Quebec's Tireless Search for Tires

Samir Syed
by Samir Syed
quebecs tireless search for tires

Last year, Premier Jean Charest’s fellow Québécois faced the worst winter the Province had seen in over five decades. So he directed his government to make winter radial tires mandatory. From December 15 until March 15, snow shoes for you, eh? Two weeks ago, I spoke to a mechanic in Nashua, New Hampshire who lamented a shortage of winter tires. New Hampshire being almost Canada, I should have twigged. Then, two days ago, a Montreal tire shop was burned to the ground in what the Montreal Gazette called a “supicious tire fire.” Still didn’t click. Finally, t he Canadian press put two and two together for me, declaring that Quebec’s winter tire law is causing a shortage and, c’est vrai, a tire war in the province. This being the first year such a law has been in place for any Canadian province, the demand for tires in Quebec has inevitably led to shortages in neighboring provinces and bordering U.S. states. In case anyone in the Northeast needs winter tires for a Ford Mustang, I happen to have a pair that I’d part with for, say, $20b dollars. U.S.

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4 of 27 comments
  • Gardiner Westbound Gardiner Westbound on Nov 13, 2008

    I priced 265/60 R18 winter tires at $2,600 including alloy wheels, TPMS sensors and calibration, installation and taxes. Steel wheels are unavailable. Genuine all season tires like the Nokian WR All-Weather Plus are starting to hit the market. I will hold out until they are generally available at competitive prices.

  • SherbornSean SherbornSean on Nov 13, 2008

    Gardiner, That's crazy money. Around now there are a lot of folks selling winter tire/wheel packages on Craig's List, typically with only a year or two's wear. If you aren't too picky about style, $500 buys a lot of rim and rubber.

  • AGR AGR on Nov 13, 2008

    Quebec for many years had the highest usage of winter tires in Canada, and everyone knew since last year that it was going to be law. Is it a real winter tire shortage?

  • Geo. Levecque Geo. Levecque on Nov 13, 2008

    May I suggest that anyone looking for Winter or other Tires read the ratings on the APA web page, its look under Tires, the Winter Tires where rated by a Quebec Firm for both Winter and Summer! Also if your vehicles takes a 18 inch wheel, you may be able to use a smaller wheel which I did with my 17 inch I used a 16 inch wheel and was able to use Steel wheels rather than the more expensive and leaking type Alloys! Good Luck