Tire Size 265/75r16 vs 235/85r16

The main difference between tire sizes 265/75r16 and 235/85r16 is that the 265/75r16 has a wider tread width while the 235/85r16 has a taller sidewall. Let’s dive into how these variations impact performance in different driving conditions.

Tire 1 Front View
Tire 2 Front View
Tire 1 Side View
Tire 1 Wheel
circumference 1
Tire 2 Side View
Tire 2 Wheel
/ R
/ R
Parameter235/35 R18205/40 R18Differ.
Tire Height
Section Width
Sidewall Height
Rim Size


Fitment Guide

When replacing tires, the new set should be within 3% of the diameter of the originals to avoid issues. The 265/75r16 and 235/85r16 differ by only 0.2% in overall diameter, so fitment isn’t a concern.

Ground Clearance

With a diameter of 31.65 inches, the 265/75r16 offers 0.08 inches less ground clearance than the 31.73 inch 235/85r16.

This minor difference has little impact on off-road clearance but slightly reduces the risk of scraping on the 265/75r16. It also causes a negligibly higher speedometer reading on the 265/75r16.

Fuel Efficiency

The 235/85r16’s narrower tread face and shorter sidewall make it slightly more fuel-efficient than the wider, taller 265/75r16.

Less rubber on the road means lower rolling resistance, while less sidewall flex reduces energy loss. For highway travel, the 235/85r16 maximizes miles per gallon.

Ride Comfort

Both tires deliver comfortable rides, but the taller 235/85r16 sidewall absorbs bumps and impacts better. Its extra cushioning smooths out imperfections, especially on uneven terrain.

The 265/75r16 provides a firmer, more responsive ride that can jitter over cracks and potholes.


The 235/85r16’s taller sidewall visually gives it a stretched look compared to the 265/75r16. This elongated aesthetic suits the rugged styling well for larger trucks and SUVs.

However, on sportier vehicles, the shorter sidewall of the 265/75r16 can better match aggressive, performance-oriented designs.

Handling & Stability

With a shorter, stiffer sidewall, the 265/75r16 offers sharper handling and cornering response on pavement compared to the flexible 235/85r16.

But both remain stable at speed and resist deflection from impacts or load changes. The 265/75r16 delivers an agile, nimble feel for rewinding roads.

Noise & Vibration

The softer 235/85r16 dampens noise and vibration transmitted into the cabin better than the 265/75r16. Its extra air volume and sidewall flex help isolate bumps and road imperfections. But both tires keep the interior reasonably quiet and comfortable on most road surfaces.

Durability & Wear

The 235/85r16’s narrower tread face distributes contact stresses over less rubber, concentrating wear in a smaller area. The 265/75r16 disperses forces over more tread, slowing wear.

Both exhibit even wear patterns and long tread life barring alignment issues or damage.

Adverse Conditions

Performance in rain, snow, and off-road is comparable between the two. The 265/75r16’s shorter sidewall responds slightly quicker on loose surfaces, while the 235/85r16’s extra clearance aids deep snow or mud. But both handle adverse conditions reliably.

Speedometer Difference

The speedometer reading is very similar between 265/75r16 and 235/85r16 tire sizes. At an actual vehicle speed of 20 mph, the speedometer reads 20 mph with 265/75r16 tires.

For 235/85r16 tires, the speedometer reading is 20.05 mph at the same actual speed of 20 mph. The difference in speedometer reading between these two tire sizes is minimal at just 0.05 mph. Overall, these two tire sizes produce nearly identical speedometer readings.

Can I Use 265 Tires Instead Of 235?

Yes, you can use 265 tires instead of 235. The diameters differ by only 0.2% between the 265/75R16 and 235/85R16 tires, which is well within the advisable 3% limit.

The slight size difference should not cause any issues. Ensure the replacement 265 tire has an equivalent or greater load capacity than the original 235.

What Does 265/75R16 Mean?

The tire size 265/75R16 signifies a tire that is 265 millimeters wide with an aspect ratio of 75%, indicating that the tire’s height is 75% of its width.

The “R” denotes radial construction, the most common type, and “16” specifies that the tire fits a 16-inch wheel rim. The tire size 265/75R16 is equal to 31.7×10.4R16 in inches.

265/75r16 vs 235/85r16

What Does 235/85r16 Mean?

The tire size 235/85R16 indicates a tire that is 235 millimeters wide with an aspect ratio of 85%, representing the tire’s height as 85% of its width.

The “R” signifies radial construction, and “16” denotes the rim diameter in inches for which the tire is designed. Tire Size 235/85R16 is equivalent to 31.7×9.3R16 in inches.

235/85r16 vs 265/75r16

This table compares the variances between tire sizes 265/75r16 and 235/85r16.

How Tall Are 235/85r16 Tires?

The 235/85r16 tires have a height of approximately 31.73 inches (805.9 mm). This measurement represents the overall height of the tire from the base of the tread to the top of the tire when mounted on a 16-inch wheel.

How Tall Are 265/75R16 Tires?

The 265/75R16 tires have a height of 31.65 inches or 803.9 millimeters, measured from the top of the tread to the bottom of the tire.

What Size Rim For 235/85r16?

The recommended rim size for a 235/85r16 tire is 16 inches in diameter with a width range of 6 to 7.5 inches. Choosing the correct rim size is essential to ensure proper tire performance and safety.

What Size Rim For 265/75R16?

The recommended rim size for a 265/75R16 tire is 16 inches in diameter with a width range of 7 to 8 inches. It is important to choose the correct rim size to ensure proper tire performance and safety.

Our Observation
After comparing the nuances between 265/75r16 and 235/85r16 tires, I’m struck by how each has strengths tailored to different needs. The 265/75r16 shines for responsive handling and a bold, truck-like look.

Yet the 235/85r16’s plush ride quality and improved fuel efficiency make it ideal for comfortable cruising. For off-road use, I’m partial to the 235/85r16’s extra ground clearance.

Overall, I recommend the 265/75r16 for vehicles requiring sharp handling, while the 235/85r16 suits those prioritizing ride comfort, efficiency, and light trail use. But both deliver capable real-world performance – choose based on your specific needs and priorities.

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