Tire Size 295/65r20 vs 33×12.50r20
The main difference between 295/65R20 and 33×12.50R20 tires is their diameter. The 295/65R20 tires are 2.1 inches (53mm) taller than 33×12.50R20 tires.
295/65r20 vs 33×12.50r20
This table provides a simple way to compare and understand the differences quickly.
The 33×12.50r20 tire is about 6% smaller in overall diameter compared to the 295/65r20. This exceeds the 3% diameter difference limit for direct replacement tires.
The 33×12.50r20 would likely require lifting the vehicle to prevent rubbing or other fitment issues.
With a diameter of 35.1 inches, the 295/65r20 provides 2.08 inches more ground clearance than the 33×12.50r20, which has a diameter of 33.02 inches.
This added clearance is helpful for off-road driving, helping prevent damage from obstacles. However, the larger 295/65r20 diameter causes a lower speedometer reading than the 33×12.50r20.
The 295/65r20 larger contact patch and heavier weight results in more rolling resistance, potentially reducing fuel efficiency compared to the 33×12.50r20.
With less rotational mass, the 33×12.50r20 confers better gas mileage, an advantage for daily drivers.
The 295/65r20 taller sidewall cushioning absorbs bumps and impacts, providing a smoother ride over uneven terrain.
Meanwhile, the 33×12.50r20 offers a firmer, more responsive ride that can jitter over rough roads. On smooth highways, the 33×12.50r20 likely provides a more comfortable experience.
Visually, the 295/65r20 taller sidewall suits the aesthetic of trucks and SUVs well. The 33×12.50r20 shorter sidewall has a sportier, lower-profile appearance that some prefer.
Overall, the aesthetic difference between the sizes is minor and subjective.
Handling & Stability
The 33×12.50r20 shorter sidewall enables quicker steering response and sharper handling on paved roads. In contrast, the taller 295/65r20 sidewall has more flex, reducing handling precision but increasing stability off-road.
Both offer responsive handling, but the 33×12.50r20 has a slight handling advantage on the pavement.
Noise & Vibration
With its shorter, stiffer sidewall, the 33×12.50r20 transmits more road noise and vibration into the cabin than the 295/65r20. The 295/65r20 additional sidewall flex better dampens noise and vibrations for a more isolated ride quality.
Durability & Wear
The potentially longer tread life and even wear characteristics of the 33×12.50r20 make it the more durable tire.
The larger 295/65r20 encounters more impacts and stress that can reduce tread life and add rotational mass that increases drivetrain wear.
In snow and ice, the narrower 33×12.50r20 can cut through to the pavement more effectively.
The wider 295/65r20 struggles for grip on snow but provides better traction in mud or off-road conditions. Overall traction differences are minor between the two.
Due to its larger diameter, the 295/65r20 causes a lower speedometer reading than the 33×12.50r20.
At an actual speed of 20 mph, the speedometer reads 18.82 mph with the 295/65r20 but 20 mph with the 33×12.50r20, a difference of 1.18 mph.
What Tire Size Is Equivalent To 33×12.5×20?
The tire size equivalent to 33×12.5×20 is 325/50r20. This size has a diameter of 32.8 inches, a width of 12.8 inches, and fits a 20-inch wheel.
Another close equivalent is 305/55r20, which has a diameter of 33.2 inches and a width of 12 inches. These sizes are commonly used on trucks, SUVs, and other larger vehicles.
The 295/65r20 is ideal for vehicles regularly facing rough terrain, where its extra ground clearance and cushioned ride are beneficial.
The 33×12.50r20 is preferable for street performance, with its responsive handling, improved fuel economy, and lower road noise.
Overall, the 33×12.50r20 is the better choice for most drivers. Its well-rounded attributes, like tread life and on-road manners, make it a smart option for daily transportation.
We recommend the 33×12.50r20 for typical driving conditions. For off-road adventuring, the 295/65r20 is a worthy contender.
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.