215 vs 255 Tires


The main difference between these two tire sizes is the width of the tread. The 255 tire has 40mm wider tread than the 215 tire, which translates to improved grip on the road, better handling, and more stability when cornering or accelerating. In addition, having wider tires means more rubber on the ground, increasing traction while braking or driving in wet conditions.

215 vs 255 Tires

This comparison table allows for quick and easy comparison of two tire sizes.

215 Tire Size255 Tire Size
More responsive handlingIncreased ground clearance
Better fuel efficiencyEnhanced off-road traction
Quieter ride on smooth roadsBold, aggressive aesthetics
More even treadwearBetter impact absorption
Lower rolling resistanceMore stability on loose terrain
Classic aestheticsIncreased tread life
Lower ground clearanceAdded noise on roads
Nimble snow/ice tractionImproved mud and dirt grip
Harsher ride on uneven surfacesSlightly higher fuel consumption

Ground Clearance

The 255 tire provides slightly more ground clearance due to its larger diameter and profile. This can be beneficial for off-road driving over rocks or on rough terrain. However, the difference is generally minor on most passenger vehicles.

Gas Mileage

The 215 tire has a smaller contact patch and lower rolling resistance, which results in slightly better fuel efficiency. The wider 255 requires more energy to roll and can reduce mileage by a small percentage.

Ride Comfort

Larger tires, like the 255 absorb bumps and vibrations more effectively. However, the narrower 215 may provide a more responsive and precise feel on smooth pavement. Overall, the comfort difference is modest.


The wider 255 tire looks more muscular and fills out the wheel well more aggressively. This can enhance the visual stance. However, the 215 maintains a balance of looks and efficiency.

215 60r16 in inches

Handling & Stability

The 215 offers crisp, nimble handling and steering response, ideal for sporty driving. But the 255 provides a bit more stability and traction at higher speeds and when cornering. Overall handling is similar.

Noise & Vibration

The 255 tires produce slightly more road noise due to the wider tread. However, their larger air chamber absorbs vibrations well. In contrast, 215s run quieter but transmit more road vibration.

Durability & Wear

Narrower 215 tires often exhibit more even treadwear patterns and can achieve marginally longer total tread life.

The heavier 255 tire places more stress on suspension components and introduces more rotational mass heat into the rubber over time. However, 255s are designed to withstand severe impacts better

215 vs 255 Tires

Adverse Conditions

Due to their narrow footprint, the 215 tires can sometimes cut through to the road surface more effectively for snow or icy conditions.

But 255 tires provide additional traction in deep mud or loose dirt, thanks to the enhanced contact area. Overall traction in adverse conditions is a complex equation.

How Much Wider Is A 255 Tire Than A 215?

The difference in width between a 255 tire and a 215 tire will depend on the specific tire model, but in general, a 255 tire will be approximately 40 millimeters wider than a 215 tire. To convert this to inches, 40 millimeters equals about 1.57 inches. Therefore, a 255 tire will be about 1.57 inches wider than a 215 tire.

How Much Taller Is A 255 Tire Than A 215?

The height of a tire is determined by its width, aspect ratio, and wheel diameter. Therefore, we need to know both tires’ aspect ratio and wheel diameter to determine how much taller a 255 tire is than a 215 tire.

For example, if we compare a 255/60R17 tire to a 215/60R17 tire, both with a 17-inch wheel diameter and the same aspect ratio of 60, the overall diameter of the 255 tires will be approximately 29.05 inches, while the overall diameter of the 215 tires will be about 27.16 inches. This means the 255 tire is about 1.89 inches taller than the 215 tires.

Are 215 And 255 Tires Interchangeable?

Each tire has a recommended rim width range that is typically provided by the tire manufacturer. This range indicates the minimum and maximum rim width sizes the tire can be safely mounted on. If the rim width falls within this range, the tire should be compatible with the rim.

The recommended rim width range for 215 tires is generally 6 to 7.5 inches, while for 255 tires, it’s typically 7.0 to 9.0 inches. As there is an overlap in the rim width range. Based on that, we can say that 215 And 255 Tires are Interchangeable.

Our Observation
After comparing these two tire widths, I’m struck by their differing strengths. The 215 promotes responsive handling and efficiency—perfect for my daily commute. But the 255 offers more excellent traction and a bold look that appeals to the off-road enthusiast in me.

While I prioritize on-road performance in my own driving, I can appreciate the rugged aesthetic and capabilities of a 255. Ultimately, drivers must weigh their priorities and need to choose the best tire size. For me, the 215’s elegant road manners win out, but 255s have their place for those who favor traction overall.

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