Those zig-zag lines in the tire tread are called sipes, and they’re built to provide extra grip on snow and ice.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
When the temperature drops below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, even traditional all-season tires begin to lose some grip, which has negative effects on your car’s braking and handling. The easiest solution is to get hooked up with a set of snow tires, but there are pains associated with that whole process. Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles thinks it has the answer, and it’s rolling this solution out to every dealer in its network.
Through the company’s Mopar parts division, owners can now order full wheel-and-tire sets at any FCA dealership. The tires and wheels come mounted and balanced, and tire-pressure monitors come included, as well. Installing them is, thus, rather easy, although the dealer will still charge for installation.
This isn’t just one type of winter tire, either. Buyers can choose tires across a variety of brands, including Continental, Michelin, Bridgestone and Goodyear. Together with a slick set of black steel wheels (the only choice there), FCA says there are over 1,100 possible combinations available.
Not every vehicle has a package available, however. As of right now, this offer is limited to the Dodge Caravan, Dodge Charger, Chrysler Town & Country, Chrysler 200, Chrysler 300 and Jeep Cherokee. FCA promises that more models will be covered next year.
At the moment, very few automakers offer such packages through dealerships. You can get a set of winter tires and wheels through Tesla or Audi, but the options are even more limited there, and you’re stuck buying another set of factory wheels, which are way more expensive than the bargain-basement steelies from FCA.
Prices range between $242 and $292 per tire before installation. While $1,000 might seem like a fair chunk of change for rubber you can’t even use for most of the year, it’s not much more than you’d pay at a third-party retailer like Tire Rack or Discount Tire. There are better deals out there, but the effort of shopping around might make the one-and-done dealership option that much more appealing.