Hankook introduces all-season truck range
If the weather in Europe is anything it is fickle, and the last couple of years have thrown several extremes our way. Hankook recognises that all-season tyres may be very much at home in our unpredictable conditions and has introduced an entirely new range of medium to long haul truck tyres for all-season purposes. The range is called Smartflex and consists of each three main sizes for steer and drive axle tyres. Hankook says the M+S marked tyres are designed to handle increased load capacities and to provide driving safety under changing weather conditions.
“The transportation business can be seen as the veins of the industrial society with just in time deliveries for nearly every product as today’s standard,” explains Hee-Se Ahn, vice-president for marketing and sales at Hankook Tire in Europe. “So it is our duty to provide products that make our fleet customers able to keep their promises as flexible as possible and regardless of weather conditions, road or vehicle requirements. This has led us to develop our all new Smartflex range of all season truck tyres that provides a smart and safe solution combined with the highest flexibility.”
The Smartflex AH31 is a five-rib medium to long haul steer axle tyre, available in sizes 295/80 R 22.5, 315/80 R 22.5 and 315/70 R 22.5. It is equipped with Hankook’s Spiral Coil Technology, which consists of an endlessly winded steel belt between the traditional high-tensile steel cord belts – this, explains Hankook, facilitates significantly improved belt durability. The new technology is said to effectively help increase both tyre life and load capacity. Furthermore, Hankook says it ensures a stabilised footprint shape for better steering and rolling characteristics. A ‘Tread Wear Equaliser Stepper’ – small support-blocks at the outside of ribs two and four – effectively prevent one-side irregular wear. All sizes have a ‘C/B’ and 72dB label rating.
The Smartflex DH31, again available in sizes 295/80 R 22.5, 315/80 R 22.5 or 315/70 R 22.5, is the corresponding drive axle tyre for medium to long haul applications. It provides a solid six rib tread design with tread blocks in six-angle shape for improved grip, higher mileage and reduced irregular wear. Hankook’s patented self regenerating kerfs in the centre of each block prevent tearing at block edges – Hankook says this provides for good traction throughout the tyre’s life. All sizes have a ‘D/C’ and 75dB (76dB for 315/70 R 22.5) label rating.
All Smartflex tyres come with a newly adapted three-dimensional full depth kerf solution. This reportedly results in a particularly even wear pattern, allowing for further mileage increase thus adding to the tyres economic efficiency. In case of the drive axle tyre 3D-kerfs care for a consistently high traction performance even in the later stages of wear.
The first sizes in Hankook’s new Smartflex range will go on sale in Europe from the second quarter of this year, and the 295-sizes will be available as of the fourth quarter.