Conti launches EV-specific tyre range
According to Continental, an estimated 2.8 million electric vehicles will be registered worldwide and on the road by 2020. To cater to this currently small yet fast-growing market, the tyre maker has introduced the Conti.eContact, a new range featuring dimensions specifically aimed at electric vehicles.
Developed in co-operation with Europe’s leading car manufacturers, the Conti.eContact introduces new tyre dimensions with a larger outer diameter, such as 195/55R20, instead of a traditional 205/55R16. This concept, Continental shares, results in substantially reduced rolling resistance. A more flexible tyre sidewall helps result in less energy loss when deflecting or rebounding.
Continental says its tyre engineers were required to start with a new approach to the Conti.eContact whilst still ensuring the tyre excelled at wet braking. The new tyre thus features wide circumferential grooves, optimised tread depth, a flat contour and smooth off-shoulder design; according to Conti, these combine to make “an extremely efficient and durable tyre for the electric vehicle market.”
The tyre will be visually identifiable by the name ‘BLUECO’ on its sidewall. Continental reports that the Conti.eContact will initially be a niche product in the UK, but a growing charge infrastructure for electric vehicles and government incentives are likely to aid uptake and a move away from traditional petrol and diesel engines. The new tyre will be available from this year in sizes 125/80R13 and 145/40R13.