Avant Garde Wheels (AG Wheels) is an American brand that manufactures cast and fully forged wheels besides some custom wheel at a considerably affordable price. The materials used are not the most expensive ones out there but everything used is all-American.
AG wheels primarily manufacture cast wheels. They serve a plethora of vehicles ranging from hatchbacks, sedans, sports sedans to even off-road capable trucks. Avant Garde currently offers six wheel series:
- ART (Advanced Rim Technology) Series which are lighter than traditional cast wheels
- Forged (SRX series)
- Luruxy forged (AG luxury- includes Aero models which are monoblock forged wheels)
- SR series- an assortment of concave designs
- KSM offroad
For the most part, AG wheels look the part and are very affordable. They have had issues with strength and durability which we will get to in the durability section.
Aesthetics and Looks
Avant Garde wheels are magnificent looking wheels, no matter how you word it. They are extremely popular among the enthusiasts for this very reason.
The Classic series offers meshwork designs that rival most other high-end American brands like Verde wheels. The design language is similar for ART series but they are significantly lighter in comparison.
The SR series wheels are concave in form and have flashy designs. Punchy colors like gold and chrome are used as accents. A similar trend is seen in the luxury series but the designs are much more tasteful and restrained.
Additionally, you have to the choice to choose from 125 form factors across five different profiles. These custom wheels are fully forged and are built only for you when you order them.
Performance and Handling
When it comes to performance and handling, the lighter the wheel, the better. This results in lesser unsprung weight which improve all aspects of driving like acceleration, braking, cornering and even response to bumps.
Avant Garde wheels are lighter than the traditional cast wheels but they are no where near as light as forged ones. The weight difference is significant to allow you to upsize your wheels by 1 or 2 inches without a noticeable increase in their weight.
If a light-weight wheel is your priority, I strongly suggest you consider the TSW Nurburgring which is not only very light but also has a reputation among the performance drivers’ community.
Durability and Strength
The durability of a wheel depends a lot on the construction method being employed. When it comes to wheel strength hierarchy, remember the order (weakest to strongest): High Pressure Cast < Low Pressure Cast < Rotary Forged < Forged (3-piece, 2-piece and then mono).
Most Avant Garde wheels are Low Pressure Cast– just like most stock BMW wheels with one important distinction. They are lighter than most low pressure cast wheels.
AG wheels are not exactly know for their strength or durability. They have had a number of issues regarding the tensile strength, rigidity and even the exterior finish. I have listed a few of them down below:
- They are prone to bending and mechanics like to compare them to ‘butter’. This does mean that they are relatively easy to fix once they do get bend. You will have to avoid potholes or you can go for high-strength forged wheels like the
- These wheel are highly likely to oxidize if you live near the water or your area is known to have a lot of salt.
- The lacquer starts to go milky and the shine starts deteriorating within two to three years of use. Some have faced this issue even before that!
If you are looking for a low-weight, high strength wheel forged wheels are your only option. They are considerably pricier but well worth the few extra bucks. BBS CI-R is one such great option.
Sizes and Configurations
Avant Garde seeks to serve nearly all major categories of vehicles so the sizing options are immense. They manufacture wheels for vehicles ranging from sub-compact hatchbacks to off-road capable trucks which explains the huge diversity.
All common fittings and lug-nut configurations have been made available for each and every wheel, keeping in view its intended purpose.
Pricing- Value for Money
A set of AG wheels will cost you well over $1000 which puts them into direct competition with a lot of big names of the industry. Their competitors not only have a lead in popularity but also have higher standards of manufacturing at no extra cost.
In my opinion, AG wheels are not great value for money. They are not hugely popular and are manufactured by the low-pressure cast method. On top of that, they are plagued with a lot of durability issues.
At this price point, you have a lot of better brand options like American Racing, Enkei, Niche and TSW. And if you are looking for performance, AG wheels are not exactly the last word in that department.