Current Location: Home > NEWS > Corporation News > Page

Same name tires, different quality in China

China-made tires are lagging behind their European counterparts in safety-related tests, especially those on wet roads, according to the latest tire test conducted by German auto magazine Auto Bild.

A total of 10 locally made 91V tires were tested at Continental's professional testing field near Hanover, Germany in September.

To avoid cheating or discrepancies, all tires were randomly bought in different cities in China before they were shipped to Germany.

They were the Michelin Primacy 3 ST, Continental ContiMax-Contact MC5, Bridgestone Ecopia EP200, Goodyear Assurance Triplemax, Hankok Optimo K415, Giti Comfort 228, Dunlop SP Sport 01, Yokohama BluEarth AE-01 and the Cooper Zeon ATP.

European-made Pirelli tires were used as a reference frame.

The final ranking was dependent on an index of 10 factors, including handling, comfort and safety.

An important measure of tire safety is braking distance, in which the Pirelli tires outperformed all the China-made ones.

On a wet road, the European Pirelli tire's braking distance was 43 m at a speed of 100 km/h, while Michelin gave the best performance among the China-made tires at 45.8 m. It was followed by Continental tires with 48.9m. The remaining China-made tires had braking distances of more than 50 m, and the last one, Cooper came in at 59.8m.

The test showed that in wet conditions when a car with European Pirelli tires stopped, cars with Cooper tires would still be moving at 53.1 km/h.

"That is the speed you would drive in a city without putting on the brakes," said Tian Jingran, chief editor at Auto Bild China.

The results of the braking distance test on a dry road were slightly more reassuring for Chinese drivers. China-made Michelin tires had a braking distance of 36.5 m at a speed of 100 km/h.

The European Pirelli tire was runner up with 36.6 m and was followed by Continental, with 38.4 m; Bridgestone, with 39.5 m; and Yokohama, with 40 m.

The remaining tires had longer braking distances and Cooper was again the last, with 41.6 m.

In other words, in dry conditions, when a car with Michelin tires stopped, those with other tires continued to move at speeds ranging from 5.5 km/h to 35.2 km/h.

Tire handling was tested on a wet, circle-shaped, 58-m diameter road.

The European Pirelli tire won first place by finishing the test in 11.75 seconds. The runner-up was Continental, with a time of 11.87 seconds and Goodyear took third place with a time of 12.13 seconds.

Cars equipped with the other six tires finished the test with times between 12.15 seconds and 12.66 seconds. The car with Cooper tires came in last again, with a time of 13.14 seconds.

The Chinese tires were between 0.8 and 2 kg heavier than the European Pirelli tires, which could account for the poorer performance in the handling test.

The tables turned in the comfort test, where tires from Bridgestone, Cooper, Yokohama and Dunlop outperformed the European Pirelli tires.

China's road conditions mean tires made domestically have alterations to provide more comfort for car passengers, said Wang Yin, editor-in-chief and publisher of Auto Bild China.

Wang said this was not an excuse for such a large gap in terms of safety performance between locally made tires and European ones.

He suggested customers choose big international brands and higher rated tires when their budget allowed them to.

"Such brands as Michelin, Continental and Bridgestone are doing a relatively good job," Wang said.

China Daily