WAYNE, NJ - With the environment top-of-mind for many people, the Hankook Tire Spring Gauge Index revealed that 61 percent of drivers would be interested in buying eco-friendly tires, with 68 percent of those drivers citing better fuel economy and gas savings as their top reasons. 

Nearly half of Americans (47 percent) would consider buying a hybrid or electric car, however only 3 percent actually own one. Men would be more inclined to purchase a hybrid or electric car – 56 percent of men surveyed would consider buying one, compared to 38 percent of women.  

Price is the number one reason consumers can’t commit. When asked why they would not purchase an eco-friendly car, 55 percent said the cars are too expensive and 23 percent said they are not very cost efficient.

While drivers may not be willing to spend the money on hybrid or electric cars, 61 percent of Americans would consider buying eco-friendly tires. Interestingly, 73 percent of those drivers are younger adults (ages 18-34), and 54 percent have a household income less than $25,000.

“Americans are looking for ways to help the environment while also saving on gas,” said Henry Kopacz, Hankook Tire America’s tire expert. “Hankook’s Optimo H426 Luxury Performance Touring All-Season tire maximizes fuel economy by providing lower rolling resistance and improved wet braking and dry handling. It gives consumers an energy-conserving, all-season option for better fuel efficiency.”

With the buzz surrounding the positive effects the right tires can have on the environment, Americans are proving themselves to be continually tire-savvy. Tire maintenance levels have not changed as a result of the season. Consistent with the findings from Hankook’s Winter Gauge Index in December, 2011, 70 percent of those polled have checked their tire pressure in the past month, 63 percent have checked for proper tread, and 63 percent have looked for damage (bruises, cuts, bulges, cracks).

Here are Hankook’s top fuel-saving tips for the spring season:

  • Check Your Pressure – Drivers should check tire pressure at least once a month to ensure proper inflation. When tires are underinflated, they wear out faster and don’t provide optimum performance, wasting energy and fuel.
  • Save for Spring – Properly inflated tires save you money at the pump. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you can improve your gas mileage by up to 3.3 percent by keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure. Under-inflated tires can lower gas mileage by 0.3 percent for every 1 psi drop in pressure of all four tires.
  • Select the Right Tire – The Hankook Optimo H426 is designed to offer lower tire rolling resistance, delivering improved efficiency and fuel savings by minimizing wasted energy as a tire rolls. 

The Hankook Tire Gauge Index is a quarterly survey of Americans that uncovers their attitudes and opinions about all things related to driving. The spring installment of the survey, conducted March 7-8, polled 1,016 randomly selected Americans on spring driving and what is on their minds as the season approaches. Additional findings from the survey include:

  • 31 percent of drivers would be most likely to consider taking a road trip this spring for a family reunion.
  • 24 percent of drivers are most concerned about potholes during the spring while 15 percent are concerned about wet, slick roads.
  • 56 percent of drivers think there are more potholes visible on the roads during the spring season.
  • 38 percent of Northeasterners are most concerned about potholes during the spring, whereas only 12 percent of Southerners are.
  • 37 percent of drivers have messed up their alignment due to potholes, with 11 percent of respondents blowing a tire due to potholes.