Tire Size 205/75r14 vs 205/75r15

The main difference between 205/75r14 and 205/75r15 tires is their rim diameter. The 205/75r15 tires have a 15-inch rim diameter, while the 205/75r14 tires have a 14-inch rim diameter. This means the 205/75r15 tires will be slightly taller than the 205/75-R14 tires.

Tire 1 Front View
Width
Dia.
Tire 2 Front View
Width
Dia.
Tire 1 Side View
Tire 1 Wheel
circumference 1
Circ.
Rim
Wall
Revs/Mile
Tire 2 Side View
Tire 2 Wheel
Circ.
Rim
Wall
Revs/Mile
/ R
/ R
Parameter235/35 R18205/40 R18Differ.
Tire Height
Section Width
Circumference
Sidewall Height
Revolutions
Rim Size

 

Fitment Guide

When replacing tires, the new set should be within 3% of the overall diameter of the originals.

The 205/75r15 exceeds this threshold, meaning adaptations like a lift kit may be required to accommodate the larger size. The 205/75r14, being smaller, is unlikely to create fitment issues.

Ground Clearance

With a diameter of 27.11 inches, the 205/75r15 provides 1 inch more clearance versus the 26.11 inch 205/75r14. This added clearance aids off-road driving by preventing scrapes over obstacles.

However, the larger 205/75r15 diameter causes a lower speedometer reading than 205/75r14. The smaller 205/75r14 reduces clearance, increasing risks of scraping, but gives a higher speedometer reading.

Gas Mileage

The 205/75r14’s smaller contact patch and rotational mass offer better fuel efficiency, making them ideal for daily driving. The larger 205/75r15 may reduce efficiency through increased rolling resistance and rotational weight.

Ride Comfort

While the 205/75r14 provides a smoother highway ride, the taller sidewall of the 205/75r15 absorbs impacts better, delivering superior comfort off-road. The extra cushioning smooths out bumps and vibrations.

Aesthetics

The lower profile 205/75r14 benefits aerodynamics, while the 205/75r15’s taller sidewall has a more aggressive aesthetic appeal. The added sidewall height suits trucks visually.

Handling & Stability

The shorter sidewall of the 205/75r14 enables quicker response and sharper handling on pavement.

The taller 205/75r15 sidewall flexes more, reducing precision slightly but offering better stability and traction off-road.

Noise & Vibration

The stiffer 205/75r14 sidewall transmits more road noise and vibration into the cabin. The 205/75r15’s extra sidewall flex dampens vibrations, making the ride more comfortable.

Durability & Wear

The smaller 205/75r14 exhibits more even treadwear and potentially longer life. The larger 205/75r15 withstands impacts better, but its added weight could increase wear on components.

Adverse Conditions

The narrower 205/75r14 sometimes handles snow/ice better by cutting through to the pavement. The wider 205/75r15 provides better traction in mud or off-road conditions.

Speedometer Difference

When driving 20 mph, a car with 205/75r14 tires will show a speedometer reading of exactly 20 mph. However, a car with 205/75r15 tires will show a slightly higher speedometer reading of 20.77 mph at the same actual speed of 20 mph.

This minor difference of 0.77 mph is because the 205/75r15 tires have a slightly larger overall diameter, causing the speedometer to read higher than the actual speed.

Overall, the speedometer readings will be very close to the same true speed between the two tire sizes.

Can I use 205/75r15 instead of 205/75r14?

The overall diameter of a 205/75r15 tire is 27.11 inches (688.5 mm), while the 205/75r14 tire has an overall diameter of 26.11 inches (663.1 mm). The difference between these two tire sizes is around 1 inch (25.4 mm), about a 3.8% increase.

Given this, using a 205/75r15 tire instead of a 205/75r14 might not be advisable because the 3.8% difference is within the recommended 3% limit. Consult a tire or vehicle professional to ensure safety and performance.

Can I put a 205/75r15 on a 205/75r14?

The 205/75r15 and 205/75r14 tires can fit on a rim with a 5.0-7.0 inches wide range.

Therefore, it is possible to mount a 205/75r15 tire on a rim that previously held a 205/75r14 tire, as they share the same rim width range. But it is not recommended.

235/65r16 vs 235/70r16

205/75r14 vs 205/75r15

The table compares the features of tire sizes 205/75R14 and 205/75R15, along with the percentage difference between them.

Our Observation
After reviewing the data, the 205/75r14 and 205/75r15 are pretty close in overall performance. The 205/75r14 offers minor advantages in fuel economy, handling, and treadwear thanks to its slightly smaller size.

However, the differences are modest – the 205/75r15 slightly increases ground clearance and ride comfort off-road. For most drivers, I don’t think these are major factors.

Given the very slight edge in fuel efficiency and responsiveness, I would recommend the 205/75r14 for typical driving conditions. But either tire size is a good option that provides capable performance. The differences between them are incremental rather than substantial.

2 thoughts on “Tire Size 205/75r14 vs 205/75r15”

  1. I’m a little confused by the notes. If the primary difference between the 205/75R14 and 205/75R15 is the rim diameter, how can a 205/75R15 tire be put on a 205/75R14 rim. Even with the same width range, doesn’t the diameter difference make it impossible to put the 15″ tire on a 14″ rim?

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