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Technical Review

Goodyear

Goodyear renews its UltraGrip winter range. High performance vehicles, compact cars, small city cars and commercial vehicles using UltraGrip Performance+, UltraGrip 9+ or UltraGrip Cargo will benefit from increased winter performance. Goodyear's UltraGrip Performance+ tires improve the behaviour of high performance cars in both wet and dry conditions with two important technologies. Traction Protect Technology, which introduces a new resin-containing compound that improves the tire's ability to deform and reshape, providing greater braking grip. Winter Grip Technology consists of a new mix of compounds that provides greater elasticity at low temperatures, which means enhanced grip on snow and ice. With the UltraGrip 9+ range, Goodyear offers a tire that can safely cope with harsh winter conditions. Its Mileage Plus technology protects the tire from damage and consequent detachment of rubber parts caused by adverse road conditions, resulting in improved performance and mileage. UltraGrip 9+ also boasts Winter Grip Technology, which ensures optimum grip on snow and ice. Thanks to several improvements made in tread design and rubber compounds, the new Goodyear UltraGrip Cargo for light commercial vehicles offers outstanding braking performance on snow and reduces total cost of ownership, improving mileage and safety, particularly appreciated by vehicle owners whose vehicles have to operate even in the toughest winter conditions. The introduction of UltraGrip Performance+ will be gradual, with more than 60% of sizes available as early as September, similarly to UltraGrip 9+ and UltraGrip Cargo.

Continental

Continental has unveiled a new short-range radar which represents the next development stage towards even more precise vehicle-surrounding detection. In place of the 24 Gigahertz (GHz) technology used up to now, the new radar generation operates using 77 GHz technology. This means that the radar sensor detects the surrounding environment at a much higher resolution and level of accuracy than was previously the case. Consequently, it is able to detect other road users and obstacles much more precisely. Moreover, the 77 GHz sensor also detects movement directions and speeds more precisely than it was possible with the 24 GHz range previously used.

In addition, the integration density has been further increased thanks to the new radar generation. As a result, the individual components of the system, such as the antenna and the radio-frequency (RF) chip, are now housed in a smaller installation space, rendering the sensor even more compact. This, in turn, makes it easier to install the system in the vehicle, even in confined places.

One of the new radar sensors can be positioned at each of the four corners of the vehicle body to ensure almost seamless 360-degree monitoring of the vehicle surroundings. Radar systems such as this already form the basis for various advanced driver assistance systems employing sensors, such as monitoring the blind spots to the left and right of the vehicle in a horizontal direction, detecting the vehicle surroundings for the Lane Change Assist, monitoring cross-traffic and intersections for the Intersection and Emergency Brake Assist systems, as well as monitoring the area behind the vehicle to ensure that vehicle occupants can get out safely. This prevents, for example, the doors from being opened when another vehicle or a cyclist is approaching from behind.

Even more functions can now be realized thanks to the much higher resolution and more precise detection offered by the new radar generation from Continental. These functions include the Right-Turn Assist system for passenger cars, which makes turning-off significantly safer and provides welcome support for car drivers, especially in the confusing situations that sometimes occur in urban traffic. The new generation of radar sensors can detect a cyclist approaching from behind the vehicle on the right-hand side. Right-Turn Assist intervenes if the driver wants to turn right when the cyclist is just about to pass along the right-hand side of the vehicle. Drivers are not always able to recognize this risky situation, even when they look over their shoulders. If the radar sensors detect a cyclist in such a situation, they transmit an appropriate signal to the brakes and the car stops before the car and cyclist collide. Needless to say, this safety function also protects pedestrians and scooter riders.

Furthermore, this new technology already meets the requirements of the Euro NCAP safety scenarios for 2022 onwards. The installation of cornering assistance systems in trucks will be mandatory across the EU on all new vehicle types from 2020 onwards. The figures clearly show just how urgent this regulation is. In Germany alone, 36 percent of all accidents in which a cyclist is killed could be prevented by installing Right-Turn Assist systems in trucks. The seamless and high-resolution monitoring of the vehicle surroundings made possible by Continental’s new 77 GHz short-range radar technology will form the basis for other advanced driver assistance systems in the future – especially in relation to automated and autonomous driving. Emergency Steer Assist, for example, can be implemented on the basis of data from the new radar generation. In the event of a sudden avoidance manoeuvre, this system allows the vehicle to be steered away from the collision risk area.

