New wheels and tyres for the VXR, problems for the Zafira. Eek!
In the Vectra’s last project progress report, I revealed the decision to cover the car’s Arden Blue paintwork with a striking new 3M vinyl wrap in advance of PVS. Those of you who attend the show will see the big reveal on the Performance
Vauxhall stand after the VXR returns from the workshop of expert wrapping outfit (and supplier of wraps to the BTCC), Joyce Design. You’ll also see the car rolling on new wheels, which arrived just as we were about to go to print.
I reasoned that the impact of updated bodywork might be diminished if I left the Irmscher Sport Stars in place. They’re great rims and are in Irmscher’s difficult-to-source offset of ET30 with staggered fitment, but if the intention is to give the car a new look, then it makes sense to complement the aweinspiring wrap I’ve picked (from a shortlist of 3M Gloss Green Envy, Satin Flip Volcanic Flare and Gloss Flip Deep Space) with new wheels.
When sold new, the car was equipped with nineteen-inch VXR Ronals. Regular readers will recall the chunky five-spokes were recently refurbished by Huntingdon-based alloy specialist, Wheel Genie, before being put to one side for my MV6 project. I liked the idea of returning nineteens to the VXR – the Sport Stars (also manufactured by Ronal) are eighteen inches in diameter, leaving a Rizla paper’s width between the six-piston AP Racing calipers and each rim at the front of the car – and started to look at the various options available.
Much like the style of vinyl wrap I’ve picked for the Vectra, I wanted to fit a set of wheels not ordinarily seen on VXRs. Punching the car’s particulars into various online configurators produced a wide selection of available designs. Among those on offer were wheels from celebrated Italian automotive styling outfit, MOMO.
There was a time when every
WHEELS IN MOTION
other modified car you saw was riding on a set of MOMO wheels (Arrows were the favoured rim of the discerning Cavalier owner!). Since that time, a huge number of aftermarket manufacturers have got in on the act, but MOMO’s output is still strong, as evidenced by the company’s latest range of designs (check ‘em out at wheelwright.co.uk).
Revenge is MOMO’s first split tenspoke road rim in thirty years. Characterised by innovative carved lines, it’s available as a cast singlepiece wheel in sizes ranging from fifteen to twenty inches. Four or five stud fitment, a huge selection of widths and a variety of PCDs are available to choose from. Finishes include matte anthracite and matte black, the latter with the option of a diamond-cut face.
Straightaway, I knew I’d found the right wheel for the car; a quick Google search for images of vehicles already rolling on Revenge rims highlighted just how good they look on pretty much anything from Volkswagens to Maseratis. Without hesitation, I placed my order.
The gloss black vinyl currently covering the car’s roof and brightwork is to be replaced with 3M Satin Black at the same time the rest of the exterior is updated. With this in mind, a matte black finish for the new wheels made perfect sense. I’ve ordered them as nineteens with 8.5-inches of width and an ET48 offset, which means they’re wider than the OEM wheels, but narrower than the 9J Sport Stars, which stick out at the rear and show great enthusiasm for catching their neighbouring wheel arches. Drat! As I write this report, the car is currently with Pod-dweller, Gary Pemble, at his Dunstable-based body shop, West Herts Customs, where the damage is being repaired. More on this in my next update.
The new wheels came complete with centre caps, a new set of bolts and the required spigot rings. All are MOMO parts, and I can’t wait to fit them to each corner of the car. Before being able to do so, there was the small matter of new wheels requiring new tyres. Rafal and Keith at Wheel Genie wrapped the aforementioned Ronals in Yokohama ADVAN Neova AD08R rubber after they’d finished refurbishing them, and it was a case of history repeating when I returned to visit the lads with another set of AD08Rs and a request for the brilliant black circles to be fitted to the VXR’s MOMOs.
We feature loads of performance Vauxhalls making use of the AD80R, Yokohama’s “ultimate street sport tyre”. Not only is it a design which looks fantastic (an aggressive appearance enhanced by a chunky rounded tread pattern offering excellent water drainage on wet surfaces), the superb trackfriendly, fast-road rubber delivers shorter braking distances and improved grip in all weather thanks to extra carbon, silica and orange oil added to the tyre compound. Rapid reflex twin ribs provide stability, while steel sidewall inserts resist lateral deflection and deliver heightened control during hard cornering.
After the tyres were fitted and the wheels were balanced, all that was left for me to do was to give them a clean in readiness for when the car returns from the body shop. I’ll be applying a wheel-specific, heatresistant wax to ensure each rim is offered extra protection from dirt and brake dust, and then it’ll be time to head over to Joyce Design for the vinyl countdown…
a full nineteen inches of matte black momo revenge glory
Yokohama’s ultimate street sport tyre
along with the 3m wrap, these wheels and tyres are going to look amazing on the VXr
Big changes are afoot!