Tyre maker Nokian is set to bring digital technology to those black, round items at the corner of your machine.
The manufacturer says it has looked at three key areas: tread design, carcase construction and tyre compound – with the latest technology combining to offer superior performance and a warranty of up to 80,000km.
Offered in three versions, the 4S is for on-road situations and aimed at SUVs. Meanwhile, the LT and XLT versions are for all-terrain, light truck and heavy-duty applications respectively.
Looking at tread design, stone ledges help eject stones from the tread and minimise stone drilling. The tyre’s scalloped shoulders provide extra traction in soft conditions, while aqua-vac channels – with deep centre grooves – are said to enhance water drainage and help resist aquaplaning.
Additionally, whisper groove shields act as a sound barrier to keep noise within the tyre, resulting in a reduction of overall road noise by about 20%. On the LT and XLT off-road versions, rugged shoulders are claimed to help deliver traction in ruts or soft terrain, while also helping to provide extra traction via the upper sidewalls and shoulders.
The tyre’s carcase construction sees high tensile body plys providing strength and durability. The manufacturer also says the super tensile steel belts in the LT and XLT versions underpin the whole tread area from edge to edge to offer higher impact resistance, while the road-focused 4S uses advanced nylon overlays to provide a more balanced uniformity.
The 4S is developed for use on bitumen, so uses high levels of silica to offer improved wet surface traction in extreme situations and a warranty to 70,000km. Similarly, the LT and XLT also use high silica content, but have cut and chip resistance, so are guaranteed to 80,000km.
The combination of improvements is said to offer a 10% improvement in tread life, a 5% better wet braking and 5% better wet handling in the case of the 4S.
Meanwhile, in the case of the off-road versions, there is a reduction in tyre noise of 20%, cut and chip performance increases 10%, and tread life gains 10%.