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Standard on the Prius are some very good looking Alloy Wheels. For reasons unknown, Toyota decided to cover each wheel with a plastic cover which actually looks like the Alloy. I removed all four of mine by prying them off with a thin bladed screwdriver and put them in storage. I could understand the use of alloy looking plastic covers if the car came with inexpensive steel wheels but it doesn't ??? Very Strange.

Arizona Charlie
 

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arizona charlie said:
Standard on the Prius are some very good looking Alloy Wheels. For reasons unknown, Toyota decided to cover each wheel with a plastic cover which actually looks like the Alloy. I removed all four of mine by prying them off with a thin bladed screwdriver and put them in storage. I could understand the use of alloy looking plastic covers if the car came with inexpensive steel wheels but it doesn't ??? Very Strange.

Arizona Charlie
There was some speculation in an earlier post that these covers served an aerodynamic brake cooling function. I have no idea whether or not this is so. I can say that they have twice saved me from damaging the edges of my allow wheels; once when I had to chain up and again when I brushed up against a high curb.
Drive happy,
Moo :)
 

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The tires mount on the metal rims, so the rims are the things that actually support the car. The plastic "covers" (perhaps better to call them "trim rings") serve no obvious function, certainly no support function. I think the wheels look a little better without the rings so I removed them, cleaned them and stored them in a plastic bag. Any degradation in aerodynamics must be small, especially during a low speed commute.
 

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So, I've been really curious about this "cover" I've heard about since ownership. I changed my wheels and sold the old ones, but never noticed ANY kind of "cover" Can someone indulge me and take a photo ort explain better what this refers to? I have never quite caught what y'all are talking about and it drives me nuts from time to time.
 

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Hi, Brad:

It's a plastic ring that attaches to the outboard side of the wheel. It's about 2 inches wide, and it attaches to the rim very closely to the tire itself.

This ring is the same color as the rim (a silver/grey color), so unless you're looking closely, you might not realize that it's plastic. It just looks like part of the wheel itself.

On or off, I have noticed that the wheels are absolutely wonderfully clean, compared to my BMW. Very little brake dust! When they say the Prius is 90% cleaner than most regular cars, I believe it!
 
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