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4x4 Truck Wheel Buyers Guide

4x4 Truck Tire Desert
Tom Morr | Writer
Posted October 1, 2009

The Latest For Wheeling, Towing & Competition

This year's guide strives to be as hardcore as possible. Those blingy dubs might be fine for the soccer-team SUV, but the focus here is on wheels that beg to be wrapped with knobby treads. While we've included many modern wheels made from space-age alloys, good old pound-'em-back-into-shape steelies get their due too. The newest beadlocks are also littered through this guide. With the holiday shopping season right around the corner, you might find something here for your four-wheeling wishlist.

AEV
AEV offers its 17x8.5 Pintler beadlock wheel for JK and TJ Wranglers as well as '05-and-newer Grand Cherokees and Commanders. These wheels use Hutchinson technology and are DOT-compliant. They have a lifetime structural warranty and a one-year warranty on the two available finishes, argent and silver. Information: AEV, 406.251.2100, www.aev-conversions.com

Black Rock
The Viper is Black Rock Wheels' latest. This alloy wheel comes in two finishes: black satin matte and tungsten silver with matte clear coat. Designed for Jeeps and other off-road applications, the Viper features exposed lugs, aggressive spokes, and diamond machined accents. Initial sizes are 15x8 and 17x8, with more fitments in the works. Custom backspacing is available. Information: Black Rock Wheels, 909.947.1831, www.blackrockwheels.com

Alcoa
Alcoa is set to announce a new 17-inch dually wheel. Available now is the Xtreme Series, which is targeted at tow rigs. It's a boldly designed 20x9 eight-lug wheel made from forged aluminum--and backed by a limited lifetime warranty. Finishes are Dura-Bright or chrome. Information: Alcoa, 888.699.4335, www.strongwheels.com

BTR
BTR is well known among desert racers. Its pressure-cast aluminum beadlocks are available in several sizes for VW-based buggies. The 17x8 TT beadlock can be drilled to spec for multiple 4x4 bolt patterns and lug styles. Finishes are polished or black powdercoat. Forged aluminum beadlock rings come in red, black, blue, and polished. Information: BTR Racing Wheels, 714.578.8258, www.btrracingwheels.com

American Racing
American Racing offers the off-road- only ATX Series Chamber PRO Bead Lock. Rotary forged from 6061 aluminum, the 17x8.5 wheel has 4 1/2-inch backspacing and is available in popular bolt patterns. It uses 24 flush-mount bolts with replaceable bushing inserts. The Chamber PRO meets sanctioning-body requirements and is available in a machined finish or coated with Teflon. Information: American Racing Equipment, 310.635.7806,www.americanracing.com

Center Line
Center Line's I.C.E. wheel uses an internal beadlock that's DOT-compliant and also run-flat capable. The three-piece design uses front, rear, and inner beadlock sections. All parts are forged from 6061 aluminum. The wheel components are joined with 20 stainless steel bolts, and the inner centering element locks the tire bead into position so the tire can run at low pressure without slipping on the rim. Sizes are 17x8 and 17x9, available in several popular bolt patterns. Information: Center Line Wheels, 562.921.9637, www.centerlinewheels.com

Bart
Bart's Supertrucker steel wheels have been off-road enthusiast favorites for more than 30 years. They're built to be strong and durable and are available in wide 15- and 16.5-inch diameters with either 3 1/2 or 4 inches of backspacing. What's more, Bart now offers 32-bolt beadlock kits for the Supertrucker. Available finishes are high-gloss black or silver powdercoat as well as chrome. Information: Bart Wheels, 708.458.9141, www.bart-wheel.com

Champion
Champion Wheel's SCORE-legal C-3 Flush Mount Beadlocks are available in 15- , 16- , and 17-inch diameters. They're engineered for exceptional tire retention under low air pressure/high torque situations. For added safety, the mounting bolts sit flush with the ring's surface. Champion begins its Flush Mount Beadlocks with American Racing wheels, or customers can have their own aluminum wheels converted. Information: Champion Wheel Co., 951.471.2183, www.championwheel.com

Bassett
Bassett's Inertia is a true steel beadlock wheel designed for hardcore off-road driving and rockcrawling. It's available in two styles: 8 D-hole and 5-Spoke (shown). Bassett puts a step in the inner beadlock ring to make tire-centering easier; each beadlock features 18 Grade 8 fasteners. Available fitments range from 15x8 to 15x14 in several five-lug patterns. Finish choices are silver or black powdercoat and duplex nickel hard chrome. Information: Bassett Racing Wheels, 888.888.7199, www.bassettwheel.com

Desert Rat
Desert Rat's newest aluminum wheel is the Raton. It's designed to combine strength (all sizes have at least a 3,000-pound load capacity), style, and affordability. Diameters are 16, 17, 18, 20, and 22 inches in popular 1/2- and 3/4-ton bolt patterns. Available finishes are Brite Machined, machined with black center (shown), and full chrome. Information: Desert Rat, 866.444.5337, www.desertrat.com

Diamond
Diamond specializes in custom-made steel wheels. Available diameters range from 13 to 24.5 inches, and widths can be made anywhere from 4 to 48 inches. More than 40 bolt patterns are available, and centers can be solid or have custom vent-window shapes. Strength comes from 360-degree welding. Standard powdercoat finishes are silver, black, and white (additional colors are optional). Beadlocks are available for 15- , 16- , and 17-inch diameters. Information: Diamond Racing Wheels, 800.937.4407, www.diamondracingwheels.com

Hutchinson
Hutchinson's Rock Monster line is one of the few DOT-certified beadlocks. Hutchinson uses an internal beadlock insert to form a lock on both the inner and outer tire beads. The two-piece wheel compresses the internal beadlock insert during assembly so air pressure isn't needed to hold the beads in place. Applications are available in 15- , 16- , and 17-inch diameters in popular bolt patterns. Information: Rock Monster Wheels, 609.394.1010, www.rockmonsterwheels.com

Dick Cepek
The new Dick Cepek Torque is a machined aluminum wheel designed for newer trucks and SUVs that require a higher offset, additional brake-caliper clearance, and the ability to use the factory TPMS. It's available in 16- to 22-inch sizes and features a machined outer lip, a flat black finish, a satin clearcoat, and a coordinating center cap. Information: Dick Cepek Tires & Wheels, 800.222.9092, www.dickcepek.com

KMC
KMC's XD Series Enduro Beadlock is suitable for both competition and recreation. It's available from 15 to 17 inches; the 17-inch models are designed to accept inner liners. Enduro Beadlocks are made from counter-pressure cast A356-T6 aluminum with 6061-T6 aluminum beadlock rings. They come standard with 36 Grade 8 bolts and washers. Most custom applications can be built to order. Information: KMC Wheels, 800.864.4387, www.kmcwheels.com

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