When it comes to wheel sizes on Jeeps, there is a world of options, and size comes down to personal preference and what your desired application is with the vehicle. With that being said, fitting 35-inch tires will offer improved ground clearance as a result of the taller sidewalls as well as a more aesthetically pleasing truck. So, is it possible, and what exactly is required to make 35s fit on the stock 18” Wrangler rims?
Yes, you can fit 35×12.50 tires on the stock 18” wheels with some minor modifications. To avoid rubbing it is recommended to fit a 2.5” to 3” lift/leveling kit with wheel spacers on stock rims to increase backspace clearance.
In this instance, size matters! Generally speaking, a 35” tire offers taller sidewalls and a wider footprint which is advantageous off-road. The taller sidewall offers an elongated footprint when deflated and thus improved traction when going off-road.
Let’s look at a few more 35” options for the Jeep Wranglers and see how 35s on 17” compares to 18” wheels.
Can I Put 35 Tires on 17” or 18” Rims
When fitting larger tires, your truck looks a lot more aggressive and purposeful. Of course, the tradeoff is increased fuel consumption which you can read more about here.
There is, however, another caveat when fitting larger tires with taller sidewalls, on-road dynamics.
Taller tires that can be fitted to a 17” have the tendency to make your Jeep feel more “spongy” or “floaty”, especially when cornering or while traveling at higher speeds on a winding highway. A 35” tire fitted to an 18″ wheels with stiffer and lower sidewalls offers a somewhat better-quality highway driving experience and improved driving characteristics. The flip side is you have less sidewall to deflate while wheeling and thus a shorter footprint. If your intention is never to venture off-road then 18s will be the better option here.
Option #1 – 35×12.50 Tires on the Stock 18” Wheels
As mentioned previously, to successfully fit 35-inch tires to your Wranglers stock rims, you’ll need to fit some wheels spacers, such as Rough Country 1.5″ Wheel spacers to push the wheels out slightly for better clearance when turning or when the wheel needs to flex/articulate uneven terrain. Even with wheel spacers, you can expect a slight bit of rub on the front plastic skid at full lock. The best would be to remove the front plastic trim piece completely or modify it by cutting/trimming it slightly where contact is made.
Option #2 – 35×12.50 Tires on the Stock 17” Wheels
This option is the best of the 3 options if you plan on doing mild off-roading. The flip side is that it requires a bit more modifications to get it working 100% and doesn’t allow for serious off-road applications. The stock rims are rather narrow for a 35” tire and will result in a bit of tire bulge and clearance is minimal inside the wheel wells, so not much room to flex. Front mudguards need to be removed to avoid scrub at full lock.
The 17” option is ideal for off-road applications but comes highly recommended to fit a 2.5” to 3” lift kit or leveling kit to accommodate the taller, wider tires, for improved clearance and articulation.
Don’t forget to upgrade your bump stops to prevent contact with fenders at full flex.
Option #3 – 35×12.50 Tires on Aftermarket Wheels
If your budget allows you the option of aftermarket rims when fitting 35s, you’re in a better position. The aftermarket wheel offset will determine how many backspaces you have which means you have more options and fewer complications regarding clearance etc.
The aftermarket rims can be a wider 9 or 10 wide rims which means you eliminate that crowning effect on the tires which results in less bulging. A more negative offset rim will offer more clearance from fenders, and eliminate the need to remove the front plastic trim plate. 17” rims with 35s would also result in a more comfortable ride off-road when compared to larger rimmed 18s or 20s.
Many people are of the opinion the ride would be rough or bumpy, however, quite the opposite is true with the ride being a lot more comfortable as a result of more rubber between the rim and the road to absorb more imperfections in the road surface.
Option #4 – 35×12.50 tires on Aftermarket Wheels and a Lift/leveling Kit
This is the ultimate setup and eliminates a host of complications straight off the bat. Of course, the con is it is the most expensive option of the 4 since full suspension upgrades of most reputable brands don’t come cheap.
The upside or pros are numerous and will offer but are not limited to the following:
- Improved ride quality both laden and unladen
- Less additional modifications necessary for 35s
- Better articulation (flex)
- Improved off-road ability
- Improved load carrying capabilities (GVM Upgrade)
- Increased ride height and ground clearance from the body
- Improved stability both on and off-road.
- Improved towing stability
[VIDEO] Stock JK Wrangler | 35×12.5R18 | 18X9 Wheels – W&T Fitment
What Is The Biggest Tire You Can Put On An 18 Inch Rim?
When considering a big tire upgrade, always make sure you select the right tire and size for your application. When you building a truck for off-road applications, rather opt for a taller side wall with an aggressive tread pattern. Larger or taller sidewall tires offer more floatation and allow you to air down the tire more for a longer or elongated footprint. Always search for tires that are around the size of “35X12.5R18.”
So, if you want to purchase the biggest tires possible for 18-inch rims, choose 325/65R18 for passenger tires or 35X12.5R18 tires depending if it’s a 4WD or a Passenger SUV.
What Users Say Regarding 35’s On 18s
Let’s read some feedback from real owners who’ve ted to fit 35s
User experience/Feedback #1
User Experience/Feedback #2
User Experience/Feedback #3
Fitting 35s on a Jeep simply looks awesome and if you’re doing it simply as an aesthetics upgrade or for improved off-road abilities, you’re fortunate to have a few options available. Remember, bigger isn’t always better and if you plan on going off-road then opt for a complete 2.5” to 3” lift kit combined with 9J or 10J aftermarket rims for a safe and comfortable off-road experience.