Ford Transit Larger Tires Upgrade

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Looking to upgrade your Ford Transit stock tires for larger diameter to improve ground clearance and traction? We were too! Here is the data we gathered during our research.

 

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Let’s get straight to the point. Before we took possession of the van, we upgraded immediately to BF Goodrich KO2 LT225/75/R16E All-Terrain tires.

First Ride Avila

 

The KO2 are all-terrain, snow approved (there is the snowflake on it), badass tires.
BF Goodrich KO2 tire

BF Goodrich KO2 tire. Buy from Amazon.

 

How is the clearance?

Note that for the front tires, minimum clearance is achieved when wheels are fully turned. The clearance shown below is for straight wheels.

Front:

BF Goodrich KO2 on Ford Transit Clearance (2) BF Goodrich KO2 on Ford Transit Clearance (4)

 

Rear:

BF Goodrich KO2 on Ford Transit Clearance (3) BF Goodrich KO2 on Ford Transit Clearance (1)

 

First of all, what does all those number means?

LT225/75/R16E

  • 225: The first 3 digits are the tire width in millimeters (225mm tire diameter)
  • 75: The second 2 digits are the tire aspect ratio in percentage (ratio of the sidewall height to its width). (75%)
  • R16: The is the diameter of the wheel the tire is intended to fit. (16″ wheel diameter)
  • LT: Light Truck metric size intended for vehicule capable of carrying heavy cargo or towing large trailers.
  • E: Load Range / Ply Rating. (D = 8 plies, E = 10 plies). Check this article for more info.

 

What is the Ford Transit stock size tires?

Our 2016 Ford Transit was equipped with stock tires Continental VancoFourSeasons 235/65/R16C. They are 28″ diameter.

VancoFourSeasons

 

What is the largest tire diameter that can be installed without rubbing?

(data gathered from FordTransitUsaForum)

  • Stock factory tires diameter: 28″ (235/65/R16C)
  • Best compromise and enough clearance for chains: 29.2″ (LT225/75/R16E)
  • Largest diameter without rubbing, probably no clearance for chains (to be confirmed): 30.4″ (LT245/75/R16E)
  • We’ve seen people installed larger tires, but some has reported rubbing, some not…

 

Why did we choose larger, all-terrain, BF Goodrich KO2 A/T tires?
  • All Terrain tread to get us to the trailheads
  • Winter approved
  • To increase ground clearance
  • Great reviews on the Interwebs

 

Larger tires will affect speedometer reading

The larger tires will decrease the speedometer reading of about 3-4 mph. For example if the speedometer reads 55 mph, our true speed is 58-59 mph. We have to keep that in mind to avoid speeding tickets!

 

How are the KO2 in snow?

They are great, except when we are driving on a soft-packed layer of snow over a layer of ice; just like a pickup truck (no 4×4), the rear of the Transit is light and tires will spin easily even with the Limited Slip Differential. We see that happens in ski resort parking lots and such (not on paved road).

For this reason, we carry Thule (now Konig) XG12 PRO snow chains (http://amzn.to/2kUayQT). See our post on snow chains here:

Wait for it! 

Ford Transit in snow

Just a random picture in snow….

 

 

Many people opts for studded winter tires and swear by it. They truly are effective on ice. Lifeakimbo installed Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT2; you can read about it here.

 

Popular premium all-terrain tire choices and specifications

BF Goodrich KO2

BF Goodrich KO2 tire

 

Cooper Discoverer AT3

Cooper Discoverer AT3

 

 

Popular winter studded tire choices and specifications

Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT2 Studded Winter Tires

Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT2 Winter Tire

 

 

 

 

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ABOUT US

Hello! We’re Isabelle and Antoine, a couple dreaming of being on the move and we’re seeking for the ride of our life. We bought a Ford Transit van, we’re converting it to a campervan and we are now selling our house to make our dream a reality. We are sharing this in hope of inspiring and helping others to follow their dreams too!

 

 

CHEERS!

 

 

4 comments

  1. Comment by Josh

    Josh Reply February 23, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    When you put the larger tires on did those fit on the factory wheels?

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply February 23, 2017 at 2:44 pm

      Yes, we mounted the larger tires on the factory wheels!

  2. Comment by Chip

    Chip Reply March 9, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    Can the speedo be recalibrated for the larger tires?

    • Comment by Antoine

      Antoine Reply March 9, 2017 at 12:06 pm

      We heard of many people who tried at their Ford dealer, but I don’t think anyone had a positive response. We learnt to live with it!

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