Panasport Wheels

Panasport FS15 15x7

[7/9/2000] Reviewed by David Wright -

Applicable to '90 - '97 '99 + 1.6 liter 1.8 liter

15x7 Panasport (Minilite) Rims

These are excellent. I have had nothing but compliments on the looks of the rims on the car. I find that they improve the "go-fast" look, without being to "unstylish" to the theme of the car.

I found to install them wasn't very difficult. Although, using the standard lug nuts is a problem. They are a little too big, with a standard socket. I had to grind down the outside of a socket to fit enough. I would suggest to get some replacement lugs, before you go to install the rims.

Over all, a worth-while product. Something I would do again in a heart beat.

Under 30 minutes to remove completely

Panasport FSm 16x8 Wheel

[12/27/99] Reviewed by Philip Salibello -

Applicable to '99 +

Panasport 16x8 FSm wheel with 40mm offset for 1999 Miata

The Wheels

The wheels look awesome! The 16x8" rim really is large. I have a black car so all that silver aluminum against the black paint is eye catching. I'll have pictures up on my web site sometime soon.

I do have to note that I bought the wheels because they were lighter than most 16" wheels, but were not the lightest. I noticed this at speed on a rolling section of highway. The suspension was working extra hard to dampen the bounce. Felt like the shocks were getting old.

I also noticed that with the combination of 215/40/16 Toyo T-1S tires, there is more room between the fender and tire. I am going to get some slightly lowering springs to correct this awkward appearance.

The ride is definitely changed. Thank the tires for the noticeably bumpier ride.

I can say that while it is real easy to buy a set of 5 spoke wheels, these set your car apart from the pack.

The Installation

When the installer tried to put the wheels on my 1999 Sport, he called me and told me he wouldn't. The holes are just slightly bigger than the stock lug nut and would have scratched the wheel tightening them.

I will concede that there may be some shops out there that have shaved tools to fit the tight clearances. What I will not give up is that out on the side of the road, there will be no special tools and you are up the creek.

Moss got on the phone and found that Panasport insisted that the stock nuts could be used with an extremely thin-walled driver. You have to be joking.


1. Find a 17mm Hex Acorn nut or a Socket Lug for a 12mm x 150mm bolt. I found two sites that sell these and

2. Socket Lug from American Racing (my choice). The lug doesn't have a hex on the outside, but is used like a ratchet with the wrench fitting inside the end of the nut. A key is provided that fits your standard tire iron.

Under 30 minutes to remove completely

Panasport FS15E 15x7 wheels

Reviewed by: Bill Rockoff -

Alloy wheels, 15" diameter, 7" wide, 38 mm offset, 100x4 bolt pattern, silver finish

I ordered these for my '91 base model from Tire Rack in 1994, back when Tire Rack carried Panasport (they apparently don't anymore.) I ordered them shipped with 205/50 Comp T/A-3's (blech!)

I was originally looking for the ability to run premium tires, which were largely confined to 15" sizes and above back then. The cosmetic improvement over my steel wheels was mostly gravy, but I was (and am still) pleased that Panasports are often found on real race cars, as opposed to most aftermarket wheels which are usually found only on other street cars with aftermarket wheels.

These arrived from Tire Rack with no mounting hardware or center caps. I called back to complain and they sent me all that stuff, but I got impatient and found a way to mount 'em with my original steel-wheel lug nuts - I turned down the outer surface of a 13/16" socket so it fits into the bolt holes. Most sockets won't fit, and the lug nuts don't come out far enough to be reached without my custom-butchered socket. Consequently, I park anywhere without worrying that I'll return to find cinderblocks where my wheels used to be. As for the center caps, well, after you remove 'em for a few track events they just don't stay in too well, and then they come off when you corner hard (or crash into stuff) on the street. Mine are gone.

