bothered They too are coming to the end of their life (70% worn) but have only covered 8000miles. The least worn tyre of the fronts will be kept and used as a spare when a wheel is sourced.

Roadpizza
04-15-2012, 06:30 AM
I can honestly say I get more mileage out of my motorcycle tires then that. Michelin's BTW.

Mike S
04-15-2012, 08:36 AM
It's not like a polished rim with a clear coat, so can it be touched up with paint? The repair cost was not bad either.

I'm really going to like these cars, the tires (tyres) are so cheap.

You are a real asset to this site with all of the advance information, it's like sending out a scout.

luke_vibert_uk
04-15-2012, 09:24 AM
Absolutely, being powder coated they are indeed easier to repair than a clear coat finish...however still annoying and still something to keep at the back of you mind when parking...more so than normal with alloys!

As to wear, the A500's are renowned for eating their way through tyres on the front...just thought I might had got 12k out of them!

Dwaynek
04-15-2012, 09:49 AM
The tire that come with the 500 in north America have a bead that is proud of the rim that provides some protection against curb rash. Locally there is a service that repairs rims thatvdoes an excellent job. They use filler and paint and they look as good as other rims when done.

luke_vibert_uk
04-15-2012, 10:36 AM
Yes the bead protector you mentioned is fitted to the tyres on the rear, as my OP says though these are not as effective as with flush faced alloys as the edge of the rim protrudes quite a way out almost level to face of the protector...

TimAllen
04-15-2012, 10:55 AM
I don't think it is the rims fault if you rub curbs... Any rim with low profile tires that don't bulge out will get scratched if you go around rubbing curbs :P

cmj912
04-15-2012, 11:36 AM
I don't think it is the rims fault if you rub curbs... Any rim with low profile tires that don't bulge out will get scratched if you go around rubbing curbs :P

I remember reading that the North American car's tires were chosen specifically to address the issue of curb rash versus the European version. It was part of an article that said something about the suspension modifications (that resulted in the goofy ride height of the Pop and Lounge) needed because of the condition of the roads here in the USA.

Such is our love for the drive-thru window, too. I can't remember if they said the rims were different but on my current 500 the tires bulge a good 1/8 to 1/4 inch out from the rim.
Not sure if the Abarth will be any different.

luke_vibert_uk
04-15-2012, 02:18 PM
I don't think it is the rims fault if you rub curbs... Any rim with low profile tires that don't bulge out will get scratched if you go around rubbing curbs :P

Yeah I hope you might have picked that up in the OP.

Fiat500USA
04-15-2012, 05:39 PM
The 17" wheels on the US car are not from OZ, but from another manufacturer (I forget at the moment:()

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_mraXzLQbfY/TsHgbwRn5mI/AAAAAAAAKCQ/jd_1lyJGtUk/s640/Fiat500USA%2520%252812%2529.jpg

Fiat500USA
04-15-2012, 05:44 PM
I remember reading that the North American car's tires were chosen specifically to address the issue of curb rash versus the European version. It was part of an article that said something about the suspension modifications (that resulted in the goofy ride height of the Pop and Lounge) needed because of the condition of the roads here in the USA.

Such is our love for the drive-thru window, too. I can't remember if they said the rims were different but on my current 500 the tires bulge a good 1/8 to 1/4 inch out from the rim.
Not sure if the Abarth will be any different.

It was actually done to withstand automatic car wash guide tracks. The rear wiper was also redesigned for drive-thru car wash use. Seems the dryer that runs along the top would bounce down the tailgate and smack the rear wiper bending it down.

unknown_eyes
04-15-2012, 08:18 PM
Not really a problem with 17" but with all wheels in general! This is why I try to pay close attention if I have to park near a curb and to potholes as well. Also a good reason NOT to let others drive your car!

Scorpion
04-15-2012, 09:19 PM
1. Can we track down who the manufacturer of the US Abarth wheel is?

2. What sort of insane individual would run an Abarth through an automatic car wash!

davidjon_99
04-15-2012, 10:13 PM
2. What sort of insane individual would run an Abarth through an automatic car wash!

