Leaf tyres

Discussion of the technical aspects of electric vehicles
Leafstorque
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2017 9:23 pm
Location: Dunblane, Stirling.

Leaf tyres

Postby Leafstorque » Sat Mar 11, 2017 8:27 pm

Thought I would share this episode with you all. Driving to work on Friday am and the tyre pressure warning light comes on. Inspected the tyre at work and could not discern any visible difference between the offending tyre and the rest. On leaving work I pump up the low tyre – warning light goes off - and set out on my 33 mile journey. Warning light comes back on about half way; I am not unduly concerned about this given my earlier experience. Get about 6 miles from home on the M9 and hear a thump from the front – pull over, fortunately close to an exit. Tyre now very low – don’t fancy trying any reparations on the hard shoulder, so I drive 2 miles to local tyre shop. Tyre guys say that tyre is write-off (only 10k miles, hardly half used) and try to source a new (factory fitted) Dunlop Enasave – none of their suppliers can help with this, or any suitable replacement – not a standard size. Tyre shop agrees to fit a used tyre f.o.c. Getting home I google Leaf tyres – some drivers reporting that Dunlop Enasave is dealer only; one driver reports paying £264. Decide that the issue must be the energy rating so finally get tyre shop to fit 2x Hankook V12 Evo2 (£100 each fitted) which has ‘c’ energy rating – Dunlop Ensasave had a ‘b’.

Are Hankooks a good buy for a Leaf? I’ll let you know.

New to the Leaf? Read the manual about flat tyres – I didn’t realise there is 12V compressor in the boot – possibly could have pitched up at tyre shop with tyre mostly inflated with a bit of planning.

In a hurry? That’s when you’re most likely to get a flat.

C’est la vie, or as they say in France, that’s life.

noahs-dad
Posts: 830
Joined: Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:36 pm
Location: Dunbar, East Lothian

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby noahs-dad » Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:27 am

Ouch, expensive tyre! The Michelin Energy Efficient A rated tyres that Nissan put on the Leaf's are in that price range, and probably the best.

I used either the TyreShopper or Blackcircles website (cant remember which) and got 4 x Goodyear A Rated Energy Efficiency tyres for just under £206. This included disposal of all 4 old tyres, I just had to select a national tyre fitting centre, for which there are many registered and local options. Had never done it that way before, but was a great experience, and a real cost saver.

If you go on such websites they are many, many dozens of tyre brands and types to choose from. I couldn't believe the choices, I must have spent 2 days working out which tyres to choose. The tyre fitting place when I asked them said to me is always much cheaper to go through the third party websites than just walking in off the street, you always get a competitive price doing so.

I recommend the Goodyear tyres I got, they have been excellent so far. Leaf tyres are considered to be cheap and a bit of a plus, the overall running costs for a Leaf are pretty good in my experience.

EDIT: forgot to mention discount codes are easily found also, I was able to get a 5% discount, there is cashback options too, and I even got clubcard points on the purchase as an additional bonus. I can't really see any reason not to use the third party tyre websites.

Leafstorque
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2017 9:23 pm
Location: Dunblane, Stirling.

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby Leafstorque » Sat Mar 18, 2017 10:00 pm

I think you got a good deal with the Goodyears. Are your wheels 16" by any chance? Blackcircles show more or less the same price - £100 fitted - for b or c energy rating from Goodyear or Hankook (Michelins are a tenner extra) for 215/50-17 tyres. Tyre guys told me that it was not a common size. To be honest, so far, I cannot tell any difference between the Dunlop or Hankook in either handling, noise or battery usage, albeit that the Hankooks are only on the front. Tyre guys also said they had no faith in the manufacturers' rating values for new tyres - although I take that with a pinch of salt.

noahs-dad
Posts: 830
Joined: Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:36 pm
Location: Dunbar, East Lothian

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby noahs-dad » Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:59 pm

yes 16" for me, not understanding why you need 17" - I thought all Leaf's be it 1st gen/2nd gen/2.5th gen/ came with the Michelin tyres and were all the same size?

I checked for you and I got these tyres from blackcircles.com:
Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance 205/55 R16 V (91)
http://www.blackcircles.com/catalogue/g ... e=32048670

They were listed as £55.76 when I bought them, but £60.99 today is still cheap and as said quite easy to find discount codes/cashback options to further reduce cost. TyreShopper who are probably blackcircles main competitior, do a price match also so worth looking there.

