THE EVOLUTION OF THE CAR TYRE

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The donuts of the car. The thing that provides the traction between the road and the wheel. The thing that can save your life within a fraction of a second. A thing that is the most important in the car but the thing that some will less care about comparing to the transmission, and engine where it fact after this 2 thing this is the most important thing. The car tire is one of the most important things as it does all the functions as mentioned above. In American English, it called as tyre and in British English, it is called a tire. Today we will look at these round-shaped car donuts that had evolved throughout the year.

A modern tire that contains just a body and thread is called as pneumatic tire where it consists of synthetic rubber or natural rubber, wire, Kevlar, and other undisclosed things. This is a far cry from the old tire that had a band of metal filled with a wooden wheel to prevent wear and tear.

Tire_tread
A modern pneumatic tire.

The standard pneumatic tire had been patented in early 1847 by Scottish inventor Robert William Thomson, however, it does not go into production. Then came another Scottish John Boyd Dunlop who had invented the practical pneumatic tire that he had created for his son tricycle. He only concerns on the cycle and light vehicles. He had tried to patent it for tricycle and the light wheel in 1888 but was declared invalid due to Robert William Thomson early patent but was credited for discovering that rubber can withstand the wear and tear but at the sometimes maintain the tire resilience and John Boyd Dunlop had acquired the right for this and allowed some limited protection of pneumatic tire with fellow inventor Charles Kingston. This is the beginning of the Dunlop Tire.

Then in 1946 Michelin had created the radial tire. Michelin had commercialized, designed, developed, and make a patent on it. This tire was made with cord plies arranged at 90 degrees to the direction of travel or from the center of the tire. This tire becomes immensely popular due to his longer tread life, better steering feedback, and lower rolling resistance that had become the hallmark of the Michelin tire and also is used by most of the tire manufacturers. They are also a big 5 in the tire industry and they are Michelin, Goodyear, Continental, Bridgestone, and Pirelli. All this manufacturer had a reputation for doing good tire and many of the car manufacturers will fit their car with these brands.

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The pneumatic modern tire had body and thread. The thread will be designed in such a way to prevent what called Hydroplaning or aquaplaning. This is basically to prevent the water building in the tire that can affect the tire that can lead to loss of traction and it can be very dangerous for the driver. If you had noticed for each tire they are a different tread pattern but they will be some similarities. They will have a water groove, thread lug, wear bar to that act as the tire wear indicator, sipe, tread void, and sidewall that will have the necessary information for the tire such width, height, rim size, manufacturer name, tire name, treadwear rating, year of manufacturer, tire load, PSI and many more.

Reading your tyre
The tire sidewall

The tire had evolved again in the of the run-flat-tire. Some tire manufacturers like to call them Run On Flat, PAX System, or RFT. This is the tire where it designed to resist the effect of deflation when the tire is punctured in a limited distance or limited speed depends on the tire manufacturer. It eliminates the need of carrying a spare tire. BMW and Mercedez-Benz had fitted all their car with this tire. BMW, on the other hand, is providing a 2-year warranty for their tire. The downside of this tire is very expensive compared to normal tire where the price range can be RM 1000 – RM 5000 depends on the tire size.

Now they are several types of tire that can be chosen depends on the user car specification. We will look at them.

1) Low Rolling Resistance.

This is a tire that used to decrease the rolling resistance of the tire and minimized the wasted energy on the tire rolling. Many manufacturers will highlight this type of tire as a fuel-saving tire. This tire will save fuel if the driver is someone who drives gently. If the driver is a speedster then this tire wills not suitable for that as it is not built for that. The tire can fit in this range is the Michelin XM series, Goodyear Assurance, ContiConfortContact, Bridgestone Turanza, and Bridgestone Ecopia series.

2) Performance Tyre

It can also be called a sports tire because of the nature of the tire where it was designed for speed and control. This tire will able the driver to take a swift corner without losing control, great grip, extra speed in the tire, and withstand a high speed. This is the tire for the speedster or someone who likes to get adrenaline rushes and at some feel safe. The tire that can fit in this range is the Michelin Pilot series, Goodyear F1 series, ContiSportContact Series, Bridgestone Potenza, and Pirelli P Zero series.

3) Ultra-High Performance.

This tire is only for the bigger car as it is only available for 18 inches and above. These tires most commonly have a bigger width such as 235, 245, or 255. The tire that falls under this range is Michelin Pilot Super Cup, Goodyear F1 Series for higher rims, ContiSportContact P, and Bridgestone Potenza series for higher rims.

4) Special Made Tire.

At the moment, the only special made for a car is the Michelin tire that is fitted to Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sports. This tire was made with the sizeĀ 245/690 R 520 in the front and in the rear the size of the tire isĀ 365/710 R 540 A making it the largest rear wheel tire in the world. The cost to change the tire is USD 42,000 per set making it one of the most expensive tires in the world.

veyron-super-sport-back
The rear tire of the Bugatti Veyron the largest rear tire in the world

The car tire will continue to evolve in the future as for all technologies of the engines, transmission, interior, and exterior design the tire is still the only thing that makes contact with the road so any innovation is expected to create a better and safer tire.

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