WHEN IT’S COLD
The Pirelli Winter Collection comprises different tires for city cars, medium powered vehicles, prestigious supersports cars, up to 4x4s used in extreme conditions.
SNOWCONTROL serie II
designed for city and compact cars, ensures grip, safety and driving pleasure in moderate to extreme winter conditions.
WINTER SOTTOZERO serie II
the ideal choice for supersports cars and top end vehicles, has excellent road holding features both on snow and on wet surfaces.
WINTER CARVING EDGE
is available for both cars and modern SUVs. It has a studdable tread designed for the most extreme weather conditions ensuring excellent traction.
SCORPION ICE & SNOW
is designed for powerful modern SUVs. It is ideal for road use and stands out for its aggressive and effective tread pattern which ensures optimum traction and road handling on both wet and dry surfaces.
Not just when it snows
“I only use it in town anyway”, “This year it won’t snow much”. “I drive slowly”…
These are the most common excuses for not fitting winter tires. Very few people know that, at a temperature of 7°C or below, even the best summer tires gradually lose their road holding capabilities, compromising stability and braking performance.
Winter tires should be fitted in autumn for confident driving in all weather conditions, without the need to fit chains. Formulated with specific compounds that are ideal for use in low temperatures, they have a specific tread pattern which helps reduce the risk of aquaplaning. This gives traction and safety, even on snow, and enables notably shorter braking distances: -10% in rain at low temperatures and -20% on snow compared with summer tires.
Italian drivers and insiders call them “thermal tires”, or “snow tires”. In english they are simply “winter tires”. They are easily recognisable with the initials M+S (Mud & Snow) plus a symbol of a mountain with a snowflake on the sidewall.
This section offers advice from Pirelli technicians as to how to get the best from your winter tires, in terms of performance and safety.
When driving avoid sharp acceleration, sudden steering action or braking, to minimise loss of traction on snow or ice.
Always fit four winter tires
For optimum performance and safety, it is essential that all four tires are the same. Always use four winter tires of the same brand, and with the same construction features. Fit tires of the same size on the same axle, with the same characteristics of use, tread pattern and conditions of wear. The use of studded tires, where permitted, must be extended to all four wheels. Consult the vehicle's handbook for the correct load capacity and speed rating of the tires to be used.
Check tire pressures regularly
Inflation pressures must be checked regularly and carried out when the tires are cold. If necessary correct the pressure again, when the tire is cold. Keep to the pressures indicated by the vehicle manufacturer. Note, pressures change in relation to the external temperature: a pressure of 2.0 bar measured at +20°C decreases to 1.74 bar at -5°C and falls to 1.59 bar when the temperature is at -20°C (a change of 20%).
Check the speed limit
Pay attention to the speed limit indicated by the rating on the tire sidewall. Optionally, the car may be equipped with tires of a lower rating than that prescribed, adjusting the speed. In this case, the European regulations state that the reduction in speed must be indicated on an adhesive label placed inside the car (on the windscreen or dashboard so that it’s always visible to the driver).
Check the tread frequently
The performance of winter tires remains effective down to a tread depth of 4mm. Below this level they are no longer adequate for winter use but can be used as summer tires down to the main tread minimum legal limit, set at 1.6 mm.
Store them carefully
When winter tires are not being used, they should preferably be kept on wheel rims and inflated, and the pressures checked regularly. If stored without rims, they must be stacked on their sides no more than four per stack so that they are not deformed by the weight.
Rotate winter tires in the right direction every 10,000/12,000 km.
HERE’S WHAT TO DO WHEN AUTUMN ARRIVES
Change summer tires to Pirelli winter tires.
Add anti-freeze to the vehicle's cooling system (a mixture of 50% water and 50% anti-freeze).
Check the braking system efficiency.
Check the windscreen wash fluid and add anti-freeze, if necessary. It is essential to be able to clean the windscreen at any time, should dirty water be thrown up from the road by the cars in front.
Check your lights! In winter, there can be visibility problems that you should be prepared for.
Winter Tyre Safety by Pirelli
SEVEN ANSWERS TO FIND OUT MORE
Below 7°C, or for most of the period running from October to March, winter tires offer greater road holding ability compared to summer tires. During the cold months, the compound used in summer tires hardens which decreases its road holding, traction and braking capabilities.
It’s true, you have to buy two sets of tires: one for summer and one for winter. But when the winter tires are fitted, the summer tires are set aside and stored appropriately. They can then be used again as the months get warmer ensuring safety in all weather conditions.
Winter tires have been developed to offer excellent performance when the temperature is below 7°C. During the summer their compound, which is softer than that of summer tires, wears much more rapidly and hence doesn't perform as well.
Winter tires have been developed to respond actively in the presence of snow but also offer excellent performance, compared with summer tires, on wet and dry roads throughout the cold weather season. The tread pattern has been designed to reduce the risk of aquaplaning considerably, compared with summer tires.
This option is strongly advised against. In fact, if the car is front-wheel drive, and winter tires are fitted only at the front, there is a risk of losing control of the vehicle. If the car is rear-wheel drive, and winter tires are fitted only at the rear, there is a risk of losing control when cornering. Finally, if winter tires are fitted on the non-driving wheel axle it will be very difficult to move on icy or snow-covered roads.
No. With chains you can’t go more than 50 km/h. Some winter tires, however, are approved for speeds up to 270 km/h (speed rating W). Obviously you must always observe the speed limits set by the Highway Code and adapt your speed according to the weather conditions.
The braking distance with winter tires is reduced by 10% on wet roads and by 20% on snow. This means that, with winter tires, below 7°C, you can stop sooner and will be able to control the vehicle more effectively.