- July 21, 2021
- By Park Muffler
- In Blog, Tires
Back in the late 60’s, the first high-performance low-profile tire was created and became a quick favourite of BMW and Porsche owners. Nowadays, these tires have crossed over from the world of auto sports into the mainstream market. From Honda Accords to Audis, low-profile tires are becoming a popular choice amongst regular vehicle owners.
Not all tires are created equal and this is no exception for the low-profile tire. If you are considering having these tires installed on your vehicle, it’s important to understand the difference between low-profile tires and regular tires.
Have you been considering getting low-profile tires for your car? Keep reading to find out what they are as well as the pros and cons of having them installed.
Every tire features a code on the sidewall that displays the tire’s aspect ratio. This is the ratio of the width of the tire to its height. Low-profile tires have a lower aspect ratio and shorter sidewall. Alternatively, regular tires have a higher aspect ratio and taller sidewall.
If you were to look at the sidewall of your tires you may see numbers such as P215/65 R15. The “R” number refers to your rim size, the “P” indicates that your vehicle is a passenger vehicle, and the number following it is the tire section width. The number following the slash, in this case, the number 65, shows that the height of the tire is 65% of the width. If a tire has a 50 aspect ratio of less, it is usually considered to be a low-profile tire. The narrower sidewall and larger wheel tend to give the tires a sportier look.
Apart from having a sportier look, there are advantages and disadvantages to having low-profile tires.
From a driving point of view, low-profile tires improve the handling of your vehicle while driving at higher speeds. Their increased width means that they can better grip the pavement and respond to cornering. Low-profile tires also tend to have bigger rims meaning that your vehicle can accommodate bigger brakes, allowing you to stop more quickly.
Here are a few other advantages to using low-profile tires:
Some cars are designed to run on low-profile tires and others are not. If your vehicle is not designed to accommodate these tires, you could be sacrificing its stability.
Low-profile tires can often lead to a rougher ride where you feel every irregularity and bump on the surface of the road. Both the sidewalls and rims are more likely to become damaged due to road conditions.
Overall, low-profile tires are not recommended if you live in a snowy climate due to their poor gripping capabilities on snow surfaces.
Here are a few other disadvantages to running low-profile tires:
Now that you know the advantages and disadvantages of low-profile tires, as well as how they differ from regular tires, you’re probably still wondering if you should have them installed on your vehicle.
From a practical viewpoint, low-profile tires are not an ideal choice for most drivers. Most of us drive at controlled speeds or on highways that are built for high speeds in cars with regular tires. During our day-to-day lives, it’s unlikely that our commute involves sprawling stretches of beautifully paved roads.
However, if you own or are looking to own a leisure vehicle for Sunday road trips or a twisting adventure through the nearest mountain range, low-profile tires are perfect for maximizing your driving experience!
When you are considering putting low-profile tires on your vehicle, look at where you will be driving and what the road conditions are like. If everything lines up and you can easily accommodate low-profile tires, go for it!
Tires have a huge impact on how your vehicle drives, including traction, handling, fuel economy, and safety. Park Muffler is dedicated to helping you get the most of your vehicle – especially when it comes to tires. Our team can help with their many years of experience in all aspects of tire care.
If you’re still curious about whether or not your vehicle could benefit from low-profile tires, don’t hesitate to contact us today! Our expert team of technicians can help guide you through ensuring that your car operates at peak performance while having the look you’ve been dreaming of. Let’s chat!