May 15 is the deadline for not risking a fine of up to 1,700 euros
Countdown to tire change. The law provides that from 15 April 2023 it is possible to replace winter tires with summer ones, even if there is time until 15 May for replacement. It is important to know that those who have opted for the purchase of 4-season tires can in fact circulate on the roads throughout the year with the same tyres. From 15 April the obligation to have non-slip means (chains) on board also falls, on the roads where this obligation has been explicitly signaled. In some regions or autonomous provinces with particularly harsh climatic conditions, the period in which winter equipment is required can however be modified by ordinance of the local authorities. From a legal point of view, switching to the set of summer tires is compulsory ‘only’ for all those cars which in the winter season have fitted M+S tires with a speed rating lower than that specified in the manual. In fact, if the law allows you to fit tires with a reduced speed rating in winter, in the summer it is mandatory to fit tires with the correct speed rating, in order to return to the maximum speed permitted by the booklet.
From 16 May onwards, therefore, anyone who has not changed tires and drives with winter tires with a lower speed code than that on the registration certificate risks a fine ranging from 422 to 1,695 euros, in addition to having the registration certificate withdrawn, according to the article 78 of the Highway Code.
Anyone who respects the speed code in the booklet, in theory, could continue to travel with winter tires or, at least, can think about changing tires without fixed deadlines and therefore even after the deadline of May 15th. But traveling in spring and summer with tires designed for temperatures below 7°C and for winter weather conditions can become dangerous and certainly does not guarantee ideal safety or optimal car performance.
As Federpneus, the National Association of Tire Dealers explains, in general “with the arrival of milder temperatures, summer tires ensure a better performance in terms of efficiency, safety and fuel economy. This is because their the harder compound deforms less with heat and guarantees better road holding, shorter braking distances and also consumes less fuel thanks to lower rolling resistance”.