What are my wheel upgrade options?

The XT unfortunately had an odd 4 X 140 bolt pattern on it’s four lug wheels. This means that your choice of wheels is pretty limited. In fact only other Subaru 13″ wheels from other models made at the time will fit - with one exception. Peugeot made 15″ wheels that will fit, but are going to be WAY harder to come by. In addition, with the exception of one multi-spoke model, the Peugeot rims are arguably far less attractive than anything Subaru ever made. Still, the Peugeots will probably be the best bet for a straight bolt on replacement, but remember when you change the size of the wheel if you don’t decrease the tire sidewall height you’re increasing the overall diameter of the rolling package. This means that your speedometer is going to be a little off. Keep the overall tire/wheel diameter about the same as the stock setup and you’ll do fine.

Probably the best alternative is to perform a “5 lug swap”. For this you’ll need the hubs and axles from an XT6. The tricky part here, is the spline count on the XT6 axles/hubs is different than what sticks out from an XT transmission. That is, you might face even greater challenges getting the XT6 axles to fit your XT tranny. Now, the XT Turbo shares the same spline count as the XT6, so such a conversion shouldn’t be an issue in that case.

Another alternative is wheel adaptors. A wheel adaptor is essentially a bolt on hub face that provides the proper number of lugs (aka, “studs”, “bolts”) for the wheel you’re trying to fit to the car. Availability is something best checked with an internet search. Some of the Japanese Alcyone sites have photos showing such adaptors being used with great results.

Still another approach is to have the hub drilled to match the 6 bolt pattern of some small import trucks, and then use their wheels. Although what light truck wheels would look right with an XT is a question that is best left to the owner’s sense of taste. This has been done numerous times, however, with Subaru Brats, Leone’s, RX’s and other 80’s models and the results are usually pretty nice looking.

The XT6, on the other hand, can accept a wider range of aftermarket wheels. Your best bet here is to consult a tire/wheel professional. They’ll know the right wheels that will fit. Again, make sure you keep the overall diameter the same or you’ll need to have your speedometer adjusted. To answer one common question (for some reason a lot of people have asked) SVX wheels will not fit on the XT6, although wheels from any of the Impreza line (Impreza, Impreza 2.5 RS, WRX, Outback Sport) and possibly the Legacy/Outback and Forester lines might fit.

2 responses to “What are my wheel upgrade options?”

  1. xt6dude Says:

    Hey let’s talk about that moster xt on the calender (october) wheels,tires,scorpion lift kit

  2. Austin Says:

    If s/he has info on the conversion, s/he is welcome to submit it. Otherwise to actually “talk” about it, I’d rather someone started a thread in the discussion area.

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