Why IS BMW So Addicted To Run Flat Tires?

Why IS BMW So Addicted To Run Flat Tires?

All drivers know that the BMW car brand is fully loyal to run-flat tires. This car maker has been equipping its vehicles with such tires for decades. Despite the multitude of criticisms from drivers regarding these tires, BMW continues to be faithful to this concept. It is true, though, that not all BMW vehicles leave the factory with run-flat tires. The exception is the M series vehicles which are available with conventional tires. Either way, we want to take a look at run-flat tires today. So, we can all understand why BMW is so passionate about this type of tire.

What's The Point Of Run-Flat Tires?

Run-flat tires are a category that ensures further driving even after they have undergone a puncture. While conventional tires deflate and require treatment immediately after a puncture, the run-flat one keeps moving forward without seriously compromising the driving experience.

The point is that run-flat tires have a different internal structure that does not depend as much on pressure as it does with conventional pneumatic tires. Following a puncture, run-flat tires do lose air. However, the air leakage does not impact the tire's shape or rolling ability. So, drivers can continue to drive up to a certain limit without needing tire repair or replacement.

The limit we are talking about is 50 miles which should be enough to reach the destination or a service center. After the technical inspection, the run-flat tire is replaced by a new one because it cannot be repaired. So, the major benefit of run-flat tires is that they keep rolling following a puncture without compromising their structural integrity or overall driving experience. 


Why Is BMW So Faithful To Run Flat Tires?

This car brand cares a lot about the philosophy of a flawless, powerful, and insanely performing driving experience. BMW is constantly looking for solutions to ensure superior driving quality. In addition to the ultra-powerful engines and technical packaging of the vehicles with the latest generation technologies, BMW wants to ensure flawless driving, including from the tire perspective. And a flat tire cannot be part of this scenario.

In this context, the reputable car maker is sure that run-flat tires are a philosophy that works. Even if many drivers criticize the ride stiffness associated with these tires, BMW still sees them as a safe option. It seems that between ultimate comfort and the ability to keep driving following tire damage, the latter is more prioritized in BMW's philosophy. This does not mean that comfort is left aside. The car brand like no other knows how to refine the driving experience of its customers through the confidence and comfort of its vehicles. Here you can find BMW tires according to vehicle model

Can You Switch From Run Flat To Conventional Tires On A BMW?

Even if BMW proposes run flats for most of its vehicles that leave the factory, the ultimate choice belongs to the final consumers. This means that you have the freedom to switch to regular tires on your BMW even if the vehicle has fitted factory run-flats.

Unlike many erroneous beliefs, it is not necessary to change the rims once you switch from run flat to regular tires or vice versa. The rim remains the same regardless of the type of tire. However, the tire you choose must fit in the size recommended by the manufacturer. Choosing the right tire size is one of the most important aspects in the equation of switching from run flats to regular tires or vice versa.

Also, it is paramount to opt for the replacement of all tires. It is wrong to mount 2 run-flat tires and 2 regular ones. This goes against the safety and performance rules and you could impact both the vehicle's components and the condition of the tires. So, whatever the replacement scenario, all tires must be of the same type.

How Much Are Run-Flat Tires For BMW?

The price differs from one manufacturer to another. However, run-flat tires are a priori more expensive than traditional ones. In the case of BMW vehicles, the price for run-flats may vary between $200 and $500, depending on the tire maker, type of tire, and additional technologies in them.

Here you have some recommended run-flat tire offerings for your BMW. These are the most popular tires that combine both run-flat technology and comfort with ultimate performance.

Are All Vehicles Compatible With Run Flat Tires?

Technically, any car can be equipped with run-flat tires instead of conventional ones. These tires do not differ much in physical parameters from the usual ones. Their only difference is the internal construction that ensures their viability even when they lose pressure. If you choose the right run-flat tire that matches your rim and your vehicle specs, you shouldn't have any driving issues or restrictions. However, make sure to read all the manufacturers' recommendations before coupling your vehicle with run-flat tires.

What About EVs: Do Tesla Have Run Flat Tires?

Unlike BMW, which is the number one promoter of RFTs in its vehicles, Tesla uses conventional tires for its electric vehicles. That is, all vehicles leave the factory with pneumatic tires adapted to the specifics and construction of EVs. In the same sense, Tesla does not in any way prohibit the installation of run-flat tires on its vehicles. But it either does not somehow promote the coupling of EVs with these tires. So, the choice of run-flat tires for a Tesla is exclusively the owner's decision and responsibility.

However, it should be noted that tires for electric vehicles differ from regular ones. They are adapted to the powertrain and the more complex weight of the vehicle. In this sense, experts recommend against using regular pneumatic tires for such vehicles. Tesla and other electric vehicles need special tires to cope with the specifics of electric cars. As for run-flats, drivers must first ensure that the tire is specially designed for a Tesla or any other EV and only then, if it has run-flat technology in it. 

BMW Run Flat Tires: FAQs

What Is BMW Run Flat?

