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I've put 50,000 miles on my E-46 330i since I bought it used and never encountered a flat tire. My luck ran out close to home as I found my rear tire completely flat over the weekend. I went to install my spare, only to find out that the previous owner had left a bald tire in place of the spare tire. No hub, no spare, just a useless tire.

Searching the forums here, it seems the best advice is to get a full size spare. I came across a lucky find on craigslist. A guy is selling 3 BMW OEM rims with tires for a cheap price per wheel. He hit a pothole and damaged a rim so he's stuck selling them individually.

The only hang up is the rims are 17"x8" and my stock rims are 17"x7" (2002 BMW 330i non-sport). I believe the E-46 wheel arches can handle up to a 8.5" rim with tires up to 235 or 245.

My question is, if I'm running 205's (17"x7") on all four corners and I put a 225 (17"x 8") spare on, assuming it's balanced, would it significantly impact performance as a spare? My gut says I'm good to go, but I thought I'd double check on here.
 

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You could use it as a spar with no problem; but, I would keep looking until you find a matching 5th wheel. There are probably tons of wheels out there for sale that are an exact match.
 

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It's a spare so you're really supposed to drive 70 miles with max speed of 50mph. so if you don't regular it, you're fine.
 

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If you have ever changed a tire on the side of a road with the factory jack - you might consider a space saver spare. The 8" wheels are heavy and difficult to get on the hub. It is possible to knock the car off the jack. Which ever way you go - the spare should be as close as possible to the diameter/revolutions per mile as the rear tires you have. You can use tire racks 'specs' chart for that. The OEM spare for your car was a full size spare on a steel wheel. Tire rack lists it as a 205/50R17. The temporary spare tire is a T125/80r17. You can find either setup on ebay - or new.
 
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