How many of you that have larger wheels than stock also replaced your spare tire? I have 17" wheels but still have the stock donut in the trunk. This concerns me becuase of the AWD so I'm thinking of getting a full size spare. Any suggestions on where to go?
If you enter your stock tire size and compare with 215 45 17 (common 17 tire size), you'll see there is a very small variation in the overall diameter of the wheels as compared to stock.
I think that is acceptable for short distance driving on your spare. However, if you are using different size tires than that, you may have to run with a full size spare for emergencies.
Of course, if you do decide to go with a full size spare, all you have to worry about is putting the same size tire on the same size wheel as what you are running. It could be *any* 17 wheel, unless you're worried about them matching in the event you have to use the spare. Try to pickup a single wheel from someone who has wrecked their car and has an odd number of good wheels left. Try to find a used tire in the same size you're using to save some money, and consider that chances are that if you get a flat, it will be on a somewhat worn tire. Ideally, you want the tread wear on all your wheels to be as equal as possible.
By Summer, I'll probably have a set of 17" Rotas. I'm deciding to take out the spare and keep at least two cans of the "spare tire in a can" in the trunk if needed (incase more then one tire flattens). That way, I can *temporarily* get somewhere safe and swap the 4 wheels there with my stock wheels.