My wife. That's why I'm glad it only comes with standard transmission, which she hates.

cmj912
04-16-2012, 08:19 AM
1. Can we track down who the manufacturer of the US Abarth wheel is?

2. What sort of insane individual would run an Abarth through an automatic car wash!

Or, for that matter, any car. You might as well wash your car with a barbecue grill cleaning brush.

wachuko
04-16-2012, 09:44 AM
My wife. That's why I'm glad it only comes with standard transmission, which she hates.

hahahahahahahah... no luck here... my wife can drive a car with manual tranny... and my daughter wants to learn to drive it as well... Daughter was the one that wanted a car with a manual tranny, which made selecting the Abarth a no brainer...

luke_vibert_uk
04-16-2012, 12:37 PM
You're 17s are exactly the same as mine.

For the record they are cast in tow different locations - some have Made in Italy, some have Made in Poland on them. Some cars are lucky enough to have both nationalities fitted.

Who makes them I dont know.

mspace
08-25-2012, 11:08 PM
I can't quite read the logo...looks like JMC or something, but it's really stylized. One hint, though, it's the same logo on the mags on my wife's Miata and my Subaru Impreza!

Crazy Otto
08-25-2012, 11:32 PM
I kerbed my 17 rim as well, in a moments inattention backing up. The problem is not the rim but inadequate thickness at rim area. The pirelli p 0 nero on US cars is and undersized tire. I will be changing to better wider rubber in the future 215/40-17 dunlop direzzas. Also I checked with my dealer the rim is $800. I will touch it up and have it professionally repaired in future.

GoFiatGo!
08-25-2012, 11:41 PM
Have you considered going with a rim protector such as RimRingz? To me they look cheap but people over in my Fiero community praise them. Might be worth a shot as they go for so cheap and cheap protection is better than no protection.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOhTAsXjQX0

SupraSkylineSTI
08-26-2012, 12:40 AM
Just get some wider tires. 215's.

Pinecone
08-26-2012, 06:57 AM
You can still curb the rims.

It used to bother me a LOT on my M3. Curbed the first rim when the car was about 5 days old. Now it is part of the car. It happens.

donnaloia
08-26-2012, 08:42 PM
Thanks for letting us know. By the way, are you the real Luke Vibert?

Rick Hunter
08-26-2012, 10:56 PM
The other bummer is that we NA folks didn't get drilled rotors like the OP has. :disturbed:

Fiat500USA
08-27-2012, 02:09 AM
I curbed my wheel making a U turn which I had to commit to or risk getting t-boned! LOL Anyway, I had Alloy Wheel Repair fix it, no problem. They came to my job and did it. $129 and you can't tell. Find them online.

Got the idea from watching the UK show Wheeler Dealers!

Pinecone
08-27-2012, 09:44 AM
The other bummer is that we NA folks didn't get drilled rotors like the OP has. :disturbed:

Why do you want drilled rotors?

They look nice, but are more prone to cracking and reduce the rotor mass meaning they are more subject to heat induced fading.

Crazy Otto
08-31-2012, 09:03 PM
Just get some wider tires. 215's.

right on..........i'm going to a extreme performance tire. the most responsive right now seems to be the yoke ad08. 215/40-17 is about 0.8 wider overall,and about the same on treadwidth (if i remember correctly). i crave sharp steering this should be a nice upgrade. the increase in overall diameter is insignificant (0.1"). the yoke will be adquate for track days as well.

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tests/testDisplay.jsp?ttid=118

Pinecone
09-01-2012, 06:17 AM
Just remember that if the AD08s get exposed to low temps, the rubber changes and they are no longer as sticky. So you have to take them off for the winter and store in a heated space.

MrFiat
09-01-2012, 08:37 AM
I curbed my wheel making a U turn which I had to commit to or risk getting t-boned! LOL Anyway, I had Alloy Wheel Repair fix it, no problem. They came to my job and did it. $129 and you can't tell. Find them online.

Got the idea from watching the UK show Wheeler Dealers!

So, when are we going to see some pictures of your new ride? :cool: