E39 SSR GT-3 Rims
Prepared by VietSB
NOTE: Perform these steps at your own risk. All P/N's listed are a "best guess", so please double-check with your local dealer. These mods and repairs were performed on my US-spec 1997 540iA (11/96 prod date, M62 engine) but there is no guarantee they will work on other E39's. These instructions are provided for entertainment purposes only!
BACKGROUND: I'll admit it, 19" wheels just plain look nice. They are expensive, heavy, bend easily, and give a rougher ride, end of story. For the foolish few that want the same look, here's some basic info on these 3-piece rims.
Suggested Parts For Staggered Setup:
- F: (2) #020613 SSR GT-3 19x8.5" Rim, 18mm offset, 120x5 PCD (~$600/rim from The Tire Rack)
- R: (2) #020619 SSR GT-3 19x9.5" Rim, 18mm offset, 120x5 PCD (~$630/rim from The Tire Rack)
- F: (2) #101-133 Bridgestone Potenza S-03 Pole Position 245/35ZR19 Tire (~$230/tire from The Tire Rack)
- R: (2) #100-870 Bridgestone Potenza S-03 Pole Position 275/30ZR19 Tire (~$225/tire from The Tire Rack)
Recommended Procedures (Depending on suspension):
- F: 19x8.5" tire/wheel package weight ~54.5lbs
- R: 19x9.5" tire/wheel package weight ~57.5lbs
- Stock: OEM BMW 16x7" Rim, 20mm offset, 120x5 PCD w/ 225/55R16 Continental ContiTouring Contact H-Rated tire package weight ~40.5lbs
- F: 2.5" lip
- R: 3.125" lip
SSR's (Speed Star Co., Ltd of Japan) primary US Distributor is The Tire Rack in South Bend, IN. Generally, if you purchase from anyone in the US, I believe they source them wholesale from The Tire Rack. For this reason, many have ordered straight from The Tire Rack since their pricing and customer service seem to be very good. I purchased thru Miles at 888-541-1777 x251 and he's sold a few other E39 owners their SSR rims, so he knows quite a bit about them.
I contemplated the 19x10" 24mm offset rear rims, but doing a little math proved the extra .5" width was solely in the inner, non-visible side of the rim. Since The Tire Rack and others still only recommended the 275mm tire instead of a 285mm+, I decided to stick with the 9.5" rim which wouldn't stretch the tire out as much.
SSR now offers the GT-3s in a Bright Satin Silver painted face which appears to be slightly like anthracite.
To protect the expensive rubber, I had a 4-wheel alignment performed soon after this purchase at Custom Alignment in Mountain View, CA. They dialed in less than spec'd rear camber of -1.1º to extend tire life on cars that will not be tracked or driven ultra-aggressively. For the most part, I anticipate not rotating the tires since they are in a staggered setup. If the unidirectional tires allow, I might dismount and remount them left to right depending on inside tire wear, or not at all.
Amazingly, the ride isn't as harsh as I'd expect from a lowered car on 19's.
They arrive packaged with two layers of round cardboard, a thin layer of packing material, the face of the rim, a thin layer of packing material, and a final layer of round cardboard. The entire sandwich is bound by a few packing straps and usually arrives with pressure in the tires no damage.
(The rims are actually extremely close in height. Difference shown here is due to distance.)
Final results w/ H&R Sport for sport suspension springs and Koni Sport Adjustable shocks:
Questions? Comments? E-mail me:
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