Which tire should I choose for my car? How do I choose the best tires for my car? If you ask yourself these questions, our article will help you take into account the important criteria to make the right choice.
Tire size may seem like the only important factor in deciding which tires to buy. However, as we will see, it is also essential to consider your riding style and the weather conditions . To help you make the right choice, we will introduce you to the European labeling system and provide you with a decision support tool .
Respect the dimensions indicated by the manufacturer
This is the very first criterion to consider when choosing tires for your car. As a tire does not have a standard size, you must first identify the tire sizes compatible with your vehicle before making your choice, according to the other criteria that we will explain to you below.
Here is an example of a complete tire size: 255/55 R17 72H
Tire sizes are also indicated in the manufacturer’s manual for your vehicle (most of the time placed in the glove box). These documents usually contain all the information about the size and specifications of your tires, as well as the recommended pressure.
What do these numbers and letters mean?
Tire width in millimeters is measured from the widest point of the tire’s outer sidewall to the widest point of its inner sidewall.
Aspect ratio is the percentage ratio between the height of the sidewall and the width of the tire. The lower the ratio, the lower the sidewall, providing better cornering grip, but less comfort.
This number is expressed in inches (1 inch = 2.54 cm) and corresponds to the inside diameter of the rim that will accommodate the tire.
This index indicates the maximum load that a tire can support at a given maximum pressure. There is a table specifying the correspondences between the index indicated and the load that the tire can support.
The speed index indicates the maximum speed at which the tire can travel, carrying the load indicated by the load index, under the conditions of use specified by the manufacturer. The speed indices are between A (smallest) and Y (largest), with one exception: H is located between U and V.
To determine the maximum speed for your tire, consult the speed rating chart. We do not recommend or endorse exceeding the maximum permitted speed.
HL tires are designed to support the weight of electric and hybrid vehicles. They allow the same tire size to be used, but with a higher load capacity.
How to recognize an HL tire? Thanks to the HL prefix located at the beginning of the tire size.
The acronym OE stands for “Original Equipment”. This clarification indicates that the manufacturer of your vehicle has approved these tires to be fitted as standard on your vehicle.
Audi, BMW, Mercedes and other manufacturers equip their vehicles with tires specially designed for their brand. A special OE marking is then present on the sidewall of the tire. If this is the case for your vehicle, MICHELIN recommends that you replace your tires with tires bearing the specific OE marking.