Depending on your EV model and your driving style, consider these tips when selecting tires suitable for you.
There are quite a few differences between electric vehicles and traditional cars that require special consideration. In addition to having the right charging equipment, EV drivers should also take some time to think about the other elements of their vehicles, including the tires.
While your EV will come equipped with tires - and likely a spare as well - it’s important to ensure that your tires can stand up to the demands of your driving habits, including the distances you drive, the seasonal impacts of your area, and more.
As you think about tires for your EV, here are a few things to know, and some important factors to consider.
Added mass and increased torque
As MotorBiscuit pointed out, many EVs are heavier than traditional cars, and much of this extra weight stems from the battery. In fact, EVs can be up to 30% heavier than regular combustion engine vehicles. While drivers may not immediately consider this added weight when purchasing tires, it is an important factor. A heavier vehicle puts increased pressure on the tires, especially the sidewalls.
Additionally, because EVs are capable of nearly instant torque, it’s key that drivers select a tire that can accommodate these more strenuous vehicle demands. To account for these elements, EV owners need highly durable tires that won’t wear too quickly given the vehicle’s torque, and ensure that treads maintain contact and grip on the road.
Lack of engine noise
One perk of EVs is the reduced engine noise while driving. Many models including the Prius are known for their almost noiseless operation. However, those new to EVs may immediately notice that this lack of engine noise can make the sound of the tires on the road seem much louder.
For this reason, it’s key to not only choose durable tires that can account for the vehicle’s weight, but those that are well-balanced and quiet as well.
Your particular driving habits
The way in which you drive your EV can also have an impact on the type of tire you need, as well as the life of these tires. For instance, drivers of sportier model EVs may tend to be heavier-footed on the gas pedal, whereas other EV owners may prefer to take it slower and easier.
In the case of the former, it’s important to have studier tires on the vehicle that can stand up to the increased acceleration. Remember, EV tires can wear out more quickly due to the vehicle’s torque. In this way, good driving habits can actually extend the life of your tires.
“You don’t want to accelerate quickly when you don’t have to, reduce the number of sharp turns you make, and use your regenerative braking to your benefit,” FleetCarma contributor Eric Schmidt wrote.
Seasonal tire demands
This is one element that EV drivers in year-round warm weather locations may not have to worry about. However, if you plan to take your EV out on snowy or icy roads, it may be beneficial to purchase tires specifically designed for this type of seasonal driving.
In fact, some EV drivers elect to purchase two sets of tires for their vehicle - one set for warmer seasons, and another set just for the winter. As an article on MyElectricCarForums pointed out, summer tires and some “all-season” tires are not the best options for winter driving. Thankfully, there are options specifically designed for winter EV driving, including tire models from Tesla and BMW.
Low rolling resistance: Support battery range
Certain types of tires can even support your EV’s battery range. Low rolling resistance tires, for instance, are particular models that promise a reduction in rolling resistance, as well as a quieter ride. The less resistance your vehicle has to work against, the longer your battery will last. This means you can drive longer distances on each charge.
Finding the right tires for your vehicle
There are more than a few choices available for drivers when it comes to tires, including those specifically created for EVs. It can be best to visit a local auto mechanic or tire distributor to discuss your vehicle’s needs and your unique driving habits.
In addition to tires, it’s also key to have access to the right charging equipment. Visit our website and connect with us at Webasto today to learn more about residential charging options.