You've probably heard the term alloy wheels all over the internet. But what does this really mean?
Alloy wheels are usually comprised of a few different types of metals. Aluminum makes up the largest percentage. Hence the name aluminum alloy wheels.
Alloy wheels are very versatile and can be cast into a large variety of shapes and sizes.
The biggest advantage of alloy wheels is their weight. Aluminum is much lighter than steel. Which means each alloy wheel is several pounds lighter than a steel wheel.
Having lighter wheels means that your engine doesn't have to work as hard to spin them, which leads to better fuel consumption or more range if you have an electric car.
Lighter wheels also mean you'll be putting down more power and there will be less wear on suspension components.
Another advantage of alloy wheels is that they're made of non-ferrous metals. This means that when exposed to salt and road grime, they won't rust.
Aluminum can still oxidize though. So it's still recommended to keep your wheels clean so they stay looking brand new.
While alloy wheels may not be as strong as their steel counterparts, good quality alloy wheels should not have any issues when subjected to everyday use.
Cost is another disadvantage for alloy wheels as steel wheels are much cheaper, and in some cases, easier to find.