I want to install a larger profile tire on my 1986 T-bird coupe, it is not the 'turbo'


Asked by Aug 22, 2014 at 08:52 PM about the 1986 Ford Thunderbird Base

Question type: Car Customization

This is a one owner 42,000 mile car in excellent condition.  I intend to do some minor restoration [a new paint job, minor upholstery repair and full detail to restore it to near show room condition]  I intend to keep the car and show it.  I would like to install 'beafier' tires on it but I'm not sure of what larger sizes the frame will allow me to use?  I would like to install 215 or 225 F,H or G 60 series tires.  But with the cost of ordering and shipment.  I want to be sure they will fit with safe clearance.  This is a 3.8 V 6, it is never going to go racing!  That is not my goal.  I'd just like it to look Good and still drive safely and comfortably.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.  
Respectfully Homer. [ ]

8 Answers


I am old and old school. Stick with stock size to avoid problems with the wheels. Maybe some good-looking mags or something


Are you going to change rim diameter and width? To go beefier tires you will have to go to a light truck tire. If your going for the "todays" look you will have to go a bigger rim with a low profile tire. But any change that you do will alter the ride and handling. Try the tire rack site and select optional sizes, that might give you a better idea..

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

No I'm just wanting to go up to something like 225 G60 14" instead of the factory spec. of 215 F70 14? I want to stay with the traditional 'style' of tire yet move it up to look more like the 'turbo' look. I think I'm alright since the Turbo used F60 15" tires, but I have to order the tires and pay shipping. As no one within 100 miles of me carries them. So I'm just wanting to find out if there are clearance problems in the original finder wells. I don't intend to modify this car beyond 'bumping' the tire sizes up some and I want the original style tires on it?

Tom Demyan

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tiretech/techpage.jsp?techid=25&.......Your car originally came with 205/70-14, if you go with 15" rims, you want to use 222/60-15's. You want to match the circumference and not be off by more than 2%. Here is another calculator...http://www.sizemytires.com/calculators/compare

James Kitlas

Rule of thumb is the larger dia. rim the smaller series profile tire. Like 60 series tires on 17" rims, 50's on 18"s, so on. "Tuners" use 35 & 45 series on imports because of limited space & lowering. Overall tire hight doesn't change much & a good place to start, measure it. Discount Tire will advise you of plus sizes, they're very good.


Back to your original problem;`: " I would like to install 'beafier' tires".If you want to keep it "looking stock", I would just put 235-60-14's on it. Just measure the original tire height (Diameter) to be sure they are no taller. Changing diameter will cause speedometer to be wrong. Personally, if I wanted to restore a car back to stock, I would n't touch the size change.


Thanks to everyone for your responses, I'm going to think on it some? I'm not going to change the tires until the paint job is finished.


Good luck with your restoration.

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