Why do motorcycle tires wear out so quickly compared to car tires?

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  1. jackiejaxon profile image56
    jackiejaxonposted 10 years ago

    I have driven a car for a number of years but recently moved on to motorcycles and though there are critical differences between the two, I notice that the motorcycle tires wear out much faster than the way the tires on my car does. Why is that?

    1. Mark Knowles profile image59
      Mark Knowlesposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Power to weight ratio is much greater - plus - there are plenty of rock hard cheap tires that will last for ages.

      1. atechwiz profile image65
        atechwizposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        I agree with Mark, car tires are generally much harder than motorcycle tires.  Typically the higher the mileage rating on a car tire then the harder the compound.  You can really notice this in wet or icy conditions.  Motorcycle tires need to be much softer because you need that to stick to the road during cornering.

  2. JenniferGG profile image38
    JenniferGGposted 10 years ago

    Because these two are very different, it's not that easy to compare the two. When you think about it, the vast majority of motorcycles are high performance vehicles compared to most cars. Consider that you rarely see a motorcycle with less than ''H'' speed-rated tires. By comparison, the vast majority of cars ride on tires with lower speed ratings. Like Mark said, power-to-weight ratio and speed are big factors with respect to tire wear. Unfortunately, when many people compare mileage, they do so with a family sedan and a much higher-performance motorcycle.

    Another significant factor in this comparison is the size of the tire contact footprint. In the case of a car, the footprint is much larger and there are four, not two tires contacting the pavement. You must keep in mind that virtually the entire width of the relatively flat tread of a car is in contact with the road all of the time. A car remains upright, even when cornering. This results in a much smaller contact footprint for a motorcycle tire. High power-to-weight ratio, speed, size of footprint and other aspects explain why motorcycle tires wear out quicker than car tires.

    To obtain the best mileage from your motorcycle tires, observe the following guidelines: obey the speed limit; avoid quick acceleration and hard braking; maintain recommended tire pressures; and do not overload your bike or tow a trailer.

    It is important to get quality tires to begin with, so check out good tire manufacturers such as Maxxis at

  3. jackiejaxon profile image56
    jackiejaxonposted 10 years ago

    Interesting. Thanks guys. Much appreciated.

  4. ptosis profile image73
    ptosisposted 10 years ago

    Motorcycle tires are more expensive than car tires because if lose a tire on a motorcycle it would be catastrophic. Motorcycle tires have a tube and cost $125 cheapest. car tire  cheap is about $80 but withing a month will get ripples on the sides of the tire. Go back and say "Hey this tire is defective" they tell you all tires do that. Not  true only the cheap ones.

    Besides, there is no 'rotation' on motorcycle tires. Tires have an arrow on the side so you don't put them on "backwards'

    1. jackiejaxon profile image56
      jackiejaxonposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I understand better now. Thanks


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