Pirelli has revealed its first test of the new, wider 2017 specification Formula One tyres will be on 1-2 August at Ferrari’s Fiorano circuit, near Modena in northern Italy. The tyre supplier will use a modified Ferrari SF15-T, at the test, during which the track will be artificially dampened in order to carry out tests with Cinturato intermediate and full wet tyres. Testing will continue immediately on 3-4 August, when Red Bull will test the new P Zero slick tyres at Mugello.
Several online sources are reporting that a number of German car manufacturers are planning to recall large numbers of vehicles as part of the ongoing vehicle emissions scandal. Sources suggest Mercedes, Opel and Porsche as well as Volkswagen and its Audi brand are to recall certain diesel vehicles. BBC news reports that over 600,000 cars are set to be recalled, citing German media reports.
Daimler AG has confirmed that it is conducting an “internal investigation regarding its certification process related to exhaust emissions in the United States”. This action follows a request from the US Department of Justice (DOJ). As a result the company says it will “investigate possible indications of irregularities and of course take all necessary actions.”
Goodyear has announced that it is supplying 19- and 20-inch OE tyres for the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class. As you would imagine, smooth ride is an important part of this particular OE deal, so it is interesting to note that the associate OE fitments feature Goodyear’s SoundComfort Technology integrated into the tyres.
Although the name Mercedes isn’t mentioned even once, there’s no mistaking that a statement issued by Pirelli yesterday aims to finally put an end to the conspiracy theories circulating since last weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix.
Dunlop has launched a series of videos themed on the brand’s technical partnership with AMG. The release of the first short videos is timed to coincide with Dunlop’s first anniversary as the AMG Driving Academy’s official tyre partner, which extended its four-year technical partnership with AMG Customer Sports. Each of the five videos offers behind-the-scenes access to Dunlop’s technical team, which designs, develops and tests tyres to meet Mercedes-AMG’s highest standards. The first two episodes in the series are available to watch in the main body of this article.
Lewis Hamilton’s victory at the British Grand Prix was inspired by an early pit stop to fit Pirelli’s Cinturato wet tyres, having conceded pole position to his Williams rivals at the start. Mercedes made the right strategy call a second time, when Hamilton was brought in for his second stop (for intermediates) just as proper rain hit the end of the grand prix.
There is chaos in the Russian light vehicle market, with some of the fastest contractions on record. The Russian light-vehicle market posted a the highest rate of monthly contraction since the accelerated decline of 2009 of 42.5 per cent year-on-year to 139,850 units, according to the latest data set released by the Association of European Businesses (AEB).
The chairman of the AEB’s vehicle manufacturers committee blamed the pull-forward effect of the government’s scrappage scheme and the heavy price inflation. The latter is no doubt a bigger reason for the collapse as the general macroeconomic environment in Russia continues to deteriorate alarmingly as the rouble weakens and sanctions bite,
Pirelli said that its pre-season data has been backed up by lap times around two seconds quicker than 2014 at the season-opening Australian grand prix. Reigning champion Lewis Hamilton beat his Mercedes team mate Nico Rosberg from pole, with both drivers utilising cool conditions and low degradation to perform very similar one-stop strategies.
Continuing its five-year collaboration, premier Mercedes tuner, Carlsson, Vredestein has released a new 19-inch high-performance tyre for the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class. The Carlsson Vredestein Ultrac Vorti is being pitched as a premium ultra-high performance tyre. Like numerous other Vredestein tyres, the new product’s asymmetric tread pattern was developed in cooperation with Giugiaro.
Once again, the Mercedes team closed out the top two steps of the podium at Interlagos, using three stops – as did almost every driver – to dominate in the penultimate race of 2014. The only surprise was that Nico Rosberg ended Lewis Hamilton’s five GP winning streak to make the Briton finish at least second to ensure championship victory in Abu Dhabi’s controversial double-points grand prix. Both Mercedes drivers started on the soft tyre to make good their front row grid advantage, before seeing out the race comfortably on the medium P Zeros. Tyre supplier, Pirelli correctly predicted this as the fastest strategy for the 71 lap race, and a high degree of tyre wear meant that all but Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen, who finished seventh, stopped three times
The development of the winter tyre market has been a topic of discussion for years now. During the last decade this niche segment has experienced significant growth (see chart 1). And while winter tyres still only account for between one and two per cent UK replacement market share, that isn’t the case across Europe where winter tyre share exceeds 50 per cent. Besides, that doesn’t negate the safety benefits these products offer. Neither does it undermine the retail opportunities available to the trade. And of course the development of winter tyres – as with summer tyres and other products – is best done in partnership with original equipment manufacturers.
With all this in mind, it is no surprise that premium-focused manufacturer Pirelli invests what it does in the development, distribution and crucially the communication of the benefits of winter tyres. For example Pirelli held a series of experience events earlier this summer in order to not only explain but also demonstrate the benefits of winter tyres to market customers and partners. Tyres & Accessories attended one such event at Tamworth Snowdome and learnt how strong Pirelli is in this segment and experience the difference winter tyres make – especially on luxury 4×4 vehicles.
Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton claimed victory in Monza, using the popular one-stop strategy, the race method predicted as dominant prior to the race by tyre supplier Pirelli. The manufacturer’s home race – it is held half an hour’s drive from the company’s HQ in Milan – saw all of the top 10 finishers using similar tactics to Hamilton, as low wear and degradation of both compounds made the approach almost obligatory.
Dunlop is the official tyre partner of the AMG Driving Academy for the 2014/2015 season. The partnership with the AMG Driving Academy is the next step of an ongoing cooperation between Mercedes-AMG and Dunlop, with both companies delivering high performance products to the market.
The Spanish grand prix at Barcelona allowed Pirelli to showcase the solidity of its 2014 Formula One rubber, supporting the manufacturer’s assertion that its tyres would not repeat the 2013 specification’s well-publicised problems. As one of the season’s most demanding tracks, the 2013 Barcelona grand prix was won on a four-stop strategy; in 2014, eight of the top 10 finishers completed the 66 laps with two.