Washington DC--Ford Motor Co. has quietly slipped a paragraph into the tyre safety section of its vehicle owners' manual and company Web site, advising Ford owners to replace their tyres after six years, regardless of mileage.
DaimlerChrysler AG will give the same advice to its customers beginning with the 2006 model year, according to a DaimlerChrysler spokeswoman. A Ford spokesman said the company based its decision on its ongoing tyre safety research, while the DaimlerChrysler spokeswoman said her company's talks with a number of tyre manufacturers confirmed its decision to give the six-year recommendation.
A spokesman for the Rubber Manufacturers Association, however, said no tyre maker would say the six-year recommendation was a good idea. "I can't imagine that happening," he said. "That doesn't make sense. Ford has never shared any (tyre aging) data with us that we know of, and the same with DaimlerChrysler."
The RMA and its tyre manufacturing members have said consistently that there are too many variables in tire aging to give a hard-and-fast expiration date, and have fought legislation that would arbitrarily create one.
Tyre Safety advice from Ford Motor Co.