Premium vs Budget
With well over 40 different brands coming in from China alone, not to mention other parts of the world, how does the man on the "Fleet" differentiate between a quality tyre and a questionable one, bearing in mind that it would hardly be fair to paint all imported tyres with the same brush?
Chinese tyre production especially has come a long way in recent years, with several plants making world-class products that can compete equally with their western counterparts.
What the consumer needs to bear in mind is that ‘budget tyres,’ which traditionally cost the least, cannot be guaranteed to provide the best possible service levels in terms performance and longevity.
The cost of a tyre and a retread for that matter can only be reduced by making the compounds cheaper or using less of a specific component per tyre.
Consumers often complain that the cheap tyre they bought didn’t last long or developed problems and that is usually when suppliers grapple with making good on their “promises.”
The best way to protect against an inferior tyre is by following these simple guidelines:
Understand the three types of new tyres available, i.e. budget, quality and high performance tyres.
Buy only through reputable tyre dealers with a good reputation who stock only reliable tyre brands backed by manufacturers’ guarantees and warrantees.
Check that the tyres carry the relevant quality marks, i.e. E-mark (European quality mark) of approval.
Speak to present users of specific tyre brands (as one would do when buying a new car) and share their experiences.
Keep in mind that in the end, it is the cost per kilometer that counts, together with good performance.
Much like most things in life, remember ‘goedkoop koop is duurkoop!’
And never be fooled into buying a budget tyre at premium price.
Insofar as the current absence of anti-dumping regulations, local manufacturers provide a significant contribution to gainful employment and a market structure that undermines this key point, and can only lead to unfortunate consequences for the social integrity of many communities where manufacturing plants operate. "It is in everyone’s interest to promote a market structure that promotes socio-economic stability and fair competition.”