Tire selection has an important impact on the operational costs of heavy-goods vehicles (HGVs). HGV tires are designed on a tradeoff between wear resistance, rolling resistance, and adhesion (skid resistance). High wear resistance tires (high mileage) are replaced less often but use more fuel during operation, and vice versa for low rolling resistance tires. Presently, finding the optimal tire to minimize replacement costs and fuel consumption (greenhouse gas emissions) is challenging due to the difficulty in predicting tire wear for a given operation, since its rate varies with different vehicle configurations (e.g., load, vehicle length, number of axles, type of axle, etc.) and road types (e.g., motorways/highways, minor roads, urban roads, etc.).
This article presents a novel empirical tire-wear model that can be used to predict the wear for multi-axle vehicles based on route data and a vehicle model. The first part of the article presents the analytical and experimental development of the model. The second part presents the experimental validation of the model based on 10 months of in-service data totaling 37,000 km of operation. The model predicts tire tread depth within 8% (average error of 2%).