Tyre OEMs may mention fuel-saving features on sidewalls from January 1
Tyre makers in India are expected to voluntarily mark/implement fuel saving features, including rolling resistance (RR) threshold limits, across tyres with effect from January 1, 2020. This initiative, sources say, is aimed at adopting global norms to cut fuel consumption and introducing safety standards to check tyre-bursts .From January 1, 2022, RR marking on sidewalls of tyres is likely to become mandatory, sources said, pointing to a proposal in the new tyre code being prepared by the Union government under the Petroleum Conservation and Research Association (PCRA). The new code is billed to bring in accountability and transparency in tyre performance in India by labelling key consumer centric informations on sidewalls of tyres, said industry sources, adding that they expect a government draft note in this regard will be in place in a month’s time. The increasing number of accidents due to tyre bursts has caught the attention of the authorities concerned and Union road transport minister Nitin Gadkari has himself expressed serious concerns over the happenings. Automotive Tyre Manufacturers’ Association director general Rajiv Budhiraja said a steering committee which was formed to discuss the issue with stakeholders held a meeting with senior government officials and a draft note/policy is expected to be issued in a month’s time. Budhiraja said, “We have to understand the technicalities of this matter before we comment on this. However, all tyre majors are ready with plans to meet the new norms, which are in line with global standards.” According to him, basically it is about tyre safety as well as performance. Though it is for the OEMs to come out with necessary informations on rolling resistance voluntarily, it will become mandatory over a period of time. All tyre manufacturers will have to get their tyres tested according to prescribed norms in any of the government-controlled accredited labs in the country, he added. According to S P Singh, coordinator of Indian Foundation of Transport Research and Training (IFTRT), the apex body which is tracking the truck industry for more than two decades, said that PCRA has held a meeting with the stakeholders and proposed marking rolling resistance threshold limits on the sidewalls of passenger car and truck/bus tyres in India in a phased manner. Giving critical information on tyre sidewalls will be in line with the practice in EU, Japan, Australia, Korea, China, said the IFTRT coordinator. According to Singh, the voluntary phase for tyre labelling will start from January 1, 2020 and it will become mandatory by January 1, 2022. He said the landmark development will give choice to tyre users to pick tyres displaying rolling resistance (fuel saving) values, he pointed out. Experts say that tyres contribute to 20 to 30% of the total fuel consumption by a vehicle, which is impacted by the rolling resistance of the tyre.