Let’s be honest, very few of us go around thinking that much about the tyres on our vehicles. They just do their job and that’s that. Yet they impact on so much, from how our vehicles handle to fuel economy and, ultimately, our safety. Do an emergency stop at speed and suddenly all you’re thinking about is brakes – and the grip on your tyres. And when you do start considering replacing tyres The Tyre Industry Federation points out that there are some 300 brands from 45 countries on sale in the UK! So, if you drive a big van, here’s a handy guide to some tyres you should be considering.
What’s the list based on?
We turned to Europe’s largest motoring association – ADAC (Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil-Club) who boast some of the most influential tyre tests in the world. So they know their stuff. Normally renowned for punishing car tyres, this was their first ever round of tests on tyres specifically designed for vans.
Here’s the list, in no particular order as always – we like everyone to play nicely! The tests were carried out on summer tyres developed for vans and light-trucks and, to get a bit technical, in the 215/65 R16 C size.
Continental ContiVan Contact 200 the choice for very low fuel consumption.
Goodyear EfficientGrip Cargo a thumbs up for very low wear.
Apollo Altrust Picked up top marks performing in the dry.
Maxxis Vansmart MCV3+ another good performer in the dry with very low wear.
Kumho Portran KC53 the quietest tyre in the test.
Nokian cLine a good all-rounder.
Pirelli Carrier another with good marks for low wear.
Falken Linam Van01 another good tyre if you want very low wear.
Uniroyal RainMax 3 another choice for low fuel consumption.
Michelin Agilis + good choice for very low wear.
Some points to think about before you buy
First and foremost, vans need specialist tyres. The demands they face are far greater than a car, so you need tyres that are up to carrying much heavier loads, running at much higher inflation pressures and delivering all the robustness you need for your workhorse. Then it’s all down to how you use your van. A good checklist to run through would include:
• What’s your average payload?
• How many miles do you clock up?
• Type of terrain? (e.g. regularly on building sites)
• Weather conditions?
Making sure you’ve got the right tyres for your trade and the way you drive will help your van perform at its best. Which means you’ll be safer and hopefully you’ll also have to spend less on tyres in the long run.
And lastly, before you choose, check the manufacturer recommendations for your vehicle just to be absolutely sure.
When you want extra guidance, feel free to talk to our specialist dealer partners. They supply thousands of vans every year and with all their experience they’ll always be happy to help.