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Thread: P38 Aftermarket Tyre Size Guide

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Townsville, QLD

    P38 Aftermarket Tyre Size Guide

    *Mods - perhaps another thread worthy of sticky-ness??*

    Hey guys/gals

    It’s a common question on the forum, so I went through every “tyre size” thread I could find on AULRO, got as much info as I could, and asked everyone willing to input info on their tyre size and brand on the forum so I could compile the info and put something up here to save sifting through the millions of threads on tyre size you’ll find when you do a search.
    The questions? What size tyres can I fit under a P38? Will XXXX size tyre fit without modification? Has anyone had issues with tyre scrub with XXXX size/brand tyre? You get the general gist of where I’m headed here...

    Here I’ll start a list of tyre sizes (including brands) used – on this very forum, with honest first hand information directly from the owners as to what works and how they made it work (not heard from a mate’s cousin’s so & so). Bear in mind, even though some tyres will be labelled as the same, they are rarely exactly the same brand-for-brand. Some tyres are known to be taller/skinnier than others, so if you find a tyre that you want to run listed below and want more info, you could PM the person related to that tyre and get more details.

    We’ll start with the big ones and work down to stock size tyres:

    Generally speaking, these are the low-downs with each size:

    315/75/16 - 35” – You will need to fit aftermarket flares and trim the body, likely remove mudflaps and retrofit universal ones, and 2” or more of lift. Definitely not for a standard P38. It’s advised to change final drive ratios as acceleration will suffer. Tyre does not fit in the factory spare location.

    255/85/16 - 33.2” – You will need to remove the front and rear mud flaps to run these tyres. You will also need a good 2” of lift. These cannot be run on a standard P38. It is also advised to change diff ratios to 4.1:1 to allow the overall gearing to return to standard. Spare tyres will not fit in the factory location at this size.

    285/75/16 - 32.8” – You will need to remove the front mud flaps to run these tyres. Some have removed the rear mud flaps as well, but others have not needed to. All members running this size tyre have 2” of suspension lift. You will need lift to run these tyres. You will have scrubbing at full lock on the front inner wheel arches, and gentle scrubbing at partial lock – fixed by simply heating the inner liner up with a heat gun and relocating back a few cm. Spare tyres will not fit in the factory location at this size.

    265/65/18 - 32” and 265/75/16 - 31.8” – Both around the 32” in size you will need to remove the front mud flaps and run some kind of bump stop packing if you are lowered for some reason, unless you have fitted a lift kit of some variety. Members with and without lift are running these sized tyres and neither have major concerns with rubbing – you do not need to lift your P38 to run these tyres. If you have not lifted your P38, you will need to carry packing in case you end up on the bump stops and have to drive for some reason. Otherwise, during normal driving, there are no dramas. The rears on Mud Terrain equipped P38’s scrub in the rear arches under articulation on vehicles without lift, but not enough to cause concern. The All Terrains in these sizes seem to have less scrubbing issues than the Mud Terrains. Spare tyres will not fit in the factory location at this size.

    265/70/16 - 31” – In an All Terrain pattern (don’t seem to be many Mud Terrain tyres in this size) they seem to have no issues rubbing. The only info I have on these size tyres says that a well-worn one will fit into the spare wheel well without issue. Not sure on new ones. You won’t need a lift to run these tyres.

    245/75/16 - 31” – In a Mud Terrain pattern the only reports of scrubbing are when hitting potholes or gutters in Low height, otherwise no issues. No known evidence of them fitting the spare in the factory location. The All Terrains have no dramas with rubbing. No lift required to run these tyres.

    255/70/16 - 30.5” – You will need to remove the front mud flaps if you run these tyres in a Mud Terrain pattern. A good choice if you want a very minor upgrade over the standard sized tyres. Small (very insignificant) rubbing under flex in the rear, but otherwise fit without issue on a standard P38. These tyres do not rub on a standard P38 if you are sent to the bump stops for some reason. Spare tyre will fit in the spare wheel well when fully deflated.

    255/65/16 - 29” – Standard size – no issues.

    Now for individual comments on the sizes:

    Not on the forum, but actually on the P38 Facebook group is Peter Davis. He is running these big puppies on his P38. They are huge – 35” tyres on a P38 - they look like 37” tyres on anything else! He has run two sets of tyres in 35”, he has currently got Mickey Thompson Baja ATZ 4-rib All Terrain tyre and previously he ran a set of Simex Extreme Mud Terrains in the same size. His P38 is on coils (2” lifted) and has classic Rangie flares over the guards. He reports no scrubbing. He also says that he’s running standard gearing (which would put it at around 1700rpm at 100km/h if I was to guess). He didn’t feel confident attacking the guards to fit the flares, so he had Damien Thorn at Peninsula Rangie in Frankston fit them up. He also runs 30mm spacers to put the tyres further out (I assume this is to prevent them scrubbing during sharp turning).
    He did run a Hard Range 2” lift with Gen III springs, but due to quite a lot of dramas with the setup (not the fault of the lift, he mentions it was the tyres potentially throwing up rocks and destroying height sensors and springs), he went to coils. He says that even though the gearing is standard, he is quite happy with it. The rover V8 has enough power to move it at more-than-reasonable pace and the fuel consumption is not excessive. He also mentions that the CV’s and general driveline will suffer long-term if you drive hard as it takes quite a lot more energy to spin up these tyres. Best to take the slow and steady approach when off-road with 35’s – lockers and low 1st with a gentle right foot.

