UTQG - Uniform Tire Quality Grading SystemUTQG stands for Uniform Tire Quality Grading System and was designed by the NHTSA to help guide consumers in finding the right tire. The UTQG uses three factors to rate tires, allowing consumers to compare tires across manufacturers using a common set of factors.
UTQG - Core Factors
The UTQG is made up of three core factors; treadwear, traction and temperature. On most passenger car and SUV tires, this information is printed right on the sidewall of the tire. Most snow/winter tires and light truck tires do not include these ratings.
The first part of the UTQG is Treadwear. The treadwear is indicated by a number, this number compares how long your tires tread might last in comparison to other tires. A tire that has UTQG treadwear of 400 will last about twice as long as a tire with treadwear of 200. These factors can vary from vehicle to vehicle depending on the vehicle, driving style, inflation pressure, climate and application.
The second part of the UTQG is traction. The traction is indicated by a letter and rates the ability of your tire to stop on wet pavement. The possible grades are AA,A, B, and C. A tire with an AA traction rating will stop quicker on wet pavement than a tire with a C traction rating. Keep in mind this ranking is based only on straight ahead braking and does not test for cornering, acceleration or dry road driving.
The final part of the UTQG is Temperature. The temperature is indicated by a letter and rates the ability of your tire to dissipate heat. Through the normal course of driving your tire will generate heat and over time heat can damage your tire. The possible grades for temperature are A, B, and C. A tire with an A temperature rating will dissipate heat better then a tire with a C temperature rating.
I hope this helps you make a better educated decision on your next tire purchase.