Why use low profile tyres and wide wheels?

What is the advantage that wide alloy wheels and low profile tyres have over more normal wheels and tyres, apart from a harsher ride?

Asked on 28 April 2012 by AP, Harrow Weald

Answered by Honest John
They make people think you might be a Premier Division footballer or his WAG. On a racetrack, more contact between tyres and the track surface means more grip and higher cornering speeds.
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