The Ultimate Tire Guide For 2003-2008 Subaru Foresters

A lot of SG chassis (2003-2008) Forester owners are beginning to lift their cars. With this usually comes the need to find a good All-Terrain tire for the trails. This can be a daunting task since there’s so many options and specs to wade through. However, we’ve compiled this list of some of the best off-road tires that will fit on your 2003-2008 Forester. We’ve included sizes for wheels 15″ to 16″ inches in diameter.

There are a couple of things to keep in mind before choosing what size you should go with. First, you’ll want to decide how much work you want to do for fitment. Second, you’ll want to keep in mind that only certain 15″ inch wheels will fit over brakes. We typically recommend the Method MR502 or another “rally style” wheel because in 15″ inch, they’ve been shown to clear even WRX brakes. A racing style wheel will also pull your wheels out away from the rear spring perches. However, in some cases you may want a small spacer in the rear as well just as added insurance.

Biggest Tire Size On 2nd Gen SG Foresters:

Stock Size: 215/60R16 (26.1″ diameter)

Common Size With Only Wheel Spacers: 215/75/15 (27.6″ diameter)

Biggest Size With Modification & Rally Wheels: 235/75/15 (29″ diameter)

How To Fit A 235/75R15 On Your Forester:

Quick List:

  • Trim fender liners
  • Fold front pinch welds
  • Remove factory mud flaps
  • Rally style wheels OR use a 25mm wheel spacer

Keep in mind that if you want to go bigger than 27″ inches in diameter, you will need to do some trimming to your fender liners, remove your factory mud flaps, and fold over the pinch weld in the wheel well. It can take a little time, but is pretty easy to do with basic tools.

You will also need to get a set of 25mm wheel spacers, or run a wheel with a low offset. Otherwise, the rear tire will rub on your rear struts and you may not clear the brakes adequately. Method MR502, Basset Steelies, and Black Rhino Boxers are a popular wheel choice.

Check out Brian’s Lifted 2005 Forester sitting on 235/75/15 Falken Wildpeaks:

Most Popular All-Terrain Tires For 2003-2008 Foresters:

For Aftermarket Wheels:


215/75R15 – 27.6”

235/75R15 – 28.8”

Popular Tires For Stock Size Wheels:

(Remember that you’ll need to use spacers if using stock wheels. Oversized tires won’t clear the rear spring perch if you don’t.)


225/70R16 28.4”

Why We Recommend

In many of our posts you will see links to products on There are a few reasons why we usually purchase not only tires from them, but tools and suspension parts as well.

As an Amazon Affiliate, we may earn from qualifying purchases.

All modifications should be performed by a trained individual. Lifted Imports cannot be held liable for any damages resulting from the use of off-road mods.

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