Tire labelling 'seldom taken into account by the consumer'
ERJ staff report (TP)
London − European consumers have become more familiar with tire labelling a year after its introduction but seldom use it when buying tires, according to new research, reported Paul Hudson for The Daily Telegraph.
A survey conducted by the purchasing guide and tire comparison website Rezulteo and the Ipsos Institute, involving 3,402 people in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK, shows that buyers are still strongly influenced by price and usually rely on the recommendation of a tire retailer.
One third of European consumers are aware of labelling but only 8 percent of the sample were able to quote the three labelling criteria – wet grip, rolling resistance and external rolling noise.
Of those consumers who bought tires since labelling was introduced, only 11 percent paid significant attention to the label (6 percent in Germany, 19 percent in Italy). The survey found that this figure is not due to a lack of clarity with the labelling itself, since three quarters of respondents find the label easy to understand.
When asked what influenced their choice, respondents cited the retailers’ advice (19 percent), brand loyalty (17 percent) and price (17 percent) ahead of the tire's performances (14 percent).
Before the labelling legislation came into effect throughout the European Union, Rezulteo found that barely 20 percent of survey respondents had heard about labelling, but 80 percent were in favour once it was explained to them.
One year later, it repeated the exercise with two objectives: to see whether drivers are now more familiar with tire labelling, and to see if it has changed their behaviour when purchasing tires.
A Rezulteo spokesman said: "Clearly, one year after the introduction of European tire labelling, the work to inform and educate consumers must continue. Not only to improve the safety and environmental impact of vehicles by taking more account of tire performances, but also help drivers make better purchases as the tire market continues to expand."
The Rezulteo.com network of websites currently covers 20 countries in the European Union, Russia, Ukraine and Middle East.
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Full story from The Daily Telegraph