Have you made the decision to buy new tires for your car? If Yes, then choosing the right tyres amongst all the various brands and makes must be a monumental task. But, wouldn’t it be easier if there was a standard on which all makes and brands can be compared against each other? For this exact reason, the tyre test is done. All tyre manufacturers need to test their tyres through independent testing bodies. Professional drivers trained to drive on proving or testing grounds drive cars fitted with testing tyres to gauge them on various grounds.
The standard parameters on which tyres are tested are;
- Straight Line Driving
Driving the car in a straight line at various speeds to gauge the steering response, steering efforts by varying steering inputs. This test indicates the wheel balancing and wheel alignment quality too.
- Steering Performance or Cornering
Driving the car in a tight circle called the Friction Circle to gauge the off-centre response of the tyres, trajectory tracking, steering precision and effort needed to maintain the track are all tested.. Cornering is checking the ability of the tyre to hold its traction when swerved and to check the rear and front tyres balancing without toppling the car.
- Active Safety (stability)
This parameter tests the dynamic response of the tyres during lane change manoeuvres. Body roll, braking while turning and other aspects are evaluated while driving.
- Wet braking or Wet Handling
A crucial test for any tyre is the way it brakes on rain-drenched roads. The car is revved up to high speeds in short distances and brought to complete stop through braking and the distance it takes to completely stop after application of brakes in noted. ( 80km/hr to 0 km/hr).
- Dry braking distance
This is a basic braking test, the everyday test to bring the vehicle to a grinding halt.Good performing tyres go less distance from the point of applying brakes to vehicle coming to an absolute stop. This parameter is a decider whether the vehicle just stops or is about to get into a head on collision with another object or vehicle.
An important performance parameter, a decider in making tyre purchase is the way the tyre can evacuate water off its groove,especially when there is almost no traction between the tyres and the road surface. Aquaplaning or hydroplaning is the ability of the tyres to avoid slippage through a thin layer of water.
- Internal noise on smooth and rough roads.
The grooves, part of the treads tend to make noise. This pass-by noise needs is evaluated as a crucial parameter and is also one of the specifications mentioned on the Tyre EU labels. It is measured in dB’s and choosing a tyre with lower dB’s ensure a quieter ride.