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Tyres' Fuel Efficiency: Do The Right Tyres Save Real Money?

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Manufacturers often boast that their tyres' fuel efficiency is money-saving, but do the right set of tyres actually impact your petrol costs? Find out here.

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Realistically speaking, tyres can account for up to 20% of your vehicle's fuel consumption. That's because it takes energy to make tyres rotate and move forward against the road. Tyres with high rolling resistance use more energy and, thus, more fuel, since your engine burns petrol to create the added, necessary force to continue rolling them.

In contrast, tyres with a lower rolling resistance use less energy and fuel. These tyres are designed with this purpose in mind, and as such, they're growing increasingly popular as drivers look for ways to reduce the budgeting strain of running their vehicles.

But do fuel-efficient tyres save you enough money to counterbalance the extra cost of their complex design and branding? Let's take a look:

Which Tyre Efficiency Ratings Are Best?

Tyres are rated on an efficiency scale that explains how much each design can accomplish. In particular, the scale is based on the amount of energy that's lost when a tyre is rolling.

Efficiency ratings range from Class A (the most efficient) to Class E (the least efficient). In between the classes, fuel consumption increases by approximately 0.1 litre for every 100 km driven. Until May 2021, the grading scale for efficiency ranged from A to G, but that's no longer the case.

Can Fuel-Efficient Tyres Lower My Petrol Costs?

Choosing energy-efficient tyres will indeed lower your fuel usage and, as a result, reduce your fuel costs. The difference between an A-rated tyre and an E-rated tyre, for example, could be as much as £1,721 over the tyre's lifespan.

This is based on the savings of 150 litres of fuel over a distance of 40,000 km at £1.15 per litre (weighted average). The effect may change depending on the vehicle and driving conditions, but performance is measured in accordance with the test method set in regulation UN ECE R117.

In short, you may save more or less, depending on your car and how the tyres are used, but the savings will still have a positive impact. That's especially true when you consider that fuel-efficient tyres, while more expensive, are also designed to be more robust and versatile, saving on the long-term costs of:

  • Repairing tyres
  • Readjusting wheel alignment and suspension
  • Servicing your car's frame
  • Switching between tyres for different weather conditions
  • Replacing tyres

Not only this, but fuel-efficient tyres also reduce your carbon emissions, making your vehicle more eco-friendly. When all of these factors are paired together, it's clear that fuel-efficient tyres are spendy, but counterbalance their price tag over time.

How To Know If Tyres Are Fuel-Efficient

Fuel efficient tyres don't look visually different to any other kind of tyre. However, each set will have a label that states its fuel efficiency grade. Since 2012, this has been a legal requirement for all tyres sold within the EU.

The label will grade the tyre in three categories:

Most tyres that are advertised as energy-efficient should have an A or B rating.

What Are The Best Tyres For Fuel Efficiency?

There are many fuel-efficient tyres available on the market, including the Bridgestone Turanza T005. This fuel-efficient tyre mixes NanoPro-Tech™ polymer into the high-silica-content compound that helps maximise fuel efficiency. This helps the tyre to hold its shape for longer, preventing friction and the build-up of heat. As a result, it uses less fuel and saves you money.

Tips For Saving More Money On Fuel Costs

To get the most from your fuel-efficient tyres, follow these tips for more efficient driving:

  • Check the pressure of your tyres regularly and ensure they stay at the recommended level.
  • Regularly inspect your tyres for signs of uneven wear. This could indicate a tracking or suspension problem, which may increase fuel consumption and costs.
  • Try to avoid accelerating or braking suddenly
  • Keep both your vehicle and your tyres well maintained.

Where To Buy Fuel-Efficient Tyres

Find out more about how you can improve the fuel efficiency of your car by visiting Autofusion. Our experts are happy to discuss all the pros, cons, and expense of fuel-efficient tyres, as well as install the right set of tyres onto your vehicle.