New tyre labelling system to increase awareness of efficiency and safety
A new tyre labelling system is to go live in the UK from 1 May 2021, providing clearer information, especially for fuel efficiency and grip in the wet.
The system is intended to address issues with awareness of tyre ratings; there are concerns that vehicle owners are not aware of the significant differences between the highest- and lowest-rated tyres displayed on the current label. According to a survey of the European Tyre and Rubber Manufacturers’ Association and Lizeo Group, just 1% of tyres in the market are ‘A’-rated for both efficiency and wet grip.
As with the old labels, the new system will display a tyre’s fuel efficiency, braking performance in the wet and the amount of road noise it generates along with its overall rating.
However, the number of ratings has dropped to five: ‘A’ being the best, ‘E’ being the worst. This is in line with other consumer products such as domestic appliances.
If a tyre is classified as suitable for use on snow, it will have the Alpine peaks symbol. A symbol for tyres classified as suitable for ice (known as ‘Nordic tyres’) is also available.
And whereas labels were previously fixed to tyres – which meant that customers at outlets rarely saw them – the new system means tyre retailers will be required to provide tyre information to customers, supported by a new digital set-up.
Stuart Jackson, TyreSafe Chair, said: “The key point of tyre labelling is to help those choosing a tyre to make an informed decision. There is concern that owners typically only consider cost and don’t appreciate there may be tyres that are more suitable and offer better value but perhaps at a higher price.”
Jackon added: “It’s in the interest of vehicle owners to make themselves aware of the information contained on the new tyre label to cut costs in fuel, as well as improve their safety.”