My Garage
New hero

Spare Wheels: A vanishing feature in the modern automotive industry

By Mathilda Bartholomew | November 30, 2023


Why not leave a comment?

See all | Add a comment

Just 3% of newly sold cars come equipped with a spare wheel

Spare Wheels: A vanishing feature in the modern automotive industry

New research by RAC has revealed only 3% of new cars sold come with a spare wheel.

A comprehensive review of 313 new cars from 28 different brands revealed that only eight models were equipped with a spare wheel and half of these models offered a spare wheel only on specific variants.

The absence of spare wheels in new cars is becoming more pronounced, with electric vehicles even less likely to include one. Typically, larger and heavier-duty vehicles are more likely to come with this essential feature.

The specific models with a spare wheel at the time of the research include the Fiat Tipo, selected models of the Ford Focus, Hyundai Santa Fe (PHEV), Land Rover Defender, selected models of the SEAT Ateca, Suzuki Across, Volvo XC90 (not PHEV), and the Toyota Land Cruiser. 

Car manufacturers are moving away from spare wheels due to stricter emissions regulations. The additional weight of a spare wheel, up to 20kg, contributes to increased vehicle weight and, subsequently, reduced fuel efficiency. This shift allows manufacturers to align with emission reduction goals more effectively.

This decline in the availability of spare wheels has significantly impacted RAC breakdown call-out volumes. In 2022, RAC patrols responded to nearly 200,000 incidents where drivers faced a puncture without a spare wheel, compared to around 165,000 four years earlier.

Related Articles

Pros and cons of a used car warranty
Why a used car warranty can be a tremendous investment but is not the solution to every problem.
Summer car maintenance tips
Your car always requires care and maintenance throughout the year to remain in pristine condition. However, it requires special care during...
What Causes Your Tyres to Be Illegal? The complete guide to be road-legal
Owning a car comes with its challenges, and one that often catches drivers off guard is the issue of illegal tyres.
How do I know if my car has been recalled?
A car recall happens when a manufacturer identifies a safety defect in a specific vehicle or group of vehicles. This defect could pose a...