Just to correct myself (forgot there were 2 efficiency ratings): These tyres are A-rated for Wet Grip & Braking Performance, and B-rated for Fuel Efficiency. I don't think you get an A+A though, A+B seems to be the best? Never paid attention to noise levels, but they seem normal, I don't notice noise. The reviews are good, and I will buy these tyres again, the Michelin are great, we got 38,000 miles from them but I don't think they are £300-400 great if your fuel costs are as low as electric cars are (in my case zero elec. costs) for probably minimal improvement. Will be interesting to see how the Goodyear compare in the long run...

I also see same spec Dunlop tyres would cost me £58.99 today, or Michelin Energy Saver for £71.50.

If you put your reg on these websites, they suggest Tyres based on your car, but I double checked the Leaf handbook just to be sure about range options. I am rubbish with cars and this sort of thing but I did find using a tyre site made it straight forward for me.

Adrian
Posts: 534
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:04 pm

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby Adrian » Mon Mar 20, 2017 6:01 pm

I am just looking for tyres for my Leaf Tekna - they are 215/50/R17 which seems impossible to find in an 'A' or 'B' energy rating. Best I can find is Michelin Primacy which are a 'C' rating.

noahs-dad
Posts: 830
Joined: Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:36 pm
Location: Dunbar, East Lothian

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby noahs-dad » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:04 am

You guys might find they are more options if you go for something other than a "R" tyre speed rating. I.e. the R in Adrian's 215/50/R17 could be a W or Z for instance, there are maybe other letter options to? Just make sure to check your Leaf handbook along with the tyre websites as to what is compatible. I had at least 2 choices when I was tyre shopping and it opened up lots more tyre choices for me. http://www.blackcircles.com/general/speedrating

Adrian
Posts: 534
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:04 pm

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby Adrian » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:19 pm

My tyres are in fact a V(91) rating which supposedly allows 149 mph........it's a Nissan Leaf not a Model 'S' :)
Anyway been looking into this; BlackCircles.com has a good description of the difference in energy rating and states that between a 'G' (worst) and an 'A' (best) there might be a difference of 6 litres of fuel in 625 miles. Assuming an average car is doing 40mpg that is about 66 Litres of fuel so between best and worst is 10%. Since there are 7 ratings (A to G) is that then 1.4% difference for each category. So if I buy 'B' rated tyres, of which there are many choices in my size, the difference is say 1.4% x 80 miles range = 1.1 miles? Or 'C' rated which is the nearest Michelin tyre then 2.2 miles?

noahs-dad
Posts: 830
Joined: Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:36 pm
Location: Dunbar, East Lothian

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby noahs-dad » Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:35 pm

Without having a calculator or math degree to hand your system seems logical to me. I suppose the difference for single trips is minimal but increased in poorer range on a bad winters day. Rather than an average 80m trip is maybe best to consider the potential efficiency savings over a year or the lifetime of the tyres, but even that may be considered minimal.

What I still don't get is why there are different sizes of tyre on the Leaf. Is it because you guys have a Tekna (I have an acenta), and Tekna comes with special luxury looking fancy jazzy tyres as one of the measures to make it look more premium? It can't be that the leather interior weighs so much more it needs bigger tyres.

Adrian
Posts: 534
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:04 pm

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby Adrian » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:48 pm

Yes it is because it is a Tekna version. In theory the larger wheel size has a lower rolling resistance but the difference between 16" and 17" is probably small.

Anyway I had to have tyres so bought Goodyear Efficient Grip (91) V rated tyres. They are 'B ' rated for energy. Drove a few miles on them today and did not use more battery than expected but only time will tell.

Leafstorque
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2017 9:23 pm
Location: Dunblane, Stirling.

Re: Leaf tyres

Postby Leafstorque » Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:41 am

I was beginning to think the Hankook tyres were significantly more energy hungry than the Dunlops, but I now realise the drop in temperature over the past few days is mainly responsible for the dwindling amount of battery charge left over from my daily commute. So I stand by my earlier view: the Hankooks appear just as good as the Dunlops.

Yes, Leaf Teknas are fitted with 17" wheels. I would be surprised if this has any effect on the rolling resistance compared to a 16" wheel - I would expect the contact area and tyre pressures to be the same ... but you never know. According to the Nissan brochure, the Leaf fitted with a 17" wheel has a slightly lower drag coefficient than the same model with a 16" wheel: 0.28 vs 0.29. If this is true then the 17" wheel models use less energy from the battery displacing the air from around the body when in motion. I would like to think the motivation for the increased wheel size was energy efficiency, rather than vanity.

However, I wouldn't get too excited about this. According to my rough calculations, at 50 mph, the 17" wheel model is using 8.1 kW of battery power fighting its way through the atmosphere compared to 8.3 kW for the 16" wheel. So the effect is not very significant ... unlike the difference in tyre costs.

I'd personally change the leather seats for fabric.


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