Shopping for snow tires/wheels

The Corolla is in need of some snow boots for the VT winters (and also because I’m not allowed to run Ice Time Trials on all seasons, never mind that all seasons would be horrible on the ice) so it’s shopping time! This is actually the first time I get to buy wheels, my Outback and Mini came both came with an extra set of wheels for snow tires and my 2006 Corolla got super cheapo snow tires installed on the factory steelies when I got was given it (pro tip: Chinese snow tires can be had for under $20 each when you are buying them in July).

Anyway, I’m excited because I finally get to buy wheels for my car. They are snow wheels so they don’t have to be nice and will be filthy all the time. I also have to like them because snow tire season in Vermont starts in late October and lasts until late April.

Option number 1 is a 16" Sparco Terra in Gray:

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These are 2" smaller than what my XSE came with and are the same size found on the SE. A 16" wheel would get a 205/55 tire.

The Assetto Gara is available in a 17 and this darker gray which I think works well on the blue:

Stepping up to a 17 does mean moving to a 215/45 tire (I’m opting to go with a Tire Rack mounted wheel and tire package for convenience, which stops me from playing games with wheel and tire sizes). It’s also about $20 more per corner for a set of 17s than 16s.

So I’m torn. I like both styles of wheels for different reasons. The Terra has a meaty rally car look which is well suited to winter but I think the Assetto Gara fits the car better, so much so that I think I would want them as my summers instead of my winters.

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So what do you think Oppo, meaty rally mode Terras or modern spindly Assetto Garas on a bright blue Corolla Hatchback. I’m kinda leaning towards the Assetto Garas but I’m not sure.

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