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The Perfect Wheel And Tire Combo For Kia K900
The K900 is Kia’s entry into the luxury performance niche. If you didn’t know that Kia made a luxury sedan, you’re not alone.
And while it doesn’t have the same performance of a Mercedes-Benz S-Class or a BMW 7 Series, it doesn’t sport the same price tag either.
Whether you get the base V-6 or opt for the more muscular V-8 package, this luxury sedan is quick off the starting line (0-60 at 6.2 seconds for the V-6) but a tad mushy in the steering department.
Because it is one of the few rear wheel drives made by Kia, it can be improved by replacing the OEM wheel and tires with an upsized aftermarket wheels and tire package with a staggered fitment.
Why a staggered fitment
In a staggered fitment, you put larger wheels on the rear drive wheels and smaller wheels on the front axle.
This arrangement changes the dynamics of the vehicle and the end result is better cornering and better braking. It’s just what the doctor ordered for the K900.
In addition to better handling, wider wheels have wider tires.
That means better traction.
So, while switching to a staggered fitment is a no-brainer to improve performance, selection of the right wheel and tire combination is tricky.
The best staggered fitments also upsize the wheel. This means switching to a larger diameter wheel and wrapping it in a tire with a smaller standing height.
That adds to the unsprung weight of the car and the K900 isn’t a light car to start. It’s a fine line to walk, but matching the best wheels and tires to any given vehicle is what Wheelfire.com does best.
Here’s our recommendation to improve the performance and looks of the K900.
Best staggered wheels and tire package for K900
The base weight of the K900 with a V-6 and all the bells and whistles is a hefty 4,376 pounds and its gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) is only 5,357.
The V-8 plus options checks in at 4,700 pounds with a GVWR of 5,622.
So, you don’t have much room to add weight if you still want passengers to ride in the car.
Stock wheels on the K900 are 18” with a 33 mm positive offset and a 5 lug pattern.
We think you will get maximum improved performance by upsizing to 20” wheels, with 9” wide wheels on the front and 10” wide wheels on the rear.
So, the question is what wheel and what tire?
Rohana RC-10 Wheels
Let’s start upsizing with the Rohana RC-10 for the wheels. Rohana is known for manufacturing wheels for high-end luxury and performance vehicles.
They understand the need to design wheels that provide enough room to clear the performance brakes standard on these vehicles.
The RC series wheels are pressure cast, a manufacturing process that compresses the aluminum alloy into the mold. The result is a wheel with greater strength and less mass than a typical monoblock wheel.
So that fits our need for keeping weight in check. Next, the multi-spoke design of the RC-10 provides rigidity without piling on pounds.
The concave design accentuates the spoke structure while meeting the positive offset needs perfectly.
So, the RC-10 fits the practical needs for our 20” wheel, but it’s also a perfect aesthetic match for the K900.
It’s available in a variety of finishes from a machined silver to machined or matte black or gunmetal.
These finishes are the perfect complement to the Snow Pearl White, Bright Silver or Aurora Black Pearl exteriors of the Premium trim or the Mineral Silver trim on the Luxury package.
Hankook Ventus V12 Tires
Now that we’ve selected the perfect wheel, it’s time to wrap them in the perfect tires.
For the front, we recommend the Ventus V12 evo² in a 245/40/20 and on the rear the same in a 275/35/20.
You may have noticed that those are not the OEM size tires for the K900.
As part of upsizing the wheels, you must downsize the standing height of the tire.
That’s because Kia engineered the K900 to travel a set distance with each wheel rotation.
When you start tampering with the wheel diameter, you must compensate with the tire size to keep the overall wheel and tire combined size the same.
Otherwise everything from the gearing to the speedometer must be re-tooled. We like Hankook because they are a global manufacturer with a great track record (pun intended) for delivering quality performance and passenger tires.
And the tires will be on the only part of your K900 that ever touches the road.
It’s an ultra-high-performance summer tire. That doesn’t mean you can’t drive it in spring, winter or fall.
It’s just a tire classification. Summer tires are built for speed and agility. They have less grooving, so more tire is on the asphalt. That’s what we need to improve the K900 performance.
The Ventus V12 evo² is a steel belted tire that was designed to deliver a sport driving experience. The tread features blocks with slanted walls to reduce road noise and grooves that help dissipate heat at speed.
The bead filler adds stiffness for better handling. Speaking of handling, the sidewalls on the V12 evo² resist distortion at speed and while cornering.
Because why have a luxury performance car if you aren’t going to drive it aggressively?
The pros and cons
Upsizing the wheels and switching to a staggered fitment has several benefits.
Aside from the obvious enhancements to the look of the vehicle, you’ll get better performance and better braking. The benefit of the increased skidpad is obvious as well.
However, as Car and Driver discovered during their testing, acceleration is negatively impacted.
Since the K900 is pretty swift, this shouldn’t be an issue.
Gas mileage suffers a bit as well. But the EPA highway estimate for the K900 is 25 mpg, not bad for a luxury performance vehicle.
And, if gas mileage is your main concern, you are only looking longingly at the K900 while shopping the Optima.
Life is full of compromises. But if you want an affordable luxury vehicle, you don’t need to sacrifice performance if you go with the K900 and customize with a staggered wheel fitment.