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Cooper Tire


The American Cooper Tire, “high-end” tire specialist, upgrades its Zeon range as well as the Discoverer series dedicated to 4x4


Duilio Damiani

The fact that Cooper tire aims at gaining ground on the European market has long been understood. From the moment that, beside the historic Cooper factory in the U.K. (a short distance from the Cooper Europe headquarters), a new manufacturing complex was created in Kruševac, Serbia, in 2012. A strategic multimillion investment where most of the company’s production destined for the European market, including Italy, will be concentrated. This is where future production lines will soon get underway which will account for 90% of the European production already by 2016.

First, the new ranges unveiled before the European press last October - soon available in Italy and marketed exclusively through a partnership with the Turin based distributor Overgom – that is, the ultra high performance Zeon CS8, which replaces the previous CS6, the Zeon SX4 Sport for SUVs (still produced, for the moment, in the U.K. factory), and the ultra-specialized Discoverer STT Pro, dedicated to extreme off-road and developed to cope with normal tar roads as well as extreme natural terrains.



Especially designed to meet the demands of a market increasingly sensitive to high technology tires, the Zeon CS8 is the latest UHP Cooper Tire designed with cutting-edge production technologies aimed at guaranteeing high level of safety on every road, in both dry and wet conditions, especially at high speeds.

With four large circumferential grooves and sequenced tread blocks, its tread design – which varies throughout the contact patch to increase grip and driving precision – also features sipes of different sizes on the shoulder to enhance tread block stability and reduce deformation, and Opti-Noise technology for a quiet and comfortable ride. Microdots cover the bottom of the circumferential grooves, otherwise smooth, reducing the amount of noise generated by the tire.

A third generation special HD compound (High Dispersion Silica Tread), uses new polymer technology and advanced mixing techniques to deliver excellent wet and dry grip while reducing at the same time rolling resistance for greater fuel efficiency.

The CS8 also features Cooper’s innovative Wear Square (in addition to the traditional Tread Wear Indicator and not meant as a replacement), an exclusive visual indicator on the tire that allows drivers to quickly and easily assess the remaining tread life. Built into the tread design, this features the outline of a square located at six points of reference around the inside and outside of the tire tread, which wears off with the tire.

With its A rating for braking distance on wet roads, the Zeon CS8 is particularly suitable, among UHP products, to equip large sedans, GTs or Station Wagons, thanks to a large dimensional range, between 15 and 18 inches and widths between 185 and 245 mm with V, W and Y speed ratings.


THE UTILITY OPTION                                             

Strategically important in an evolving market, the Cooper tire range intended for large and mid-size sport utility vehicles is now called Zeon 4XS Sport. Here too the evolution of the American brand is seen in the application of advanced designs and compounds, just as in the case of its road counterparts. A technology that earned an A rating in braking distances in wet conditions, thanks to the wide longitudinal grooves that favor maximum water displacement. While special 3D grooves allows the Zeon 4XS Sport to quickly reach and maintain the operating temperature, benefiting wet grip and tread block flexibility, the variable tread blocks coupled to NDS technology promote acoustic comfort, generating less rolling noise.

The tire’s stability, subjected to heavy loads and high power, benefits from an asymmetric tread design with three-dimensional footprints outlined by three-dimensional tread blocks, with 3D technology Micro-Gauge, which, through a series of notches inside the grooves, contribute to enhance heat reduction while maintaining a constant driving precision, besides increasing the overall lifespan of the tire.

A lighter casing and new High Dispersion Silica Tread compound, the same found on the Zeon CS8 UHP tire, increase stability and handling, coupled with a generous central tread rib to provide sensitivity and precision.

A new bead profile has been used on the 4XS to improve the tire/rim seat interface, making tire-fitting operations easier, besides protecting the sidewall from accidental contact with obstacles such as stones and sidewalks.

The Zeon 4XS Sport TIRE replaces both the previous Zeon 4XS and XSTa, covering a wide range of sizes suitable for most sport utility vehicles, with keying ranging between 16 to 21 inches, and sizes between 215 and 295 mm and speed codes H, V, W and Y.


WHEN THE GOING GETS TOUGH…                        

With experience gained over decades, including motor sport events ( for example the World Rally-cross Championship sponsored by Cooper as technical supplier), as well as recent victories in the Dakar, the wide range of products dedicated to 4x4 vehicles has been further enriched by a new upgraded version of the Discoverer STT Pro, a tire with huge tread blocks, which aims to offer the best possible grip in the worst conditions.

From dirt and mud to rocky terrain, the Discoverer STT Pro benefits from an aggressive tread pattern with large blocks and grooves able to bite into the ground. The Discoverer STT Pro is equipped with reinforced shoulder and 3-ply Armor- Tek3 casing construction for maximum strength and durability in any off road terrain compared with a conventional 2-ply structure.

The tread pattern, with 3-2 inner tread ribs, delivers excellent handling, traction and even tread-wear, ensuring a good compromise even when driving on tar roads, reducing friction and rolling noise even on every day roads. The size range - similar to previous STT - will cover specific sizes, from 15 to 18 inches, from 225 to 315 mm and aspect ratio between 65 and 85.


The current range of Ultra High Performance road tires is offered with a money back guarantee formula (within the first 1,000 km or 30 days), as well as a guarantee by the manufacturer not only against manufacturing defects, but also the risk of cracks and holes, as well as a performance guarantee for as much as 48,000 km. This formula, of great interest for the clients, which says a lot about the quality standards applied to a production that wants to set itself as a reference point not only for the US market, but in Europe as well, represents a unique guarantee for European motorists. New car and SUV products are expected in the near future, which will complete, by 2017, the full renovation of Cooper’s tire range.

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