Now motorists will never have to feel deflated again! Michelin working in partnership with General Motors have just announced a prototype for the first ever airless car tyre. In future this will negate the need for spare tyres and takes the ‘run flats’ used by some manufacturers to the next level. There are other green benefits as worldwide millions of tyres every year are sent to landfill after a puncture and not being economically viable to repair.
The tyre is made up of several layers; the traditional rubber for the tread patter, resin embedded glass fibre for the structure and aluminium for the wheel spokes. This provides the strength required without using air to cope with the load bearing stresses and high-speed motorway driving. Target to release the tyre is 2024 but will be subject to further real-life tests to ensure it can cope with day to day rigours of driving. With more and more cars currently coming with inadequate puncture repair kits, this has got to be the right direction. Beyond tyres for motor vehicles the expectation is this can be applied to an array of vehicles and transportation in many industries.
Further changes to come as always for all things automotive !