Protyre News


Do you know how to choose the right SUV, 4x4 or Crossover tyres for your vehicle?


It’s undeniable. SUVs, 4x4s and Crossovers are getting more and more popular. The growth in this vehicle segment goes unabated. In fact they now account for roughly 25% of all new cars sold in Europe. They’re now the preferred choice for many motorists who would have previously bought a hatchback and estate.

Not so long ago, this vehicle segment was very simple – there was one size, and it was big. Today, there are seven categories in this vehicle class, encompassing everything from “large” (like the Hyundai Sante Fe) to “small” (think Kia Soul). But many drvers opt for what are known as “compact” SUVs, and here the Nissan Qashqai is the market leader. In the UK alone, just under 65,000 Qashqais were sold in 2017. It’s easily the most popular SUV on the market.

By their very nature, SUVs, 4x4s and Crossovers require special tyres, and in our latest tyre safety article, we examine what to look for, and why.

Why are SUVs, 4x4s and Crossovers so popular?

When asked, most SUV drivers typically say one of two things: Either “my family is safer in an SUV…” or “I love the higher driving position”. Significantly, however, you don’t usually hear them say “I love driving off-road”.

So what do you use your vehicle for?

Your answer to this question determines which tyres are right for you.

Do you drive mainly on-road?

If you typically use your SUV, 4x4 or Crossover for the daily school run, or to pop into town, the expert Protyre team recommend a tyre that’s designed primarily for road use. Good examples include Continental’s premium tyres, like their ContiSportContact 5 SUV, and the ContiPremiumContact 5 SUV.

The ContiSportContact 5 SUV is a very popular choice, because it offers perfect grip and optimal handling in every driving situation, delivering shorter stopping distances on both dry and wet surfaces, as well as a comfortable driving experience and reduced rolling resistance (which helps reduce fuel consumption, and CO2 emissions).

The ContiPremiumContact 5 SUV provides excellent road grip and handling for safety when cornering, shorter braking distances in all weather conditions, reduced fuel consumption, and high mileage.

Premium tyres like these are designed primarily for road use, offering a quieter, more comfortable drive. They provide reduced fuel consumption, thanks to what’s known as “low rolling resistance”. And while they’re also okay for some light adventures off-road, it should be remembered that they’re primarily designed for the urban driving environment.

Do you drive mainly off-road?

You may live on a farm in the countryside, or spend significant time driving in fields, open land or loose tracks. If this sounds like you, your tyre choice will reflect the need for extra grip. In this case it’s worth considering a superb premium tyre, like the new Continental CrossContact™ ATR.

This tyre provides increased wet traction and better braking on slippery surfaces, improved overall durability, and substantial road noise reduction. Of course you’ll also be driving on paved roads, where the tyres also need to perform well, and the Continental CrossContact™ ATR provides high performance all-round.

If you can, always choose Original Equipment

“Original Equipment” tyres – also known as OE – are the ones that the vehicle manufacturer fitted to your SUV, 4x4 or Crossover when you purchased it brand new, from the factory. OE tyres are designed specifically for that vehicle model, following a comprehensive development process with premium tyre makers, like Continental. You’ll find Continental OE on many SUVs, 4x4s and Crossovers.

Why? Because Original Equipment is optimised to work with and bring out the driving characteristics of a specific vehicle. As such, OE tyres enhance the capabilities of your vehicle, providing superior braking and driving performance.

Continental OE Expertise

Driver safety

Through their commitment to on-going research and development, plus initiatives like Continental’s Vision Zero – their quest to achieve “zero fatalities, zero injuries, zero accidents” – tyre manufacturers are helping to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities. Even so, the role tyres play in terms of road safety is still under-valued. It really shouldn’t be.

Why? Because your tyres are the only contact your SUV, 4x4 or Crossover has with the surface (no matter if a tarmaced road, gravel track, or open field) and – despite its many airbags and other safety features – when it really matters, it’s the quality of your tyres that count.

When it comes to SUVs, 4x4s and Crossovers, it’s worth remembering that these vehicles are heavier than ordinary cars. They also typically have a higher centre of gravity, which places special demands on the tyres. So whatever choice you make, your tyres need to keep you and your passengers safe, by dispersing water as effectively as possible, and providing excellent grip so that you can stop exactly when you need to.

Talk to Protyre for expert SUV, 4x4 and Crossover tyre advice

For impartial advice on the best SUV, 4x4 or Crossover tyres for your vehicle, visit your local Protyre garage. Our tyre care professionals will help you to make an inform tyre purchasing choice, and provide you with expert fitting solutions.

Find My Protyre

About the author

Article Author Photo
By Adam White
Adam looks to create engaging and informative content across the website that provides consumers with expert advice on MOTs, servicing, vehicle maintenance and tyre care. As a motorsport enthusiast, Adam enjoys documenting the Protyre Motorsport team’s involvement in major motorsport events across the UK.
View authorArrow right