Road Tyres have been a major feature in every main Gran Turismo game. All vehicles in the games feature a default tyre when acquired, and they can be exchanged for new compounds that provide more grip, better durability, or even dirt or snow tyres for certain vehicles. New tyre compounds can be found in the manufacturer's tuning parts area for older games, or in the universal Tuning Shop in later ones.
Some events require a certain tyre type, or restrict the compound that can be used. Tyres can be replaced once worn if the player enters the pit-lane, which is available on most tracks. Careful tyre management becomes a major factor in longer races, particularly Endurance events, where a strategy regarding frequency of pit-stops made can contribute to either success or failure.
Tyre wear is represented by a small diagram usually placed on the bottom-right side of the in-game screen, or HUD. In Gran Turismo 1 to Gran Turismo 4, tyre condition is shown as different colors. Blue coloring represents new, cold tyres that have yet to be warmed up. Green coloring represents warm tyres, the ideal temperature range producing the best grip. Colors ranging from yellow, through orange to a deep red represent lightly worn to worn out tyres, which will begin to deteriorate rapidly and result in less and less grip until they are replaced. In Gran Turismo 5 onwards, tyre condition is represented as a bar, or meter, inside each individual tyre indicator. Tyre condition in these later games generally start to perform poorer and poorer as the bar drops below 50%, or halfway.
Types of CompoundsEdit
There are two types of tyre compounds in the original Gran Turismo. They are referred to as Semi-Racing and Racing Slick, with the original tyres on all vehicles simply called Stock. In this game, compounds cannot be switched around once purchased, if one desires a certain tyre combination, they must purchase them in that format. Tyre wear in this game is limited to endurance races. The Semi-Racing tyres are equivalent to Sports tyres in later games, except only one compound is available for them until Gran Turismo 4.
- These are semi-racing tyres. They come as a 4-tyre set, with both front and rear tyres being made of a hard compound. Hard compound tyres don't have as good a grip as soft tyres, but they don't wear out as quickly and are suitable for long-distance races.
- This set has hard front tyres and soft rear tyres. Because the rear has better grip than the front, the car's steering properties are moved towards understeer, because the front tends to slip and the rear tends to grip. This set is a useful combination to improve the balance of vehicles such as high-powered rear wheel drive cars with strong oversteer.
- In this set the front tyres are soft and the rear tyres hard. Because the front has better grip than the rear, the car's steering properties are moved towards oversteer, as the front tends to grip and the rear tends to slip. This is a useful combination for cars with strong understeer, such as FF cars.
- These are a set of 4 semi-racing tyres. Both front and rear tyres are high-grip soft compound tyres. Soft compound tyres give good grip but they wear out quickly. As a result they are suitable for sprint races.
Racing Slick Hard/HardEdit
- These are specialist racing tyres with no tread at all. This set consists of 4 tyres, and the front and rear tyres are made of a hard compound. Hard compound tyres don't have as good a grip as soft tyres, but they don't wear out as quickly, and are therefore suitable for long distance races.
Racing Slick Hard/SoftEdit
- In this set the front tyres are hard and the rear tyres soft. Because the rear has better grip than the front, the car's steering properties are moved towards understeer, as the front tends to slip and the rear tends to grip. This set is a useful combination to improve the balance of vehicles such as high-powered rear wheel drive cars with strong oversteer.
Racing Slick Soft/HardEdit
- This set has soft front tyres and hard rear tyres. Because the front has better grip than the rearm the car's steering properties are moved towards oversteer, as the front tends to grip and the rear tends to slip. This is a useful combination for vehicles such as FF cars with strong understeer.
Racing Slick Soft/SoftEdit
- These are a set of 4 racing slick tyres without tread. Both front and rear tyres are high-grip soft compound tyres. Soft compound tyres give good grip, but they wear out quickly. As a result they are suitable for sprint races.
There are 7 types of tyre compounds in this game. Control (called Simulation in the NTSC-U version), Sports, Racing Slick, and Dirt. Tyre wear generally only becomes a factor in endurance races. By default, the stock tyres installed on road cars provide grip between Control and Sports tyres, while all race cars in GT2's stock tyres are equivalent to Racing Slick Medium compound.
