Tyre testing has commenced at the new Nokian Tyres Test Center in Santa Cruz de la Zarza, Spain. The tyre maker is utilising all ten tracks at the site, including the ‘crown jewel’, a seven-kilometre oval track circling the facility.
Finnish manufacturer Nokian Tyres says it wants to develop and present a concept tyre entirely produced from renewable and recycled tyres by 2025. It hasn’t yet shared specific project details, but it appears this 100 per cent eco-friendly concept may well be a winter tyre. Nokian’s announcement creates this impression, at any rate.
Nokian Tyres is introducing a new range for the coming winter. It describes this addition to its product portfolio, the Nokian WR A4, as a “premium winter tyre” and “the ultimate weather master.” The WR A4 carries the 3PMSF ‘snowflake’ marking and will be available in 51 sizes for 16 to 21-inch rim diameters and speed ratings from H up to W, including XL load capacity and run-flat versions.
Nokian Tyres has introduced a new off-road tyre for light trucks and SUVs, the Rockproof, and says it “offers extreme durability for professional driving and off-road enthusiasts. The tyre maker singles out quarries, forests and mines as environments in which the Nokian Rockproof is a “fearless performer,” and states that “this sturdy new tyre is a tireless workhorse with a thoroughbred mining compound that can handle even unexpected impacts during demanding off-road use.” Eight Nokian Rockproof sizes will introduced in Europe early next year.
The introduction of the European tyre label in November 2012 resulted in murmurs from some tyre makers – most notably Nokian Tyres – about its unsuitability for appraising their winter ranges, and the Finnish manufacturer even went as far as introducing its own ‘winter grip label’ that aimed to place labelling criteria within a winter context. This was withdrawn after a short period of time, but now Nokian Tyres has made another label-related winter tyre announcement: Despite the label’s use of criteria that is more compatible with summer tyres, this autumn Nokian will launch a SUV winter tyre that has achieved an ‘AA’ label rating. The tyre maker points out its size 265/50 R19V WR SUV 3 is the first winter tyre in Europe – and by default the world – to achieve this top label rating.
Winter means different things to different people depending on where they live, and thankfully tyre makers are acknowledging this. Both Pirelli and Michelin recently added summer/winter tyres for temperate European climates to their portfolios, and winter tyre pioneer Nokian Tyres has now introduced a product it describes as a “versatile chameleon for winter roads” – a tyre that not only performs well in snow and slush (real winter weather, to use Nokian’s own words), but also in the wet weather that many of us more commonly encounter in the colder months. The Nokian WR D4 is scheduled for release in autumn 2015 and is promoted as the “world’s first premium winter tyre for passenger cars” to achieve an ‘A’ European tyre label rating for wet grip.
Nokian Tyres has provided details of a new range it says will “put an end to the tyre change roulette that bothers drivers each spring and autumn.” Scheduled for an autumn 2015 launch and developed with motorists in Central Europe in mind, the Nokian Weatherproof family aims to “combine reliable winter safety with the precise driving stability and firm handling of the Nokian summer tyres” and will be available in passenger car, SUV and van fitments.