Tires on New Cars: Replace After 20,000 Miles?

Expensive car, inferior tires?


I think car manufacturers and tire makers have a deal with each other. Here’s why:

I bought a 2007 Suzuki SX4 two years ago to serve as a commuter car. Today it has 22,000 miles on it, and last week I had to replace all four tires, because the front ones were nearly bald.

I figured I just had a case of bad luck and partly blamed myself, since I failed to rotate the tires on a regular basis. But the guy at the tire shop said he’s noticing a common trend: People are coming in for new tires with about 20,000 miles on the odometer. 

I got home and started searching online, and sure enough I found forums where people complain that their new cars need new tires after only 14,000 to 20,000 miles. A guy here made it 18,000 miles with a 2007 Lexus ES 350. Same thing here on a Mercedes GL450.

What’s the deal? Are car companies cutting costs by putting inferior OEM tires on their vehicles?

While I don’t doubt that could be a possibility, I think the bigger picture is a lack of proper tire maintenance. The guy who sold me the new tires for my Suzuki recommended having them rotated every 5,000 to 6,000 miles; maybe if I had done that in the first place the originals would’ve gone another 10K or so. 

Also, please keep an eye on your tire pressure. As temperatures rise, tires that were properly inflated in cold weather could suddenly be overinflated. Measure your tire pressure “cold.” If possible, park the car in your garage overnight, and check the pressure in the morning.

Even with proper maintenance, tire life is another thing to consider when buying a new car. Check to see if the tires come with a warranty, and if not, use it as a negotiation tool to inch your price down.

When selling a car, consider doing what the guy who traded in the car my wife bought did: He felt bad getting rid of a car with used tires, so he put on brand-new 18″ Yokohamas before getting rid of it. Sweet!

If you want to learn more about tires, please read our Beginner’s Guide to Car Tires.

Has anyone else noticed a short life for tires on new cars? How many miles do you typically get out of a set of tires?

-tgriffith

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224 Comments

  1. Have anyone got any warranty coverage from dealer or tire manufacturer in case the tire tread became 3/32 even before 27000 miles on the odometer? I’m facing this issue with my cadillac XT5 2017 model having Michelin tire which says almost 60000 mile warranty on their new tires.

  2. Here I thought I was alone.
    I have a 2017 Ram 1500 and was told I need to replace my tires because the thread is at 3/32. I have 35k miles and purchased it new. Tires have been rotated with every oil change.
    After reading this thread I guess I should feel lucky, but I’m appalled and upset at what these companies are doing. It’s obvious that they are using sub standard tires so we can spend more money.
    Shopping for tires I’ve noticed that the shortest warranty is 50k. Seriously? If that’s the case why is it that everyone here has come short of that????

  3. Did anybody have to face this situation so that you can get your car inspected. I was told to put new tires on at 25000,. The tires were always rotated on schedule.

  4. reading these comments then I know I wasn’t alone. I was surprised when the guy did the oil change told me I need replace my tires when my 2015 honda civic had only 21k. I guess I will pay more attention when I purchase a new car (negotiate with dealer) and when I purchase new tires (check warranty).
    But there should be some action to stop this scam. new car comes with ‘soft’ tires!

  5. I have a 2018 Chevy cruze with 20000 miles. Tires were rotated regularly with oil changes and serviced at the dealer. The front tires are starting to show threads and the rear are not far from doing the same. It has Hankook tires and reading their tire warranty shows that it does not cover original equipment tires. That right there shows that the original tires from the dealer are substandard if they wont cover them straight from the dealer.

  6. I leased a 2017 Ford Focus SE. They have Continental Pro Conti Tires on them, I have 30,000 miles on them Ford Dealership says I need to replace them. They said factory tires are softest than. Store bought tires. Even new cars are headaches.

  7. Same here with Honda CR-V and 23k miles. I am going to replace all four tires pretty soon. The original tires are Michelin and should last five years at least with regular driving condition. Here is the text directly from Michelin: “Keep five years in mind.”

    • I’ve been bringing my 2016 Nissan Rogue in for oil change,tire rotation etc since purchased new. I have 37000 miles on it and was told by dealership that I need new tires. My response to them was why and they said I should have had my tires rotated with oil changes. I guess they forgot that I ‘ve been going to them each 4000 miles for oil change and tire rotation plus inspection of entire car. NOTE: I never made a comment before.

