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Chevrolet Sonic Owner's Manual: Tire Terminology and Definitions

Chevrolet Sonic Owner's Manual / Vehicle Care / Wheels and Tires / Tire Terminology and Definitions

Air Pressure: The amount of air inside the tire pressing outward on each square inch of the tire. Air pressure is expressed in kPa (kilopascal) or psi (pounds per square inch).

Accessory Weight: The combined weight of optional accessories. Some examples of optional accessories are automatic transmission, power windows, power seats, and air conditioning.

Aspect Ratio: The relationship of a tire's height to its width.

Belt: A rubber coated layer of cords between the plies and the tread. Cords may be made from steel or other reinforcing materials.

Bead: The tire bead contains steel wires wrapped by steel cords that hold the tire onto the rim.

Bias Ply Tire: A pneumatic tire in which the plies are laid at alternate angles less than 90 degrees to the centerline of the tread.

Cold Tire Pressure: The amount of air pressure in a tire, measured in kPa (kilopascal) or psi (pounds per square inch) before a tire has built up heat from driving. See Tire Pressure.

Curb Weight: The weight of a motor vehicle with standard and optional equipment including the maximum capacity of fuel, oil, and coolant, but without passengers and cargo.

DOT Markings: A code molded into the sidewall of a tire signifying that the tire is in compliance with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. The DOT code includes the Tire Identification Number (TIN), an alphanumeric designator which can also identify the tire manufacturer, production plant, brand, and date of production.

GVWR: Gross Vehicle Weight Rating. See Vehicle Load Limits.

GAWR FRT: Gross Axle Weight Rating for the front axle. See Vehicle Load Limits.

GAWR RR: Gross Axle Weight Rating for the rear axle. See Vehicle Load Limits.

Intended Outboard Sidewall: The side of an asymmetrical tire that must always face outward when mounted on a vehicle. Kilopascal (kPa): The metric unit for air pressure.

Light Truck (LT-Metric) Tire: A tire used on light duty trucks and some multipurpose passenger vehicles.

Load Index: An assigned number ranging from 1 to 279 that corresponds to the load carrying capacity of a tire.

Maximum Inflation Pressure: The maximum air pressure to which a cold tire can be inflated. The maximum air pressure is molded onto the sidewall.

Maximum Load Rating: The load rating for a tire at the maximum permissible inflation pressure for that tire.

Maximum Loaded Vehicle Weight: The sum of curb weight, accessory weight, vehicle capacity weight, and production options weight.

Normal Occupant Weight: The number of occupants a vehicle is designed to seat multiplied by 68 kg (150 lb). See Vehicle Load Limits.

Occupant Distribution: Designated seating positions.

Outward Facing Sidewall: The side of an asymmetrical tire that has a particular side that faces outward when mounted on a vehicle. The side of the tire that contains a whitewall, bears white lettering, or bears manufacturer, brand, and/or model name molding that is higher or deeper than the same moldings on the other sidewall of the tire.

Passenger (P-Metric) Tire: A tire used on passenger cars and some light duty trucks and multipurpose vehicles.

Recommended Inflation Pressure: Vehicle manufacturer's recommended tire inflation pressure as shown on the tire placard. See Tire Pressure  and Vehicle Load Limits.

Radial Ply Tire: A pneumatic tire in which the ply cords that extend to the beads are laid at 90 degrees to the centerline of the tread.

Rim: A metal support for a tire and upon which the tire beads are seated.

Sidewall: The portion of a tire between the tread and the bead.

Speed Rating: An alphanumeric code assigned to a tire indicating the maximum speed at which a tire can operate.

Traction: The friction between the tire and the road surface. The amount of grip provided.

Tread: The portion of a tire that comes into contact with the road.

Treadwear Indicators: Narrow bands, sometimes called wear bars, that show across the tread of a tire when only 1.6 mm (1/16 in) of tread remains. See When It Is Time for New Tires.

UTQGS (Uniform Tire Quality Grading Standards): A tire information system that provides consumers with ratings for a tire's traction, temperature, and treadwear. Ratings are determined by tire manufacturers using government testing procedures. The ratings are molded into the sidewall of the tire. See Uniform Tire Quality Grading.

Vehicle Capacity Weight: The number of designated seating positions multiplied by 68 kg (150 lb) plus the rated cargo load. See Vehicle Load Limits.

Vehicle Maximum Load on the Tire: Load on an individual tire due to curb weight, accessory weight, occupant weight, and cargo weight.

Vehicle Placard: A label permanently attached to a vehicle showing the vehicle capacity weight and the original equipment tire size and recommended inflation pressure. See “Tire and Loading Information Label” under Vehicle Load Limits.

Tire Designations
Tire Size The following is an example of a typical passenger vehicle tire size. (1) Passenger (P-Metric) Tire: The United States version of a metric tire sizing system. The letter P as the first ...

Tire Pressure
Tires need the correct amount of air pressure to operate effectively. Caution Neither tire underinflation nor overinflation is good. Underinflated tires, or tires that do not have enough air, can ...

Other materials:

Courtesy Transportation Program
To enhance your ownership experience, we and our participating dealers are proud to offer Courtesy Transportation, a customer support program for vehicles with the Bumper-to-Bumper (Base Warranty Coverage period in Canada), extended powertrain, and/or hybrid-specific warranties in both the U.S ...

Tires and Wheels Description and Operation
There are two types of tire and wheel balancing: static and dynamic. Static balance is the equal distribution of weight around the wheel. Assemblies that are statically unbalanced cause a bouncing action called wheel tramp. This condition may eventually cause uneven tire wear. ...

Control Valve Body Cover Replacement
Removal Procedure Disconnect the battery negative cable. Refer to Battery Negative Cable Disconnection and Connection. Raise and support the vehicle. Refer to Lifting and Jacking the Vehicle. Remove the front bumper fascia opening lower cover. Refer to Front Bumper ...

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