Tyres are one of the most misunderstood consumer products on the market. In common sizes, the number of replacement tyre options can be overwhelming. For SUVs it can be even more confusing.
Join us as we discuss SUV tyres; types and finding an ideal aftermarket replacement in regard to tread patterns and performance. Enjoy the read.
Key considerations as you shop for a SUV tyre replacement
SUV tyres are widely categorized into four main segments, namely; H/T, A/T, M/T, and H/P.
Highway Terrain (HT) tyres
They are the most similar to a standard passenger car tyre. Their intended primarily use is on paved roads and are built to provide a smooth, quiet and comfortable drive. Inspired by better fuel economy, longer tread life, compared to AT and MT tyres.
All Terrain (AT) tyre
They are designed to handle multi-surface driving. It depends on manufacturer but it is designed for mostly more on road usage. The tread design is more rugged compared to the H/T.
Mud Terrain (MT) tyres
They feature aggressive tread design to go against elements of unpaved roads like rocky and muddy surfaces as found in farms, mountains or rural area. However, the tyres can be uncomfortable and noisy for daily usage in city paved roads.
High Performance (HP) tyres
High performance tyres are designed to provide superior levels of handling and grip at high speeds. They do this by incorporating a larger contact patch, which clings to the road surface when cornering. This offers improved stability for sporty SUVs. HP tyres are also popular with asphalt racing cars.
Key steps in finding an aftermarket replacement tyre
Below are key steps that can help you wade through the options to arrive at a quality tyre that will meet your needs.
- Identify OE tyre parameters. Size, brand, tread pattern and grip ratings. This are important benchmark points to guide you in case you consider deviating from OE.
- Is there anything you liked and disliked about the tyres you have now? Ride quality in regard to noise, and general driving input performance, wet and dry weather performance are some of the aspects to keep a tab on before looking around for a replacement.
- How do you drive/what is your driving style? Most drivers wont have a specific answer but extreme drivers know themselves.
- Where do you drive? City, highway and rural environments do differ. It helps to identify this so that you can get a well suited tyre for your specific environment.
- What is most important to you? Is mileage your highest priority, or wet grip? Could it be all terrain use or silence on the highway? Make sure you know and align your priorities.
Long wearing tyres often provides a lot of value but are not as responsive as other tyre types. Tyres with more grip and responsiveness will stop or turn as you command, but not last as long. Tyres that are better in snow often have to sacrifice ultimate dry grip. Sadly, there is no SUV tyre that: allows a vehicle to handle like a sports car, gets 100,000 Km of wear, grips in wet roads, holds up to off-road terrain, is fuel efficient and whisper quiet.