Usually larger rims means a stiffer tire because of the side wall being shorter. Since the tires is stiffer, its supposed to help with cornering reducing roll. Unfortunatley this will make the ride slighlty worse because you will feel all imperfections and holes in the road. So its a trade off between a comfortable ride and better cornering.
Most people however stick with 40 or 45 on the tire profile when going with a 17". If you do this, I'm sure you won't feel much difference from stock. When going to a larger rim and smaller profile (35/40) you will definately notice a harsher ride.
So basically on a 17" rim with 45 profile tire, you shouldn't feel much different from stock.
Kyle (turbosb) may have more to say about this since he has aftermarket rims on a convertible.
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