28 September 2016

New summer/winter tyre from Michelin

Michelin has launched a CrossClimate tyre which is designed to be used in both summer and winter conditions, writes Brian Byrne.

The tyre is claimed to be the first summer tyre to be independently certified for winter use.

Although we don’t get the summer/winter extremes which pertain in mainland Europe countries, changes in temperature can mean that ordinary summer tyres are not as safe in winter even here.

In cold weather, a standard summer tyre’s composition will harden, meaning the tread will not grip as well. This applies at varying rates below 7degC, a temperature which is common even in an Irish winter.

In some countries, like Germany, motorists are required to change to winter tyres after a certain date. In other countries, where there aren’t such rules, most drivers don’t bother.

The CrossClimate tyre can mean not having to think summer/winter. It uses an innovative compound that grips the road in all conditions; an energy-efficient, under-tread layer with low heat build-up properties; and a unique ‘V’- pattern tread with varying ‘vee’ angles and self-locking, variable-width sipes that act like claws in snow to enhance traction.