Just as talented chefs tweak their recipes to improve flavours, tyre manufacturers make updates during the production cycle to gain better performance. Such a tweak has helped Bridgestone: When Autozeitung tested the Turanza T005 in 2020 it found the tyre imperfect on wet roads. Bridgestone adjusted the T005’s tread compound last year, and the result is a safer “wet specialist” – and an Autozeitung test win for the Bridgestone tyre.
The scramble to make this year’s Auto Bild summer tyre test shortlist is over, with no less than 21 of the 50 competing tyres making the grade. These finalists achieved the shortest combined stopping distances in wet and dry braking tests and include established premium brands as well as products that offer good performance at a competitive price.
Summer tyre tests in 2021 have highlighted the sometimes dazzling qualities of the best performing tyre products. However, the Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobilclub’s (ADAC) most recent test appears to have been particularly demanding. No tyre received ADAC’s top “very good” rating, and only five models were rated “good” over the two sizes tested – 205/55 R16 V and 225/50 R17 Y. There were some intriguing results at the top of the table. Falken confirmed its increasingly impressive performance of recent years by winning the 17” tyre test with its Azenis FK510 flagship UHP tyre. The Kumho Ecsta PS71 also achieved a “good” rating in the 17” test, while Continental group brand Semperit’s Speed-Life 3 achieved an overall result matching the Conti PremiumContact 6 in the 16” test. There was worse news for the 17” Firestone Roadhawk, which became the only tyre to receive an “inadequate” report.
For their current summer tyre test, the main motoring associations in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (the ADAC, ÖAMTC and TCS) have looked at 32 products in total. Half of these were in the small family car size 185/65 R15 H/V, and the remainder size 215/65 R16C, tyres suited for use on vans, minibuses and campervans.
According to Bridgestone Corporation, its global investments in research and development are the highest in the industry – it invested more than £710 million in this area last year – and the company says they’ve paid off. As evidence, the tyre maker points to the more than 45 original equipment fitments it has landed on more than 15 vehicle models since the start of 2018. What’s more, over 60 additional fitments are expected to come by the end of this year.
Bridgestone tyres have been approved as original equipment on the latest Mercedes A-Class. The Turanza T005 is the tyre of choice, and Bridgestone Europe reports it will supply Mercedes-Benz with dimensions to fit the full 17- to 19-inch high-rim range, including 17- and 18-inch tyres with run-flat technology.
Bridgestone launched the new Turanza T005 in the second half of 2017, replacing its Turanza T001 EVO, and joining the innovative DriveGuard in covering the European car tyre market. The new tyre, which was developed and produced in Europe to offer motorists improved wet performance and fuel economy, combined with high mileage, is now available in a wide line-up that will eventually provide almost complete touring market coverage by 2019, with more than 140 sizes for 14’’ to 21’’ rims.