Where's the spare? One third of new vehicles don't have extra tire

Lloyd Doyle
October 19, 2017

The reasoning itself is innocent enough: automakers want to reduce the weight of their cars in order to improve fuel economy. According to new research from AAA, almost oneā€third (28 percent) of 2017 model year vehicles do not come with a spare tire as standard equipment, creating an unnecessary hassle and expense for drivers.

"A lot of newer vehicles don't have spare tires", said AAA's Bownman. AAA said they did it to make the vehicle lighter, which provides better gas mileage.

AAA said drivers should always double check to make sure there is a spare tire or ask for one when purchasing a new auto.

Just previous year, the company was called out to help about 450,000 people who caught a flat but didn't have a spare. "This can turn the relatively routine process of changing a tire at the roadside into an inconvenient and costly situation that requires a tow to a fix facility".

Some automakers provide emergency tire-inflation kits as as substitute for spare tires. "AAA urges drivers to make it a priority to check their vehicle's equipment and know what to do if faced with a flat tire".

"If the motorist had a spare tire they would be able to get back on the road, saving them time and money".

On a recent call the driver suffered a flat tire.

AAA recommends always double checking to make sure there is one before purchasing a new vehicle.

Smith recommends doing a 32-point inspection which will let you know when you're tire tread is low and might blow.

If your auto does have a spare tire, be sure it is properly inflated and stowed and check your tire pressure every month.

Some high-end vehicles do come with run flat tires. Most need to be replaced every four to eight years. However, AAA says the top cause for roadside assistance calls are tire-related.

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