Tire Efficiency Consumer Information BETA

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Rule Map–>Testing Requirements–>DURABILITY

The “durability” rating that will be included on the proposed new consumer information tire label will be based on treadwear life  –  the length of time that a tire will maintain both sufficient tread depth for safe operation and the same strength the tire had when it was originally purchased.

NHTSA proposes to base a tire’s durability rating on the results of treadwear test procedures currently required under NHTSA’s  Uniform Tire Quality Grading Standards (UTQGS) tire rating system.  The agency intends to use these existing test procedures because the Energy Independent and Security Act of 2007 requires that the new tire efficiency consumer information rule be finalized by the end of 2009.

Current UTQGS grades range from 1 to 800.  NHTSA proposes that the UTQGS score be normalized to a 0 to 100 point scale for display on the new label, to make the durability rating comparable to the other two ratings.  So, the UTQGS score will be divided by 10.

In the UTQGS procedure, a tire’s rating depends on its treadwear life relative to the treadwear life of “control tires.” On the new scale, control tires will have a durability rating of 10.  A tire with a 20 rating will have a treadwear life that is twice as long as that of the control tires, a tire with a 30 rating a treadwear life that is three times as long, and so on.

NHTSA acknowledges the limits of the UTQGS approach, including limited consumer understanding of the system.  It seeks comment on other test methods that could be easily used to establish alternative metrics for durability ratings.