If you’re considering picking up a set of brand new wheels for your car, then you know just how exciting the process can be. But also how shopping can be a little stressful because there are just so many options to choose from.
There’s a lot to think about between different styles, trends, reliability qualities, and price points when buying a new set of rims. Don’t worry--we’ve compiled a list of our favorites that look sick, perform incredibly well and cover a wide range of wallet sizes, so no matter what you’re looking to spend, you can be riding in style.
Before we get started, there are three different types of rim manufacturing to keep in mind when you’re doing research. These are different ways that companies actually build their products, and they can make a big difference in the quality and price of the wheels.
Cast Wheels: Cast wheels are going to be your most common style of production. The company will mold the wheel and pour in the materials while piping hot, letting them cool down into the sturdy rim you know and love. This method can be more affordable than the other two, but they may come at another cost. Cast wheels tend to be a bit heavier and wear quicker than other methods. Not to say that they wouldn’t be worth the purchase if that’s your budget range, but it’s something to keep in mind.
Also, be on the lookout for low-pressure cast wheels. While some companies might still follow the traditional method of pouring in liquid material, this can sometimes create pockets of air that aren’t good for the structure of the rim. Low-pressure casting involves putting in the liquid material from the bottom up slowly. This drops any concern of air bubbles.
Flow Formed Wheels: This process is a bit newer and sits right between cast wheels and forged, combining a bit of both worlds. Flow formed wheels start as cast wheels, in theory, slightly smaller than they’ll end up. They go through a machine process that stretches and shapes the metal into its final form, creating a stronger and lighter product than traditional casting.
Forged Wheels: Forged wheels are generally top of the line and are incredibly reliable due to how they are made. As the name would suggest, forged wheels are forged out of a single piece of material, typically aluminum. This creates a seriously strong piece of hardware that your car can sit on for years.
Forged wheels are either pressed into shape with massive force or machine-carved out of a metal block. However, they tend to run on the more expensive side, so keep that in mind.
Now for our top rim picks of 2021. We made choices on rims depending on style, performance, quality, and overall design.
We’ve got two Moto Metal rims on this list, and even though they didn’t come out in 2021, anyone familiar with wheels will recognize and respect the name.
The M0962s have stood the test of time, and while designed for Trucks, SUVs, and Jeeps they range in size from 17” to 24”.The design of these rims is classic, aggressive, but refined, coming in either classic chrome or milled black. The amount of weight these things can hold will ensure that you won’t be wearing them down anytime soon, no matter where you find yourself.
While the MO962’s are a bit on the pricey side, coming in at just under $300 each, it’s definitely money well spent for any truck-lover or off-road enthusiast. And with our flexible payment plan, you don’t have to stress about dropping a load of cash all at once, making it easier than ever to get those high-quality wheels.
Our other Moto Metal pick on this list is the MO970. If you love the MO962s, but the aggressive stance is a bit much for your truck, the MO970s are going to be a perfect fit. They come in a wide array of offset, giving you options for how you want your ride to look cruising down the street. Getting down to a 16” up to a 22” diameter opens up the door for just about any Truck/SUV/Jeepyou’re looking to beef up.
These rims are also noticeably more affordable than the MO962s at $138 per wheel, but you don’t have to feel like you’re getting the cheap option. These rims are built tough, the only way Moto Metal knows how.
The Fuel Rebel wheels are a seriously killer option when it comes to wheels. The medium-sized spokes reach up to a faux-bead lock lip for those of you who love the look but don’t want to deal with the potentially illegal qualities of actual beadlocks.
These wheels come in a wide array of offset options, so you can really choose the perfect option for your vehicle, from +20 back to -44 for that awesome, deep-dish look.
While a little on the more expensive side of the range, the matte black Fuel Rebels look and ride incredibly smooth for your truck, SUV, or midsize sedan.
Another favorite coming from Fuel is the D610 Mavericks; these things are amazing. The silver and black design pops off the pavement, and we love staring at these and the hidden lug cap on the face.
Beyond aesthetics, these rims are no joke, and to some, they might seem a little heavy. But these wheels are tough when it comes to hitting the ground running and an incredible deal at just under $50 a month with our plan.
The Ultra 203b Hunters definitely earn their name with their sleek, agile, and ferocious appearance. If the simple spoke design isn’t speaking to you, then maybe these will. With a more complex face design and similar beadlock appearance as the Fuel rims, the Hunters are definitely a statement piece just waiting to be added to your ride.
And at only $40 a month, these wheels won’t break the bank.
Not feeling the beadlock rivets around the rim? Want something that looks like it’s still got motion, even when parked? Unless you’re looking for spinners, the TIS 547bs are a fantastic choice.
TIS crushes it when it comes to making a lightweight, super-strong rim in the 547b. While the 544s have definitely been fan favorites for a few years, the 547bs are a strong option if you want to go with a reliable brand with a newer face.
Whether you’re considering one of our favorite rims for 2021 or have something else in mind, there are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re shopping for new rims.
Firstly, you’ll want to double-check that you know what offset will best serve your vehicle. Offset is the measurement of the connection point on the wheel to the true center. This determines whether your rims will have a flush, clean look or a deep dish, sunken look. Both can be highly appealing, but it’s important to know exactly what you’re buying and how it might affect your ride.
Whatever you go, positive or negative, you’ll affect your suspension system and wheel wells. Going too far positive on the offset might force your tires to grind against the outer wheel well when you turn too tightly while going too far negative is going to put stress on your suspension due to improper weight distribution.
The other thing to keep in mind, and this might seem obvious, but it’s worth mentioning, is the size of the wheel. Measure the rims that you have on right now and read the front of your tire and try to buy something the same size, if not extremely close. While you can go bigger or smaller, if you want, make sure to consult with a tire professional before doing so. You can always chat with a Rent A Wheel tire expert at any time if you have questions.
Rims in 2021 are looking sharp but not overdone. Bold, but not blatant. Flashy but not trashy. Do your research when it comes to finding the right wheel for your ride and get a set that makes you happy, because while it always feels good to have neighbors and strangers commenting on how wicked your new rims are, how your car looks and feels entirely depends on how you prefer it.