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Arches shouldnt be a problem to get rolled, could even fit 16 valve front arches? Not sure if they fit but deffo worth finding out, also with big 17s youll be changing the bearings more often so worth looking at BBperformance for uprated bearings.
wouldnt have thought that the rear should provide much of a problem cos theres feck all under the arch, have seen an RT in Derby with 17s and that was a well tidy job.
17s will go straight on a 16 valve with lowering, might rub a bit with people in the back.
17s will go straight on an RT but will rub at first, but it will form groves. if your gonna lower it then the rear arch needs to be gutted, took elite 7 hours to do mine! the front aint bad at all apart from turning and going over a bump, that doesnt hit your arch it hits the WING!