The run flat technology allows the tire to maintain its integrity after a damage or puncture. With a punctured conventional tire, it deflates and further driving becomes dangerous and severely affects the tire's condition. In the case of run-flats, air loss is not a problem. Run flat tires have a reinforced construction inside them. Thanks to this, the tire maintains its shape and rigidity, which allows the driver to keep driving until a technical service center. Even if the run-flat tire loses air, its reinforced inner construction keeps it in shape. As such, run-flat tires are not as dependent on air pressure as conventional tires are. Due to their specific construction, run flats are usually more expensive than regular tires.

Do I Really Need Run Flats on my BMW?

The decision is yours. BMW usually launches all its vehicles (except the M series) equipped with run flats. The brand is loyal to the run-flat concept because it prioritizes the safety of its drivers. At the same time, the driver can opt for regular tires on his BMW without any restrictions if they provide him better comfort. What truly matters is that the regular tires match the size of the rims and the specifics of the car body. Also, drivers must understand well what are the advantages and disadvantages of regular tires before making the change. In this sense, each driver decides which type of tire gives him the best advantage.

How Long Do BMW Run Flats Last?

Run flat tire longevity depends on the manufacturer and type of tire you choose. For example, winter tires serve less than all-season touring tires. Either way, statistics show that run-flat tires usually have a shorter service life than conventional radial tires. This is explained by the more rigid formula and construction of the run-flat tire, which predisposes it to faster wear. So, tire longevity is more of a disadvantage than a benefit of run-flat tires.

However, if we talk about the scenario of a possible puncture, the run-flat tire is the one that saves the situation. This allows the driver to keep driving safely for another 50 miles after tire damage/puncture. This advantage eclipses all other shortcomings.

Can I Replace the Run Flats With Normal Tires?

You can as long as you take into account the manufacturers' recommendations. First, you need to change all 4 tires and not just 1,2, or 3. Second, you should consult an expert to choose the right tire size. Finally, we recommend that you carefully analyze the advantages and disadvantages of both types of tires to make the right choice. After going through all these 3 points, go ahead with tire replacement.

Are Run-Flat Tires Safer?

Run flats are safer in case of a possible puncture and tire damage. The driver can be more sure that he will arrive safe and sound at his destination if the tire is damaged by a nail, cut, or other type of damage. In the case of regular tires, the driver would have to roll up his sleeves and change the tire somewhere on the side of the road, which would throw his plans upside down. With run-flat tires, this scenario is less likely, which speaks of an increased degree of safety. 

Thus, the manufacturers' goal, including BMW, which solidly promotes run-flat tires, is to provide drivers with a less stressful ride. Even if this implies slightly higher noise or a bit more harsher ride, run flats solve what ordinary tires do not. However, regular radial tires are also quite safe, especially if you treat and maintain them correctly. But, in case of a puncture, drivers have more distress with them.

What Is The Disadvantage of BMW Run-Flat Tire?

Despite the many advantages, run flats do have some drawbacks that drivers should be aware of. It is about a greater weight due to the reinforced construction. This can slightly influence the efficiency of fuel consumption. Also, their service life is generally shorter than conventional tires. Thirdly, they are more expensive and deliver a slightly harsher ride. 

What Are the Best Run Flat Tires for BMW?

Here you have some great options to consider for your BMW.

Bridgestone DriveGuard

Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season

Michelin Primacy 3 ZP

Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 3 Run on-Flat

Why Trust Us?

The Neotires team is proud of over 5 years of experience in the tire field. During this time, we have learned a lot about this industry and have shared our knowledge and experience with our customers. We are more than an online platform that offers tires for sale. We are a team passionate about rubber that is curious to learn everything about the innovations and technologies in this industry.

Our goal is for our customers to learn as much as possible about their safety on the road. The more he knows, the safer his every ride is. Thus, we have attracted professionals and experts to our team who have wide experience in testing and reviewing our tires and recommend the most truthful safety tips.

Our tire testing center is a "lab" where we thoroughly analyze the performance aspects of the products we propose. Thus, the reviews in our blog are approved by the experts with whom we collaborate and who ensure that the information delivered is maximally trustworthy.

Finally, our credo is to create a long-term relationship with our customers. For this, we not only sell tires but also keep up with innovations, research, and development in the field. You are welcome here as a customer or simply as a blog reader if you align with our philosophy.

Bottom Line

For BMW, run-flat tires are the ticket to hassle-free driving and the ultimate performance experience without being compromised by a potential flat tire. While BMW sees them as a viable solution, it leaves the final decision in the hands of the final consumer anyway. So, any BMW driver is free to choose between a run-flat or a regular tire depending on his priorities.

Either way, run-flats are about personal choice. You have to test these tires to understand if they resonate with you or not. Some drivers choose regular tires because they find the ride stiffness unbearable. Others, though, find these tires acceptable in terms of comfort and appreciate them for the safety they offer in case of a tire puncture.

We at Neotires are neither for nor against run-flat tires. Our goal is to inform you about everything you need to know about them. The more you know the better you can make the right choice. Drive safe and choose wisely!

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Brian Darr is a passion-driven enthusiast who has become an expert in the tire industry. His passion for rubber started with his first driving experience. He firmly believes that the performance and safety of any vehicle are due, first of all, to the quality of the tires mounted on it.
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