  8. I leased a 2017 C 300 and already two of the tires need replacing. I do not drive this car in a reckless manner and it’s had all of it’s service checks. The left rear tire blew out and had to be towed to the dealer (no spare on these babies) I have less than 24,000 miles on the car. The right tire was damaged and needed replacing as well. This seems like a racket to me. No spare so you are forced to have it towed to the dealer where they carry the replacement tire which they don’t have in stock so you have to wait several days and in the meantime you’re out a car.

  9. Me too ! Glad I found this discussion .. I bought a brand new vehicle thinking I wouldn’t have to dump a bunch of money into fixing things and then my tire has a wee little nail in it that they supposedly can’t fix. So I supposedly need four new tires now ! I got 32000
    Kms so I guess I should not complain . But this sucks that tires are so crappy!

  10. Brand new tires – 60k Michelin’s put on at Costco May 2017 – have driven 27k mikes in exactly 2 years and need 4 new tires already. 2011 Hyundai Santa Fe. Front two are almost bald, back two I was told by another company could do another 2-3 months. This is ridiculous.

  11. 2018 Prius. Have already had to replace two back tires between 15,000-20,000 miles due to blow-outs.

  12. 2017 Ford Escape with 20000 miles. Rotated every 5000 at oil change time. Needs tires all around. Unrreal. My first experience not getting 40000 or so.

  13. I am experiencing the same thing with our 2014 Mini Cooper S. The vehicle has 28,000 kilometres, not all on these kilometres were driven on these factory installed Pirelli’s. I have put winter snow tires on from October to May since purchase. Today I learned that all four tires are showing blistering on the inner lining and must be replaced. Something doesn’t seem right here.

  14. 2017 Honda HRV 22000 miles – my daughter needs all 4 tires replaced tire has a nail in it – was told can not replace one tire on an awd car it will ruin the drive shaft and or transmission – came With Michelin’s 200 dollar tires – what a bunch of bs. I have owned 12 cars in my life and until the newer vehicles never in my life have I had to replace all 4 tires with 20k miles. Maybe 2 I can see but all 4 a scam between the cars dealers and tire industry

  15. Getting ready to replace 2018 Honda Odyssey Bridgestone Turanza tires with approx 26,500 miles on them. Worn between 2/32-3/32. The van has only been driven for 1 year, 4months. Ugh. We had the same problem with our 2004 Toyota Sienna. We would put on 65K and 80K tires but kept replacing tires around 25,000 miles (would get a hefty rebate though) at Discount Tire. We rotated as specified and kept tire pressure correct. We were hoping Honda would be different than Toyota design so the tires would not wear out as quickly. The tire people kept saying vans were hard on tires. We hoped Honda would be different but so far they are tracking the same! I long for the days when driving my Honda Accord and the tires would actually last somewhere near the manufacturer’s rating! Tires are expensive.

  16. We purchased our 2017 CRV less than two years ago. In that amount of time we put just over 30k on it. Average driving. But the car has failed it’s very first inspection because the Bridgestone times were near bald. Bridestone claims “Tires used in commercial service and original equipment tires on new vehicles have no mileage warranty.” Are you kidding me? We’re so annoyed and Honda can’t do anything for us even though the bumper to bumper warranty is still in effect.

    • I have 36,000 on a 2017 CRV and I need new tires. I guess I did better than a lot of other people. I asked the dealer today how many miles most people get on the factory tires. I think he lied to me. He said it depends on how a person drives. Then he said some people get 80,000 while other people get 30,000. I am pretty sure nobody gets 80,000 on factory tires.

  17. Guess I should be happy. Got to almost 28000 miles on 2017 CRV Honda. Not my first rodeo so was saving for inevitable. You are all right. 20000 is average.

  18. Add us to the list 23,000 miles on a 2017 Honda CR-V, completely bald on all 4.

  19. have a 2016 ford fusion at 19000 miles need tires already dealers must sell cheap tires on new cars i rotated evey other oil chang cheek pressure all the time did not matter still worn

  20. 10000 Miles on my 2017 Nissan Titan and need to replace two tires.
    ??? Not sure rotating every 5000-6000 miles would make too much of a difference.
    TOYO – not a fan.
    Bought the vehicle used when it had 3100 miles, so do not have original receipt and Carmax doesn’t offer any warranty on them.
    So I’m stuck having to purchase two new tires.

