What is a Demo Tire?

Key Takeaways

  • Demo tires are identical to the same new tire
  • They are often barely used but still sold at a discount
  • They are uncommon as they are not sold in bulk

So you’re needing to buy a new tire for your vehicle. While trying to get the best deal, you come across something called a “Demo Tire” and you’re left wondering what that means.

Well Demo tires, although not common, are just regular tires that may have been briefly used. They can sometimes come up for sale cheaper than a brand new tire, even thought they are identical!

But are there any other things to be aware of if you are considering buying a demo tire? Read on and we’ll tell you everything you need to know!

What is a Demo Tire and should I buy one?

A demo tire, short for demonstration tire, is a new tire that has been used or driven on for a few miles at most before being sold to the public at a discount.

The reason that manufacturers sell off these practically new tires, is that they are no longer required. Most of these demo tires are simply used to transport brand new vehicles from the factory to the show room, being parked up most likely at a dealership or even taken off again.

New tires are also sometimes used for promotional and display purposes at trade shows. Whatever a manufacturer decides to use a new tire for, once the tire has served its purpose, they are then sold on as demo tires.

These practically new tires are sold on to the public for a discount, and its not uncommon to see savings of between 10-20%. That could add up to tens or even hundreds of dollars worth of savings for what is practically a brand new tire!

But while those savings may sound great, actually getting those deal can be a bit tougher as these tires were never meant to be sold in bulk.

What is the Purpose of Demo Tires?

Demo tires are meant to be identical to the model of tire that is or will be on sale to the general public.

One of the primary objectives of a demo tire for a manufacturer is to announce or showcase a new tire model at trade shows and car shows. This allow manufacturers to show off their new model to potential customers, normally with the aim to sell as many tires as possible to the public.

By allowing trade show attendees and car show visitors to get hands on with the tire, manufacturers can more effectively market the product. This allows people who are looking to purchase a particular tire the chance to have a closer look at the tire and see the features firsthand.

Recent trends in the tire industry has seen manufacturers design appealing sidewalls designs on tires to make them standout from the competition. This includes the likes of Michelin and Continental who are competing in the high end of the market with enthusiasts and owners of show cars.

Demo Tires are different from prototype tires, which are pre-production versions not yet in production. These tires are not for public sale and are produced in limited quantities.

Encountering Demo Tires

If you are an automotive enthusiast, attending events like auto shows, tire expos, or dealer showcases you are likely to encounter demo tires. During these events, tire manufacturers and retailers often set up stands, allowing visitors to explore and interact with their products.

You will find demo tires mounted on display stands, vehicles, or even have the chance to participate in test drives to get a firsthand experience of their performance.

It is worth noting that demo tires at these shows are not usually available for purchase. Their purpose is to be shown off and used as a display.

If you are interested in purchasing a specific tire model that you encounter as a demo tire, you can typically find the production version of the tire available for purchase at authorized retailers or online platforms.

Can you buy Demo Tires?

Yes it is possible to buy demo tires. However they do not often come up for sale as there are only so many tires used as demo tires.

Millions of drivers purchase new tires each year and everyone is looking for a good deal on tires. This is why buying part worn or demo tires is the easiest way to save money when needing to replace your old worn out tires. And who doesn’t like saving money!

Is it a good idea to buy Demo Tires?

Demo tires are no different to other used tires and are usually a good idea as compared to other used tire, they are minimally used.

As long a tire is free of any damage, is less than 6 years old and has the required amount of tread, they will be perfectly safe to drive on.

Just make sure to check the size of your wheel and the tire to ensure that the tire will fit your vehicle. Also consider whether the tire will be suitable to for the conditions that you will be driving in.

Do Demo tires come with warranty?

Yes, Demo tires come with the same manufacturing guarantee that a new tire would come with. It is worth checking this with the individual tire retailer.

Second hand retailers may not have information on this if the tire is not supplied from the original manufacturer.


While demo tires may not be as common or widely available, they play an important role in the automotive industry. They serve as powerful marketing tools, allowing the public to get introduced to the latest research and development in the tire industry.

So, the next time you are looking to purchase new tires for your vehicle, keep an eye out for any demo tires available in the size you are after. Not only can you be confident that they manufactured to the same standards as an equivalent new tire, you will more than likely make a nice little saving. What’s not to love about that!