GT Radial

The GT Radial 4Seasons - premiered in Cologne last year - is the tire that marks the brand's entry into the all-season market. The tire was developed at Giti Tire's European Research and Development Centre in Hannover, Germany. GT Radial's 4 Seasons tire is available in 14 -17 inch sizes with speed rating indexes between T and V. Featuring a newly developed full-silica blend tread compound, the GT Radial 4Seasons carries the ‘alpine symbol’ to indicate good performance regardless of the weather conditions. The tire is created to deliver secure traction in winter and comfort in summer, with the important added benefit of a good wear rate. Design features include a wide centre rib and relatively stiff shoulders for fast steering reaction and cornering stability. Two ultra-wide grooves ensure fast water displacement to reduce aquaplaning and braking distances on wet surfaces, while smaller grooves of differing depths enhance grip on snow and ice-covered roads. Giti Tire is one of the largest tire companies in the world in terms of both volume and revenue.

Dunlop

Dunlop has announced it will launch a trio of new motorcycle tires in the second half of 2019 with the ambition of creating the tire brand’s strongest-ever portfolio. The new launches will include a retro-styled tire featuring modern technology, a new addition to the MXGP and Supercross winning Geomax range and an innovative new trail tire that promises to showcase Dunlop’s interpretation for this trendsetting segment.

Dunlop will soon reveal details about a new tire for the Adventure market. With sales of on/off road bikes such as the BMW GS, Honda Africa Twin and Triumph Tiger growing, riders are becoming more demanding about their tire requirements. With many bikes being chosen as ‘two-wheeled SUVs’, riders are seeking strong wet performance, sporty handling, high mileage as well as expecting off-road adaptability. For tire designers, that’s a tough brief but Dunlop has fused the experience of their sports bike and off-road development teams to create a tire suitable to cope with this challenge. This latest addition to the Trailmax range will be on sale by the end of the year so riders can plan their 2020 adventures.

This Autumn, Dunlop will offer a key addition to the Geomax range, the all-new enduro tire named “EN91”. This new product will be targeted at the Enduro competition market, with compound and construction features designed to maximise the performance throughout long-distance cross-country time trial competitions.

One of the fastest growing segments in the European motorcycle market is the retro sports roadster market. From BMW Cafe Racers to Yamaha XSRs, the combination of searing modern performance with a nostalgic vibe has captured the imagination of riders. Dunlop’s research has shown that many of these riders are demanding the very latest tire technology to match the performance of their bikes, but they are seeking a tread pattern with a retro feel to reflect their chosen model’s image. In August, Dunlop will launch a tire designed to meet those needs, drawing inspiration from one of the company’s greatest racing successes, the TT 100 GP, the first tire capable of reaching 100 mph average speed on the famous TT course.

Luca Davide Andreoni, Marketing Manager, Dunlop Motorcycle Europe, highlights Dunlop’s relentless development drive: “In the last two years, Dunlop has focused on hypersport tires with an unprecedented five new tires, all receiving test success and accolades from experienced journalists. Behind the scenes, we’ve been working on achieving the same heights in other segments too. An exciting but challenging segment is the Trail market. Dunlop has chosen to invest here with Trailmax Meridian - a brand new product design for adventure-seeking riders who are waiting to experience something new for their bikes. On the off road-enduro side, the new Geomax EN91 will move the game on, completing an offer that has already proven to be one of the most competitive in the market. Finally, TT100 GP will offer a vintage sport alternative to our existing hypersport line-up, catering for the retro classic trend we’ve been seeing in the market in the last few years.”

Edouard Carpentier, General Manager, Dunlop Motorcycle Europe, added: “We believe that Dunlop dealers will have the strongest portfolio ever to offer their customers by the end of 2019. Dealers and riders cannot help but have noticed our pace of development in the hypersport market over the last two years, but our passion to innovate is wider than just the sport sector. These new tires complete a truly global portfolio that delivers safety, quality, performance and riding enjoyment for every type of rider. Dunlop commitment to innovation is relentless. Our wins this year in Pro Motocross, Supercross, Women’s Motocross, Endurance racing and Dunlop being the most successful tire of the 2019 Isle of Man TT show our team is building on the winning mindset that began over 130 years ago”.

