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TMCNet:  Study Finds Shockingly High Levels of Tire Ignorance Among American Drivers: 72% Lack General Tire Knowledge and Nearly Half Have Driven on Bald or Worn Tires

[January 25, 2023]

Study Finds Shockingly High Levels of Tire Ignorance Among American Drivers: 72% Lack General Tire Knowledge and Nearly Half Have Driven on Bald or Worn Tires

Anyline, a global leader in connecting real-world data with digital environments through mobile data capture and AI-enabled, machine learning technology, today announced the findings of its "Smart Tire Retail: How U.S. Drivers Take Care of Their Tires" report. The survey, conducted on behalf of Anyline by YouGov, highlights U.S. drivers' general tire knowledge, preventative maintenance and challenges to online tire buying. With more than two-thirds of U.S. drivers not knowing much about their tires, the report outlines opportunities for tire retailers and dealerships to improve the entire process of tire service and purchasing.

Bridging The Gap in Tire Knowledge

Although the majority of U.S. drivers lack general tire knowledge, they do know the fundamentals of tire care, such as how to check tire pressure (77%), measure tread depth (64%) and identify sidewall damage (56%). However, 39% of U.S. drivers rely on professionals to know when it is time to change their tires, and 33% of drivers decide to get new tires after experiencing performance issues. The survey also found that those who do know how to check tire tread depth typically use outdated or inaccurate methods.

This indicates a clear gap between what people know and what they should know about their tires, resulting in less maintenance and therefore a threat to safety on the roads. This lack of knowledge contributes to almost half (47%) of Americans admitting to driving on bald or severely worn-out tires, and an additional 46% having experienced a tire blowout while driving.

The Rise of Tire eCommerce

While the number of U.S. drivers willing to buy tires online increased from 10% in 2017 to 29% n 2022, the majority of U.S. drivers still hesitate to buy tires online. According to the report:

  • Almost half (48%) rely on an in-person mechanic/salesperson to help them find the right set of tires.
  • There are pain points during in-store purchases, including being bothered by up-selling salespeople (37%), waiting too long in the store to get new tires (37%) or being unsure of what they were buying (30%).
  • 43% of drivers would consider purchasing tires online if they had more knowledge about the tires they were buying, while 30% cite cost and instant access to tire information as key to the decision-making process.

Improving Overall Tire Maintenance and Purchasing with Mobile Scanning

While most Americans do their best to keep up with the health of their tires, it is not always enough. In fact, the survey shows that 64% of American drivers say the biggest indicator that it's time to buy a new set of tires is worn tire tread, but by that point, tires might already be considered problematic and dangerous.

Using artificial intelligence and machine learning approaches, Anyline gives tire dealers the power to read, interpret and process visual information with any mobile device. With this technology, tire technicians can collect all tire and vehicle data needed to conduct maintenance and service checkups in a matter of seconds.

"This lack of real-time information clearly illustrates the need for tire retailers and dealerships to offer mobile data capture and scanning to their customers, empowering drivers with technology that can help them make more proactive and informed decisions about their tires," said Lukas Kinigadner, CEO and founder, Anyline. "Through mobile scanning, U.S. drivers can uplevel their general tire knowledge, streamline preventative maintenance and ensure they, and everyone else around them, are safe on the roads."

To learn more about U.S. driver's perspectives about tire maintenance and online purchasing, download the "Smart Tire Retail: How U.S. Drivers Take Care of Their Tires" report.

Research Methodology

The results in this report are from an online survey conducted by YouGov and commissioned by Anyline. The survey was fielded from Nov. 16 - 22, 2022; 1,041 U.S. consumers completed the survey. The responses are weighted to be representative of the overall population by seven demographics.

About Anyline

Founded in Vienna in 2013, Anyline has established itself as a global leader in mobile data capture and data insights. Using the latest, most innovative artificial intelligence and machine learning approaches, Anyline gives businesses the power to read, measure and interpret visual information with any mobile device.

Anyline is used by leading manufacturers and retailers across the automotive and tire market to scan tire sidewall, tread depth and vehicle data, including tire DOT codes, vehicle identification numbers (VINs), license plates and barcodes, using any standard mobile device or camera-enabled TPMS.

Anyline helps businesses to move away from costly, tedious manual processes and instead, make them easy, fast and convenient for everyone, from the end user to the front-line worker. Anyline's mobile data capture technology is CCPA/GDPR compliant, ensuring that all data collected is processed and stored securely. Anyline is trusted by household brands such as PepsiCo, Discount Tire and IBM, as well as national governments and the United Nations.

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