Even though the wheels/tires are the same weight as a unit, the tires are 4lbs heavier with the rims 4lbs lighter. Because the tires are further from the axis of rotation, it does have the effect of increased rotational weight. THerefore, range is affected, also, the offset with the tires sticking out more and less aerodynamic rim design has a negative effect also. Lastly, the increased tire footprint and stickier compound add increased rolling resistance. I'm sure range is decreased to some extent, but will have to wait until my wife drives it to/from work a few times to see what the actual hit is.
THis setup isn't for everyone. This wheel is pretty much the lightest thing you can buy in either a 17x8 or 17x9. The RPF1's spoke profile in a 17x9 looks awesome (and way different than even their 17x8 or 17x8.5) . The 17x9 JUST clears the front brake caliper, otherwise I would have been happy to run the +45 offset and get the wheels slightly more tucked under the car by 10mm. The camber kit is the Eibach Camber kit sold on http://www.TireRack.com
and it is capable of + or - 1.75 degrees. I've got them set to max neg, and most cars come with less than 1 degree of neg camber, prob -0.5 on the Leaf, SO I'm guessing it is now at -2 or -2.25 up front. In order to achieve this without paying for an alignment, I can tell you, all you need to do after installing and the camber bolts in the upper strut mount hole and setting it to max neg camber, is to turn the toe adjusters 2 full turns (shortening the toe rod) on each side to get back to zero toe. Use a marker, dab of paint, nail polish on the rod to mark your starting point (SInce the toe adjusters are behind the front wheel, it goes "toe in" when you instal the camber kit).
I noticed a nice difference with the camber kit added to the set of 235/45/17's that I had on before btw. But these tires just take it to another level. The tires are not for everyone. They are extreme, they make a ittle noise, but if you're a serious grip hound, you can live with them. They're marketed as a 200 treadwear tire, but I will be surprised if I get 10k miles from them. Next time around, I may just go with the Continental DW as it is the lightest tire you can get in most sizes close to what I'm running now. I may dial it back a notch the next time cause these tires are seriously a bit too much and they seriously do make some funny noises and the wear rate just makes them sort of irrational. But I wanted to see what this car was capabe of with maximum grip and like I said ablove, I'm surprised at how well composed it has remained. Sure, it's got more body roll, but the amount of roll isn't that noticeable really from the driver's seat. I've given up on suspension changes to the car because many times, you give up something to get something, and often end up with aspects of your handling that are sacrificed. On a smooth track (glass surface) you can get gains, but in the real world, bumps and imperfections upset the car and the OEM susp has lots of compliance/travel, and maintains composure at the expense of ride height and some minor body roll. THe Nismo suspension would be tempting, but I've tried to look up the susp on Japanese sites and it is just too much of a Pita. Right now, that is the only susp I'd consider for the car.
BTW, the car at this point could really use a rear sway bar to help keep the front tires planted and gripping. With passengers in the back, cornering grip is noticably decreased and acceleration squat with the added weight in the rear makes the front tires spin when the whels are cranked tight in a low speed corner. My next task would be to test removing weight from the trunk area and taking out the read seats to simulate the effect of increased spring rate in the rear which will have the same effect. However, my wife will prob NOT allow me to keep them out! Lol. We do have a couple kids! But then again we do have a Prius as well as a Subaru...but yeah, Haha. I do also wish the car had some more power. If it was just me (no wife) I'd prob begin to do some weight reduction. Whci, I already have to some degree. Motorcycle battry is under the hood saving 16lbs, and in my other car I have a 2lb Li Ion unit which I keep meaning to order for the Leaf. Yes, I've looked into race seats just for kicks, but alas, my search so far hasn't turned up anyone that makes brackets (bases) for them. Although I only checked with Corbeau. I would also consider yanking the A/C, rear wiper, interior floormats, etc. The hood is actually pretty heavy and I looked for a Carbon Fiber unit, but no luck. I don't think I'd actually ever do this stuff, but I did get 420 lbs off my old turbo Mitsubishi and it was a revelation!
Anyway, I'm sure some of you stoppped reading a while ago. If anyone is in the San Diego area (near the airport) I'd be happy to let you take a look at the car and I can take you for a spin. It really is some night and day stuff.