Mattei

The latest edition of the Public Transport Summit has just concluded in Stockholm, with Mattei as one of the stars. In fact, the Italian company is a member of the UITP organising association, which brings together the top players in the urban public transport market. This global event for sustainable mobility has confirmed that the vehicular sector is the perfect context for the Mattei rotary vane compressors, especially when looking at rail applications and in hybrid or electric vehicles. The low rotation speeds and the reduced number of moving components make them free from vibration and extremely quiet; perfectly in line with the needs of the latest generation of ecological vehicles. Another important trait is their energy efficiency, which guarantees long periods of autonomous use. The undisputed stars of the show were the solutions designed to meet the demands of compressed air “on-board”.

The XT65 compressor is the solution offered by Mattei for applications on buses and electric and hybrid vehicles. The main qualities of the compressor perfectly meet the needs of these types of vehicle: the lack of vibration makes them the quietest available on the market, while the compact dimensions and low weight (between 20kg & 35kg) help support a very flexible installation, even in the tightest of spaces. Another key feature of this machine is the modular aspect of the configurations, which allows the development of highly customised solutions, and also facilitates maintenance operations.

Staying with the subject of maintenance, it is also notable that the pumping unit does not need to be replaced, and the XT65 has the longest maintenance intervals of all compressors on the market. The innovative design of the XT65 is also protected by 4 international patents. Also on display at UITP was the new RVR (Rotary Vane Rail) line, dedicated to rail applications, such as those for braking systems, the activation of doors and suspension systems. Offered in different sizes and available with different types of coupling and motors (hydraulic, electric or diesel), these compressors are characterised with great reliability, low weight and being the complete package, which allows two types of installation. On one hand it is possible to completely configure the compressed air generation treatment unit (AGTU): these compressors come comprehensively supplied with pumping unit, motor and dryer, oil separator, inlet filters, optional inverter and control devices all mounted on the frame. The high efficiency filters are a fundamental factor in the railway sector, where the amount of dust is considerable given the location of the compressor being close to the ground. On the other hand, the RVR line compressors also lend themselves for retrofitting existing compressors, by integrating the motor and drying unit (AGU) as flexible modules, guaranteeing a pure air quality without pulsations in flow. Finally, the attention of UITP visitors was also drawn towards the Bart unit, specifically designed for use on subway and metro lines.

Bridgestone

Bridgestone has announced the launch of Enliten, a new innovative lightweight tire technology that represents an unprecedented reduction in material and rolling resistance performance to contribute to the reduction of a vehicle’s CO2 emissions, while providing the same wear life as a standard original equipment tire. Benefitting car manufacturers, drivers and the environment, tires with embedded Enliten technology also improve the vehicle’s handling and stability to increase driving pleasure.

Today, dwindling resources and climate changes are two global megatrends bearing significant pressure on the environment and automotive sector. European legislators have reacted by setting increasingly stricter targets on original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to reduce the CO2 emitted by their vehicles. Enliten is Bridgestone’s latest breakthrough solution to achieve those goals. The technology reduces the rolling resistance of a passenger tire by, on average, 20 percent from a standard premium summer touring tire. This enables tires with embedded Enliten technology to help reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions in combustion vehicles, while also extending battery life and vehicle range in electric vehicles. Enliten enables passenger tires to be reduced in weight by, on average, 10 percent from a standard premium summer touring tire. This not only ensures that less raw materials are used to manufacture the tires, but also contributes to the reduced rolling resistance. Enliten is able to achieve all that without any trade-off on tire wear or safety. The technology even improves the vehicle’s handling and stability to increase driving pleasure. Enliten has achieved these capabilities through an innovative approach to tire design and production. The technology combines a proprietary compound mix that enables improved wear performance and a decreased tread depth, a reduced and reinforced inner liner thickness, and a new dedicated mould design concept. Paolo Ferrari, CEO and President Bridgestone EMEA, commented: “Becoming more sustainable is the responsibility of every person and business on this planet. For example, at Bridgestone, everything we do must contribute to our sustainability strategy, ‘Our Way to Serve’. Of course, our customers have their own initiatives, and as their partner, we are responsible for helping them achieve their goals as best we can. As we are working towards our long-term environmental vision to manufacture products from raw materials that are fully renewable and sustainable by 2050 and beyond, Enliten is a great step forward”.

