Are wider car tyres better than narrow car tyres?

By Julia Freeman

In addition to impacting the appearance of a vehicle from a purely aesthetic perspective, the width and size of a tyre will also affect how a vehicle handles in a range of different conditions. So, if you have ever wondered whether wider tyres are better than narrow tyres, then we're here to answer that question.

wheel on a car

Tyres that are wider than standard tyres have a larger contact area, which means they offer an improved grip and more stable acceleration capabilities on dry surfaces. Additionally, they can also provide an enhanced driving experience in very specific situations, including in challenging winter weather road conditions.

Are there any advantages of wider tyres?

Depending on the type and model you choose, switching to a wider-than-average tyre can bring several benefits. For a start, if there are additional sipes present within the tread design on wider tyres, drivers may experience additional grip, even on snow-covered surfaces. Additionally, larger tread blocks work to minimise braking distances and contribute to a more balanced drive with precise steering. Wider tyres also typically provide enhanced lateral grip and reduce the chances of wheel spin.

Plus, there's no denying that wide tyres can give your vehicle a more overtly aggressive and eye-catching appearance. However, there are also plenty of disadvantages that should be properly considered before making the decision to switch.

What are the disadvantages of wide tyres?

It is essential to ensure that the tyres you are fitting to your vehicle are aligned with the guidelines released by the manufacturer. If these guidelines aren't followed, you may experience a range of issues, including increasing the likelihood of aquaplaning. Additionally, if a wide tyre doesn't fit properly within the wheel arch, your vehicle's turning radius and freedom of motion may be restricted.

As wider tyres change the performance characteristics, it is vital that the brakes on your vehicle can efficiently stop the wheels from moving. Just as the potential for aquaplaning is higher with a wider tyre, drivers may find that narrower tyres are more suitable for driving on ice, slush and snow because the vehicle's weight will be concentrated in a smaller overall area, which will help the tyre to really push into the road's surface.

Wider than average tyres can have a higher rolling resistance and produce much more road noise, which can impact the in-cabin experience. Similarly, as pressure is typically higher in wide tyres, drivers should expect a harsher ride.

Should I invest in wider tyres?

The choice is entirely yours, however you must ensure that all work to your vehicle is completed by an experienced and fully qualified professional. Our tyre professionals have years of experience with all top tyre brands, including Falken, Bridgestone, and Sumitomo. So, if you're looking to buy tyres online or you want some personalised advice regarding any wider tyre models that may be suited to your vehicle and your driving needs, please get in touch and we'll be happy to help.

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About the author

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By Julia Freeman
Julia is Head of Retail Marketing for Protyre and loves engaging with customers and the business as a whole to make sure Protyre is more than just a local garage.
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