Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV – Nokian’s tyre for ‘genuine’ winter conditions
Nokian Tyres reports the use of ‘military-grade materials’ in its latest winter SUV tyre; by this it means aramid, which is present in the sidewall and provides the Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV additional protection against impact damage. The new tyre also utilises what the tyre maker says is the “most modern stud technology in the business”; Nokian says the end result is a tyre that offers “maximum peace of mind to drivers who can now completely enjoy the performance of their sports utility vehicles.” The Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV is designed for larger 4×4 and SUV vehicles.
The stated leading principle behind the Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV’s product development was to create a genuine winter tyre that will operate reliably in winter conditions – on ice, snow, and slush. Nokian says the principle of sustainable safety was also a major factor behind its product development – in other words, the tyre’s safety characteristics and handling must remain as good as possible even as the tyre wears.
“The fine-tuned Nokian Eco Stud 8 Concept in the new Nokian Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV ensures excellent winter grip,” reports Juha Pirhonen, product development manager at Nokian Tyres. “There are several innovations that improve driving stability. We also improved durability, which is very highly regarded by SUV drivers, by using even stronger materials, such as aramid fibres, on the sidewall, and by creating a tread compound that can tolerate the stress caused by rough northern roads.”
Nokian summarises the main innovations present in the Nokian Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV as follows:
Nokian Eco Stud 8 Concept: The Eco Stud 8 Concept has been tailored for use on heavier SUVs. It now includes a new-generation anchor stud, a flange design that reduces stud impact, and the Eco Stud cushion (already used on previous Hakkapeliitta winter tyres), which improves the studs’ operation and further softens road contact. On average, the Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV has 50 per cent more studs than predecessor tyre the Hakkapeliitta 7 SUV.
Nokian Aramid Sidewall technology: Durability and protection for surprising situations. The sidewall compound that is exceptionally durable and puncture-resistant contains extremely strong aramid fibres. The same material is utilised by the aerospace and defence industries. The aramid fibre stiffens and strengthens the sidewall rubber to withstand external impacts and pressing against the wheel flange.
Brake Booster Better braking grip: The brake boosters on the rear parts of the tread blocks improve braking grip on snow. The serrated pattern of the brake boosters especially improves grip on snow.
Hakkapeliitta Cryo Silane Gen 2 tread compound: Excellent winter grip under all temperatures, excellent wear resistance, and lower fuel consumption. The large amount of natural rubber keeps the compound flexible under all conditions. The sipes on the tread blocks work actively regardless of variations in grip level and temperature. Superior winter grip is ensured both near zero degrees and at very low temperatures. Added rapeseed oil increases the tear strength and ice grip of the compound.
Stiffness Zone: More driving stability and precision. A special Stiffness Zone has been added between the tread blocks in the shoulder area in order to stiffen it. The Stiffness Zone makes driving more precise and calmer, especially on dry roads.
Diagonal 3D support sipes: Quicker steering response. The diagonal 3D support sipes in the centre area stiffen the structure. The tyre is quick to react when steering, ensuring safe and precise handling.
Self-locking 3D sipes: More driving precision. The self-locking 3D sipes on the outside shoulder lock the tread blocks together on road contact, improving handling in turns and during evasive manoeuvres.
The Nordic region and Russia are the primary markets for the Hakkapeliitta 8 SUV, and Nokian says the range will contain 47 fitments for 16 to 21-inch rim diameters, including run-flat and XL versions. An autumn 2014 market launch is anticipated.