Welcome to the new and improved Small Car Performance website!

phone: 253-473-2474

Wheels, Tires, and Types of Spares

Here is a wheel and tire calculator for you to use in your plans for Vanagon or Bus ownership.  Use this calculator to get the size differential for you will experience when you upgrade your wheels and tires.

Tire and Wheel Size Calculator

Current Tire and Wheel Size (Calculator 1)

Future Tire and Wheel Size (Calculator 2)

Change in Tire Diameter

Click on a question to see the answers.

First, tire selection is getting really bleak for 14" wheels.

Secondly, you will struggle even more to find a tire that is load-rated for safe driving.

We recommend 16" wheels because it greatly increases your tire selection. 16" wheels are in the light truck category which opens properly load-rated tires.

It can! 16" wheels future-proof your van for brake upgrades. If you plan to upgrade your van over time like most of our customers, go with 16" wheels.

This is a spare tire that has different dimensions than your daily tires. 2WD Vanagons have some flexbility on how you select a spare tire.


You must only use that spare tire on the front wheels of your 2WD van.

This means: a rear flat tire requires you to move a daily front tire to the rear and using your "space-saver" on the front.

No. Don't try it. You can break your differential and cause extensive driveline issues.

We offer some great tire options! We personally like 215/65/r16 for tires (27").

This offers a 330 rpm drop at 70 mph making for a smooth ride.


There is a lot to Vanagons beyond just slapping some tires on them. If you go with a larger tire, you will want to make sure you suspension is ready for the change.

For example, Nokian WRG4 225/70/r16 are a great tire for a 2WD van with fresh suspension, but on blown shocks with original springs you will get rubbing!


SCP makes a product that allows customers to run a larger spare tire in the same area as the clam shell.

Fitment will vary depending on the type of tire selected.


All sales are final for wheels and tires. VWs are heavily modified vehicles and base configurations are hard to predict.