How to buy the best tyres for your car - guide to size, type, cost and care
For most of us, shopping for new tyres is a choice based first and foremost on what they cost. Here's what you need to know about buying the best set of tyres for your car and budget.
If you can afford to stretch that little bit further when it comes buying a new set of tyres, then chances are you are going to save money – and potentially more - in the long run.
“Tyres are critical to the performance of your car,” says automotive engineer Graeme Gambold.
While Gambold is best known for his work helping Kia tune the driving behaviour of its vehicles for Australian roads – including the new Kia EV6 GT electric vehicle – he spends a lot of time conducting tyre evaluation testing for different brands.
And his conclusions drawn from years of comparative testing is that while tyres look the same, they don’t perform the same. Tyre development and construction really is a black art.
“There are a million things that we tune in a tyre: The [steel] belt tension, belt width, belt height, belt position vertically, apex height, silica content, natural rubber content, how much colouring black is in there.
“And then you have the mechanical tread pattern properties in terms of [water] evacuation performance and everything.
“Then you have chemistry and that is the big one. Chemistry is 80 per cent of the tyre’s performance and that’s why the great tyre manufacturers in the world have really smart chemists and laboratories developing these chemistries.