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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm going to buy new tires and wheels, thinking Wildpeak A/T Trails and Motegi MR142s. My question is what's the largest size I can buy the tire, where there won't be any rubbing? I would like a meatier tire but also don't want things to rub. I might get a lift kit later on, but I would prefer to buy something that will fit fine as is. Anyone have any thoughts?
 

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I’d like to know this too! I’m thinking one size up, but increased backspacing on new wheels would definitely help.
 

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As an aside, a lift is not going to materially affect maximum tire size on this kind of vehicle. Keep in mind that you also need to change your spare if you upsize your tires.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I’d like to know this too! I’m thinking one size up, but increased backspacing on new wheels would definitely help.
I actually did some digging and found a thread on here of someone who has 235/65/17 on their Outback and it just barely fits with no rubbing. It’s a very close fit and doesn’t seem like it would fit with mudflaps installed. I got OEM mudflaps so I’m thinking about getting 235/60/17 now.
My only qualm now is I don’t want to have to keep my spare on the roof/trunk especially since I have a power rear tailgate. I’m not sure if this tire will fit in the spare tire well
 

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235/60-17 will fit in the spare tire well, as would 235/60-18. I think 235/65-17 might fit in the spare tire well also.

There's a huge extensive thread on wheels and tires - 2020 Outback Aftermarket Wheel & Tire Thread
 

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As an aside, a lift is not going to materially affect maximum tire size on this kind of vehicle. Keep in mind that you also need to change your spare if you upsize your tires.
Question on that. Considering most of the spares (aside from the Onyx) are smaller ones that you'd only use for a short duration, how important is it to get a spare so close to what you're running full time? Does the AWD system compensate for the one smaller tire? Obviously the tires would wear uneven if they were left on for a long time, but for a quick emergency application I wouldn't think it would hurt too much. But I could be wrong?
 

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The spare tires in the other outbacks are the same diameter as the OEM tires, just skinnier so they have the same revolutions. As for how much damage you'd do if the diameters are mismatched, it depends, but why set yourself up for doing damage?
 
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Gotcha. Still curious how the system would deal with a mismatched tire, just out of curiousity's sake.
I think the problem isn't so much the side-to side variation since we have open differentials, but it will definitely throw off stability control etc. A bigger issue is front to back differences in diameter affecting the center differential. If you had one small tire on a corner it would also affect the front to back difference.

Because our cars can off road, obviously it's not going to be damaged when the front or rear briefly spin at different speeds, but it's more the chronic speed difference that may harm it - like how lightly holding the brake for miles can wear out your pads real quick compared to doing normal stops even if they're hard stops.

Subaru has set a parameter of no more than 2/32nds difference in tire tread depth for tolerance, which translates to 1/8" difference in diameter?
 
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Gotcha. Still curious how the system would deal with a mismatched tire, just out of curiousity's sake
It will not deal with it at all which is why Subaru's specification is so tight for tire diameter variance. A tire of a different diameter rotates at a different speed which in turn puts strain on the drivetrain.
 

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The spare tires in the other outbacks are the same diameter as the OEM tires, just skinnier so they have the same revolutions. As for how much damage you'd do if the diameters are mismatched, it depends, but why set yourself up for doing damage?
Not quite. The temporary spare 155/80-17 is just under two inches (actually about 1.76-1.86 inches) shorter than the stock tires (225/65-17 and 225/60-18), thus the limited use. Many of the sizes quoted in this thread are about 1/2 inch taller than stock, so yes they will fit in the spare well, but I would limit their use on the road. For how long? That's debatable. Subaru recommends no more than 2/32 (1/16 inch) difference. I once drove over 1,000 miles with about 3 to 4/32 difference (about 1/8 inch) with no ill effects. YMMV. I used Discount Tire size calculator for my comparisons.
 

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As another data point regarding fit.

I put 235/65/17 Wildpeaks with LP Aventure LP1 (17x7.5 +35 offset) on my 2021 and didn't experience rubbing though only tested on flat ground. I have since added a 1.5" lift and don't think the lift helps with tire clearance. The front/back of the wheel wheel don't go up enough to make a difference and the lift doesn't change spacing from the strut. Increasing tire sizing does make me worry more about tire chains. I have a set on order that I'll put on the front but I think I'd run into clearance issues on the rear with chains.

In regard to the spare fitting, mine fits though it has to be worked in a bit and the bolt that holds the spare tire down is just a little bit too short to bite into the threading in the car if using the OEM round tire hold down. I ended up putting the OEM bolt through some angle bracket cut to length, flattened out and padded with tape. It isn't pretty but it's getting the job done to hold the spare in place.
 

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Not quite. The temporary spare 155/80-17 is just under two inches (actually about 1.76-1.86 inches) shorter than the stock tires (225/65-17 and 225/60-18), thus the limited use. Many of the sizes quoted in this thread are about 1/2 inch taller than stock, so yes they will fit in the spare well, but I would limit their use on the road. For how long? That's debatable. Subaru recommends no more than 2/32 (1/16 inch) difference. I once drove over 1,000 miles with about 3 to 4/32 difference (about 1/8 inch) with no ill effects. YMMV. I used Discount Tire size calculator for my comparisons.
That's odd everyone was saying it's a full size/full height spare - thanks for the correction. I assumed full size/full height meant it was the same except for width.

 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
As another data point regarding fit.

I put 235/65/17 Wildpeaks with LP Aventure LP1 (17x7.5 +35 offset) on my 2021 and didn't experience rubbing though only tested on flat ground. I have since added a 1.5" lift and don't think the lift helps with tire clearance. The front/back of the wheel wheel don't go up enough to make a difference and the lift doesn't change spacing from the strut. Increasing tire sizing does make me worry more about tire chains. I have a set on order that I'll put on the front but I think I'd run into clearance issues on the rear with chains.

In regard to the spare fitting, mine fits though it has to be worked in a bit and the bolt that holds the spare tire down is just a little bit too short to bite into the threading in the car if using the OEM round tire hold down. I ended up putting the OEM bolt through some angle bracket cut to length, flattened out and padded with tape. It isn't pretty but it's getting the job done to hold the spare in place.
Great info, thanks. I’m leaning towards 235/60 because they weigh less and I’ll get better MPG, BUT I have a feeling the 235/65 will feel/look better. I might just get the Method wheels since they’re the lightest I’ve found so far
 

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I have 245/65/17 Wildpeaks on Motegi MR118 17x8+45's on my '21 Outback... No Lift... and No rubbing.
The Motegis are a couple of lbs lighter than the Method MR501's I was also considering.
 

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There are few guys on the site running 255/55r18’s, @Schroeder runs them on stock wheels with 55 offset. These would run real close to the strut assembly and probably should have at least ET 48 or lower to give around 9-10 mm of strut clearance. but looks to be working for him. Because this tire is only 1/4” larger radius, and given the clearances of stock tires on the inner fender liners, it shouldn’t rub (as long as you use a reasonable wheel offset). I’m coming to this conclusion based on stock dimensions and geometry changes that would happen with the 255’s and lower offset, but would like confirmation from anyone else who’s tried these 255’s
 
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