Friday, 12 December 2014

Winter Tyres with Michelin

A cold, snowy winter is predicted, so we may have the usual “country comes to standstill at first fall of snow” crisis.   Yet much of North America and all of Eastern Europe has several feet of snow every year and copes just fine.  Yes, they get it every year so they expect it; yes, their infrastructure is geared up for it; but really, it’s not that uncommon here, so surely we should be able to keep going when a few flurries head our way. And actually research shows that it's not always the snow we drivers need to worry about.

One of my abiding memories of Moscow life was the almost ritualistic way every car owner swapped their tyres over as, or just before, the first snow fell in late October. The switch to winter tyres was as normal as getting the winter coats out.  In the UK, only 7% of Mumsnetters currently own winter tyres, which apparently is above average when compared with the UK as a whole, but 66% said they would consider or be prepared to buy winter tyres in the future. And winter tyres aren't just for snowy days.

A recent survey by Michelin and Mumsnet indicated that tyre labelling remains little understood by drivers, and that many may be relying on TPMS (Tyre Pressure Monitoring System), believing that this removes the need for regular tyre pressure checks. However, Michelin say that older, indirect TPMS systems (mainly fitted before 2012) may only alert the user to a sudden change in pressure (e.g. that caused by a puncture), and they do NOT necessarily indicate the gradual loss of air from tyres.  But maintaining tyre pressure is essential as reductions can reduce performance, leading to reduced fuel efficiency and braking capability.

65% of respondents said they are prepared to pay the extra for a quality tyre brand which confirms that the majority of Mumsnetters recognise its worth paying for the inherent quality and safety performance associated with a recognised premium brand. Michelin Total Performance tyres bring together an optimum mix of performance areas such as grip, long-life and fuel saving without a trade-off, so Michelin tyres are a great match for the daily driving challenges that we all face.

As one respondent said,

“I was once told that the tyres are the most important part of the car as they are the only thing
connecting you to the road. I have always remembered this, especially with kids in the car”

Post in association with Mumsnet and Michelin.  For more information, read the other posts in the blog hop here.

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