Goodyear battling winter CV tyre misconception
Goodyear has launched an information campaign about winter road safety aimed at commercial vehicle owners and fleets. The manufacturer says it has identified a common misconception, with many commercial vehicle operators assuming that winter tyres are only suitable for snow and ice. Of course, readers of Tyrepress.com will be well aware that winter tyres are developed not only for extreme weather conditions; they also perform better than other tyres at temperatures below 7°C, because of optimised designs and softer, high-silica compounds that don’t harden like regular driving compounds.
In launching its campaign, Goodyear refers to recent statistics that show 568 accidents involving heavy goods vehicles due to snow or ice in the UK alone, a country not renowned for the more extreme weather conditions with its Oceanic climate. Given its high grip properties, Goodyear is making it clear that a winter commercial vehicle tyre can significantly improve handling and traction as well as reduce the braking distance of a vehicle in winter conditions – not meaning merely snow or ice, but normal roads in colder temperatures too.
“With increasingly unpredictable European weather conditions and stricter tyre legislation, Goodyear is advising all commercial vehicle operators to ensure that they have the right tyres before the start of winter. It is all about safety, and also about ensuring commercial vehicles can continue to meet tight schedules without hindrance, regardless of weather conditions”, said Boris Stevanovic, marketing director Truck Tyres, Goodyear Dunlop EMEA.
“Today Germany has traffic laws making the use of winter tyres compulsory, and several other countries are already applying similar laws or introducing winter tyre legislation for the coming season. Winter tyres are not an option, they are a need.”
Goodyear also identifies another common misconception: that all tyres marked ‘M+S’ or similar (‘M.S’, ‘M&S’), standing for ‘Mud and Snow’, are winter tyres. The company explains that some tyres that are marked ‘M+S’ do not necessarily offer the same levels of performance nor are they suitable for all winter conditions.
Goodyear Ultra Grip range
Goodyear’s range of winter tyres for commercial vehicles is called Ultra Grip. Available in a wide range of sizes, these tyres comprise the Ultra Grip WTS steer tyre, WTD drive tyre and WTT trailer tyre. The Ultra Grip WTS steer tyre has a wide, deep tread pattern, Z-blades and a tread compound suitable for winter conditions. Goodyear says these give the tyre the required mileage and braking on wet, snowy and icy roads.
The Ultra Grip WTD drive axle tyre provides improved traction in severe winter conditions on snowy and icy roads, featuring tread compounds and carcass constructions with blading technology. Traction, stability and braking are improved while still providing high mileage performance, according to the manufacturer.
The Ultra Grip WTT winter trailer tyre complements the range for specific winter applications, where all axles need to be fitted with winter tyres. The WTT was developed for use on paved roads as well as on unpaved and forest roads. The robust carcass protects against external damage.
“Many operators never consider winter tyres unless they operate in the northernmost parts of Europe or in mountain regions, or are forced to by law,” said Stevanovic. “Goodyear winter tyres not only fulfill the legal needs where they exist but also help ensure excellent grip in all conditions to prevent unnecessary delays and incidents due to bad road conditions. What’s more, our Ultra Grip tyres do not have the negative effect on fuel consumption that many believe and they also offer high mileage potential.”