- Tyres which are as close as possible to in characteristics to real tyres. Although it is extremely difficult to drive using the game controller, you can experience a simulation of real driving which does not feel like a game. These tyres require quicker braking, careful steering, and delicate work with the accelerator. These tyres are specific to surfaced roads.
- Special sports driving tyres which will allow a higher level of grip on surfaced roads than normal tyres. One set for front and rear wheels. Fitting high performance tyres is said to be one of the more effective ways of improving the driving performance of the car. Once you buy the tyres, you will receive tyre service continually from then onwards.
Racing Slick HardEdit
- Although the absolute level of grip is lower, they use a durable compound. They can deliver good, stable grip characteristics over long periods. As the temperature of the tyres is slow to increase, they take some warming up, and sufficient care must be taken while driving the first two laps. These are tyres specific to surfaced roads.
Racing Slick MediumEdit
- These tyres use a compound which achieves a good balance between grip and durability. The tyres will reach the correct temperature after 1 lap, and can deliver good grip. They don't have the durability of the hard compound tyres, but they do not wear out as fast as the soft tyres. These are tyres specific to surfaced roads.
Racing Slick SoftEdit
- Even though these tyres are durable to a degree, the compound used has been chosen to deliver the best possible absolute grip. These are the optimum tyres for races such as time trials. The tyres will be warmed up enough to deliver good grip after only half a lap. Because the durability is low, very careful tyre replacement is necessary. These are tyres specific to surfaced roads.
Racing Slick Super SoftEdit
- These are tyres that sacrifice durability for the sake of maximum possible grip. These maximum grip characteristics will only be displayed after having gone through several corners. Because the grip will suddenly deteriorate due to wear, care must be taken in handling the tyres. These are tyres specific to surfaced roads.
There are 11 types of tyre compounds in this game. Further expanded from the PS1-era games in the series, there are subsequently many different strategies and car/tyre combinations that can be ideal for every track. They are Normal, Simulation, Sport, Dirt, and Racing. In this game, tyre wear only becomes a factor in some Amateur League events, all Professional League events, and Endurance League events.
- The default tyre for most cars in their factory form. These tyres generally do not provide much grip or durability, and are only suitable for slower, unmodified vehicles. It is widely recommended to upgrade to Sport tyres as soon as it becomes viable.
- Like previous games, Simulation tyres provide a limited sense of a realistic driving experience. Earlier braking, careful steering, and gentle throttle control is necessary when using these tyres. They do not provide any advantages over the standard Normal tyres.
- Sport tyres provide better performance than Normal tyres, and are regarded as one of the first modifications that should be purchased for a car. They display better grip through corners, allow slightly better acceleration off the line, and are slightly more durable than Normal tyres.
- There are 7 types of Racing tyres in Gran Turismo 3. Ranging from the ultra-durable, low-grip Super Slicks, to the extremely grippy but very poor durability Super Softs, there is a tyre available for every application. It must be noted, however, that the F1 cars introduced in GT3 are limited to Racing Mediums only. No other compounds can be purchased to replace these. For hard compound tyres, the term "slick" is used instead of "hard" as used in other games in the series. A quick-reference list of the available compounds is shown below:
|Racing Super Slick||Extremely durable tyres, but only provide a limited level of grip.|
|Racing Slick||Slightly less durable than Super Slicks, provides only slightly better grip|
|Racing Medium-Slick||Durability closer to that of Mediums, though still below-average grip rating|
|Racing Medium||Provides equal durability and grip, the default (and only) tyre equipped on F1 cars|
|Racing Medium-Soft||Slightly better grip than Mediums, though durability starts to drop|
|Racing Soft||Superb grip, low durability. Care must be taken not to over-drive these|
|Racing Super Soft||Provides unparalleled grip, durability however is very poor|
Tyres in Gran Turismo 4 are divided into 5 categories, with 13 different types in total. They are Standard (also called Normal), Sport, Racing, Dirt and a new type, Snow. Tyre mechanics have been greatly improved over its predecessors, meaning that greater care and thought should be put into which tyres will perform best on the current vehicle and situation. Tyres also are a large contributing factor to the amount of A-Spec Points that are awarded at the end of each race. The lower the grade of tyre, the higher the amount of points garnered if the race is won.
