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I bought my SLK to drive year round and am planning ahead for winter. I’ve done what I think is a reasonably thorough search of various forums but haven’t quite found the answers I looking for.

I will be buying a new set of rims and fitting them with a winter tire. I want to buy Michelin X-ice Xi3s. Unfortunately, they do not come in the 225/45R17 size that my 2005 SLK with AMG Sport package currently wears on the front.

My questions are:
1) Would a 215/45R17 tire (like those worn by the R172) fit my R171 SLK?
2) If yes, any ideas on which rim size would be most appropriate? I guess I’m a little confused how the same tire can fit on wheels of different widths.
3) Any predictions on how the different tire size would ride? Any rubbing? My understanding is that they are a thinner tire than the ones my car currently wears which would be a good thing for snow traction.
4) If all else fails, Dunlop sells the WinterMaxx tire in a 225/45R17. Am I thinking correctly that the front and back tires should match in size for snow tires (instead of the staggered tires my car is wearing now)?

I Appreciate all comments.
 

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You can try the online tire rim calculators to check which tire fits on a certain rim. I guess one size smaller in width will be ok and as you said better for snow. Different width tires fit on the same rim because the tire walls are flexible. No rubbing of course with a smaller tire...
 

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You said you are buying new rims. But the tires you want aren't available for the rims currently used on the front. There's no reason the new rims you buy for the winter tires have to be the same size as the summer tires. They can be a bit narrower, which as you said, are better for the snow. That's what I did for my wife's 2010 SLK 350 that has the AMG package. The standard, summer only tires and wheels are actually a staggered configuration, but the snow tires are the same size at all 4 corners.
 

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Mercedes recommend 225/45 R17 winter wheels/tyres for both ends of the car.

I have Nokian WR D3 on my winter wheels which were great on the snow and ice.
 

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Premium Member 2001 SLK320
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Snow Chains for R170 SLK

Here in Australia, we only have need for snow chains when we go for a week skiing in the mountains.
To enter the Alpine areas, it is mandatory to carry snow chains. Winter tyres are not accepted as an alternative. Even 4wds must comply.

The link below lists a huge range or rims for R170s but every one likely to be available shows as not suitable for snow chains.

http://www.mercedes-benz.com.cn/content/media_library/china/mpc_china/SERVICES/Accessories_Collection/Collection_Brochure_Folder/Light-alloy_Wheels_Out-of-production.object-Single-MEDIA.tmp/Light-alloyWheelsOut-of-production.pdf

There are two issues,
the chains scratching the rims if they protrude, ( no problem if I use an old pair of pre-scratched rims) , and also clearance for the chains.
I could not find anywhere in the owners manual that prohibited chains, but also there was no info on what was the correct tyre/rim combination for this purpose.
Any thoughts please?

What rims are suitable to use with chains?
Does M-B sell steel rims for this purpose?

Thanks
 

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Premium Member 2001 SLK320
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thanks Sneaky Pete,
I think you have cleared it up.
So I can use the common Slk230 7" fronts, on the rear with chains, it would seem, excellent.
I misread the M-B wheel catalogues where it indicated the rear 8" rims were unsuitable, as applying to the whole staggered set / style.
Much appreciated !
 
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