If you drive a car of any description, you should know which tyres work best in any given situation. You often hear stories about drivers getting stuck in the snow during winter or skidding (not singing) in the rain during the summer months. In fact, we’ve probably all been that driver at some point! That’s why it’s important to know your tyres, and we mean really know them. Take them out to dinner if you want to.
We jest, but there are several types of tyres that work in different situations, and we’re the perfect place to begin your research. Simply put, tyres are one of the most important things about driving a car, as they’re the only thing keeping you gripped to the road. They directly affect top speed, braking distance and handling, as well as a host of other factors. It’s important that you choose tyres that suit your driving style too, so there are several types of tyres that you need to get your head around.
Primarily built for manoeuvrability and responsiveness on the road, summer tyres have tailored tread patterns that increase precision as you’re driving in the summer sun. They generally place more rubber in contact with the road, which improves traction and performance around corners too. For these reasons, they’re also sometimes known as performance tyres, and you can see why!
A lot of summer tyres perform better in wet conditions too, which is often a surprise for some people. Tyres such as Goodyear’s EfficientGrip and Excellence have outstanding performance in the rain, and they’re great all-rounders in other areas too. This is due to their tread patterns, which resist the dreaded hydroplaning that affects other tyre types. You should consider the climate and your driving style before choosing any tyres, but summer tyres are a safe bet.
Winter driving can be dangerous, especially if you experience snow or high winds on a regular basis. While regular summer tyres are perfect for dry and wet conditions, they’ll suffer performance issues during the winter. In fact, they tend to underperform in temperatures lower than 7 degrees Celsius, while winter tyres excel due to the difference in build. Winter tyres also have better traction in the snow too, making them an ideal choice in the colder months.
They’re actually a legal requirement in the EU, while the UK’s milder climate makes them a recommendation, rather than a necessity. Even still, they make a tremendous difference. Tyres such as the UltraGrip Performance make short work of snow, ice and rain in colder temperatures, and they also have excellent fuel economy too. Look out for the snowflake symbol on the tyre, which shows that the tyres have the tread patterns needed to deal with snow. It’s also quite pretty.
If you don’t have time to change tyres every 6 months, or if you prefer the convenience of a do-it-all tyre, an all-season option may be better for you. These combine the benefits of summer and winter tyres into one while also offering a similar level of performance. They perform better than a summer tyre would perform in winter, and vice versa. However, they don’t perform as well as their specific counterparts would in their intended climate, making them a go-to tyre for your everyday driver in a milder climate. This makes them perfect for the UK!
The Vector 4Season Gen-2 is a tyre from Goodyear that aims to mimic the performance of summer and winter tyres. It offers year-round driving performance, with specific tread zones that adjust to changing conditions on the roads. If you’re concerned about the performance of your car in winter, or if you want to increase its capabilities in summer without the hassle of switching tyres, all-season options are the best bet.
For off-road performance that doesn’t sacrifice on-road capabilities, all-terrain tyres are for you. Perfect for the adventurous type, or for those using an SUV or truck, they allow you to scramble over rocks and other obstacles with ease. Gravel and tricky surfaces like sand are no match for tyres in this category, as their stiff sidewalls and reinforced layering ensure that you remain safe in the wilderness.
We’d recommend Goodyear’s Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure, which has been specifically built for this purpose. It’s reinforced with Kevlar® for extra protection and the optimised tread design improves the mileage, which is a common complaint regarding all-terrain tyres. It’s important to note that these tyres can be loud due to their heavier build quality too, but they need to be to explore the great unknown.
Which Do You Choose?
If you’re based in the UK, you can’t go wrong with a compatible all-season tyre. The tyres are perfectly suited due to the milder climate. However, if you want to increase the lifespan of your tyres, or if you want to have peak performance in the summer and winter, then buy summer and winter tyres separately. (You may also want a set of winter tyres just in case, as sudden snow often catches the UK off guard during winter!)
We have hundreds of tyres available at the click of a button, and you can easily enter your number plate to find options that suit your motor. If you’re doing research, you may want to view our blogs about tyre markings and longevity too! Once you discover which tyres suit your car best, you’ll notice an increased difference in performance, resulting in a smoother drive. It’s a simple change that makes all the difference.