- Acting as the replacement to the previously featured "Simulation" tyres, they do not come equipped on any car by default, however they are free to purchase. The three grades are Economy, Comfort, and Road. They provide a realistic feel to the car driven in terms of capability and response, but offer no advantages over the Sport grade tyres. However they are a great tool to learn the mechanics of simulation driving, and provide the most A-Spec Points of all tyres if a race is won with them equipped.
- These are the default tyres equipped on almost every road car in the game. Ranging from Hard to Soft compounds, these are the tyres the player will arguably use most throughout GT Mode. They provide decent levels of grip and durability, but are normally not suited for use on race cars.
- The highest-grade tyres available, and these sets come at a steep cost. Available in Super Hard, Hard, Medium, Soft, and Qualifying compounds, these tyres are best suited for the most extreme supercars and hardcore race cars. Like in previous games, Super Hard tyres provide the highest durability, but lowest grip, and the Qualifying (also known as Super Soft in Arcade Mode) set have extreme levels of grip but very poor durability. Some primarily road-car events do not allow use of racing tyres.
From Gran Turismo 5 onwardsEdit
From the PS3-era of the series, tyre mechanics have again been overhauled, though this time, the tyre wear system was redesigned from the ground-up. Tyres are still separated into different grades, each with their own advantages and disadvantages, and it is now more important than ever to consider which tyre grade is best suited to the car being driven, the track being driven on, the length of time the tyre is expected to be driven on, and a newly-introduced factor, the weather. All grades are available in Hard. Medium, and Soft compounds only (with Super Soft returning for Racing tyres in GT Sport), with the exception of Dirt and Snow. They appear in Comfort, Sport, and Racing types. This is also the first game to implement restrictions on the type of compound used in some races. These restrictions however, are mostly limited to B-Spec Mode in GT5, but was later expanded to almost every event in GT6 and GT Sport, in both online events and GT League.
The changes dates back from Gran Turismo 5 Prologue, where compounds are known by a number designating their softness (Comfort Hard is known as C1, for instance). This designation was also used in GT PSP.
- Comfort Soft tyres are now the default tyre equipped on most lower-tier sports and city cars, although they are available in harder-compound Medium and Hard sets. They provide adequate levels of grip and response, but their limits are easily exceeded and are generally suited to lower-level cars.
- Sport Hard tyres are the default tyre equipped on most high-performance cars, though supercars and some tuned cars come with Medium or Soft grades equipped. They offer greater grip and boast higher durability than Comfort tyres, and will generally be the grade most used throughout career mode, particularly in GT5's B-Spec races. Many road car events in GT6 limit tyres to Sports Soft tyres.
- Racing Hard tyres come equipped on all race cars, though there are a few exceptions. They provide the highest levels of grip, and even higher durability than Sport compounds, at the cost of a much higher purchase price. These tyres are best suited for longer event races and championships, particularly the Endurance races. In GT5, once Racing compund tyres are purchased, two wet-weather variants are automatically added to the player's option list for that car: Racing Intermediate and Racing Wet, and they are used for longer Endurance races where wet weather is a factor and normal Racing tyres are not well-suited for the situation. Intermediate perform best in a wet or damp track situation, and Wet compounds are primarily suited for heavy rain and extremely slick areas of the track. However, these tyres must be purchased separately in GT6. In Gran Turismo Sport, Racing Super Soft tyres makes a return, and provides the highest grip at cost of very durability.
- Due to the lowest grip the tyre offers, Simulation tyres were a popular choice for drifting in every game the tyre made appearances. The role has since been switched to Economy/Comfort Hard tyres.
- In Gran Turismo 5 onwards, there is an unused tyre compound called Sports Super Soft, which would have provided the grip that rivaled those of Racing Hard compound; this might be the reason it was removed from the final game. The compound makes another return on early GT Sport builds on show events, but was also removed from the final build.
- All racing tyres in Gran Turismo 5 also have unused "Type C" and "Type V" variants, which focus on horizontal and inline grip respectively.