More than one in ten UK drivers could be driving unsafe part-worn tyres, new research has claimed.

According to figures from AA Tyres, 14% of UK motorists plan to buy one or more part-worn tyres in the next 12 months, with more than a quarter (27%) of those aged between 18?24 expecting to buy second-hand tyres in the next year.

Part of the appeal seems to be a perceived level of cost-effectiveness, with 55% of motorists saying that new tyres are too expensive and 10% saying used tyres are better value for money.

However, AA Tyres said the tread of a used tyre is less than new and that the cost per mm over the lifespan of the tyre can be more expensive compared with new wheels.

Worryingly, 38% of drivers believe that a tyre fitter would supply tyres without knowing how safe they are, while 14% admitted to not caring where their tyres came from.

“When it comes to choosing tyres, picking price over safety is a dangerously regular occurrence,” said Mark Shankland, managing director of AA Tyres. “It’s not surprising that drivers are looking for ways to lower the cost of running their car, but buying used tyres is simply a false economy that continues to mislead millions of motorists each year.”

He added: “While initial outlay on a part-worn tyre may be as little as £10, the legal limit for tread is 1.6mm. Buying a used tyre with 2mm left of tread is therefore far less economical than buying a new tyre with 7mm, for example.”