    Paul (PaulP38A) ran these in both Maxxis Bighorn and BF Goodrich KM2 Mud Terrain on his Hard Range P38. He had to remove the front and rear mudflaps and run the Hard Range 2” lift kit to fit them in the guards. Paul had 4.1:1 ratio diff centres in his P38 to return the factory gearing. They measure in at just over 33” diameter. He also mentions concern over running a wider tyre at 33” rubbing quite significantly – hence his choice to run 255/85 instead of 285/75.

    Martin (Fantom P38) has run BF Goodrich KM2 Mud Terrain tyres in this size on his P38 for some time with the Hard Range 2” lift kit. He has removed the front and rear mud flaps, but other than that has not trimmed guards or modified anything else and reports that he is confident with them if he should need to drive on the bump stops.

    Paul (Hammer_H) is running these in BF Goodrich KM2 Mud Terrain on his P38 as well as a 2” suspension lift (still on EAS). He reports scrubbing when in Low height at full lock, and that the rears just bump the arch liners if you hit a hard bump in Low height. He says that driving in Access height is pretty much a non-event as they rub like crazy. He also says that the front wheel arch liner cops a little rub at the rear on steering lock – not bad enough to warrant modification, but it is happening. Using a heat gun it would be simple enough to just warm the arch liner up a little and bend it back a few mm to avoid the rubbing. Otherwise it’s not bad enough to cause dramas. He suggests running bump stop packers if you have to drive on the bump stops for any reason. These tyres measure in at just less than 33” in the old money.

    P38oncoils (unsure of his name) is running Maxxis Bighorn tyres in this size on his coil sprung P38 (3.5” higher at the rear and 2.75” at the front). He says initially he had issues when turning, but has modified the sill trim (assume this is the panel below the doors). He mentions that it’s only at full lock on the front and under articulation in the rear that he scrubs (but is not bad enough to warrant mods to liners or guards).

    Mogswoffy (don’t know his name!!) is running General Grabber AT2’s in this size and reports no issues (other than the spare not fitting in the factory spot). With minimal details in his post, I’m going to assume being a 32” tyre that there would be some minor rubbing on the front mud flaps and rear arch liners if you hit the bump stops.

    Sean (Davidsonsm) runs this tyre (he measures at 31.5” ), in the BFGoodrich All Terrain tread pattern. He says it seems smoother to drive than the factory 255/55/18 tyres and is very happy with the road manners. He has removed the front mud flaps. He ran this tyre with no suspension lift, albeit a minor tweak to get 1” extra via EAS calibration, and had no issues other than rubbing at full lock in reverse with no scrubbing in standard height or above. He has now lifted his Rangie by 2” and mentions that he will be getting a set of Mud Terrain tyres for a set of 16” rims he has. He had longer bump stops by 20mm to be sure in case of a suspension failure.

    Gary (mtb_gary) runs Maxxis Bighorn Mud Terrains in this size on his P38 with 2” of lift. He says they are noisy and slow to respond on the bitumen, but runs these as an off-road only tyre so he is fine with those traits. He says that the adjustable Panhard rod has removed the right-rear chassis scrubbing issue he initially had with these tyres. He also says that they are close to scrubbing on the front mud flaps, but lucky for him they don’t touch, so he still runs them.

    Many moons ago, Ron (p38arover) ran these sized tyres in Cooper ST All Terrain tread pattern. He reports that they were not as good as the Michelin XPC’s in the wet, and noisier too. He says they fouled on the front mudflaps at full lock in Access height. They also fouled the rear arch liners when his suspension failed and lowered him to the bump stops. He changed to a 245/75/16 in the same tyre some years later.

    Wayne (Wayneg) is now running this size Dunlop GrandTrek ATZ on his P38. He says they rub in the front but cannot find rub marks (he assumes the mud flaps are the culprit), but otherwise is rub free.

    Wanglemoose (unsure of name) runs a Maxxis Bighorn 764 in this size on his P38. He is on coils in a +2” size, he also says that he has scrubbing issues to the point where he has removed bits of the front wheel arch liner to allow full lock steering. He says they scrape the guards in the rear under articulation as well.

    RoverHse (not sure of the name) runs the Goodyear Wrangler MTR in this size on his P38. He does not recall any scrubbing issues.

    Peter (Pete 38) is running these in BF Goodrich KM2 Mud Terrain on his P38. Currently not modified suspension-wise other than Arnott Gen III springs (theoretically during normal driving this should not change from standard springs other than when flexing). Peter reports minimal scrubbing in the rear arches when under cross-axle articulation and suggests that bump stop packers are used if you are planning to drive on the bump stops for whatever reason. That means that driving in Access height is limited to straight ahead only, and minimal distances. Otherwise, the front mudflaps have had to be removed, but it does not scrub anywhere else. These tyres are just a shade less than 32”.

