Low Rolling Resistance Tires

Low Rolling Resistance Tires: Are They Worth A Shot?

Tires-Easy Tire Technology

It’s no gamble – we’d bet on these low rollers

What’s in a name? Fuel efficient tires, environmentally-friendly tires, low rolling resistance tires. While these may appear like three different products, they’re actually all names to describe the same thing: tires designed to reduce energy loss and increase fuel efficiency.

If you’ve been shopping for tires lately, you may have noticed that the “green revolution” has made its way into the tire market. In the constant battle to increase fuel efficiency and reduce CO2 levels, these low rolling resistance tires have gained a significant amount of popularity over the years.

What is rolling resistance?

To understand how these tires work, we’ll employ the help of our friend, Physics.  Rolling resistance is essentially the required amount of force needed to get a tire rolling from an idle state. The level of rolling resistance in a tire is measured by the resistance force required to keep the tire rolling. Hysteresis is the energy loss that occurs as a tire rolls through its footprint, which needs to be overcome by the engine.
Phew. Now that we’re through with the boring stuff, let’s talk about what actually makes a tire low rolling resistant.

Tread Pattern

For one, tread pattern has a significant impact on the rolling resistance of any given tire. One reason that big vehicles using off-road truck tires get low fuel economy is because the deeper the tread, the more tires flex as they roll. If you reduce the depth of a tire’s tread blocks, you’ll save a lot more on fuel in the long run.
Overall, a smoother tread pattern will roll more easily than its aggressive, off-road counterpart, while also delivering a quieter driving experience.

Tire Compound

Another factor affecting low rolling resistance is tire compound. Your average tire is typically made up of a combination of natural and synthetic rubbers. Tire manufacturers have introduced the addition of silica, as well as alternative oils and emulsifiers to this traditional compound.
The benefit is lower rolling resistance (without sacrificing traction) as well as a cooler running tire that prevents energy lost as heat.
Several manufacturers have explored alternatives to the normal toxic oils employed during fabrication. These can reduce the negative environmental impact historically associated with the tire industry and are often a component of LRR tires.


As a rule of thumb, harder, lighter compounds maintain their rigidity better than more pliable or heavy rubbers that tend to deform easily, thus requiring more energy. Sidewall design also affects a tires weight. Increasing the stiffness of the sidewall normally reduces rolling resistance but at the same time increases mass, which can negatively impact it.
Ultimately, a tire made of less materials requires a smaller amount of energy to deform and therefore has more potential for lower rolling resistance.

Why choose an Low Rolling Resistance tire?

A study conducted at the University of Michigan in collaboration with Consumer Reports says you could save $78 per year by switching to low-rolling resistance tires. While that may not seem like a whole lot, that amount quickly adds up over the life of the tire.

Here’s a few benefits of LRR tires:

  • Fuel economy
  • Less CO2 emission
  • Designed to reduce energy loss as tire rolls
  • Decreases required rolling effort
  • Saves money

What are some popular LRR tires?

If you’re in the market for tires with lower rolling resistance, check out a few of our favorites below:

FUN FACT: All newer model Nokian Tires are low rolling resistance. This is not surprising, as it aligns perfectly with their commitment to green, sustainable, and environmentally conscious products. The Nokian eNTYRE 2.0 was designed specifically for North America to give drivers the ultimate in safety, comfort and performance in an environmentally friendly tire (low rolling resistance for better fuel economy).

The Michelin Energy Saver A/S is Michelin North America’s most fuel-efficient All-Season Passenger car tire developed for the drivers of hybrid and fuel-efficient passenger cars that want to exploit their vehicle’s fuel economy. Representing the forefront of Michelin Green X technology, Energy Saver A/S tires can enhance vehicle operating efficiency and environmental impact by reducing fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions while delivering year-round traction, even in light snow.

Continental Pure ContactThe Continental PureContact is an ideal Grand Touring All-Season tire for luxury sedans and sporty coupes. It features long tread life and low rolling resistance. The computer-optimized symmetric tread reduces noise but increases gripping power. If you’re looking for a safe, comfortable, all-season tire that saves money at the gas pump, the PureContact is a perfect choice.

One things for sure, no matter how the dice roll, you won’t be taking a gamble on these low rollers.

Tires-easy supplies high quality, new tires from Nokian, as well as hundreds of other brands. As a Tire-easy customer, you have access to the latest and greatest product offerings in a variety of sizes and features. Check out our mileage warranties, rebates, and everyday low pricing while gearing up for your next great adventure! Finding your tires just got easier at tires-easy.com

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