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Thread: how about this idea...staggered wheels, but BACKWARDS?

  1. #1
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    how about this idea...staggered wheels, but BACKWARDS?

    running wider tires in the rear than in the front is, on our cars, a recipe for exacerbating understeer. which, for an Audi, is like throwing gasoline on a fire. we drive what is really a 911, but backwards - a big old V8 hung completely in front of the front axle.

    so...anyone ever get outside the box mentally and try running wider front tires? as long as they're not sticking out of the fenders, you wouldn't be able to tell just by looking. say 275 or 285 front, 255 rear?

    I realize this sounds completely stupid at first glance, but Audi did make a car called the R18 that ran tires in a similar staggered setup, and apparently it was fast and won a race or fourteen...
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    Registered User hahnmgh63's Avatar
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    The new Audi RS3 uses 235/35-19 front & rear, when optioned with what they call the Dynamic package they widen the fronts to 255mm and leave the rears the same. I just drove one last month. The little screamer really moves, I love the I-5 motor.
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    Not stupid at all, and like hahnmgh63 mentioned, it's already being done on some Audis. You could do 275 up front, and 255 with spacers or shorter offset to keep the look OK. The only question I have is whether the improved balance is enough to offset the reduced overall rubber on the road. It's easy to fit 275 on the back, and 275 is pretty much the limit on the front, so the only way to go reverse-stagger is to go smaller than possible on the rear. If you're running a good swaybar/coilover setup, can you tune the suspension enough to take advantage of the wider rear tire, even with the weight imbalance?

    My guess is that for a track setup, getting as much rubber on the road is top priority, along with aggressive suspension tuning and driving-style adjustments to take advantage of it.

    For a street setup, the wider front might give you a bit more grip without having to get as aggressive on the suspension.

    Try it and let us know!

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    I've budgeted out my wheel upgrades over a couple of months; I'd eventually want 275s all round. But who knows, maybe 275 front/255 rear would really liven up the handling? I'll report back when I've given it a whirl!

    I had no idea Audi was doing reverse staggered tires as an option; very cool!
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  5. #5
    Registered User hahnmgh63's Avatar
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    I had a 4:1 bias center differential installed in the TDI 6spd I'm installing in my RS6. S4 guys say it is one of the best improvements you can do to improve the handling.
    2003 White RS6 BBS RS-GT, RNS-E, KW V3's & Hotchkis
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  6. #6
    Registered User G2's Avatar
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    It might "help" some - a reverse stagger - perhaps a bit. I've taken a similar approach on other cars but using different compound tires. Major eye opener. Put a pair of sticky tires on the front and find a wide open space...

    Another way to help get a more neutral balance with a square setup would be to use a stock front swaybar with a big rear bar. For those with double adjustable shocks, stiffening the rear compression would add to the effect. Essentially a softer front end with less roll-stiffness compared to the rear will help increase oversteer.

    With a FWD car the only true option is a torque sensing differential like Quaife. Made a drastic improvement on my VW. So much that it ended up being almost too tail happy. If given a choice would do the front RS6 diff first, then address the rear as needed.

    Was always curious what Randy Pobst did on their race RS6's. Obviously worked.

    BTW he's in my RS6 Facebook group, which is super cool.

  7. #7
    Registered User ZCD2.7T's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by G2 View Post
    ...Was always curious what Randy Pobst did on their race RS6's. Obviously worked.

    BTW he's in my RS6 Facebook group, which is super cool.
    Champion did everything they could (legally) do to get those RS6s to dance. Wider tires covered by huge fender flares, replacing suspension mounting points after every race, engine management mods, the works. The drivers said it was still a rocket-ride down the straights followed by a fight to maintain as much of the advantage as they could in the corners. Yes, it "worked", after a fashion.

    I also recall the motors being tested after the RS6s had put up some eye-opening lap times at Road America. Suffice to say that the engine output was limited after the truth came out about just how much power they'd been making... LOL!

    The RS6's run ended when Cadillac was allowed to basically field a prototype under a stock-looking body and blew the field away. Audi and some of the other competitors said "eff this" and went home. Ahhh, racing.... ;-)

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    Registered User G2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZCD2.7T View Post
    Champion did everything they could (legally) do to get those RS6s to dance. Wider tires covered by huge fender flares, replacing suspension mounting points after every race, engine management mods, the works. The drivers said it was still a rocket-ride down the straights followed by a fight to maintain as much of the advantage as they could in the corners. Yes, it "worked", after a fashion.

    I also recall the motors being tested after the RS6s had put up some eye-opening lap times at Road America. Suffice to say that the engine output was limited after the truth came out about just how much power they'd been making... LOL!

    The RS6's run ended when Cadillac was allowed to basically field a prototype under a stock-looking body and blew the field away. Audi and some of the other competitors said "eff this" and went home. Ahhh, racing.... ;-)
    Almost sounds like hands on experience, or running in the same circle?

    If memory serves tires were limited to 275mm. Would assume the widest wheels possible with spacers helped fill the flares. Was a bit dubious on the purported 475hp - obviously restricted. Bet there was plenty torque to make up for it!

    The RS6 is a fun GT street car but really shows it's weakness when pushed in slow speed 2nd gear corners on exit - even with a serious suspension and tire/wheel setup. A dedicated track tire might help hold the power, reduce push, likely in combination with addressing torque bias issues. Until I track the car can't speak for high speed balance- should be manageable- any dancing will likely require a bit of see-sawing on the steering wheel.

    Friend of mine is a master body repair guy who keeps talking about making carbon bits for the RS6. Flares are #1 on the list. Told him he could slice up my car for R&D. Liking the idea of 305's at each corner.

    Just need the demand....

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