‘Worst Tires Made In History’ Goodyear Finally Recalls Deadly G159

A lawyer involved in one of the dozens of lawsuits over Goodyear’s G159 tires dubbed it “The Worst Tire Made In History.” But that was years ago, as was the beginning of the NHTSA’s investigation, which began in 2017. But after refusing to recall them, the NHTSA forced Goodyear to finally begin recalling 173,000 of the recreational vehicle tires. 

When were these truck tires first available?

Goodyear tires
Goodyear tires | Getty

What might be worse is that 1996 was when production first began for the G159. It continued in production until 2003. That’s right, it has been in production for almost 20 years. A 2018 information request letter revealed almost 100 fatalities or injuries, according to Associated Press.

The G159 tire was first developed for delivery vehicles but then was marketed for recreational vehicle use. So in other words, motorhomes and RVs. In 2017, the NHTSA opened a preliminary evaluation after being apprised of litigation over the 275/70R22.5 G159 tire. In that litigation, it was alleged that they caused motorhome crashes where there were injuries and fatalities of some occupants. 

Why did it take so long to have these tires recalled?

Goodyear tires
Goodyear tires on automated conveyor | Getty

Since then, Goodyear and the NHTSA have conferred over the matter. Last year the NHTSA requested Goodyear to start a safety recall for them, but it “declined.” But now, finally, the company has begun to initiate a recall. Any vehicle rolling on them will receive replacement 275/70R22.5 G670 tires for free. 

But you have to wonder who would drive on 20-year-old tires, especially on a motorhome? How much good is this safety recall under these circumstances? Is there anything substantial affecting Goodyear after all of this time?

Goodyear says it will also pay for dismounting, installation, and balancing of the new tires. And they will also receive $60 to cover professionally weighing the motorhome. If anyone has one of them, it will exchange them for $500.  

How will Goodyear find the owners?

Goodyear tires
Goodyear tires stacked | Getty

In another victory for Goodyear by stalling all of these years, all of the motorhome manufacturers who sourced them are no longer in business. So there is no registration data for which motorhomes might have had them installed. What Goodyear intends to do is issue an information bulletin. 

Also, Goodyear will publish information on certain Goodyear websites, along with Tire Service Centers and dealers. The company will also perform outreach to the motorhome industry, trade associations, and numerous organizations specializing in Motorhome-related content. 

Do tires have an expiration date?

Goodyear tires
Goodyear tires | Getty

And finally, you should be checking your delivery trucks or RVs to see what tires they’re running. If you find these G159 tires on your vehicle, you need to replace them more often than once every 20 years. There are usually expiration dates located close to the wheel rim. 

The recommended time you absolutely should replace old tires is 10 years. But actually, you should replace them after six years. They can crack and get hard, which not only affects safety but also contributes to poor handling and ride. The more pliable they are, the better they feel through the steering wheel, and also in your seat.