What Is The Difference Between Power Sports Tires & Wheels?


A lot of terminology gets thrown around when it comes to tires, wheels, and rims. If you’re considering some new power sports tires or wheels for your ATV or UTV, it’s good to know what you’re looking for.

The tire is where the rubber hits the road, literally. Tires are the rubber portion of the wheel that grips the road and leaves skid marks when you spin out. ATV and UTV wheels are typically made of aluminum or steel and have a hub that the tire is mounted on. Often the word rim is used interchangeably with wheel. Technically, the rim is the outer part of the wheel; the cylindrical edge that holds the tire in place.

There are different power sports tires depending upon the terrain you plan on driving on. Some of your options include:

  • Mud Tires: These tires are designed with aggressive lugs to provide sufficient bite in soft, slippery terrain.
  • Hard Pack Turf Tires: If you ride or race on concrete, pavement, or other hard surfaces, these tires have a wider profile and tighter tread for a smoother ride.
  • Spot/Performance Tires: Non-direction patterns and heavy-duty construction make these tires the choice for hard-impact sport driving.
  • Sand Tires: Also known as paddle tires due to the tread pattern, these are a must for beach or dune driving.

Why You Wont Generally Need Power Sport Tires

If you purchased your ATV or UTV for general purpose riding, such as heading to offroad trails on the weekend, you won’t need to worry about a hard-core power sport tire. You can save yourself some money by purchasing an all-terrain tire that gets the job done just fine. There are many styles of 26x10x12 ATV tires on the market that are all-purpose and are good for general riding conditions.

What Power Sport Tires Are Used for

You’ll want power sport tires if you like to take your ATV or UTV out in extreme conditions. There are tires designed for specific conditions, and you will have a safer ride if you use them. In addition to the ones listed above, there are a few more you should consider, such as:

  • Snow Tires: Just about any tire will work well on hardened or packed snow. These tires are for the adventurers who like to head out in a heavy, fresh snowfall on untracked trails. They will provide superior traction in any loose snow.
  • Racing Tires: These tires come in a variety of compounds and tread designs for particular types of tracks. You will need skilled racing advice and know-how to match the tire to your specific race.
  • Turf Tires: Get solid traction without damaging turf or grass. These are the power sport tires for riding on lawns, parks, or other areas where damage must be avoided.

Always purchase your tires from a reputable source that can answer all your questions. Check with stores that also have motorcycle tires for sale. You will be able to find knowledgeable salespeople who understand your ride, your gear, and your sport.

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