changing from 15" to 14" wheels

Hi All
Car: Focus 1.6 Zetec 2001 (UK model) with standard 15" alloy wheels.
I have moved to the French Alps temporarily (3-4 years) and I am trying
to find out if it is possible to swap the 15" alloy wheels as supplied with 195/60 R15 tyres for the 14" steel wheels with 185/65 R14 tyres as fitted to some other 1.6 models. I cannot get a specific answer from Ford UK over the phone. I guess they don't want to commit themselves and be liable but does any kind soul out there know what the actual differences are apart from the wheels themselves. Are the brake discs/hubs/etc different between models fitted with these different wheels. For info the rear brakes are drum.
Alternatively does any one know of a snow chain provider which can actually supply chains which fit the 195/60 R15 tyres.
Cheers in advance
Dave
ps if this is possible does anyone have any recommendations for winter tyres (Continental/Michelin/other)
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If you get a set of 14" steel rims from another Focus, they will fit. You just have to do a calculation when you buy tyres for them to ensure that the overall diameter is the same which will ensure that your gearing and speedo readings remain the same. I suspect that 185/65/14's would be fine but there is a formula for working it out.
I've actually got a set of original 14" rims in my garage following my upgrade to 15" alloys. I think they have 175/70/14's on them. As you probably realise, the narrower the better for driving in snow.

Don't really know. Check to see what the locals are using.
--
Paul Giverin
British Jet Engine Website http://www.britjet.co.uk
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I said this before, but I guess once more won't hurt.Here in Canada I changed my 195/60/15s for 185/70/14s winter studded with excellent results..I don't know if you have them there, but I used 14 inch steel Ford Tempo or Mercury Topaz rims from the junkyard. I don't think the 14 inch alloys for these cars will fit as they hit the brake caliper. Murray

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Ford and its dealers seem reluctant to say so but the answer is yes, but you need 185/70 14s to have the right diameter. You can't go wrong with Michelins.
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From: http://groups.google.se/groups?hl=sv&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&threadm?c1b78f%241%40news.unibe.ch&rnum=2&prev=/groups%3Fq%3Dsnow%2Bchains%2Bford%2Bfocus%2B14%2522%26hl%3Dsv%26lr%3D%26ie%3DUTF-8%26oe%3DUTF-8%26selm%3D3fc1b78f%25241%2540news.unibe.ch%26rnum%3D2 2003-11-23 23:47:31 PST
"Strangely (you might think) the standard recommended size in Switzeland is 185/65-14. These are about 2% undersized, but it is to provide clearance for snow chains. I need to use chains about once a week here in the winter, and it's not a possibility with the 15s, unless I want shredded wheelwells.
Anyway, I agree that buying a set of steel wheels is the best idea, especially with all the salt used in eastern Ontario.
Stephen"
take care, /per

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