How tires affect your electric car's performance

Mar 8, 2022 2 min read
How tires affect your electric car's performance

Tires are easy to ignore since they are so durable and low-maintenance. Electric vehicle tires play a greater role than conventional tires in overall performance and range. Tire technology is constantly evolving, and several factors can impact an EV's range. The following are a few of the most significant ways tires may impact the range of an electric car.

Underinflated tires

Driving your EV on underinflated tires may significantly reduce rolling resistance and hence efficiency, reducing the range of your EV by several hundred kilometers. Tire pressure changes with time and temperature, so check it once a month. Simply stick a coin or penny into the tread to see if the pressure is enough or needs to be increased.

Using EV tires not designed for your car

Your electric car's tires were probably designed specifically for it. Determining the vehicle's characteristics may help determine the tire's noise profile, durability, grip, and rolling resistance. Your EV's tires are likely to satisfy the largest possible segment of owners, regardless of whether the tire is optimised for the vehicle or not.

If you desire greater performance or wear rating from a pair of tires than your OE (original equipment) fitting permits, keep in mind that there may be tradeoffs. For example, a tire with more grip improves performance and braking but may increase noise and limit range due to differences in tire carcass, tread, and compound design. If you want a tire that wears slower and lasts longer, your electric vehicle may have less grip or longer braking distances.

It's always a viable option to consider a different tire than the ones that came standard with your EV, but it's crucial to spend some time researching to find one that matches your demands. However, the tires fitted by the manufacturer have typically undergone extensive testing and development to optimise for that specific EV—are generally the best option.

Using non-EV tires

Everyone wants to save money, mainly to get the same product for less money. On the surface, two tires may seem to be similar. EVs have different rolling resistance rules than ICE cars.

Because electric cars are more efficient than fuel cars, converting over 80% of their electricity into motion compared to roughly 25% efficiency of ICE cars, rolling resistance has a much greater impact on range. Changes in tire rolling resistance directly and significantly impact the total electric vehicle range—about three times the effect on a conventional fuel vehicle.

So, as simple as it is to overlook your electric vehicle's tires, it's important to ensure that you not only pick the perfect tire for your electric car but also maintain the tires.

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