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///M3 Forum
The BMW E46 ///M3 is the M version E46 and puts out an amazing 333 HP and 262 lb-ft of torque at stock specs! There are an amazing amount of modifications for both the coupe and convertible models so read up and get started modifying your cars today!

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Old 07-20-2011, 12:06 PM   #1
Beemernow
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Front tires rub shock towers

I bought a 2004 M3 which had 18's on it, wanted the factory 19"s (not the CSL's). So I bought a set from a guy who had them in a storage unit and they are 255/35/19 and 285/30/19. The backs fit fine but the fronts rub on the shock towers?? I sholud have did my homework first, but I've only seen this style factory wheel on these yr M3's so I ass-umed they'd work....so why don't they fit or what were they supposed to fit on??

Thanks in advance for any help!
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Old 07-20-2011, 12:12 PM   #2
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Are they rubbing on the strut perch or on the strut itself (tube). Based on the size comparison of a 255/35 compared to stock 225/40, Im guessing its the latter. Which would mean you probably just need spacers in the front.
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Old 07-20-2011, 12:18 PM   #3
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+1 on spacers prolly only need 3mm to make clearance. dont panic get the spacers. they are cheap anyway.
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Old 07-20-2011, 03:28 PM   #4
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Sorry, I'm not sure what the strut perch is, just know that when I reach my hand in over the top of the tire and feel the back it's hitting the top part of the strut that you can see with the wheel on. I always thought spacers were not really a good thing? If I put spacers on is it going to make the front appear out farther than the rear, or should I put them on the rear also to line them up? Guess I really don't have another option, either get them or sell the wheels...anyway, thank you guys very much for the help!!
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Old 07-20-2011, 03:34 PM   #5
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If you think of a strut like the letter "t", the strut perch is the horizontal part of the "t". The spring sits on top.
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Old 07-20-2011, 04:04 PM   #6
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Oh, ok.....I'll check it again when I get home, thanks!
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Old 07-20-2011, 04:59 PM   #7
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Is your front suspension stock? Some aftermarket front suspensions have issues with clearance of the springs or spring perches.
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Old 07-20-2011, 07:07 PM   #8
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Hey I have a question for you guys...could I drop the tire size on the fronts one size? That would probably do it....
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Old 07-20-2011, 09:07 PM   #9
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STOLIDOG....it's hitting the perch
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Old 07-21-2011, 09:59 AM   #10
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Thats an odd problem. Typically you should only have that problem if you are running sizes that are a little larger than stock. When I went to the online tire size calculator, it said your 255/35's have a smaller diameter than the 225/40's (stock size). With that said, I have two sets of tires, 1 that is stock size and one that is 245/35 + 275/30. The 245's are very close to hitting my strut perch, but they certainly fit. They have about half of a fingers worth of clearance.

In summary, you shouldn't have any problems with 245/35s if you wanted to size down. I am also curious if a spacer will fix your problem on the 255's because I seem to remember other people running that size.
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Old 07-21-2011, 06:10 PM   #11
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Hey man thanks again for looking into it and trying to help!

So check this out, here's the deal....I got a hold of a BMW dealership here and they ran the numbers of the wheel for me to see what they fit. They said they fit a 2004 M3 made in Dec, 04 or later. When I gave them the last seven of my vin, they ran it and said even though my car was a 04, the build date was Nov 03 and they wouldn't fit?! They couldn't tell what had changed, it baffles me becuase I always thought they were basically the same car??

So, I can go down to the 245/35's on the same rim and it won't roll the side wall too much? I'd love for that to work because I really love these wheels and even though I know I can use a spacer, I really don't want too. They are pushing up against the perch so hard I think it would take a 1/2" spacer to move them out far enough, they already come almost right to the fender edge, anymore and it will have that roller skate look to it I hate, not to mention I'd have to space out the back ones too to line it all up. So if the smaller tire size won't work I guess I'm going to have to sell them and start over. I may be posting them on here soon for sale
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Old 07-22-2011, 03:29 PM   #12
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Considering that stock fronts are 225s, you're just cramming too much tire up there. Just get some spacers. And find a different dealership - they're blowing smoke up your ass.
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Old 07-22-2011, 04:20 PM   #13
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Thanks unixM3!....Yeh, that's what I figured. I spent most of the day yesterday researching stock 19 wheels for all years of the e46 M3 and of the 19's they were all 8x19 (fronts) with no mention of the offset being different.

So I called another dealership here and they told me there was nothing wrong with the wheel, it's just the 255 tire is too big without the spacers (like you stated). He told me the 255's were 30mm too big. He said whomever I bought the wheels from was probably using them on an X5 (they were in storeage when I bought them).

So I guess I'm going to move the 255's to the rear, get some 225/40/19's for the fronts and try and sell the 285/30/19 tires I currently have for the rears as I don't want to do spacers or have 225's on the front and such a wide (285's) tire on the rear.
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Old 08-24-2011, 05:45 PM   #14
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For whatever it is worth. I noticed that my 04 M3 with 19's and standard tire size had almost no clearance under the spring perch. I took it back to the M3 boutique I bought it from and compared it to the others on the lot noting that the others had a good finger clearance. I had them check it out and they stated everything was fine it was just that I had an 08/03 build date and that later 04 05 and 06 had different struts that allowed for more clearance...... thoughts?

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Old 08-24-2011, 05:55 PM   #15
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Oh yeah. I looked at the window sticker and the car came from the factory with 19's.... I don't get it. Unless they changed the perch to better accomidate 19's. Mine clear but barley maybe a credit card thickness worth of gap..

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Old 08-25-2011, 11:17 AM   #16
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BADPIG; mine has a 11/03 build date. Instead of just changing the fronts down a size or two, I had finally decided the 285's were too big and made the rear end look too blocky. So I opted to go with the original factory set up. One, because I knew they'd work and I'd have no more problem, two, because I figured BMW set it up that way for a reason and lastly I just think it looks better all the way around. So, I moved the 255's from the front rims to the back (now have the 285's for sale) and bought the standard 225's for the front. I just put them on yesterday and was immediatly pissed as I thought they were still hitting the perch, but, closer inspection (after my eyes went back to normal revealed there was a nat's ass of clearance?! Guess that's enough as I drove it and didn't hear or notice any rubbing, but damn it's close! Not sure why they made it so close as I would think maybe a little bit of flexing or expanding would make it hit, they are that close! Good thing I stayed with the OEM19's and didn't change to the CSL's like I was considering because I don't think the factory set up on those of 235/35 would have fit.

Hey man, thanks for your input!

Last edited by Beemernow; 08-25-2011 at 11:18 AM.
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:56 AM   #17
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I want to get some csl replicas as well. I think if I go with a 35 offset I will be pushing the half inch bigger rim size all to the outside thus maintaing the same inside dimensions and then stretching the 225/40 over the bigger rim. I am pretty sure this will work. The rims I am looking at come with a 33 rear off set which is 6 more than the stock of 26. I don't see 6 ammo being a noticeable difference as I have room on the inside and the outside appears to be flush ad it is. I just want to make sure
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Old 08-25-2011, 12:01 PM   #18
badpig475
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I meant 27 offset on stock not 26
Apologize for the other spelling errors as well.....autocorrect.....
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Old 08-25-2011, 02:52 PM   #19
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Hey it seems we have the same set up, if you go with the rep CSl's, can you let me know exactly what you ended up going with offset and tire size?? If I know exactly what will work in advance I might change my mind later....Thanks!
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:02 PM   #20
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I was going to suggest sizing down the tires, so it looks like that worked out for you.

255s on the front are pretty aggressive.
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