    • Replacing all 4 on my Tatan before 11,000 miles. It is a 2017 also which has had 2 rotations, front end checked, and pressure looked at every 2 weeks. Go Go Goodyear, not a chance! Bye Bye Goodyear.

  21. I am replacing mine from 2018 Honda Odyssey at 18k today. Who would buy tire that only last less than 20k?

  22. Just bought a new Audi A4 with the S Line package and Continental Sport tires. After only 3000 miles the rear driver side tire blew out along the whole edge of the sidewall. Audi is trying to tell me it is my fault that the tires drove with not enough air. Interesting because this car tells you when the air is too low, but mine did not. They are trying to make me buy a new tire and not stand behind the ones they put on the vehicle, which has only been driven for a little over one month (most of the miles are from driving it home from buying from out of state). RIDICULOUS Scam artists!

  23. I have a 2016 Toyota Highlander and my car only has 40,000 miles on it and already the dealer is telling me that the front tires have to be changed because they are 3/32 inches or less. The tires are in great shape. When I asked the service guy why he says they are wearing out so fast he said that because the Highlander is a front wheel drive you put more wear on the tires in the front. But, I rotate them every 5000 miles so they’re not necessarily the tires that were in the front when I first got the car. These may be from the back. He then explained to me that they are Bridgestone tires and that while they have better performance (not) they don’t last as long. He says that Toyota never puts the same tires on all the cars. One month they might put on Bridgestone tires. On another month they might put Michelin tires. He was telling me that you can find used tires at Ram tire’s or Mexicali tires. He said Mexicali has more variety. He told me that Hancook are lower performing tires and that Bridgestone are better performing tires. A lot of times the tires that last longer don’t perform as well. He said on the side of the tire they give a letter grade for handling and traction. To look for the letter A for both. He went on to tell me you can find used tires at Ram tire‘s or Mexicali tires. He said Mexicali has more variety. He told me that Hancook are lower performing tires and that Bridgestone tires are better performing tires. He said that Toyo tires and Bridgestone tires will wear out the fastest but are the better performing tires. Is this a load of crap they are feeding us? I feel they just want to get us to spend more money if it’s unnecessary. I’m going to get a second and third opinion.

  24. After reading these comments I don’t feel so bad! Was very surprised when Nissan just advised me I needed new tires (2013 with 27,000). Tires have been rotated and I have always kept an eye on tire pressure. One more thing to think about when buying a new car! I expected 40 -50K at least! Also, I have mainly driven only in town – short distances and low speeds.

    • That’s me too! Before Christmas when I had the oil changed (when they usually rotate my tires) the dealer said he wouldn’t rotate them they were too bad. A 2016 with 22,000 miles on it!

  25. I have same issue with my new 2017 Infiniti QX 60 which has only 19K miles on it. It came with a Bridgestone Dueller tire and I had been rotating those every 5K miles along with the oil change. Unfortunately one of the tires caughta nail and was losing air slowly.

    When I took to the dealership, they advised that I change all tires. I called Bridgestone to inquire about having to change tires with such low miles and they asked me to go for a tire inspection at a Firestone nearby. They also recommended changing the tires due to the tread being 2/32 and 3/32.

    I’m planning to follow this up through BBB autoline.

    • Omg that’s me too! I have a 2018 qx60 and need 2 new back tires. Only 21k miles and I have to replace the back brakes too. I’m glad that I’m not alone…. sorry about your four Bridgestones, I only need two so I’ll stop complaining

  26. My 2015 Ford Focus has a little less than 19000 miles. I’ve rotated my tires and keep an eye on tire pressure and drive it almost exclusively on toll highways. I have an appointment tomorrow to change them as they are now at 2/32-4/32s tread depth…Anyone getting more than 20000 miles from the OEM Continentals is far the exception than the rule in my opinion..

  27. 2015 Mazda CX-5 with 22K miles, told 2 of the tires are 3/32 and 2 are 4/32 and should be replaced soon.

  28. I drive a 2007 Toyota Prius which now has 144,500 miles on it. Took car in for rotation and told I need new tires and that they ares worn. Looked back at the record I had, last set of tires was purchased mid year in 2016. Odometer at that time read 104400. This will be the 4th set of tires I have had to purchase. No…I did not rotate tires quit the way I should have, but after reading all the comments and post here…looks like that would not have helped anyway. Clearly the tire manufacturers have found a way to sell sub standard tire quality yet claim to back their products up with 50-69,000 Mile warranty. How are they getting away with this is what I would like to know?

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