We humans are quick to wrap ourselves up as soon as the thermometer falls, yet some British drivers assume their car tyres will maintain the same level of performance irrespective of the temperature. They won’t, as the majority are ‘summer’ specification products, the tread compound of which tends to harden at ambient temperatures below +7°C, causing a notable reduction in grip.
One thing’s for sure, as soon as the winter really bites, the countryside will once again be littered with abandoned cars, as we never seem ready for the inevitable.
This situation is entirely avoidable, as the solution is quick and easy – ie, as recommended by TyreSafe (the award-winning tyre safety organisation), to fit ‘all-weather’ products ongoing, or full ‘winter’ specification tyres from now until March next year.
Happily, following the introduction of its new WinterCraft WS71 offering, Kumho has the perfect range of products to help UK motorists in this matter, whatever they drive.
All-season - car
The Kumho Solus HA31 is the ideal choice for drivers of all sizes of passenger car who seek optimum performance and reliability in all weathers and, following numerous additions, is now available in no less than 70 sizes.
Winter - car
Primarily intended for medium and large-sized family and executive cars, the WinterCraft WP71 is available in an extensive range of sizes from 205/55R16 to 275/35R19, and in V and W speed ratings. There is also a choice of four different run-flat sizes including 225/55R17 and 245/45R18. For smaller vehicles Kumho offers the aesthetically-pleasing new-generation WinterCraft WP51 - again, there is a run-flat version in 195/55R16 size.
Winter - SUV
WinterCraft WS71 - this hi-tech newcomer is aimed directly at the burgeoning SUV market. Initially available in a choice of 24 sizes and H and V speed ratings, it even boasts innovative hourglass-shaped wear indicators for quicker, easier tread depth assessment. The I’Zen RV KC15 is the ideal choice for such perennially popular 4x4s as the Range Rover and BMW X5.
Winter – van
PorTran CW51 is yet another relatively new Kumho pattern that provides light commercial vehicles with the best in traction and handling in snowy and/or icy conditions. It comes in a choice of 18 sizes.
Additional information and tips re winter driving
All members of Kumho’s cold weather tyre range feature both M+S (Mud & Snow) and the desirable 3pMSF (3 Peaks Mountain Snow Flake) sidewall markings. The treads of all the company’s cold weather products contain additional silica in order to keep them supple in lower temperatures, and additional ‘sipes’ (small lateral grooves) to help best maintain contact with the road in wet, icy and snowy conditions.
Whatever tyres are fitted, when driving in wintery conditions it is doubly important for their tread to be of ample depth, and for them to be inflated to the recommended pressures. They also need to be in good overall condition and free of such potentially dangerous damage as bulges, cracked sidewalls, abnormally worn shoulders etc.
As their name implies, ‘all-season’ tyres are a compromise and designed to safely cope with conditions all the year round. ‘Winter’ ones on the other hand are intended solely for the colder seasons, so need to be paired with an equivalent set of summer covers - some dealers even offer a ‘hotel’ facility whereby winter rubber can be stored in summer and vice versa.