What does a tire’s speed rating mean?
A tire’s speed rating indicates the max speed the tire can safely maintain over time. In short, it’s the fastest speed a tire can handle before it no longer performs as designed. Speed ratings are not just about speed. They’re also about ride comfort, wear, and cornering ability. Typically, the higher the speed rating, the better the grip and stopping power but the lower the tread life. A higher speed rating may not have the same level of ride comfort as a lower rating either. You can always increase the speed rating of the tires on your vehicle for improved performance but you can’t decrease it without reducing the top speed to that of the lower speed rating selected. Tire speed ratings are a series of letters that correspond with a maximum speed value. See the chart below.
Where can I find my tire’s speed rating?
You can find your tire’s speed rating on the sidewall. It will be the last letter in the sequence of the tire’s size code. You can find the recommended speed rating for your vehicle in the owner’s manual or it may also be on a sticker on the driver’s side door jamb, inside the gas tank door, or possibly in the glove box door.
For more information on what the markings on your tire’s sidewall mean, check out our blog on tire sidewall markings at blog.rabentire.com/what-do-tire-sidewall-markings-mean/