Winter Tyres: The safest choice when it becomes cold and wet

It is well known that winter tyres make an important difference in the snow, but did you know that they are the best choice as well on your average grey British winter day?

The only thing holding your car to the road is the tyres, so it’s really important to have the right tyres for the right occasion. Everyone associates winter conditions with being all about snow and ice, but it doesn’t have to be as dramatic as that for winter tyres to deliver several important benefits compared to standard summer tyres.

When temperatures start to drop below seven degrees centigrade winter tyres will ensure higher performance thus increasing braking efficiency. These types of tyres provide outstanding stability in the cold and rain, as well as on snow and ice. This has been proven in a number of international tyre tests over the years.

Pirelli Sottozero

How do winter tyres work?

Although they are known as ‘winter’ tyres, these tyres work best in all conditions where the ambient temperature is seven degrees centigrade or below. Above seven degrees centigrade, summer tyres provide more grip.

A combination of tread pattern, sipes, and compound ensures that each Pirelli winter tyre delivers optimal performance in cold weather.

Tread pattern design: allows good drainage of water, thus guaranteeing that the tyre has good wet grip and a reduction in aquaplaning risk

Sipes: If it does snow then these tyres can trap a large quantity of the white powder. This results in an increase of grip on snow, as the friction between snow and snow is larger than that between rubber and snow

Compound: a special tread rubber compound ensures the necessary grip especially at low ambient temperatures

How to recognise winter tyres?

They are easily recognisable because they have a M+S (Mud&Snow) marking on the side and a mountain with a snowflake symbol.

A look into the winter range from Pirelli.

Pirelli’s Ultra High Performance products have always been something of a speciality as the company has also maintained its position at the forefront of winter tyres. Pirelli’s winter tyres for high-powered cars and SUVs highlight the Italian firm’s emphasis on Ultra High Performance products.

The cold weather tyre created specifically for medium to high engine capacity, premium and prestige segment cars is now in its third generation. The WINTER SOTTOZERO™ family, helps to echo the sporty attributes of the vehicle it sits on while still delivering ground breaking winter tyre performance.

SCORPION™ WINTER is the SUV winter product by Pirelli and has enjoyed a fantastic technological breakthrough in terms of overall performance, delivering highly rated braking and

handling characteristics. It guarantees maximum stability and control in snow, wet and dry conditions. Tyre test accolades include ‘best in class on snow (braking, handling and traction)’ and ‘excellent braking and handling (in wet and dry conditions at low temperatures)’.

CINTURATO™ WINTER has been created for owners of medium sized cars that cover high mileage even during the winter months. Examples of high mileage use include commuting.

Braking distances have been reduced with this tyre thanks to a technology developed by Pirelli’s engineers, “Multiactive 4D Sipe” technology, which features directional sipes which fluctuate in form according to the driver’s input. In addition to this, safety and reliability is possible in all conditions thanks to its tread pattern and structure.

CINTURATO™ WINTER is the first winter tyre that talks to its drivers as safety has driven the development of this unique tread pattern. “Now Snow” appears on the tyre’s tread. The user knows when the tyres are no longer suitable for use on snow as the “w” from “Now” wears off first to leave “No Snow” written on the tyre. This indicates that the level wear is too high to be able to recommend driving on snow.

CARRIER™ WINTER is the ideal choice for vans in the colder months. CARRIER™ WINTER offers excellent mileage, safety in wet and winter conditions and more regular wear characteristics making it arguably one of the most complete winter van tyres on the market. It has evolved from previous generations of Pirelli van tyres and features an all new tread pattern, an enhanced profile and an all new compound to provide it with all the key safety attributes drivers are looking for in a premium winter van product.

For more info on winter driving then please visit

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