Do electric cars need special tyres?

Thinking of buying an electric car for the first time, or expecting to work on some soon? You might be wondering what kind of rubber they need. Are EV-specific tyres a thing, or can you get away with cheaper brands? To help you decide what to choose for your own car (and how to advise customers), we’re taking a closer look at the subject in this guide.

Not essential, but…

EVs can be fitted with regular tyres, just like a petrol or diesel car, provided they match the OE dimensions.

However, because EVs run so quietly – and because they typically have lower ranges than ICE cars – choosing the right tyre is crucial. They’re also heavier than petrol and diesel models generally, so load ratings become an important consideration.

According to industry experts TyreSafe, choosing the wrong type of tyre could result in reduced range, unpleasant cabin noise, increased wear and – if the load rating isn’t up to scratch – potential failure.

The rubber compound is crucial too, as EVs develop maximum torque from idle. As a result, the tyres need to be both hard-wearing and provide adequate grip – a tricky combination to crack for manufacturers.

So, although it’s not a strict requirement to choose an ‘EV-specific’ tyre, it’s highly recommended that you do so.

The experts’ view

“Tyres are an extremely sophisticated piece of technology, which we all too commonly take for granted,” says TyreSafe Chair Stuart Jackson.

“However, drivers of electric vehicles must be aware of how different they could be to those on other cars, and when it’s time to replace the original tyres, owners need to ensure they are buying the right specification.

“Choosing a like-for-like tyre will allow EV owners to enjoy the full benefit of the electric car revolution and reduce the risks of an incident.”

Tyre changing equipment online

If you’re in the trade and need new tyre changing equipment for your workshop, we’ve got you covered here at Tyre Bay Direct. Browse our full range today and order online!

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