The year is quickly coming to a close, and that means the end of a wild decade in the automotive world. Looking back across the last ten years, there have been a number of influential designs that are shaping what this next decade is going to become.
If there's one feature that can make or break a car's design, it has to be the choice of wheel. Since it's so subjective, we polled the office to find out everyone's favorite factory wheels of the decade. These are five of the most chosen:
BMW 666M - BMW F8X M3 & M4
JR - Social Media Manager
Out of nearly fifty responses on the matter of wheel of the decade, this choice was almost unanimous. I, for one, remember when they were first unveiled on the BMW M4 GTS at Pebble Beach in 2015, and my first time seeing them in person at the following NYIAS. As the crowds gathered around the Frozen Dark Grey Metallic GTS, the focus there was all on those wheels. At the time, they were so far removed from other wheels BMWs typically shipped with. Initially, they could only be purchased with the orange accents; however, they can now be purchased with a neutral grey accent.
Volvo ODYSSEUS - Volvo S60 & V60
Adam Goral - Volvo Catalog Manager
Photo Courtesy of Stephen Evans
Volvo design doesn't get nearly as much love as it should. Nothing about what they do is flashy, and this wheel design is another example of their design language. These wheels were actually released on the 2007 model year S80 but were sold new on the 2011 S60 and V60 straight through to 2018. Measuring in 18x8", they look right at home on almost every Volvo, old or new, wagon or sedan—with the simple meaty 5-spoke design.
Volkswagen Cadiz - MK7 Volkswagen Golf R
Kevin Kaiser - Customer Service Representative
When the MK7 Golf R was first released, it was one of the best performance bargains out there (and still is five years later). All-wheel-drive, 288 horsepower, a six-speed manual, or seven-speed DCT, the Golf R punched far outside its class.
Volkswagen has always been known for their slightly unconventional wheel design, and the Cadiz design didn't stray from that. The design was polarizing; some people loved them while some hated them. At the time, they were an interesting choice on an otherwise subtly-styled car. Later model models of the Golf R had the option of the always sharp flow formed Pretorias.
Audi Rotors - Audi B8 S4
John Dockendorff - Quality Assurance Specialist
Photo Courtesy of VWVortex.com
Audi Rotors—It's hard to find an Audi that they don't look good on. They come in nine different size/offset options from nineteen to twenty-one inches, so you can find one that adds that aggressive look to your B6 A4s all the way through your Q5. If you option the "titanium package edition," you can get them finished with gunmetal grey spokes and a machined perimeter, which sets the look off even further.
Mercedes-AMG Turbines - Mercedes-AMG S65
Shane Giumarello - Customer Experience Lead
Photo Courtesy of fly-wheel.com
When you think of an AMG, what's the first thought that comes to mind? For many, it's "class"—so much so that Mercedes differentiates their models that way—by class.
The "Turbine" wheels as they're referred to, are about as classy as you can get with sixteen spokes in a polished finish. Not many cars can pull off the polished wheel look like the S65 can.
Do you agree or disagree with our choices? Let us know what wheels of the last decade are your favorite in the comments below.
Writer/Editor at FCP Euro and owner of a daily R53 MINI Cooper, a track-built R53 MINI, and a 1997 Dakar Yellow E36 M3 Sedan. ••• Instagram: @evan.madore