Cold Weather / Winter Tyre Sizing


Registered User

After recently bumping my 8 month old A5 Quattro Cabriolet in the recent snow because I couldn't stop )-: i'm seriously looking at getting some winter tyres.

All sites i've been to indicate that I need to buy the same size as my summer tyres - 255/35R19/096Y. However, i've also heard that winter tyres are often a different size (a friend who drives a porsche has different size tyres to his summer tyres on the same wheels).

The only reference to winter tyre sizes I can find is on the tyre pressure label on my door and that mentions 225/50/R17 M+S. However, i'm sure that must only apply to the Audi winter wheels (i'm not ready to shell out £1500+ on a set of Audi wheels & tyres).

Can anybody confirm that I should be buying the exact same size winter tyes as my summer tyres (with the exception of the speed rating).



Registered User
I believe most tend to downsize their alloys to get bigger sidewall profiles on the winter tyre. As you go down an inch in rim size, you can increase the profile of the tyre by 5%. The reverse is true if going up an inch in rim size. The idea is to keep the overall wheel diameter the same.

By getting bigger tyres you are increasing the wheel diameter and potentially messing with the speedo readings, odometer and any number of other components, like ABS, the quattro system and the clutch. Have no idea how valid these claims are, but not something I would risk personally...

Can you not look for cheap 17" OEM alloys off eBay from someone thats upgraded their alloys and stick bigger winter tyres on those? That to me seems the best solution? Swapping wheels is much easier than swapping tyres!


Active Member
VCDS Map User
I was £700 for a set of 4 Audi winter alloys and Continental Winter tyres from although the rate has changed a little since then.

It is not easy getting 225/50/R17 winter tyres in 98V ratings either and that is what Audi recommend, bearing in mind that even V rating is 149MPH - below the factory top speed.

Decent snow tyres make a massive difference in snow and ice - and if you swap wheels, you wear half in summer, half in winter so the cost is not as much as you think.


Registered User
There's a guy selling a set of 17's with Conti's barely used for £320 on A5OC.

If I hadn't just bought the 19's and a grill I'd have snapped them up myself.

Living in the country is great but they would be a godsend for the lanes:cold:


Staff member
VCDS Map User
I run 225/50/17 winter tyres on my A4 and they are V rated, just in case I feel the need to whip upto 150mph.
Most winter tyres are not speed rated as high as the summer tyres, there wouldn't be an issue using H rated tyres, You wouldn't have had a bump in the car with these on.
I got my Nokians from Tyreleader
They are great tyres and get good reviews. 4 tyres £84 each = £336
4 second hand alloys £170