The director for technologies of compartment of passenger car tires Goodyear Xavier Fraipont opened details about process of working out of new winter tire Goodyear UltraGrip 9. The success of a hit is always very difficult for repeating, and as since 2011 in Europe it has been sold over seven millions Goodyear UltraGrip 8, tires of the ninth generation should be really qualitative to be compared to the previous model. During a recent meeting in the Center of innovations Goodyear in Luxembourg the company held presentation of new tires, and Xavier Fraipont, the director for technologies of compartment of passenger tires Goodyear, told about how were created Goodyear UltraGrip 9. Hardly it is necessary to be surprised that in the company new tires consider as a key element of “winter” assortment. Workings out began, when in 2011 have been released the Goodyear UltraGrip 8, from computer modelling. Against nine tires of competitors it has been tested an order of 70 variants of new tires. Seven test sessions in winter conditions allowed to be defined definitively with a tread pattern – if more precisely, with drawings because Goodyear UltraGrip 9 are accessible in versions with and without the central longitudinal flute which in narrower models increases quantity of edges of gearing for good roadability on snow.
Drawing of complex enough and including numerous cross-section flute for clutch and water drainage increase. Steels an integral part of modern winter tires, are executed in three variants – direct, zigzag and “wafer” (or 3D-lameli – 3D-BIS). The quantity of edges exceeds 2 400. Tires also are supplied by the indicator of deterioration showing when depth of a tread decreases to 4 mm.
In laboratories Goodyear it has been tested hundred variants of a rubber mixture, and new tires is more elastic at low temperatures, than at Goodyear UltraGrip 8, thanks to a number of softeners, including vegetable oil. The rubber mixture also includes the rubbers increasing run and reducing resistance to swinging, and silicon, improving roadability on snow and wet road. All rideable qualities in winter conditions have been improved, but clutch on snow most strongly grew – as speak in Goodyear, the braking distance on a snow-covered surface on 4 % became shorter, than at «the nearest competitor».
On questions on how were developed Goodyear UltraGrip 9, and their what market waits, Xavier Fraipont answered.
Can tell you about what approach uses Goodyear during workings out of winter tires?
We develop not only separate products, but also technologies, and in the latter case can be demanded more time. On creation UltraGrip 9 some years left, but at this time we also worked over technologies which are unessentially intended for any one model of tires, and is faster for a certain segment.
How you solve, what technologies are necessary for developing?
We have an accurate plan on creation of new products, and we develop them very quickly. Not all tire manufacturers deduce on the market new tires each three-four years … We experts in respect of clutch on snow, therefore we invest in workings out of winter tires. If to speak about summer tire covers, the European identification mark has great value, therefore we work and in this direction. Besides, we conduct market probes to answer a question, what things will be important for consumers tomorrow.
Also there is one more prominent aspect – work in a segment of a primary complete set. We develop the tires which are precisely meeting the requirements of motor-car manufacturers. We also know, what norms will be entered in the European Union in 2020 so we will need to improve even more the characteristic of the tires in the nearest some years. Here as a whole all factors, being guided on which we solve, what indicators we need to reach, and what will be our priorities.
Whether use of new technology for a product which is already exhausted on the market that it to improve is possible?
All depends on technology type. In tread UltraGrip 9, for example, are 3D-lameli. If to speak about new as in this case, they are used only in new products as the compression mould is necessary. If speech about new ornaments which improves base characteristics, such as resistance to swings, clutch on wet road or we can use it in manufacture of tires already presented in the market.
Goodyear plans to continue workings out of tires of family UltraGrip?
If to take present ruler UltraGrip, into it enter UG9, UG8 Performance – tires of class High Performance – and also UG Ice 2, Ice Arctic (with stripes) and all these tires in versions for cars of class SUV. We have some operating time concerning the tenth generation. We know, that we want to reach, and in what direction will move, most likely, competitors … If to begin with zero and to exhaust new model in two years, it is an impracticable problem. If you want to receive something qualitative, it is important to plan also working out process, and for winter tires besides it is required seven test sessions in winter conditions.
Snow is, alas, not simply snow … the Size of snowflakes, how they are laid, the raised or depressed moistness and much another has huge value. Tires will not be ideal everywhere, but we want, that they well worked on all types of a surface. Therefore it is necessary to consider a full spectrum of conditions.