Best online tyre retailers 2018

Save money by buying new tyres on the web, but where is the best place to buy car tyres online?

Looking for new tyres isn’t top of everyone’s list of fun things to do, but a raft of online tyre retailers has made it easier than ever. New tyres can be expensive, especially if you have to replace the whole set at once but, as we always stress in our comprehensive tests, you can’t put a price on these safety essentials. Not only is driving with worn rubber illegal, it’s also dangerous for yourself and other road users.

Yet while you shouldn’t choose new tyres on price, once you’ve selected the right design for your car, you can save a small fortune by shopping around. And, as with most things these days, one of the easiest ways to do this is to log on to the Internet. Online tyre retailers offer great deals and tasty discounts on some of the finest tyres out there.

• Best winter tyres to buy 2018

Many provide a choice between delivery to your house, leaving you to sort fitment (direct service), or delivery to a nearby fitting centre which will put the tyres on for you included in the price (partner fit). Some websites also offer a mobile fitting service, which you book to come to your home or place of work. Which should you use to save while staying safe? With so many sites online, we’ve narrowed it down to a top 10.

How we tested them

The sites all operate in a similar way, with the user entering tyre size or car registration to bring up a list of available options. The services that scored best in our test were those that had the best search functionality and were the easiest to navigate.

Marks were given to those that let us filter results for price, brand and season, plus the ability to see live stock details. We searched for our top summer, winter and all-season designs, giving bonus points to those with every one in stock. Prices were also compared so we could see which sites had the best deals.

Verdict

Long-time favourite Black Circles is at the top of the tree once again. Not only is its website easy to use, it also offers impressive tyre availability and great pricing. We rate Oponeo strongly again, while My Tyres has made significant improvements since our last test, and is rewarded with a place on the podium.

  • 1. Black Circles
  • 2. Oponeo
  • 3. My Tires 
  • ReviewsBlack Circles

    Type: Direct, Partner Fit
    Rating: 5.0

    Serial winner Black Circles reigns supreme again thanks to its combination of an easy-to-use website, unbeatable stock list and keen prices. The site lets you search by vehicle registration or tyre size with results ranked by price, although one letdown is that you can’t filter by tyre brand as easily as with some rivals. There’s loads of information on the results page, but this can make it a bit confusing for the casual user. The best thing about Black Circles is its impressive stock list and the great prices; all six of our test tyres were available.

    Oponeo

    Type: Direct, Partner Fit
    Rating: 4.0

    As soon as you log onto Oponeo, you’re met by a very detailed search that makes finding the right tyres for your car a breeze. This includes a graphic to show how to get the right measurements, as well as the ability to search by make and model. We also like the stock level indicator on each tyre, which gives you a colour-coded view of how many are left. Oponeo had all the tyres we hunted for in stock as well, but once you account for fitting, its prices were slightly higher than those of Black Circles.

    My Tires

    Type: Direct, Partner Fit
    Rating: 4.0

    Since our last test, when we criticised its filtering tools, My Tyres has made big improvements. The site has been upgraded with a new search function that offers make and model, tyre size and vehicle reg. The results page is simple, so scanning through to find the tyres you want is easy, and filtering options are better than before. This site had more tyres in stock than most on test, too. During our search it offered all six tyres and listed whether they were in stock, plus they were competitively priced.

    Tyre Shopper

    Type: Direct, partner fit, mobile fit 
    Rating: 3.5

    Long-established site again performed admirably. It’s a decent alternative to top-tier services, with a good filtering system to find the tyres that suit you best. The layout is basic, but that makes it easy to use. However, there’s no stock indicator, and Tyre Shopper loses out most with the number of tyres it lists. It only returned four of the six we searched for.

    Just Tyres

    Type: Direct, partner fit 
    Rating: 3.5

    A strong debut puts Just Tyres in the midfield. A graphic makes it easy to fill in tyre size and you can search by reg. Filtering options allow you to quickly update results without the page reloading and it compares prices between fitted and delivered – this is harder to find on most websites. There’s no indication of stock, but all our tyres were competitively priced.

    Tyres on the Drive

    Type: Mobile fit 
    Rating: 3.5

    A new entry in our test and a strong debut performance from a site that only offers mobile fitting at home or work rather than the delivery or partner fitting options of most rivals. The menu system is probably the best on test, with searches carried out by registration or size. It groups tyres into budget, mid-range and premium, so you can shop based on what you want to spend. Once you’ve found the tyres you want, it lists stock and fitting availability. During our test it had four of the six tyres, although prices were a little bit steep.

    Love Tyres

    Type: Direct, partner fit 
    Rating: 3.0

    Best Buy five years ago and runner-up in our last test, Love Tyres has now been overtaken by rivals. There’s no vehicle reg search and the tyre size search is a series of dropdown menus; others have slicker graphics. The simplicity carries over into the text-heavy results. Still, it does list whether the tyres you want are in stock, with a wide range available – including all of our six.

    Value Tyres

    Type: Direct, partner fit
    Rating: 3.0

    Another newcomer, Value Tyres focuses on providing rubber on a budget. But the page layout is erratic and there’s no reg lookup. Searching for tyres also involves lots of scrolling and the results are messy. Even so, it offers huge stock and shows how soon you can get them fitted. If only the prices lived up to the website name; they were middle of the pack for cost.

    Also TestedF1 Autocentres

    Type: Partner fit
    Rating: 2.0Kwik Fit

    Type: Partner fit, mobile fit
    Rating: 2.5

    Now you know where to get your tyres, why not buy some of the best tyre shine on the market?

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