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Some Beginner Questions About Wheels

koalb

Passed Driver's Ed
Location
Minnesota
Car(s)
2016 SE, PP, LP
Let me start off by saying that I've been searching the existing threads on this forum, and will continue to do so.

So I've got 18" Austins on my GTI. Don't have strong feelings about them either way, but I have noticed them to be a little "delicate," or easily scratched in my opinion. I'm not talking curb rash, I'm taking normal wear and tear. Have also noticed a few white spots near the bolt holes, which I recall reading is some kind of clearcoat de-lamination process.

Have been window shopping Enkei and Neuspeed wheels – just based on reputation, style and price. I understand that Neuspeed's are manufactured to fit the GTI without spacers, different bolts, etc.

So my questions are as follows:

How well do Enkei and Neuspeed wheels compare with OEM wheels in terms of durability. Not talking curb rash. Talking about normal wear and tear. I'm hoping the answer is "more durable to some degree."

Assuming you're comparing like for like between Enkei and Neuspeed – any meaningful differences in terms of quality and engineering?
 

HarryCMK7

New member
Location
Hampshire UK
Car(s)
2015 VW Golf MK7
Agree with Mud.

I fitted a new set of Genuine VW 18" Cadiz alloys to my MK7. Before getting 4 new tyres I ceramic coated all 4 alloys twice (yes overkill I know) and left them to cure for 24 hours. Then fitted tyres and put on my Golf.

Just make sure they are protected whatever you put on. This stops / slows the de-lamination process too.

H.
 

jmblur

Go Kart Champion
Location
Massachusetts
Car(s)
2017 Golf R
the "white worm" is a typical issue with "diamond cut" clearcoated wheels, and is actually corrosion of the bare aluminum surface under the clearcoat. Manufacturers love them, I hate them for this reason and stay away from them. A fully painted or powdercoated wheel tends to be more durable, however you WILL still get small dings and chips from road debris. Just what happens.

Wax, ceramic coat, etc. are important to protect your wheels from brake dust infiltration and generally make them easier to clean, but they will NOT prevent stone chips or scuffs. The only thing that will is clear bra, and it won't hold up on wheels due to the temperatures it will see.

Generally aftermarket wheels will be similar to OEM as long as you go with a reliable brand - enkei and neuspeed fitting that category. Note that with the Enkeis you'll need new lug bolts (conical) and very likely hub rings as well (usually included). Make sure to review load ratings vs OEM and only get wheels that have a real TUV or JWL VIA marking on them (not just "tested to JWL standards" - this means no independent confirmation). Again, no problem with enkei and neuspeed there. "DOT approved" or "meets DOT standards" means precisely nothing - it only specifies how wheels are measured and how they need to be marked, no actual performance testing or safety evaluation.
 

Diggs24

Autocross Champion
Location
de plains! de plains!
Car(s)
2015 GTI; 2003 Saab
Quite a few people with bending issues on Neuspeeds if you have potholes, which considering your location you deal with every winter/spring. I'd suggest keeping the Austins as a second set until roads are in good shape. Don't go 19s.
 

Cliff

Go Kart Newbie
Location
San Francisco Bay Area
Car(s)
2015 Golf R
Quite a few people with bending issues on Neuspeeds if you have potholes, which considering your location you deal with every winter/spring. I'd suggest keeping the Austins as a second set until roads are in good shape. Don't go 19s.
That must be people running 19" wheels.

I've been running 18" Neuspeed wheels on my car since it was 3 days old, and the only time I bent a wheel happened when I went off track at Buttonwillow and smacked into an adjacent section of track at 30+ mph. A friend of mine who operates a wheel repair business in this area was able to straighten the wheel. I'm up over 50k miles now, with 60 track days on the car, and Neuspeed wheels have been absolutely solid as far as I'm concerned.
 

ChrisMk77

Go Kart Champion
Location
Sweden
Car(s)
2018 GTI Performance
My Team Dynamics wheels are to durable, no rockchips or marks yet and I am to cheap to just powder coat them in the color I want when they are still in great shape. 😄
 
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