Product testing at the Pirelli Sottozero Centre in Lapland, Sweden is now taking place in summer as well as winter. Pirelli says it switched the facility to year-round testing in response to increased demand for product development on both wet and dry roads, particularly for all-season and winter tyres. The team at the Sottozero Centre recently wrapped up its winter test programme for the season and is now beginning the summer programme.
Hankook Tire is unveiling three products at The Tire Cologne later this month, including its first tyre family designed for electric vehicles. Other newcomers include the latest winter tyre range as well as an airless concept tyre. The tyre maker invites visitors to the show to view these and other products at its booth in Hall 8.1, aisle C040/aisle D049.
Hot on the heels of its all-weather PorTran 4S CX11 van tyre comes Kumho’s new WP52 – a winter pattern for medium to large passenger cars and SUVs. The company’s cold weather range now comprises five models of car & SUV tyre and two van tyre lines.
Italy-based Magri Gomme has hosted 2021’s best performing Giti and GT Radial customers at a celebratory event at the ski resort of Livigno. Dealers were given the opportunity to try out the brands’ latest winter tyres at Livigno Ice Driving School, including the GT Radial IcePro3, GT Radial WinterPro2 Sport, and the new GitiWinterW2.
Hankook will launch a new line of speciality electric vehicle tyres in May 2022. The line of Hankook iON tyres is developed to offer reduced rolling resistance and therefore an increase in range, lower tyre noise for more comfort, and higher resilience to deal with the higher torque of electric vehicles. The Korean manufacturer said that it is launching the iON line as a contribution to the transition towards zero emission vehicles. The iON line will be available initially in three designs for summer, winter, and all-season applications – the latter in North America, but with European seasonal fitments – in sizes between 18 and 22 inches. The tyres will respectively be launched as the Hankook Ventus iON S summer tyre pattern, the Hankook Winter i*cept iON (from September 2022), and the Hankook Ventus iON A. In addition to supplying its tyres to EV manufacturers and launching an EV tyre line in its domestic South Korean market, Hankook has recently aligned itself with a range of electric mobility projects, such as its title sponsorship of the inaugural Top Gear EV Awards in 2021. Hankook adds that further specific product designs are in the pipeline.
International contract tyre producer SD International is expanding its range of private brand Zeta car and SUV tyres. The range now includes seven models, with runflat, all-season and winter options for extended mobility joining the key Alventi and Impero lines of summer tyres.
The 2021 recovery of the UK car, SUV and van tyre (Light Vehicle) replacement market may not have been the desired quick return to pre-pandemic numbers, but GfK data supplied exclusively to Tyres & Accessories gives us some idea of how 2019 market growth areas have preserved continuity through the last two Covid-afflicted years. Tyres designed for the larger rims of higher performance and newer car models, SUV and light commercial vehicle tyres, and tyres offering performance in all seasons continued to grow at quicker rates than the whole UK replacement tyre market. These overall figures, shown in the top left-hand corner of the infographic, show that unit sales increased by three per cent within the panelmarket – similar figures comparing 2020 with 2019 published in February 2021 showed that unit sales contracted by 14 per cent for comparison. Meanwhile, the value of the UK’s Light Vehicle tyre market rose by seven per cent according to the panelmarket. GfK’s panelmarket data tracks points of sale around the UK to indicate aftermarket tyre trends – the data used for this article compares January-December 2021 to full-year 2020.
Nokian Tyres has developed a new line of winter van tyres for professionals and recreational drivers, with an additional studded option for Nordic conditions. The Hakkapeliitta CR4 and C4 studded tyres are designed to last longer and carry heavy loads in a balanced manner at higher speeds, the Finnish manufacturer says. Nokian has maximised the durability of the Hakkapeliitta C4 and CR4 via its impact, cut, and pothole resistant Aramid Sidewall technology. The new tyre line, designed for key markets in the Nordic countries and Russia, will be delivered to retailers by autumn, in time for the 2022/23 winter season.
The new Nokian Tyres Hakkapeliitta R5 for passenger cars and the Hakkapeliitta R5 SUV for sport utility vehicles and crossovers are made to deliver uncompromising safety and smart driving features for every day of winter. Offering the purest form of safety, the new Hakkapeliitta R5 product range is an innovative combination of winter grip, silence and driving comfort. A special addition to this product family is the Hakkapeliitta R5 EV, a dedicated version for electric vehicles and hybrids.
In a teasing press release just before Christmas, Nokian Tyres revealed that the company is extending its Hakkapeliitta winter tyre range, with the addition of new flagship products; the Hakkapeliitta R5 Nordic non-studded winter tyres, designed for passenger cars and SUVs. The new tyre is, says Nokian’s head of product management Marko Saari, “a revolutionary new tyre that everyone will want to experience for themselves.”
BKT develops specific tyres for the colder months of the year, solutions designed not only to deal with muddy or snowy surfaces but also to provide maximum performance in normal conditions on dry soil. It gives these products a tread pattern and compound that maintain the tyre’s characteristics even at low temperatures and provide traction and grip on wet, snowy or slippery terrain.
The latest figures from the SMMT confirm that electric vehicle uptake is accelerating, with 21,726 vehicles sold in November, equating to 18.8 per cent of the market. However, motorists embracing electrification for the first time need to consider the impact of harsh weather conditions on battery performance, says Venson Automotive Solutions.
Pre-Q Galgo Corporation has published details of its extension of the company’s Extreme tread line that includes the addition of 12 designs that were lab-tested down to 80 below and received Three-Peak Mountain Snow Flake (3PMSF) certification.
If you have the impression that we’re seeing more tyre tests these days and they’re appearing more frequently, you’re not mistaken. There are several reasons for this. One is the increasing popularity of all-season tyres. Secondly, tyre manufacturers are increasingly commissioning comparative tests of their own products alongside the competition. The third reason is that tests are often tweaked and presented to the public more than once. This was the case with the most recent winter test from German publication auto motor und sport (ams); it wasn’t long before two suspiciously similar – but not identical – doppelgangers appeared.
Apollo Tyres expresses pride in its Vredestein brand’s podium finishes in Auto Bild’s annual Tyre Manufacturer of the Year awards. The leading German car magazine awarded Vredestein joint second in the winter tyre category and joint third place in the all-season category.