Why Are ATV Tires So Expensive? Cost Breakdown


ATV (All-terrain vehicle) tires are a greatly overlooked part of ATVs. They are also very expensive but are some of the common upgrades people do for their quads. What makes them so expensive?

ATV tires are expensive because the labor and raw materials used in their manufacture are costly. The raw materials consist of rubber, synthetic materials, and oil. Events like drought and climate determine their availability. The manufacture of ATVs is also a very specialized niche.

The rest of this article will give a cost breakdown of ATV tires, variables that determine the cost, how to get the best deal and save money on tires, and how to protect your ATV tires from wearing out.

Cost Breakdown of ATV Tires

There are different kinds of All-terrain Vehicle tires, including mud, snow, youth, racing/sport, sand, rock/hard crawler, and all-terrain. The table below will provide you with an inkling of the amount of money it will cost you for each.

Tire TypePrice Range in Dollars
Mud50 – 150
Snow60 -190
Youth20 – 80
Racing/Sport70 – 120
Rock/ Hard Crawler110 – 250
Sand50 – 450
All-Terrain50 – 150

Check out our ATV Tire Guide before buying to make sure you get a set that will work for you.

Variables That Determine How Much ATV Tires Cost

From the price range in the table, it is clear that prices vary by a lot in every category. Several factors contribute to this, and they include:

Type/Style

Different ATV tires offer different features that determine their purposes. Additional steps are taken in the manufacturing process with improved or extra features that add to the cost. Some of their features are:

  • Sand Tires. They feature big rubber paddles that enhance better grip when driving in the sand. The manufacturing process is more complicated because of its awkward shape for the paddles to tolerate immense forces.
  • Mud Tires. To enhance optimal traction in muddy areas, they have enormous tire lugs. Where the tread pattern is more aggressive, it is more expensive.
  • Rock/Hard Crawling Tires. They lack the aggressive pattern but require to be puncture-resistant and more robust. They feature reinforced tire cords and possess more rubber layers (high ply-rating) than all-terrain tires.
  • All-terrain Tires. Their price is moderate because they are the most common in stock. Their design offers decent performance, but not for extreme use.

Size

ATV tires in stock measure 6 to 10 inches wide and 25 to 26 inches in diameter. When upgrading your tires to achieve better performance off-road, you will most likely use bigger tires.

While it is safer to go for the one-inch size up without risking driveline and suspension issues, some people will go to the extreme of getting 32- inch tires to achieve better ground and traction when muddling.

The bigger the size of ATV tires, the more expensive they are because the manufacturing process becomes more complex, and a lot of raw materials are used.

Reputation and Quality of the Tire Brand

The marketplace is usually swamped with cheap tires that are identical to those of reputable brands. While they are more affordable, they are not of the same quality.

You will experience less traction, balancing problems, and mileage in the short period before the tire starts wearing due to low rubber quality.

Popularity

ATV tire sizes and styles that are sold in large quantities are cheaper than those that are less popular and sell in low quantities. All-terrain is the most popular and therefore is more affordable than most.

With common tires, manufacturers can keep the costs down. They do so by producing them in large quantities without altering the line of production. Bestsellers spread the risk of tires that don’t get sold to those that are, therefore reducing the loss.

How To Acquire the Best Deal and Save Money on ATV Tires

The prices for ATV tires may not come down any time soon, but there are ways you can get the best deals and save on money. These include:

Purchase a Complete Set

Purchase the full set that has four tires to or as pairs to lower costs. Buying ATV tires individually will be more costly, but you are likely to save on handling, shipping, and getting a quantum discount with a full set.

Shop Around

Getting these tires on sale or at a discount will make a big difference considering how expensive they are. By shopping around, you can get a deviation of the price of MRSP by up to 50 or 100 percent.

You may find favorable deals online; however, the total cost you will incur is higher due to shipping costs. It is therefore advisable to purchase from a local dealer. Also, be on the lookout for promotions and discount codes.

Compare Prices

Ensure that the prices of tires are comparable as the price does not only entail the product cost. Track other costs that include installation, shipping, balancing fees, and taxes.

Some retailers will provide an “out-the-door” fee or an “all-in price” that includes all the costs, but beware of those who display the shipping and product cost only.

You can find all types of ATV tires from LionParts here or from ATV Tires on Amazon.

Read Reviews

The sale price will only tell you part of the story. To get tires that offer excellent traction, it is best to read reviews. Tires can look identical online or on paper but wear differently.

Reading reviews will prevent you from buying soft tires that will wear faster. You also get to know if your dealer is reliable.

Save Installation Costs and Buy Tires Between Seasons

Prices of ATV tires fluctuate in-between seasons throughout the year, so you don’t have to wait until you need new ones. Look out for signs that your tire needs replacement in advance, and start your search for new ones before they are completely worn.

You have a chance of finding better deals if you search early. Similarly, change your tires instead of having dealers charge you an extra fee. As long as you are well equipped, installation is simple.

Avoid Cheap Rubber Tires

Whether you are buying ATV tires for an old quad or for one that you don’t use as much, cheap ones will end up costing you more.

Cheap ATV tires are fragile and are not as durable as established brands, especially in extreme hot or cold weather. Only buy them cheap if you get them at a discount or on sale.

Purchase Tires for the Right Purpose

Quad tires are the most expensive, especially those that are off-road for snow and deep mud. Many people end up buying these types, but what they don’t realize is that they are for too harsh conditions.

If you want to climb a steep hill with your Polaris, a general-purpose ATV tire such as All-terrain will serve the purpose at an affordable price.

Purchase Second-Hand Tires From Reputable Brands

Reputable brands use unique and tougher materials for their ATV tires that can resist wear and tear during off-road use. If you are on a budget, purchase second-hand tires that are affordable from these brands instead of cheap knockoff ones.

They will show signs of wear, but they will serve you better than the cheap ones, hence saving you money in the long run.

Here is a video on how to choose the right tire for your ATV:

Tips on How To Protect Your ATV Tires From Wear

  • Avoid “launching” your ATV that is accelerating at full speed while at a standstill.
  • Use a protective coat or apply a protectant during very hot or cold weather.
  • Align and balance your quad to ensure both the inner and outer parts of the tires maintain a proper grip.

Bottom Line

ATV tires are expensive because they are a specialized niche when it comes to manufacturing. Also, the raw materials and labor required are costly, and that translates to the total price.

The cost also depends on variables like the size of the tire, popularity, type, and reputation of the brand. To get the best deals, save money on ATV tires, compare similar prices, purchase tires for the right purpose, read reviews, avoid cheap knockoffs, and shop around.

Rob

That's me sinking another ATV. I love to ride no matter what it is, snowmobiles, four wheelers, dirt bikes, and anything else off-roading. I've experienced my fair share of machines, and like to share that experience here.

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