    Wayne (Wayneg) was running this size tyre on his P38 in Bridgestone Dueller on the rear and Nexon Rodean All Terrain on the front. He says they don’t rub at all and the spare (a well-worn one at that) fits into the spare’s factory location when fully deflated. He says they were a vast improvement in terms of tram-lining over his 18’s. He also comments that being a standard size across a vast range of larger 4wds makes these tyres a good size from a price perspective.
    You would class these tyres as a 31” tyre.

    Parasnoop67 (unsure of his name) was running Goodyear Wrangler MTR’s on his in this size. They are a true 31” tyre and he reported no scrubbing issues except bumping gutters, etc in Low height. He says they are a bit noisy on the highway but bearable for a mud tyre.
    He does not mention if they fit in the factory spare wheel location or not.

    Benji runs BFGoodrich All Terrains in this size. He says that there are absolutely no issues with rubbing and he’ll easily get 100,000km out of them. He also says that they start to bag out nicely at 24psi or below.

    I am running these sized tyres in BF Goodrich KM2 Mud Terrain. I ran them for 40,000km prior to lifting my P38. The front tyres scrubbed the mud flaps so they were promptly removed. Under full articulation the rears only just touched the wheel arch liners in the rear (and I mean JUST – enough to put tiny marks on the liners). I drove over 1000km on the bump stops when these tyres were pretty much new, including 100km of low-range axle-twisting country, I can confirm you can drive on the bump stops and not have scrubbing issues. I had standard Dunlop air springs at that stage.
    Now that my Rangie is lifted 2” (still using EAS), I am reconsidering putting the front mud flaps back on. There are zero scrubbing issues. Tyres do not touch the rear arch liners any more. On paper they measure in at 30.5”, on my Rangie at 40psi with no load in the back they measure 29.5” from the ground to the top (kind of sad but that’s the reality).
    These tyres do fit in the factory spare tyre location when completely deflated and the valve innards removed. Even from new.

    This is the factory size tyre. You should not experience any issues with scrubbing whatsoever and should expect the spare to fit in the factory location without the need to deflate.

    Cheers for reading!

    RoverHSE's P38 with 265/75/16 Bridgestone Wrangler MTR's

    996Turbo's wearing 265/75/16 BFGoodrich KM2's

    Redandy3575's wearing 30" (255/70??) Silverstone All Terrains.

    PaulP38a's old Hard Rangie wearing 255/85/16 Maxxis Bighorns.

    DT-P38's wearing 265/75/16 Dunlop GrandTrek's

    And Wayne's running the same 265/75/16 GrandTrek All Terrains

    P38oncoils 285/75/16 Maxxis Bighorns

    Martin's wearing 285/75/16 BFGoodrich KM2's

    My P38 wearing 255/70/16 BFGoodrich KM2’s

    Pete’s wearing 265/75/16 BFGoodrich KM2’s

    Sean’s wearing 265/65/18 BFGoodrich All Terrain’s

    Peter Davis’ wearing mammoth 315/75/16’s

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Truganina ( Hoppers Xing )
    Well done Keithy,
    Should provide a great guide to all considering tyre/suspension changes.
    I have just compiled some photos for comparison with my std tyre setup in all heights and KM2's also in all heights with measurements from ground to wheel arch inset into photos will post up once photoshopping is done!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Yeh great effort to bring that all together Keith. I'm sure the P38 community will thank you.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Broken Hill
    Great write up! I must've missed the boat for input. I've just fitted 265/75/16's AT's to my stock p38 and only get slight rubbing under articulation and around corners hitting bumps in highway mode.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Gosford, NSW, Australia

    Another great write up, fantastic work

    MY96 4.6 HSE P38. Niagara Grey; "The Phoenix"
    MY99 4.6 HSE P38. LPG, Blenheim Sliver; "Voldemort" burnt to a cinder
    MY79 RR Classic, Gone, MY57 Series 1 SWB, Long gone
    P38 write ups and info on my website

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Muddie envy. They transform the vehicle from meek and mild to aggressive and mean.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Having never had mud tires before - an 'Elementary dear Watson'- question.
    How much of a difference do mud tires make offroad? I've got bfg at's, to use as a basic yard stick.
    Do they increase traction on dry surfaces, or only in the sloppy stuff?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Townsville, QLD
    Yes, both sloppy and dry 4wding is improved by the larger tread blocks on muddies.

    The downside is that they dig in very soft dirt (for example, climbing a soft dirt hill or sand dune).

    Sand has not proved to be an issue, only when elevation is concerned do they dig in sand. The right tyre pressure has a bigger bearing for muddies than all terrain's on sand.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    upwey vic

    Thumbs up

    Fantastic work a great guide for those thinking of mod's in the future ; Pic's are great to, CHEER'S

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Burpengary, QLD
    really useful collection of information here, thanks everyone for taking the time to provide and compile the info, I am thinking about 245/76 R16 muddies and I can now be confident they fit without a lift (which should be coming thanks to your last, equally great thread), but if someone could tell me if it fits in the spare wheel well I would be grateful (I am sort of expecting it to not fit to be honest)

    thanks again to everyone

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