# Does more surface area mean more traction?

I came across this question when considering new vehicle tires in a snowy environment. It appears that big off-road tires have very deep treads which greatly increase the surface area of the tire. Does this allow the tire to have more traction since more surface area is in contact with the ground resulting in the concept of "more surface area equals more traction"?

• More on friction & area. – Qmechanic Dec 28 '15 at 18:01
• Generally speaking for friction the somewhat idealised model $F_f=\mu F_N$ is used, where $\mu$ is a friction coefficient and $F_N$ the Normal force. It's surface area invariant. I believe it's the same here. The deep grooves act like shovels, thereby greatly increasing traction. So I would argue that such a design increases $\mu$, and so also $F_f$. – Gert Dec 28 '15 at 18:07