Kwik Fit | Wednesday 11th March 2015 2:00pm
As one of the biggest events in the automotive calendar, the Geneva International Motor Show gives the big players in the motor industry the perfect opportunity to showcase their latest products and innovations. Goodyear were yet again present at the 2015 event taking place in Switzerland this week, and revealed a trio of new tyre innovations.
Energy generating tyres
The first and most notable innovation on show from Goodyear was the unveiling of the company’s latest concept tyre – a tyre with the unique ability to generate electricity. Conceived by the engineers at Goodyear’s Innovation Center, the developmental tyre known simply as the Goodyear BH03 at present, contains materials that can create electrical energy that supplies the batteries on a hybrid vehicle as well as powering other on-board electronics. Thermoelectric materials used in the construction of the BH03 transform heat when the tyre is rolling into electrical energy and can also absorb light and heat thanks to its ultra-black texture when the tyre is stationary. A second piezoelectric material in the tyre accumulates electrical energy in response to pressure.
Although the technology is purely conceptual and there are no plans to release the tyre, Goodyear will continue to develop low carbon, energy efficient technologies as desire for electric cars grows.
Smart morphing tyres
Goodyear’s second big reveal at the show was for another concept tyre – the Goodyear Triple Tube. The tyre is so called because it can inflate and deflate automatically based on the road ahead, allowing it to “prepare” the shape it needs to be before entering a corner, thus delivering improved performance and versatility for drivers.
An internal pump moves air from the main air chamber in the tyre into three individual air chambers to best suit road conditions. An economy position offers reduced rolling resistance and improved dry braking by utilising a wider footprint in contact with the road; the sporty position gives drivers improved dry handling through an optimised contact patch which uses an active conical shape; and finally, a wet safety position provides improved aquaplaning resistance thanks to a raised tread in the centre of the tyre which gives a larger tyre diameter resulting in a narrow and long surface footprint.
Triple Tube technology also provides extended mobility like a runflat tyre as a puncture in one chamber would still allow the driver to continue their journey utilising the other two.
Like the BH03, Goodyear won’t be bringing the Triple Tube to market just yet but the concept may shape future tyre technology.
While the above innovations give us a peek into what the future of tyre technology may hold in store, Goodyear also demonstrated its new EfficientGrip Performance AA-rated tyre available in eight sizes.
EU Tyre Labelling legislation which came into force in 2012 necessitates that all tyres carry a label providing objective and comparable information about the tyre. The AA rating is the highest grade set out by the legislation and signifies a tyre that delivers an A in both fuel efficiency (as a result of reduced rolling resistance) and wet grip.
Goodyear was the first to introduce concept AA-rated tyres back in 2012 when the new EU tyre labelling legislation came into force and the launch of the new EfficientGrip Performance AA at this year’s Geneva International Motor Show means Goodyear is now providing the largest number of tyre sizes showcasing the AA rating on the market today.
Look out for availability of the Goodyear EfficientGrip Performance AA in the near future and, who knows, maybe even energy-generating tyres in the next few years.
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