Marangoni

Marangoni Retreading Systems is pleased to announce the launch of its new precured tread range in which the continuing rationalisation of the company’s production and commercial operations has led to the full integration of the European product lines. Compared to the previous edition, the new tread range now features only two brands – PRL and UNITREAD, with a significant reduction of the complexity previously caused by product overlaps. PRL still represents Marangoni’s “performance and quality promise”, enhanced by the introduction of new modern tread lines developed with high-performance compounds, characterized by the use of the “BLK” (Blackline) marking.

The PRL Blackline products have been designed to guarantee the best performance in respect to the highest market expectations concerning fuel consumption, durability and grip in all road conditions. The 3PMSF marked winter tread BLK PTW WSS and the regional champion BLK PDR HM2, demonstrate the company’s commitment to support and further develop its premium line of treads. The most important products of the previous Kontur line are still present in the current PRL range. UNITREAD’s range has been redesigned by Marangoni to offer the perfect solution for the price-oriented customer, where the key is the lower cost of the finished product. This product family is divided into two lines: standard (STD) and BASIC. Unlike the PRL range, where most of the products are cut-to-length based on the casing size, UNITREAD products are offered in 10 metres tread rolls. Many UNITREAD treads are also lighter and therefore particularly well suited for retreading casings which should be less affected by stress, fatigue and heat build-up during service. The new edition of the “THE TREAD” Product Manual highlights these innovations, illustrating both updated ranges of precured tread strips and featuring numerous changes, starting with the clear distinction between the market positioning of the different Marangoni treads product lines. As a result of the tread range rationalization, the price of some products will change accordingly to the market positioning of the brand and many patterns will be available only on request, with a price level depending on the order volume.

Fra-Ber

Fra-Ber, in collaboration with its official e-commerce distributor Car-Care.it, launches the new Innovacar range dedicated to detailing. Fra-Ber designed a line with the aim of completing the pain-staking work of detailers: experts, "or car care specialists", people who have invested time and money in the best manufacturing techniques and on the composition and characteristics of the various products on the market. Fra-Ber, with its "cyclic system", created a series of products capable of optimizing the effectiveness of the next one, in order to guarantee the best result in terms of cleanness, protection and durability. To obtain a perfectly clean surface, Fra-Ber uses enzymes, molecules with particular characteristics.

Shell

Shell Lubricants is constantly looking for innovative formulas able to meet the growing demand for lEV lubricants. Shell’s E-fluids range – according to the research carried out in the Hamburg and Shanghai labs by experienced scientists - helps batteries reduce C02 emissions and, thanks to its ultra-low viscosity level, extends battery life by combating engine ageing. Vehicle manufacturers are facing a complicated challenge, changing their business model with a view to electric mobility.

This translates into rethinking cars, in terms of engineering and design as well as maintenance. In fact, like all vehicles, even EVs need lubricants. These are inserted as "first fill", i.e. directly by the manufacturers. After the first filling, the lubricants must adequately perform throughout the life cycle of the car. That is why choosing the right oil is so important. However, lubricants designed for internal combustion engines are unlikely to meet the needs of high-tech electric vehicle engines. Shell has developed the E-Fluids range, based on its dual experience in the world of lubricants and in the energy sector. The market for electric vehicles is constantly growing: every year by 40-50%. As anticipated by the International Energy Agency, 280 million EV are expected by 2040, which is why Shell is determined to continue its research and innovation efforts to remain ahead of its cuatomer’s need. "Improving electric mobility is a major challenge and everyone must play its part. That is why we work alongside manufacturers, helping them to cope with the constant changes affecting the automotive world and providing them with the tools to better protect new technologies," concludes Benedetto Forlani, Shell's Europe marketing manager.