Tire Size 195/55r16 vs 205/55r16

The main difference between 195/55R16 and 205/55R16 tires is the section width. The 205/55R16 has a 10mm (0.39 inch) wider tread than the 195/55R16, making it better suited for certain vehicles and driving conditions.

/ R
/ R
Parameter205/50 R15215/50 R15Difference
Overall Diameter
Section Width
Sidewall Height
Revs per mile
Rim size


Fitment Guide

When replacing tires, matching the overall diameter to within 3% of the original size is crucial. This ensures proper clearance and prevents speedometer inaccuracies.

At 631.9mm overall, the 205/55R16 is only 1.8% larger than the 195/55R16 at 620.9mm. So, the 205 can directly replace the 195 without any fitment issues.

Ground Clearance

The slightly greater diameter of the 205/55R16 provides an extra 1.8% (11mm) of ground clearance over the 195. This can help prevent scrapes and damage when driving over rough terrain or obstacles.

Gas Mileage

The 205 wider tread results in a larger contact patch with the road, increasing rolling resistance.

This typically translates into marginally worse fuel efficiency compared to the narrower 195. However, other factors like construction and tread patterns also affect efficiency.

Ride Comfort

The 205/55R16 wider tread and taller sidewall subtly improve ride quality over uneven roads.

The additional tire flex absorbs more shock before it reaches the wheels and suspension. This cushions the ride, although both sizes still deliver a comfortable highway cruise.


Visually, the 205 has a slightly more aggressive, muscular stance than the 195. The extra 10mm of width accentuates the tire’s footprint.

While minor, some drivers prefer the improved aesthetics. However, too wide of a tire can begin to look disproportionate.

Handling & Stability

The 195 smaller contact patch provides crisper turn-in response and handling precision. But the 205 offers marginally better straight-line stability at higher speeds due to its larger footprint.

For most drivers, handling differences between these close sizes will take a lot of work to notice.

Noise & Vibration

With more air volume and sidewall flex, the 205/55R16 is subtly better at dampening road noise and vibration.

This helps isolate the cabin from irregularities in the road surface. However, both tires still deliver a quiet, comfortable ride for daily driving.

Durability & Wear

The 205 added width distributes forces over a larger contact patch, reducing wear in the center of the tread.

However, the heavier tire also puts more strain on suspension and drivetrain components. Even wear, and long tread life can be expected from both sizes with proper maintenance.

Adverse Conditions

Performance in rain, snow, and off-road conditions is similar between these sizes. The 205 wider tread provides more traction, while the 195 smaller footprint can sometimes cut through snow more easily. But both handle adverse conditions well.

Speedometer Difference

At the same true speed, the 205/55R16 causes your speedometer to read 0.35 mph higher than the 195/55R16 due to its 1.8% larger diameter. This small variance is unlikely to be noticeable during normal driving.

Can I use 195/55r16 instead of 205/55r16?

Typically, using tires that differ in diameter by more than 3% compared to the original tires is not advised. The overall diameter of a 205/55r16 tire size is 24.88 inches.

The 195/55r16 tire has an overall diameter of 24.44 inches. When you calculate the difference between these two tire sizes, it comes to approximately 0.43 inches or about 1.8%.

Since this is less than the recommended 3% difference, using a 195/55r16 tire instead of a 205/55r16 is feasible. Always consult a tire or vehicle professional before making such changes to ensure safety and performance.

Can I put a 195/55r16 on a 205/55r16?

The 195/55r16 and 205/55r16 tires can be mounted on a 16-inch rim. These tire sizes’ suggested rim width range is 5.5-7.0″ and 5.5-7.5″, respectively.

Therefore, it should be possible to mount a 195/55r16 tire on a rim previously used for a 205/55r16, assuming the rim width is within the specified range.

205/55r16 vs 195/55r16

This table will provide a clear overview of the differences, making it easier to understand them quickly.

How Much Taller Is A 205/55r16 Tire Than 195/55r16?

The 205/55r16 tire is 0.43 inches (11 mm) taller than the 195/55r16 tire, representing a 1.8% increase in diameter.

The 205/55r16 tire stands at a height of 24.88 inches (631.9 mm), while its counterpart, the 195/55r16 tire, measures 24.44 inches (620.9 mm) in height.

How Much Wider Is A 205/55r16 Tire Than A 195/55r16?

The 205/55R16 tire is 10 millimeter wider than the 195/55R16 tire. Specifically, the 205/55R16 measures 8.07 inches (205mm) wide, while the 195/55R16 is narrower at 7.68 inches (195mm) wide.

What Does 195/55R16 Mean?

The tire size notation “195/55R16” provides key details about the tire. The first number, 195, signifies the tire’s width in millimeters.

The second number, 55, represents the aspect ratio, indicating the tire’s height as a percentage of its width. “R16” indicates a 16-inch wheel diameter compatibility. In inches, the tire size 195/55R16 is equal to 24.4×7.7R16.

What Size Rim For 195/55R16?

The 195/55R16 tire size is specifically designed to fit an 16-inch wheel rim. To ensure optimal performance, it is best to use a rim width that falls within the manufacturer’s recommended range of 5.5 to 7 inches.

What Size Rim For 205/55R16?

For those who are considering the 205/55R16 tire size, it’s crucial to use it with an 16-inch wheel rim for proper fitment. Furthermore, the manufacturer suggests using a rim width between 5.5 to 7.5 inches to ensure the best performance and safety on the road.

Our Observation
The differences between 195/55R16 and 205/55R16 tires are quite minor. The 205 offers slightly better ride comfort, aesthetics, stability, and traction from its wider tread and taller sidewall.

However, the 195 provides marginally better handling and fuel economy with its more minor contact patch. For most drivers, either tire will perform excellently.

Given the very small variances, we recommend choosing based on visual appeal and proper fitment for your vehicle. The 195/55R16 and 205/55R16 are great tire sizes with nearly identical overall performance.

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