Where are American Racing Wheels made? We have customers call us almost daily with this question. Since the name of the brand is American Racing most people assume that they are made here in America. Along with all custom wheel manufacturers today, most of the wheels they sale are made overseas. Specifically in China. But that doesn't mean that all American Racing wheels are made in China. Place of manufacturer varies depending on the type of construction. So let's look at each type of construction used to build American Racing wheels explaining the construction process and where they are built.
One-Piece Cast Aluminum Wheels
One-piece cast aluminum wheels are made by pouring molten aluminum into a cast mold. The aluminum then takes the mold's shape and it cools and hardens. There are three types of casting methods in the manufacturer of aluminum wheels today. They are low pressure gravity fed casting, counter pressure which uses a vacuum to pack the aluminum into the mold, and high pressure casting which uses air pressure to pack the aluminum into the mold. American Racing chooses which method they use depending on the particular weight, strength, and finish of the particular wheel they are designing. All of American Racing's one-piece cast aluminum wheels are made overseas in China and then shipped over by container to their distribution centers in the U.S. The quality of these wheels is high due to today's manufacturing techniques, however, the drawback to one-piece wheels is their limited size and offset availability. American Racing has to predict demand and sales for a style and build only the sizes and standard offsets they believe will have the best sales potential.
Two-Piece Cast Aluminum Wheels
The centers of two-piece cast wheels are made in exactly the same way as the one-piece wheels are made. These centers are also made overseas, however, they are shipped to the U.S. and then assembled into outer barrels here in the U.S. Therefore since these are assembled in the U.S. they are considered to be Made in America. The cast centers are welded into spun outer aluminum rims. The barrel is spun, heated, and then pressed between steel rollers that pull the rim into it's final shape and width. This process produces a wheel that is lighter and stronger than a one-piece cast wheel, but is much less expensive than a forged wheel. This also offers the consumer a wide variety of fitment options as the centers can be welded all along the barrel to achieve custom offsets. That means if you are custom building a car that has a shortened rear axle and mini-tubbed rear, you can get a custom offset and width to allow for a wider deeper wheel to make your car look exactly as you want.
Two-Piece Forged Aluminum Wheels
The term "billet" wheels has become synonymous with forged wheels, but forged refers to the process of manufacturing, and billet refers to the solid piece of dense aluminum that is used in the forged process. The forge which is a huge machine that exerts thousands of pounds of pressure on the metal, basically presses the billet aluminum into its fundamental form. Then the form is machined to the final shape and finish. This process uses much less material which results in a much lighter weight and is stronger than other manufacturing processes. These forged centers are also welded into spun outer barrels which allows for a great offering of design, offset, and widths compared to other types of manufacturing. These American Racing Forged Wheels are 100% made in the U.S. and are the highest quality wheels available today. They also are going to be the most expensive wheels available.