Tire Size 265/70r17 vs 285/70r17
The primary difference between 265/70r17 and 285/70r17 tires is the width. The 285/70r17 tire is 0.79 inches wider than the 265/70r17 tire.
This means that the 285/70r17 tire will have a larger contact patch with the ground, which in turn can provide better traction.
265/70r17 vs 285/70r17
This table of comparison will assist you in quickly understanding the distinctions.
Replacement tires should be within 3% of the original tire’s diameter to avoid clearance issues or speedometer inaccuracies.
The overall diameter of 265/70r17 tires is 31.61 inches, while 285/70r17 tires are 32.71 inches in diameter. This difference is 1.1 inches or 3.5%, which is within the 3% fitment guideline.
Larger 285/70r17 tires may require small adaptations like a minor lift to prevent rubbing at complete turn.
The 1.1-inch larger diameter of 285/70r17 tires provides more ground clearance compared to 265/70r17 tires. This added clearance is useful for off-road driving, preventing scrapes over rough terrain.
However, the larger diameter also causes a 0.7 mph lower speedometer reading at 20 mph actual speed.
The narrower 265/70r17 tires offer slightly better fuel efficiency over the wider 285/70r17 size.
The smaller contact patch and lower rotational mass improve efficiency, which is ideal for daily driving. The wider 285/70r17 has more excellent rolling resistance, reducing economy.
The taller sidewalls of 285/70r17 tires absorb road impacts better than 265/70r17 tires. This cushioning effect creates a smoother ride over uneven surfaces.
The 265/70r17 is still comfortable, but its shorter sidewalls transmit more harshness into the cabin.
Visually, the difference is minimal. The 285/70r17 has a slightly taller sidewall, giving a subtly stretched, aggressive look compared to the 265/70r17.
This suits trucks and SUVs well. The 265/70r17 has a slightly lower profile appearance.
Handling & Stability
The 265/70r17 tire’s shorter sidewall enables crisper handling and quicker response on pavement.
The taller 285/70r17 sidewall flexes more, reducing handling precision a bit. However, both deliver responsive, stable handling overall.
Noise & Vibration
With its taller sidewall, the 285/70r17 dampens road noise and vibrations better than the 265/70r17 tire.
The shorter 265/70r17 sidewall transmits more harshness into the cabin over uneven roads. But both provide a relatively quiet, comfortable ride.
Durability & Wear
The narrower 265/70r17 tire may exhibit slightly more even treadwear and longer life than the wider 285/70r17.
The heavier 285/70r17 also adds more stress to vehicle components. But both offer durable performance.
In snow and ice, the narrower 265/70r17 can cut through to the road surface well. The wider 285/70r17 provides better traction in specific off-road conditions.
Both perform well in the rain. The 1.1-inch extra ground clearance of the 285/70r17 is advantageous.
At an actual speed of 20 mph, the speedometer reads 0.7 mph lower with 285/70r17 tires compared to 265/70r17 tires. This must be accounted for to avoid unintentionally speeding.
Based on this comparison, the 265/70r17 appears optimal for everyday on-road driving. Its narrower width provides better gas mileage and handling over the 285/70r17.
However, the 285/70r17 excels for off-road driving or rough conditions. Its added width and diameter increase traction, ground clearance, and ride comfort on uneven terrain.
For mixed usage on and off-road, we’d recommend the more versatile 285/70r17 tire. Its superior performance beyond paved roads outweighs the minor tradeoffs in economy and handling. Overall, the 285/70r17 is the better choice for most drivers.
Meet Caitlin McCormack, a Tire Size Expert and Blogger Passionate About Everything Related to Tires. With Years of Experience in the Tire Industry, Caitlin Has Become an Expert in Tire Sizes and Their Impact on Vehicle Performance.