Volkswagen Transporter tyres
In panel van, minibus and camper form, the Volkswagen transporter has been going strong for 65 years. The vehicle has been though six generations, with the original camper vans assured of their place in motoring history. It wasn’t until 1990 that the Transporter’s engines were both water-cooled and mounted at the front of the vehicle. The Transporter is best known today as a panel van, although minibuses and campers based on the same T5 chassis are a common enough sight on Britain’s roads.
The transporter is available in a myriad of body styles, with long wheelbase, high roof, crew cab and pick-up versions available. Each is designed to bear different maximum weights, something which is reflected in the specification of the tyres originally fitted to each variation of the vehicle as it leaves the factory. When replacing a damaged or worn tyre, the load rating of each tyre is therefore critically important.
Each tyre should only be replaced by one of a similar or greater load rating to preserve the vehicle’s safety and performance. As well as being potentially illegal, fitting a tyre with a lower load rating can be very dangerous indeed. A higher load rating means a stronger tyre. In many cases, a weaker tyre simply won’t be up to the job, especially in view of the amount of punishment which van tyres can take.
For example, clipping or mounting a kerb, especially with the extra weight of a fully-laden van, can place enormous strain on a tyre. In that scenario, a standard car tyre would often become damaged beyond repair. In contrast, a tyre designed for van use will have a reinforced sidewall and a greater chance of absorbing the impact without damage. A reinforced sidewall means a more expensive tyre, but the short cut of fitting an inappropriate tyre is dangerous as well as a false economy.
Continental tyres aren’t the cheapest option on the rack but they are factory-fitted to many vehicles across the VW range, including the Transporter. Continental’s Vanco range is not only the most common original equipment range for this vehicle but also etyres’ best-selling replacement tyre for it, too. These tyres are trusted to deliver excellent levels of both durability and grip, meaning that they tick all the right boxes for many Transporter drivers.
Another option to consider comes in the shape of Kumho’s RA28 tyres. These may not have a well-known name behind them but are factory-fitted to quite a large number of VWs based on the T5 chassis as well as the Transporter. Their key feature is that they are available at a very competitive price point, making them a popular replacement tyre choice.
Dunlop tyres remain a popular choice for the Transporter, as are various ranges from Nexen. Key to choosing between them will be your own driving style and mileage. For drivers who rely on their van for daily deliveries and higher mileages, the fuel economy ratings of each replacement tyre option will be particularly relevant. Ratings for both fuel economy and grip are clearly displayed on each tyre’s label and on this website.