The tyre labeling regulation (Regulation 1222/2009 with amendments EC/228/2011 and EC/1235/2011) was announced by the EU in 2009. It relates to the display of information on the fuel efficiency, wet grip and external rolling noise of tyres.

Tyre labeling allows end users to make informed choices about environmental impact and economical efficiency of road transport in Europe. The regulation affects the following tyres categories: C1,(Passenger car) , C2 (Light commercial) and C3 (Commercial truck and bus). The label information will be visible on technical promotional literature such as catalogues, leaflets or product websites.

Some tyres are excluded from the labeling requirements:

  • Tyres designed to be fitted only to vehicles registered for the first time before 1 October 1990
  • Tyres whose nominal rim diameter does not exceed 254 mm or is 635 mm or more
  • Tyres designed only to be fitted on vehicles intended exclusively for racing
  • Tyres fitted with additional devices to improve traction properties, such as studded tyres
  • T-type temporary-use spare tyres
  • Off-road professional tyres
  • Tyres whose speed rating is less than 80 km/h
  • Re-treaded tyre

What information can you get from the tyre label?

The tyre label is divided into 3 performance indicators:

  • Fuel efficiency
  • Wet grip
  • Exterior tyre noise

For Fuel Efficiency and Wet Grip, the performance is expressed in 7 classes ranging from A (the most efficient) to G (the least efficient). For noise, the measured value is present on the label together with 3 symbolic sound waves (one wave is lowest noise and 3 waves for the highest noise rating).

Picture: Example of a STARCO Tyrelabel

Fuel efficiency

Fuel consumption is influenced by the rolling resistance of the tyres caused by tyre deformation when rotating, resulting in energy losses in the form of heat. The higher the deformation, the higher the tyre rolling resistance and consequently the more fuel is required to move the vehicle forward. In other words, lower rolling resistance means lower fuel consumption and therefore lower vehicle emissions, including CO2. The new label will display different grades in “rolling resistance” where A is the most “fuel efficient” and G the least efficient in class. The black arrow (in this case E) next to the grading indicates the performance level of the product.

Customers should be made aware that the actual fuel savings and road safety depend heavily on the behaviour of drivers, in particular the following: eco-driving can significantly reduce fuel consumption; the tyre pressure needs to be correct and regularly checked for optimum fuel efficiency.

Wet grip

The most important role of a tyre is to provide safety – in all weather conditions. Wet traction or grip is one of the most important performance characteristics of any tyre. There is typically a performance trade-off when combining noise, fuel efficiency and safety performances like wet grip. The labelling will allow customers to prioritize for themselves their preferred performances.

The label will display a range of 7 grades where tyres with an “A” provide the highest levels of wet grip and “G” the lowest.

Exterior tyre noise

Exterior tyre noise levels are split into 3 categories and measured in decibel (dB) in comparison with the new European tyre exterior noise levels to be introduced until 2016.

  • One black sound wave = 3dB less than the future tighter European limit
  • Two black sound waves = already compliant with the future European limit
  • Tree black sound waves = compliant with the current European limit


The tyres labeling legislation applies only to tyre categories C1 (passenger car tyres), C2 (light commercial vehicle tyres) and C3 (heavy commercial truck/bus tyres). The following categories are excluded from the regulative requirements:

  • Retreaded tyres
  • Professional Off Road tyres
  • Racing tyres
  • Studded tyres (studdable tyres if supplied without studs are included)
  • Temporary use spare tyres
  • Tyres designed to be fitted on vehicles registered for the first time before 1 October 1990
  • Tyres whose speed rating is less than 80 km/h
  • Tyres whose nominal rim diameter does not exceed 254 mm or is 635 mm or more

The categories are outlined in Article 8 of REGULATION (EC) No 661-2009 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL.

All C1, C2 and C3 tyres (with the exception of the excluded categories given above) produced from 1 July 2012, (date code “2712” “Wk. Mth”) and sold after 1 November 2012 must conform to the requirements of The European Tyre Labeling Regulation at the point of sale. All tyres in stock produced before July 2012 (date code earlier than 2712) can be sold after Nov 1st, 2012, without conformity to The European Tyre Labeling Regulation. Operators throughout the supply chain will have to manage a transition period while stocks contain tyres made both before and after 1st July 2012. This must be undertaken to ensure all label information is available for tyres in stock with a date code “2712”.