If you want a reliable, fun to drive, fast and good-looking sports coupe, you can’t go wrong with the Nissan 350Z. Its unique styling stands the test of time and even the driving dynamics are still relevant to this day. That’s one of the reasons why Nissan 350Z has a big following behind it – the enthusiasts simply love this car.
Thanks to that, there are a lot of aftermarket tuning parts for the 350Z, including wheel spacers. Wheel spacers are one of the first things enthusiasts install on their vehicles and the 350Z is no exception here. They bring several improvements to the table, but some negatives as well. That’s why it’s very important to buy the best wheel spacers from a reputable manufacturer – don’t cheap out on these, as with every other car part.
|350Z Bolt Pattern||PCD 5×114.3|
|Stock wheel offset||15 to 35 mm|
|Custom Offset Range||-25 to 42 mm|
|Center bore (hub bore)||66.1|
|Thread size||M12 x 1.25|
|Stock Rim Sizes Range||17×8.0 – 20×9.0|
|Custom rim sizes range||17×10.0 – 20×9.5|
|Tire sizes||225/50 R17 – 245/30 R20|
Why do I need wheel spacers for my Nissan 350Z?
First and foremost, wheel spacers definitely make the 350Z stand out from the crowd. They push the wheels outward (called wheel offset), which gives the whole vehicle better stance and more muscular appearance. This can be achieved even with the stock wheels – they still look cool to this day.
However, you can also install wheel spacers with aftermarket wheels. There are a lot of rims for the Nissan 350Z available, but most of them are much bigger than the stock ones. In this case, you need wheel spacers so the wheels will fit your vehicle better. If you don’t, they may be rubbing the fenders. You might want to install bigger brakes on your 350Z (most owners do).
There are other considerations for wheel spacers as well. They widen the track of the 350Z, which in turn enhances stability at higher speeds and the grip at lower speeds thanks to more uniform tire loading. On the other hand, you may experience worse steering stability under braking, more steering effort in the corners, reduced bearing life due to higher torque and more tire wear in the long run.
What are hub-centric wheel spacers?
The hub-centric wheel spacers carry the weight of the vehicle by themselves, thus limiting the strain on the bolts and other components. The cheaper lug-centric wheel spacers put the weight of the vehicle on the bolts, which is certainly not something you want. Lug-centric wheel spacers are not only less safe, but they also produce vibrations while driving.
When changing your rims with aftermarket ones, you may hear about hub-centric rings as well. These are different when compared to hub-centric wheel spacers in a way that they don’t push your wheels outward. The hub-centric rings are used only to center the wheel perfectly to the hub.
How to install wheel spacers on Nissan 350Z?
First, you must see whether your 350Z is equipped with bolts or lug nuts. In the case of bolts, to find the perfect size of wheel spacers you need washers. Just put the several washers on the bolts and install the wheel. After you find the right width, choose a wheel spacer with the same thickness as all washers combined, used only on one bolt. If your vehicle is equipped with lug nuts, add the washers to the back side of the wheel.
After you found the perfect size of wheel spacer, the rest of the process of installing wheel spacers is very easy:
- Jack up the Nissan 350Z
- Remove the wheel by unscrewing the lug nuts (or bolts). Remove the retaining clips as well
- Install the wheel spacers on the hub directly
- Put the wheels back and tighten the lug nuts (bolts) using a torque wrench according to factory specification