Understanding Tyre Symbols

We use a number of, hopefully, self-explanatory symbols on our website to help you choose the right tyres for your vehicle. Here's a rundown of what they mean...

Run Flat Tyres

A run flat tyre is designed not to deflate too quickly when it is punctured and also reduces the chance of a blow out.

To earn the Run Flat label it should be possible to drive for 50 miles at a maximum speed of 50MPH on a punctured tyre. A Run Flat tyre cannot be repaired once it has sustained a puncture.

Extra Load Tyres Tyres

Extra load tyres have XL or RNF displayed on the tyre wall.

XL when referring to tyres, does not refer to extra large as one might expect. It actually means, Extra Load. They should be fitted to vehicles that carry heavy goods or a higher than average number of people (SUVs and people carriers typically have XL tyres). The tyre's sidewalls are reinforced and the tyre is blown up to a higher pressure than a standard tyre. This type of tyre provides a greater level of comfort on Britain's pot-hole riddled roads!

4x4 Tyres

Whilst there's no specific symbol on the sidewall of a tyre to identify it as a 4x4 tyre we do highlight them on our website.

4x4 tyres are traditionaly classified as H/T - Highway Terrain, M/T - Mud Terrain or A/T - All Terrain.

Highway Terrain H/T 4x4 tyres are typically for the Chelsea Tractor driver. The tyres are specifically designed for on-road use and have the benefit of giving a smoother, quieter ride on tarmac that M/T or A/T tyres.

Mud Terrain M/T 4x4 tyres are for the off-road enthusiast. They will give superior traction in mud and on soft ground. Expect them to be noisy on tarmac or hard surfaces.

All Terrain A/T are for drivers spending time both on and off-road. Perfect for the horsey set when dragging your trailer across muddy fields but also providing good all-round performance on the motorway to Badminton.

Most 4x4 tyres also carry the M+S symbol meaning they perform particularly well in Mud and Snow.

Van Tyres

Again, there's no specific symbol for a van tyre present on the sidewall of a tyre but we do highlight those tyres on our website to help you find what you're after.

Vehicle Manufacturer Symbols

Some tyres are specifically approved (homologated in tyre parlance) for certain makes of vehicle. If you find any of the following symbols on the sidewall of your existing tyres then you should replace them with tyres with the same symbol. We show the vehicle's badge against the tyres to keep it simple.

Tyre Symbol Meaning
* BMW approved tyres
AM4, AM6, AM8 Aston Martin approved tyres
AO Audi approved tyres
J Jaguar approved tyres
K1, K2 Ferrari approved tyres
N0-N6 Porsche approved tyres
MC1 McLaren approved tyres
MO Mercedes approved tyres
MOE Mercedes approved "extended" tyres with run flat capability
VO, VW Volkswagen approved tyres
VOL Volvo

Use our tyre selector to Compare tyre prices

Return to articles
Posted on