Tire Size 285/65r18 vs 33×12.50r18

The main difference between 285/65r18 and 33×12.50r18 tire size lies in the section width. 285/65r18 tires have a width of 11.22 inches, while 33×12.50r18 tires are wider at 12.52 inches, an 11.6% difference. This impacts various performance factors.

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

The 33×12.50r18 tire is 1.3% larger in overall diameter and circumference compared to the 285/65r18. This is within the 3% limit for direct replacement without modifications.

However, the wider 12.52-inch section width of the 33×12.50r18 may require checking for rubbing at full lock and scrub radius effects.

Ground Clearance

With a 1.3% larger diameter, the 33×12.50r18 tire provides 0.44 inches more ground clearance than the 285/65r18.

This extra clearance is useful for off-road driving, clearing obstacles, and preventing damage over rough terrain. However, it can also cause a 1.3% lower speedometer reading.

Gas Mileage

The 33×12.50r18 wider tread and heavier weight than the 285/65r18 results in slightly increased rolling resistance and rotational mass.

This typically decreases fuel efficiency to some degree, an important consideration for daily driving.

Ride Comfort

The taller sidewall and greater air volume of the 33×12.50r18 tire absorb bumps and impacts more effectively.

This cushier ride quality is advantageous on rough, uneven roads but comes at the expense of some handling precision on pavement.


Visually, the 33×12.50r18 has a brawnier, more aggressive look due to the large 12.52-inch section width.

The 285/65r18 appears more balanced with its 11.22-inch section width. Styling preferences vary, but the wider 33×12.50r18 suits larger trucks and SUVs well.

Handling & Stability

The 285/65r18 shorter sidewall enables better responsiveness and handling agility on paved roads. In contrast, the 33×12.50r18 taller sidewall flexes more, reducing handling sharpness slightly but providing stability off-road.

Noise & Vibration

With a shorter, stiffer sidewall that transmits more road noise and vibration, the 285/65r18 provides less acoustic dampening than the 33×12.50r18. However, minor noise differences and both tires deliver a comfortable ride.

Durability & Wear

The 285/65r18 smaller size, lower weight, and reduced stresses can extend tread life slightly over the larger 33×12.50r18.

But durability depends more on both sizes’ construction, materials, and driving conditions.

Adverse Conditions

Performance in rain, snow, and off-road is similar for these sizes. The 33×12.50r18 provides more traction off-road, while the 285/65r18 is marginally more responsive on pavement. Both perform well overall in adverse conditions.

Speedometer Reading

At an actual speed of 20 mph, the speedometer reads 0.27 mph higher with the 285/65r18 compared to the 33×12.50r18 due to its 1.3% smaller diameter. This speedometer discrepancy is minor but should be considered.

285/65r18 vs 33×12.50r18

What Does 33×12 50r18 Tire Mean?

The “33” in the 33×12 50r18 tire size refers to the tire’s height in inches. The “12.50” in the 33×12 50r18 tire size indicates the tire’s section width, which is also in inches.

The letter “r” in 33×12 50r18 stands for “radial,” which is the type of tire. The “18” in the 33×12 50r18 tire size is the diameter of the wheel in inches that this tire size can fit. 

Now that we know what all the numbers and letters in the 33×12 50r18 tire size mean let’s move on to the comparison.

285/65r18 vs 33x12.50r18

Our Observation
The 285/65R18 offers a balanced fitment and improved handling on pavement, while the 33×12.50R18 provides greater ground clearance and a beefy aesthetic for off-road use.

For most daily drivers and road-focused usage, we recommend the 285/65R18 for its responsive on-road manners, even wear, and accurate speedometer.

For off-road adventures or improving the rugged look of a truck or SUV, the 33×12.50R18 is an excellent choice, thanks to its extra clearance and bold styling. Evaluate your priorities, but overall, the more versatile 285/65R18 is best suited for typical drivers.

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