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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I know many on here have posted about road noise issues on the Gen 3 Mazda3. I noticed that the noise was really dependent on the road surface - a freshly paved asphalt road was ok, but some roads caused huge resonance that was annoying on long drives.

I also had some complaints about ride harshness over sharper bumps and was generally disappointed with the stock Dunlops. After researching and being disappointed w/ the options in the standard 215/45R18 size, I went up to 225/45R18. The tires fit perfectly and barely impact the speedo, and you can't really tell there's extra sidewall. Turn-in is perhaps a tiny smidge less sharp, but the grip is better and I've noticed it is much quieter and the edge gets knocked off bumps. Also, wet grip is better and road noise is between 30-50% lower (which makes the wind noise stand out a bit, but worth it).

Highly recommend these tires - I got them for $160 on Tire Rack.
 

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225/45/18 with OEM rims makes a big difference in ride comfort with no real negative impact.

I had to buy my Michelin PS4s and put them on the stock rims while I waited for my Enkei rims to arrive. They looked good and really improved the ride quality.
CK
 
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225/45/18 with OEM rims makes a big difference in ride comfort with no real negative impact.

I had to buy my Michelin PS4s and put them on the stock rims while I waited for my Enkei rims to arrive. They looked good and really improved the ride quality.
CK
A reduction in road noise is what I'm looking to find also. I'm still on the OEM dunlops. These things are so loud. I actually had 205/60/16 winter tires for a season and I sold them because my ears were bleeding lol. I added sound deadening to all my doors, trunk and back seats, but its still a bit loud. I can't wait to get rid of the Dunlops.

It looks like people run 225/45 instead of 215/45 without issues. It should be safe to do right? I think I'll get 225/45/18 Michelin pilot sport all season 4 from Costco when the time comes.

The difference in speed is there but negligible. If a bigger tires gives me more comfort, I will happily go for it
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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah I've had zero issues with rubbing or anything -- the difference in diameter is less than half an inch, as you posted. I'll say the car is now by no means super quiet, but it is a significant improvement and it's gone from being occasionally annoying to just slightly louder than average for a compact.
 
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