We often have people ask, "Why would I need reflective wheel stripes? They have been making reflective tires for years."
It's true--tire manufacturers have been adding retroreflective striping to tires for quite a while and I don't really have much bad to say about them.
The issue is, if you want to rely to reflective bicycle tires, your tire selection is extremely limited. At least in the states, there are only one or two performance road tires available with reflective striping, and they are almost always heavy and not what one would consider race tires. Even if you aren't a road racer, narrowing your tire selection down to only the ones with reflective stripes is just that--narrowing your selection (not to mention that reflective tires often cost $10-$15 more than their none-reflective counterparts).
Fiks:Reflective wheel stripes weigh almost nothing and don't affect aerodynamics--exactly what roadies want--and since they come in 8 different colors, they can be as inconspicuous or striking as your want. Plus, no one can steal them.