REGULATION (EC) No 1222/2009 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL requires that all tyres* produced after June 2012 and on sale in the EU from November 2012 will show grade of Rolling Resistance, Wet Grip and Noise in all technical promotion materials. There is no requirement to place individual stickers directly onto truck and bus tyres.
* Scope includes tyres for cars, light commercial vehicles and heavy trucks.
Other tyres such as retread, professional off-road or studded tyres are excluded.
The standardized EU tyre label that will be introduced by the European Union in 2012 will provide information on 3 specific tyre performances: wet grip performance, fuel efficiency, and exterior rolling noise.
The most important role of a tyre is to provide safety – in all conditions. Wet adherence or grip is one of the most important performance characteristics.
However, higher adherence and lower rolling resistance are often contradictory objectives that have traditionally required a performance trade-off. Thanks to the new labelling regulation, customers will be able to see and choose for themselves their preferred performances.
The label will display a range of 7 grades going from “A” (best wet grip) to worst wet grip.
One of the forces influencing the fuel efficiency of a motorised vehicle is the Rolling Resistance of the tyres.
This phenomenon exists because a tyre deforms when rotating, resulting in energy losses in the form of heat. The higher the deformation, the higher the tyre rolling resistance, and consequently the more fuel required to move the vehicle forward. In other words, lower rolling resistance means lower fuel consumption and therefore lower vehicle emissions, including CO².
The new label will display different grades in “rolling resistance” going from A (most efficient) to least efficient.
Traffic noise is a relevant environmental issue, determined by:
Traffic intensity and vehicle types
Exterior noise levels are split into 3 categories and measured in decibel (dB) in comparison with the new European tyre exterior noise levels to be introduced until 2016.
1 black sound wave = 3dB less than the future tighter European limit.
2 black sound waves = already compliant with the future European limit.
3 black sound waves = compliant with the current European limit.
The regulation aims at increasing the safety and the economic and environmental efficiency of road transport by promoting safe and fuel-efficient tyres with low noise levels. It also establishes a framework for the provision of harmonised information across the industry on some tyre parameters.
Such information will, at all times, be available for customers through technical promotional material, including the websites of the manufacturers. Some tyres are excluded, such as retreaded tyres, off-road tyres and racing tyres.
The expected cumulative benefits from the increased use of fuel efficient tyres will lead to saving up to 4 million tonnes of CO² per year (depending on the speed of market transformation towards fuel efficient tyres) , and will also drive the market towards improved wet grip performance.
Actual fuel savings and road safety depend heavily on the behaviour of drivers, and in particular the following:
eco-driving can significantly reduce fuel consumption.
tyre pressure should be regularly checked to optimise wet grip and fuel efficiency performance.
stopping distances should always be strictly respected.
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