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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

First time poster here and bought my M3 Sport Hatch about a month ago. I've been reading a bit about the various wheel options being used in HS with the various models of this car and I don't seem to have nailed down a concensus for this car. It looks like 09 is the first year for 17" only rims on this model and my options are about nil? I've read about the older stock 5 spoke wheels claiming to only 19.4 vs. the 23 lbs. reported and seems like the only/best option vs. my stock snowflake models. I need to(should have) put on some snow tires very soon and am looking whether I should use the stockers for autox or snow tire duty. If there are no options then I can get whatever size I choose for winter wheels and autox wheels are already decided. Any options I missing?

Furthermore, what is the consensus of the best street/autox option for shocks at a reasonable cost(<$800 or so)? FSD's, Sports, anything else? After driving my new 09 WRX around for a week, the Mazda 3 seems pretty poor in comparison in bump absorbtion and can use an upgrade. The WRX is going to be my main autox vehicle, but I definately want to have a capable backup and who knows, if the Mazda proves more fun/competitive I may refocus my $$. Thanks for your time.
 

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Welcome to the forum!

You can definitely pick up a bunch here as it seems most Mazda 3 MZ3 and MS3 drivers seem to be on this board.

The 17" wheel is the only option for the hatch going back to the 2004 model. Just a crappy size and all of us have been hoping to find a lighter wheel. You are correct in that the 5 spokes, at least as posted on this board - I've never compared personally, are a few pounds lighter compared to the snowflakes. We even tried to get Wheeldude.com, one of the larger Rota dealers in the US, to see if they would make a small run of the 17" X 6.5" wheels we crave. No dice...

Shocks. Most people seem to go with Koni yellow or Koni FSD. My co-driver PZ, his car we will be installing the Mazdaspeed (not Mazdaspeed 3) shocks and struts this spring. If you haven't registered yet... Mazdaspeed has fantastic racer support and you would be surprised at the level of discount you can get on stock and Mazdaspeed parts.

Keep us posted we you are and what events you will be attending.
 

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Agreed on the 17's being the only stock wheel size. Unfortunately, unbeknowist (sp?) to me...I've been riding on 16's ever since I got the car last year (thanks to the loser who owned the car before me)! I was gonna boot up to 18's for auto-x, but I conviced myself to just go with stock 17's. So that way, I can stay in HS and not have to move up with only 3 races under my belt lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well thanks for the info. I'm in the Chicago Region SCCA and race in Milwaulkee's, NW IN and sometimes Southbend, IN as well. Last year was going to be the year I was planning on trying Nationals with a decently prepped car until I had difficulty in acquiring coilovers before June. And once acquired, my motor spun a bearing(05 WRX in STX). I only went to two events last year because of all that. Now that car is gone, I'll be learning the 09 WRX and Mazda3 locally this year. Two new cars, both competitive in their stock classes will be fun............and a bit expensive. I don't know if I'll do the R-comp thing yet, with one, both or neither as this would be my first time doing so and we have great "street tire" classes here. Just have to drive 'em and see.
 
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