There are many functions and features of a vehicle that determine how it runs, performs and supports the driver. The average motorist will be less informed on the inner workings of an engine, or how tyres interact with the road – but these can be important pieces of information to have if you’re ever having troubles with your car. Tyres may seem fairly trivial to some, but they are of the utmost significance for vehicle performance and safety. For those wanting premium performance, tyres from brands like Michelin are always recommended. So, how do tyres impact car performance and why should you keep a close eye on them?
Firstly, your tyres have a massive role to play when it comes to how your car handles. Handling includes the steering, grip and traction of your vehicle on the road. These are all important to ensure that you can control the vehicle sufficiently. Tyre tread is a fundamental element that allows your car to ‘grip’ the road and thus there is a legal tyre tread depth limit that you must ensure your car is above. Worn, damaged or under-inflated tyres will ultimately impact how you well your car handles on the road, which can make you and your vehicle a safety hazard to yourself and other motorists.
Tyres also have a significant impact on the speed that your vehicle can reach. Make and model variations have different speed ratings which determine the maximum speed that a tyre can achieve safely. Inflation is also important for speed and performance because an under or over-inflated tyre will increase the resistance on the wheel, limiting how fast your car travel. Again, worn or damaged tyres will be more dangerous as your speed increases – so ensure that you inspect your tyres regularly.
To stay safe on the roads, you need to ensure that you can brake effectively. Tyres are a fundamental part of the braking process, providing grip to the road in order to bring the car to a halt. Higher quality tyres should provide superior braking ability in trickier driving conditions, such as when roads are wet, icy or have a loose surface.
Finally, tyres can determine your fuel efficiency, among other factors. Those with a higher rolling resistance, from under-inflation for example, will lead to higher fuel usage as opposed to those with a lower resistance. Similar to speed, different tyres are designed to offer greater fuel efficiency, if that’s what you are prioritising. Increasing your fuel efficiency is important if you want to decrease your car’s running and fuel costs.
The tyre is more complicated and significant than it may first appear, so ensure that you do regular checks on your tyres and replace them if necessary.