Michelin promises “unrivalled” longevity from new motorcycle tyres
In September, Michelin will launch a tyre it says delivers unrivalled tyre life. Naturally, this is a bold statement to make about any tyre and the manufacturer therefore supports this claim with results of independent tests conducted in the United States. Testing of Michelin’s new product, the Commander II, was carried out using a Harley-Davidson Electra Glide Classic and Michelin reports an impressive outcome: The rear tyre proved itself capable of covering distances of up to 25,000 miles or 40,000 kilometres; this is, Michelin comments, almost double the distance the Commander II’s direct competitors can cover. The front tyre displayed an even greater longevity.
“The Michelin Commander II creates a new standard with regard to durability, yet without making any compromises in terms of wet weather grip, manoeuvrability or stability,” the French manufacturer states in a press release announcing the new tyre’s imminent release. “This performance balance provides yet another eloquent illustration of Michelin’s research and development philosophy: no performance gain to be achieved on one front to the detriment of another.”
In response to the major problem faced by custom motorcycle riders – tyre life, notably at the rear – Michelin says engineers at the Michelin Technology Centre at Ladoux, near the company’s headquarters in Clermont-Ferrand, have developed a new rubber compound. The tyre’s radial casing is thus paired with what Michelin calls ‘Silica Rain Technology’, an integration of silica into the tyre’s tread compound. As for the tread pattern itself, the tyre maker says the pattern used on the Commander II has been designed to prevent all forms of uneven wear.
According to Michelin, the tyre’s architecture brings both manoeuvrability and stability, with its more rigid, high-density carcass improving manoeuvrability while resistance and lightness is enhanced by the rear tyre’s aramid fibre crown ply; this, Michelin adds, gives the Commander II “impeccable stability”, even at high speeds. Last but not least, the numerous longitudinal grooves of the new tyre’s tread pattern were designed to optimise water dispersal for outstanding wet weather grip.
Thirteen Commander II sizes will be available from September 2011, while two additional sizes will be released at the beginning of next year.