Whenever we go to buy tyres for our cars, at one point of time we have always pondered over the question of which tyre brand to buy. CarToq tries to help you answer that question with a comparison between Indian tyre brands vis-à-vis International tyre brands by listing out their advantages and disadvantages.
What do Indian brands have to offer?
Indian tyre brands have lower prices and last longer. Indian brands like MRF, Apollo, JK Tyres offer tyres which are OEM for car companies like Ford, Maruti Suzuki etc.
These tyres are affordable, have a fairly long wear-out life & are generally durable and are suited for all driving conditions. They are made of harder compounds making them tough, more resistant to punctures and damage etc.
Related: Effects of upsizing tyres
However, because these tyres are made of harder-rubber compounds they aren’t so good when it comes to performance. These tyres do not offer high grip levels, especially for high-speed driving and cornering. Plus, they rate below international brands in ride quality and noise.
However, brands like MRF and JK Tyres have been associated with road races and rallies, which has helped then gain more experience and to manufacture performance tyres for specific needs. It has also helped improve regular passenger car tyres in the process. These companies now offer a few models which cater to users looking for better options than OEM tyres. A major advantage of these tyres, apart from the performance factor, is the price at which they are available. Due to the competitive pricing, these tyres manage to sell in good numbers in spite of international brands being present in our markets.
Also see: All you have to know about upsizing
MRF provides a number of models, namely ZVTS, ZV2K, ZSLK and ZLO which are focused towards better ride comfort at the same time being tougher, offer better fuel efficiency with low-rolling resistance, lower noise levels, better cornering grip and handling.
They are available in a variety of sizes for passenger cars. These tyres retail from Rs.2,700–Rs. 5,500 per tyre, depending on the size of the tyre. Another model is the Wanderer which is a specially designed tyre for SUVs and retails for Rs. 6,000 – Rs. 7,000 per tyre.
JK Tyres also offer a variety of options, namely Vectra, Ultima XP, Ultima Sport, Ultima NXT, Tornado, Elanzo Supra, Elanzo Crusero, and Brute. These tyres feature better sidewall construction, larger contact patch, softer rubber compound and better stability among other features. They retail from Rs. 2,500 – Rs. 6,000 per tyre.
Apollo Tyres boasts of a wider range of choices in larger wheel sizes. Models include the Amazer range, Acelere range and Aspire. These tyres feature comfort, improved handling, asymmetric designs and up to Y speed rating (up to 300 kmph). They range from Rs. 2,200 to Rs. 9,500 per tyre for high-performance tyres. They also offer their Hawkz models for SUVs which retail for Rs. 5,000 – Rs. 11,000.
Also see: What type and brand of tyre to choose?
Do International brands have an edge over Indian Brands?
International tyre brands like Michelin, Bridgestone, Goodyear are Yokohama are amongst the more widely used tyres in the international markets and some of these are also OEM suppliers for various car manufacturers.
Along with higher price tags these tyres offer a lot more in terms of performance, ride comfort and specific applications due to the years of experience and R & D which goes into their development. With international car manufacturers bringing in their models in to our market, the demand for these tyres has grown substantially over the years, especially in the premium segments.
All these manufacturers are equally competitive and offer tyres for specific needs and have various choices for almost every type of car. Michelin offers models like Energy MXV8, Energy XM1+, Energy XM2, Primacy, Latitude and their Pilot range of tyres ranging from Rs. 2,800 – Rs. 13,300 per tyre.
Goodyear has a wide range, namely Assurance, Ducaro, Duraplus, Eagle, Excellence, GPS2, GT3 ranging from Rs. 2,300 – Rs. 11,500 per tyre. They also have the Wrangler series for SUVs retailing for Rs. 5,000 – Rs. 14,100.
Bridgestone offers their Potenza, Turanza, S, and B series tyres retailing for Rs. 3,000 – Rs. 9,200 with the Dueler series catering to SUVs ranging from Rs. 6,700 – Rs. 13,800.
Yokohama mostly supplies tyres to premium car brands but also offers a wide variety for other regular cars. Their models include: A Drive, C Drive, S Drive, Advan, Aspec and ES series of tyres ranging from Rs.2,900 – Rs. 12,000. For SUVs, they offer the Geolander series ranging from Rs. 5,600 – Rs. 10,000.
Also read: Signs that its time to change your tyres
Which brands are better?
Indian and international brands both have their own advantages and disadvantages. So here is a quick summary which should help you decide.
- Offer lower priced tyres which are cost effective and economical to purchase.
- More options if you are looking for stock tyre sizes as most manufacturers are OE suppliers.
- Are long-lasting and have a good wear-out life thus reducing costs on frequent tyre changes.
- Are built tough using harder rubber compounds.
- Offer more grip thus better braking and cornering, and lesser road noise.
- Overall more performance oriented in spite of their higher prices.
- Offer more options for larger wheel sizes and lower profile tyres.
- May have options for odd sizes.