What Car?’s tyre test team make a good point highlighting the differences between some premium and budget products in their recent tyre test. But it appears they went a step too far when they entitled the feature “why budget tyres could kill” lumping the three cheaper products (Arrowspeed, Ovation and Sunew) together in the their final conclusion. It might sound a touch pedantic, but the addition of the word “some” in the headline may have been fairer as this would have avoided generalising about the overall quality of tyres.
It didn’t take long after Tyres & Accessories reported on the tests on our daily e-Newsletter for the manufacturers involved to take up their right to reply. The Korean manufacturer behind Kwik-Fit’s popular Arrowspeed tyre brand arguably has the best case for disputing being tarred with the saw low-budget brush as the Ovation and the Sunew tyres.
What Car? has named and shamed budget brands in a test warning that tyres like these “could kill.” In the test published online on 4 August 2010 What Car? measured the performance of the Arrowspeed CP661, Continental Premium Contact 2, Goodyear Optigrip, Michelin Pilot Sport 3, Ovation VI-182 and Sunew YS112 in dry braking, wet braking, lateral grip and noise tests. The Michelin Pilot Sport 3 came out top, with particularly strong results in wet and dry braking. However, there were some shocking outcomes in the budget sector when it came to braking and noise.