Tire size for duchess

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    william linville


     I would like to replace the old tires and possibly new rims on my Duchess MGTD kit car. manuals say the 1970 VW ran a tire with a 25.5 inch diameter. 165-15. This was before the current tire sizeing.I am thinking about 195 65 R15 which has a 6.4 inch tread width 7.9 inch section width and diameter of 25 inches and is a radial. Will this be to wide? The rear has ample clearance but the front may rub. How about wider on the rear and narrower on the front. The rim width for the above tire is 5.5inches up to 7 inches. Bill Linville

    Frank Kuhn


    This is a good question. I would like any info on this subject.


    Paul Mossberg



    165 R15 is the standard VW Beetle size radial tire. These days the equivalent is 165 80R/15. That’s more tire than an original TD. I have them on my Duchess on stock VW wheels, simply beucase I wanted something close to the original look. My car is in the gallery under PMOSSBERG.

    With the 165s, there is a lot of clearance on my Duchess. Based on that, my guess is the wider tires would fit with no problem in the rear. You might have some rub at full left/right in the front. As these cars are all hand built, there can be some variation in the exact position of the fenders. So it’s hard to say for certain if you will have clearance issues or not.


    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    Mark Hendrickson


    Keep in mind that these cars are light and the smaller width tires will give you better traction (more lbs. per square inch of tire contact).

    Also, the VW drivetrain/suspension, for several reasons, doesn’t like too large of a tire. I’d search for some P165/80’s or P175/80’s on http://www.tirerack.com or http://www.discounttiredriect.com not anything larger or with a smaller aspect ratio.

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