Spare tires are rapidly being replaced with tire repair kits in new cars, but drivers may not take that into consideration when shopping for vehicles. In place of spares, automakers are choosing to include liquid tire sealant and an electric air pump that weight 20 pounds less than a spare, which helps to improve fuel efficiency, according to The Washington Post. Already, automakers have made the switch in 14 percent of new vehicles.
If the hole that caused the flat is too big, the repair kit won’t be of much use, but car companies firmly defend the swap. General Motors, which has taken spares out of all but five of its 22 U.S. models, claims that the kits can handle 85 percent of punctures. They are also faster and easier to use than changing a spare tire.
Drivers who just can’t bear the idea of taking a trip without a backup tire can choose to pay extra for the spare. The news source reports that many motorists may be unaware of the recent changes in standard equipment in new vehicles. Drivers who are shopping for new cars with a car loan should take this into consideration when choosing which car to buy. Honda is one of the automakers who has yet to take the spares out of its vehicles.