Tyre Labelling explained: Understanding tyre performance.

Selecting new tyres can be a difficult choice with many brands, specifications and personal preferences to take in to account. To ease the decision and help consumers to make a more informed choice, tyre labelling became mandatory in November 2012 under European Regulation.

The EU Tyre Label provides crucial information for consumers enabling them to understand what they can expect from their new tyres before they make their choice. This is similar to the labelling process used for white goods such as fridges, freezers and washing machines.

The three areas that the EU Tyre Label focuses on are fuel efficiency, wet grip and noise emission levels.

Tyre Fuel Efficiency

On average, around £1 out of every £5 spent on fuel is used up by tyres.
As a tyre rotates, it is continuously distorting as contact is made with the ground. This distortion acts against the vehicle, preventing it from rolling freely, and so is called "rolling resistance".

310 litres less fuel

An average car will use 310 litres less fuel when upgrading from four E-rated to four A-rated tyres.

At £1.50 per litre fuel costs, this would save £465 over the life of the tyres, £116 per tyre.

Tyre Wet Braking

A car's ability to brake safely depends on 4 points of contact with the road, each roughly the size of your hand.
In wet weather, at 50mph, each tyre must disperse up to 30 litres of water per second to sustain this contact patch, maintaining grip and enabling safe braking.

9 metres shorter braking

At 40mph, a car travels 18 metres every second.

Upgrading from four D-rated to four A-rated tyres will reduce the braking distance of the average car by 9 metres, which is the length of 2 family-sized cars.

Tyre Noise Generation

A car travelling at 50mph typically generates more noise from its tyres rolling on the road than from its engine. In addition to the road's surface, the design of the tyre plays a significant role in the noise level and can make for a much more pleasant driving experience.

4 times less noise

The noise scale for tyre labelling means that a B-rated tyre is half as noisy as a C-0rated tyre, and an A-rated tyre is half as noisy again.

Therefore, upgrading from a C-rated to an A-rate tyre will be 4 times quieter.