The different offset changed the steering feel quite a bit - there's much less effort immediately off-center than before. Too bad; steering feel was one of my favorite things about my car when it was stock. However, the wider wheels and tires give more ultimate grip than I was getting w/ stock wheels and 14" street tires, so that makes up for some of the loss (although when I run "loaner" wheels while someone straightens my Panasports after the crash of the day, I always think "dang, it sure feels nice with proper offset.....")

Now, I didn't pay much attention to my wheels (other than saying "wow, those STILL look good") until May '99 when I used up my brakes but GOOD and decided to upgrade to the bigger stuff from a 1.8L Miata. Lo! and Behold! The caliper brackets that hold the pads on a 1.8 stick WAY out further than the 1.6 parts. They stick out beyond the mounting surface of the rotor, whereas the old ones are flush; consequently, they interfere with the Panasports. Stock alloys and most aftermarket wheels don't have this problem, because by this point in their diameter most wheels have spokes that clear this bracket. The Panasports still have some hub there. Maybe that's part of the key to their strength. Apparently, some other 1.8 Miatas have had the same problem (Hector at R-Speed, for one) and have had to grind down the bracket to fit the wheel. Maybe some 1.8 brackets are different from others and fit beneath the Panasports just fine. Maybe this is Fate's way of evening the score a bit after my low initial purchase <review cut off>

Reviewed by: Peter G. Whelan -

Panasport 15x7 alloy wheels

Very happy with the product. Bought from Moss about 2 years ago. Received in about 10 days.

Bought them for appearance and handling improvements, and to make my Miata a little different from the rest of the crowds. Appearance was a huge improvement over stock alloys. Still generates favorable comments from friends and strangers alike, (including a guy driving a full zoot AMG Benz who stopped me in a parking lot. Fitted them with 195/50 Dunlop 4000's. Great all weather traction and more tire than the car needs. I recommend them.
Under 30 minutes to remove completely

Reviewed by: Jeff Barlow -

15 inch direct replacement wheels for the Miata   

What a fantastic wheel! I haven't stopped getting comments on how great they look since I got them. Even the guys at the tire shop were impressed. I decided on the Panasports based on three things. First, a friend has them on his '91 BRG; though they're an older stlye (not Miata specific) they look incredible on his car. Second, I really wanted to keep weight down. These wheels along with the Dunlop SP8000 tires weigh in at 35 lbs. My stock '93 alloys with Dunlop D60A2's weigh 30 lbs. Not a big increase for my use (daily driving). Finally, as mentioned before these are Miata specific wheels - they have the correct offset, are hub-centric, etc. Basically, this means that no spacers, adaptors, etc. have to be added to the wheel to make it fit the car. Asthetically, this is the best purchase I have made to date for the car, hands down.

Under 30 minutes to remove completely

Reviewed by: Paul Wilson -

Aluminum road wheel designed to look like classic mini-lites.

I have them on a Nissan Sentra SE-R (my girlfriend's buying a Miata, that's why I'm here). I've put about 120k miles on them and they're great. They much lighter than the stock wheels and they are very strong. I got forced into hitting a raised man hole cover. It was hard enough to ruin the tire but the wheels weren't effect at all. My brother has MSW wheels on his CRX and takes at least one a year to be straightened even though they weigh a lot more.

This is a great site. I'll have to maintain my girlfriend's Miata and I've learned a lot.

Reviewed by: Matt Eads -

Panasport alloy wheels size 15x6

I purchased these wheels about a year and a half ago for my 91' Silver base Miata.

I had a set of Dunlop D60 A2 195/60-15's installed on these wheels before installing them on my Miata. The 15 inch wheels really fill up the wheel wells and make the car look great. I had the stock steel wheels on prior to this so the car look leagues better than before, especially on a silver car. I immediately noticed that steering effort went down (I don't have power steering) and I attribute this to less unsprung weight, and possibly the larger tires. These wheels are particularly hard to wash. I use just a wash mitten and no brushes because I don't want to damage them. Overall I am very pleased with the purchase and would reccommend these wheels to other Miata owners.

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15 July, 2000