What are the Speed Ratings on Tires

Most tires on the road today carry a tire speed rating, which lets you know how fast the car can safely travel. Tire speed ratings are designed to spell out the maximum speed the tire is capable of handling.

Always keep in mind the speed limits when on the roads of Harrisburg, Mechanicsburg, and Carlisle, as that speed rating will typically be well above the speed limit. Faulkner Toyota Harrisburg has put together this guide, taking a closer look at speed ratings and what they mean.

What Tire Speed Ratings Mean

Tire speed rating can be found on the actual tire, and it’s relatively easy to find, because it’s the last character found in the tire’s size code. For example, a tire that says “P205/60R16 82S” would mean that S is the speed rating. A speed rating of “S” means the maximum speed the tires can handle is 112 MPH. While that number may seem random, it’s based off European ratings in kilometers/hour, which was then converted to miles per hour.

A speed rating of “S” is most common passenger cars and vans, though some tires may carry a “T” rating on these same vehicles, meaning the tires can handle up to 118 MPH. On sports cars, you may even see ratings of “V” or “Z”, the former able to handle speeds up to 149 MPH, and the latter speeds over 149 MPH.

Speed ratings are thanks in part to Germany’s Autobahn, which does not have speed limits in many stretches of the highway. So, some cars may reach those speeds in Germany, but of course, obey all speed limits here in America while driving.

Finding Tire Size and Speed Rating

To learn how to read tire size and speed ratings, it’s important to know where to look. Tire size can be found in these distinct places:

  • The owner’s manual
  • Driver’s side door jamb
  • Glove box interior
  • Gas tank hatch

If the original tires are still installed, tire size and speed rating info can be found on the tire sidewall itself. No matter where you’re looking, there is some information to decipher, with a sequence of letters and numbers providing this valuable information.

Our Tire Shop

You won’t get very far on the roads without a good set of tires. We carry tires from name brands like Bridgestone, Dunlop, Goodyear, and Michelin here in our tire shop. We’ll ensure the right tires are found for your car.

There are some things you can do to take care of your tires. The proper tire pressure should be kept at all times, to ensure efficient fuel economy and performance. A tire rotation should be handled every 5,000 miles or so, to ensure the tires can sit on different wheels and wear more evenly.

Comprehensive Service for Your Tires

If your vehicle needs a new set of tires, or you have questions for us about tire speed rating, we’ll be happy to answer them. Faulkner Toyota Harrisburg is proud to serve drivers in Harrisburg, Mechanicsburg, and Carlisle.