Tuesday, 24 June 2014

The EU Tyre Label - What Does It Mean?

Back in November 2012 the tyre industry quietly launched the EU Tyre Label, this label was designed to give customers more of an idea of what they were buying and the ability to compare tyres on more than the name, price and pattern design.

Since April 2014 it has been a legal requirement for tyres that were made during this month or later to come with an EU Tyre Rating. This is the biggest change that has happened to the tyre industry in over 2 decades. We look at the Ins and Outs of Tyre Labels and whether they will help you choose what tyres to buy. Check out the video Continental have done to explain the Labels.

Firstly lets look at what the label actually shows:

  1. Fuel Consumption
  2. Wet Grip
  3. Noise Level
Fuel Consumption:

Based on an A-G Rating
Shows the amount of energy lost when a tyre is rolling
The Lower the rolling resistance the less fuel is lost

Wet Grip:

Rated on an A-G scale
Measures the braking distance on wet roads
The higher the rating the shorter the braking

Noise Level:

Rated in Decibels and Waves
The higher the Wave the louder the noise
2 Waves is soon to be the limit on noise level

But Do The Ratings Really Make That Much Difference?

You might be thinking that the ratings won't make much difference, we take a look and find out.

Fuel Consumption:

A vs G - A rated tyres could save you over 6 litres of fuel compared to G rated ones over 625 miles. This does however depend on your driving style and conditions.

Wet Grip:

A vs G - Between each rating the distance increase by roughly 3 meters or 1 car length. So the difference between A and G is 18 meters or 4 Car Lengths. A huge difference.

So What Tyres Should I Buy?

Although some say that the EU Tyre Labels have made buying tyres easier due to the ability to see a distinct difference in each tyre, other argue that the Label doesn't go far enough and things like Wear, should be added to the label.

Here at Ears, we welcome any positive changes that make it easier to buy tyres, so we do endorse the tyre label as a good starting point on what tyres to buy.

If you're still comparing tyres and don't know which to buy, we would recommend going for which ever has the higher wet grip rating even if the fuel efficiency is low. As we'd rather be safe than save a few quid. 

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