Should I Choose ZR or R Tires for My 2016 VW Golf?

QuestionsCategory: Ask An ExpertShould I Choose ZR or R Tires for My 2016 VW Golf?
Madison Thomas asked 7 months ago
I own a 2016 VW Golf, currently fitted with 225/45R17 91 H tires. I came across a promotion offering a 'buy 3, get 1 free' deal on 225/45ZR17 tires. I'm considering taking advantage of this offer, but I'm uncertain if switching to ZR tires is advisable for my car. My main concerns are the potential impact on road grip, fuel efficiency, noise, vibration, and the durability of the tires. I'd appreciate expert advice on whether ZR tires would be suitable for my vehicle and daily driving conditions.
1 Answers
Zack Norman Staff answered 7 months ago
Hey there, Madison! Thanks for reaching out with your question! Deciding between ZR and R tires for your 2016 VW Golf requires considering several factors, so here's what I feel are the most important ones that you need to consider:
  1. Speed Rating: ZR tires are designed for higher speeds (over 186 mph), while your current H-rated tires are suitable up to 130 mph. Unless you frequently drive at very high speeds (like on the Autobahn), H-rated tires should suffice for everyday use.
  2. Seasonal Use: ZR tires are often geared towards summer or three-season use. If you live in an area with harsh winters, these tires might not be suitable year-round. Check if you need a separate set of winter tires.
  3. Performance on Road: ZR tires may offer better grip due to a softer compound, but this can lead to faster wear. They might be "stickier" on the road, which can be an advantage for handling but might slightly reduce fuel efficiency.
  4. Durability: ZR tires generally have a shorter mileage warranty compared to R tires. This means they might need replacing sooner, which could increase long-term costs.
  5. Noise, Vibration, Harshness (NVH): Higher performance tires like ZR might introduce slightly more noise and harshness, but this varies between tire brands and models. It's not a guaranteed downside but something to consider.
Given these points, weigh the benefits of improved performance and grip against potential downsides like increased wear and potentially higher noise levels. If high-speed performance is not a priority, sticking with tires similar to your current ones might be more cost-effective and suitable for regular driving conditions. Lastly, it's wise to check reviews and possibly seek further advice on the specific ZR tire model you're considering. I hope that helps :-) Zack - Motor Verso Mechanics Team