Tire Speed Rating. It’s your tire speed rating, or, to be more accurate, your tire’s performance rating. People refer to that last letter of the tire size on the sidewall of your tires as ‘tire speed rating’—the maximum speed a tire can sustain for a certain period of time without risk of tire failure. But it’s not just about speed.
While a Z speed rating still often appears in the tire size designation of these tires, such as 180/55ZR17 73W, the Z in the size only signifies a maximum speed capability in excess of 149 mph. The W in the service description indicates the tire’s actual maximum speed of 168 mph (270 km/h).
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