What are the different types of tyres for trucks?


There are three different types of tyres for trucks based on their axle position: steer tyres, drive tyres and trailer tyres. The tyres are designed for optimal performance in their specific axle position. Therefore, you should only ever fit each type of tyre to its corresponding axle. 


Choosing the right tyres also comes down to weather conditions, tyre size and performance criteria. For commercial fleets, the most important elements to consider are reducing downtime, fuel efficiency, and mileage. You can learn more about these aspects of truck tyre choice in our buying guide for truck tyres.

Types of Truck Tyres for Different Axle Positions

The design of truck tyres varies depending on the axle they are being used on. That’s because each axle position has different requirements to ensure optimal performance on the road.

Goodyear tyre positions

Steer Axle Tyres

The front axle on your truck requires specifically designed steer tyres. In this position, the steer tyres take all the stresses and strains of turning your vehicle. For this reason, they need to have optimal handling performance for precise and smooth steering.


Steer axle tyres also need to have excellent aquaplaning resistance properties. They will be your first tyres to hit wet roads, so need to be able to disperse water effectively.


As a final point, steer tyres will also have the biggest impact on comfort in the cabin. To maximise comfort, your steer axle tyres should minimise external noise and vibrations. This will ensure your drivers have a quiet and comfortable ride.

Trailer Axle Tyres

Truck trailer tyres are designed to handle static and dynamic loads, while also maximizing mileage and fuel efficiency.  They also need to protect against scrubbing, which can result in rapid and uneven tyre wear. And if this happens, it would mean you’d need to replace the tyres sooner than expected.

Drive Axle Tyres

First and foremost, your truck’s drive tyres are responsible for turning engine power into forward motion. They achieve this through an tread pattern specifically designed to maximise traction. Additionaly, drive axle tyres need strong grip to reduce braking distances due to the high braking pressure they experience.


It’s also important that your drive axle tyres are tough enough to cope with a high load rating. Drive tyres typically carry the highest axle load of the whole road-going setup.

All Position Tyres

You will sometimes find tyres advertised as all position tyres. These tyres are designed to have good performance across the board and maximise mileage. However, all position tyres are more commonly associated with urban transport vehicles such as the URBANMAX MCA, rather than long haul trucks. For national and international fleets, you should fit your trucks with the correct steer, drive and trailer tyres to guarantee optimal safety and performance.

Goodyear tyres closup

Can You Mix Steer, Drive or Trailer Tyres Across Axles?

You shouldn’t mix the different types of tyres across the different axles. Each tyre is specifically designed for the demands of each position on the truck and therefore mixing tyres will lead to underperformance.


Use our Truck Tyre Search Tool to filter your tyre search by position: steer, drive, or trailer.

Looking After Your Truck Tyres

Tyre maintenance is vitally important to reduce downtime and maximise the lifespan of your tyres. But this can be a very time-consuming task when you’ve got a large fleet to service. So instead of looking after your tyres manually, you can use Goodyear’s Drive-Over-Reader. The Drive-Over-Reader provides an automated solution that checks your tyres in seconds, helping to keep your fleet on the road.


You can also fit your truck tyres with Goodyear TPMS sensors. Goodyear’s TPMS is fitted to the rim of each wheel and will alert you to any changes in tyre pressure. With Goodyear’s TPMS monitors you can keep your fleet running reliably and efficiently. 


And for those fleets that make frequent trips, there is Goodyear DrivePoint. Via a sensor placed on the valve and an intelligent scanning system, DrivePoint will check your tyre pressure every time your vehicles return to and leave the yard. For even more information, there is our ultimate tyre inspection technology: Goodyear CheckPoint. This hi-tech pressure plate is fitted special sensors and cameras that automatically measure a tyre’s remaining tread depth, tyre pressure and axle* and vehicle* load in mere seconds! 


To find out more about Goodyears’ integrated tyre and service offering, reach out below.

* Only available with the in-ground version of the Goodyear CheckPoint.

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