When it comes to Teslas, most of the talk is centered on battery capacity, safety features, speed, and acceleration.
Very few people talk about the tires, which are way more expensive than those of other cars.
However, it is important to note that Tesla does not manufacture its own tires. It only sources them from manufacturers who meet its standards. These include Hankook, Pirelli, and Continental.
What’s the Average Price for Tesla Tires?
Tesla tires cost between $150-550. The amount you pay majorly depends on the quality, size of the tire, and manufacturer.
And that’s not all – mounting and balancing these tires requires special skills, and can cost you between $50-$100, depending on location.
Tesla cars also don’t come with spare tires, unlike most ICE cars. This means, in case of an emergency, you will have to buy new tires or take your tires to a service shop.
Tire Prices for Different Models
Different Tesla models have different features and tire requirements, so prices vary widely. Here are some rough estimates for tire costs for each Tesla model:
The recommended tire diameters for the Tesla Roadster are 16” and 17”. However, the model is primarily designed for speed and requires more advanced tires.
Consequently, the prices of Roadster tires range from $300 to $500 per tire. At the moment, the model is not in mass production, which could also account for the high tire prices.
Model X is technically an SUV and requires slightly bigger tires (20-22 inches). The average price ranges between $200-$450 per tire.
The Model S is arguably the most successful of all Tesla models. The best part is that you can get its factory tires for as low as $150 per tire. The maximum you can pay is $500.
The Tesla Model 3 requires smaller tires (18, 19, or 20 inches), which on average cost between $100 – $400, depending on the tire size and brand.
The Tesla Model Y is wider and has a longer wheelbase compared to the Model 3. The average cost of one tire is about $195 – $550
What Makes Tesla Tires So Expensive?
Tesla is arguably the biggest EV manufacturer in the world, and they demand the tires on their vehicles to be as high-tech as other features.
Below are some of the features included in Tesla tires that drive up the prices:
Noise Muffing Technology
Most Tesla tires contain acoustic foam that absorbs and muffles road noise and vibrations.
Additionally, most foam-filled tires can maintain their shape even when they are underinflated or punctured.
While safety specifications vary across models and tire brands, Tesla tires are generally designed to offer maximum grip and traction on the road.
They have an asymmetrical tread design that provides excellent grip on all road types.
Tesla cars, especially the performance models like the Model S, not only have high instant torque but are also capable of delivering fast acceleration and reaching top speeds.
All these factors can put a lot of stress on the tires, causing them to wear out more quickly. Additionally, the weight and power of these vehicles can also put more pressure on the tires.
Generally, Tesla-branded tires can last for about 40,000 miles. To achieve this level of durability, manufacturers use special and advanced tire designs and extra tough materials.
They usually have higher load capacities and are constructed with more durable materials, including toughened rubber with advanced siping.
Companies making Tesla tires go out of their way to deliver tires that provide a satisfactory driving experience. Some of the key performance features of Tesla tires include:
- Traction – The tires generally grip the road much better and provide high levels of stability during high-speed driving and sudden maneuvers.
- Comfort – Tire manufacturers also consider ride quality and stability of the vehicle, including factors such as road noise, vibration, and suspension. This is in line with Tesla’s goal to provide elite comfort to its drivers.
- Fuel efficiency – Tesla tires typically have low rolling resistance and are designed to improve or at least maintain the efficiency and range of the vehicle.
As you can see, Tesla tires are quite challenging to make. The materials, technology, and innovation required don’t come cheap and this inevitably influences tire prices.
What to Consider When Buying A Tesla Tire
- Fuel economy – Look for tires with low rolling resistance, as this can help improve the fuel economy and range of your Tesla.
- Grip levels – Consider the type of driving you’ll be doing and choose tires with appropriate levels of traction and handling for your needs. For example, if you want to drive in wet or slippery conditions, look for tires with good wet traction.
- Noise level – The level of road noise generated by the tires can impact the overall driving comfort of your Tesla. Ideally, you should get foam-filled tires with high levels of noise reduction capabilities if you want to ride in relative quiet and comfort.
- Tire wear levels – Look at the expected wear rate of the tires, as well as the cost of maintenance over the life of the tires. Some tires are designed to have longer lifespans and more consistent wear patterns, while others have shorter lifespans but offer better performance.
- Type of driving – Choose tires that are designed for your specific driving needs, and that can provide good performance and safety in all driving conditions.
If you’ll be doing a lot of winter driving, for instance, look for tires with good snow and ice grip.
You should also consider the handling and stability of the tires in wet conditions, as this can impact safety and performance during rainy seasons.
Tesla cars are high-performance vehicles, and the company demands its tire suppliers meet stringent safety and performance requirements.
However, as electric vehicles become more ubiquitous and tire manufacturers scale up their production processes, the prices will most likely drop. For now, taking good care of your Tesla factory tires is your best bet at reducing costs in the long term.