Why Are Tires So Expensive?

why are tires so expensive

The answer to why are tires so expensive has to do with the rise in materials costs, the continued research required to plan and release a new model of tire, as well current global economic issues.

In this article we will take a look at the reasons why tires have such a high cost, and we’ll explore the different varying factors between tires and how they affect all affect the price.

By understanding “Why Are Tires So Expensive”, you can be better prepared to make a purchase that fits both your needs and your budget. Let’s get started!

Why are tires so expensive?

If you’ve been wondering “Why Are Tires So Expensive”, you’re not alone. Tires are a necessary part of every car as well as many other types of vehicles, and their price has been on the rise in recent years.


There is a huge amount of research that goes into planning a new model of tire. The company needs to test its performance in all conditions, what kind of vehicle it will be used on, braking and aquaplaning tests, and much more. All of this research takes time and money.

Popular tire manufacturers such as Michelin and Goodyear have huge testing facilities dedicated to testing tires, and there are many tests that tires must undertake before the final tire that will be produced is approved. This is what gives the premium tires their superior performance but also adds to why are tires so expensive.


Once a tire has been through testing, it then needs to be assembled. Making tires is a complicated and multi-step process that involves a huge amount of large machinery. This manufacturing makes tires expensive to produce and therefore expensive to purchase.

Different manufactures will have different steps and processes and this is why performance between tires can vary so greatly.


The materials used to make tires is also a large factor that contributes to how expensive they are. Tires are made from synthetic rubber, natural rubber, fabric and steel wire. The cost of these materials can fluctuate greatly, which in turn affects the price of tires.

For example, in 2010 there was a rise in the cost of natural rubber due to heavy rains in Thailand which is one of the world’s largest producers. This led to a rise in the cost of tires as well.

Premium tires are made with additional layers of materials and structural steel, giving the tire more strength and rigidity and more performance as a result. These tires will also be more expensive.


The size of a tire is another factor that will determine how expensive it is. Car tires are large and require a lot of materials to make them. This means they will be more expensive than a smaller tire such as those used on a bicycle. Large vehicles and pick up trucks need even larger tires and so the price will be even higher.

Tractor tires are some of the largest and most expensive tires. They can be up to 16 feet tall, weigh over 5000 pounds and can cost in excess of $10,000 dollars!


The final factor to consider when asking Why Are Tires So Expensive is performance. Some tires are made to perform better than others in certain conditions. For example, there are high performance tires that are made to give the driver more grip and control when driving at high speeds.

There are also tires that have been designed to perform better in wet conditions or in the snow. These tires will often have deeper treads and different compounds to make them more effective in these conditions.

As you can imagine, these tires will be more expensive than a standard tire due to the factors already mentioned above. These include the research, manufacturing and the unique and special compounds in the tire which help it to perform in these conditions

So, there are many factors that contribute to Why Are Tires So Expensive. The size, materials, performance and research that goes into making a tire all add to the cost. When you are next looking to purchase tires, keep all of these factors in mind to help you make the best decision for you.

Why Have Tire Prices Been on the Rise in Recent Years?

One of the main reasons that tires have become more expensive in recent years is due to the rise in raw materials costs. The cost of rubber, steel, and other materials used to make tires has been on the rise, and this has caused the price of tires to increase as well.

In addition to this, the cost of shipping and exporting goods, including tires has also gone up in recent years. This is down to an increase in fuel prices, supply chain issues across the globe and other factors including the pandemic and geo-political factors.

As a result, the price of tires and most other goods has been rising, and this is likely to continue into the near future.

Cost of shipping a container is up nearly 600% over last year

How can you save money when buying tires?

Compare Prices

When looking to buy new tires, you should always compare prices from all the main tire sites and local tire shops. There will be a wide variety of brands and tires to choose from, and each tire will have its strengths and weaknesses.

Make sure to read our guide to figure out what is most important for you to consider when picking a tire for your vehicle.

Special Offers

Other ways to find a great deal on tires is to look out for special offers that may be running. There are often promotions or discounts available if you are looking to buy a set of 4 tires, either online or at your local shop. This is an easy way to save money if you are looking for a set of new tires.

Long Tread Life Tires

A good way to save money in the long run, is to pick out tires that are rated with a very long tread life. These will normally be all-season tires and if cared and maintained properly, could last up to 100K miles or 7 to 8 years.

This tires may come at a premium price at first, but will more than pay for themselves if you find yourself not needing to replace them as often.

Buy Tires with Warranty

For peace of mind when purchasing tires, there are many tires available that come with limited mileage warranties. This means that the manufacturer will reimburse you an amount off the price of a new one should something go wrong.

This will be calculated depending on how long you’ve used the tire and how worn the tire is. This can be particularly effective if you have spent a large sum of money on tires and feel comfortable having that assurance there.

Part Worn Tires

If you are looking for a more budget option, then part worn tires may be the way to go. These are second-hand tires that have been used before but have been checked for any damage and still have a large amount of tread life left.

These can be a great option if you are looking for a cheap set of tires but make sure to do your research before buying as there have been cases of people being sold fake part worn tires.

Drive Smoothly

One of the best ways to make your tires last longer and to save money, is to simply drive smoothly. This means avoiding harsh acceleration, sharp turning, avoiding potholes, speed bumps and other road hazards that can cause damage to your tires.

In addition, driving smoothly will also help to improve your fuel efficiency which is an added bonus.

Final Thoughts

So as you can see, the answer to the question “why are tires so expensive” has many factors to bare in mind. From the research and manufacturing, to the export and delivery of tires, the cost of tires is likely to continue to be dictated by the factors above for the foreseeable future.

Check out our guides on the best tires for your vehicle and your needs. And remember, the best way to save money on tires is to buy quality ones that will last you a long time.

We hope you enjoyed this article and found it informative. If you have any questions then please leave a comment below or get in touch via email or through social media and we will read and respond to every comment, email or question. Thanks for reading!

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