Bridgestone Announces Development of "Large & Narrow Concept Tire" To Achieve Superior Levels of Fuel Efficiency and Safety
Tokyo (March 5, 2013)-Bridgestone Corporation today announced the successful development of its new "Large & Narrow concept tire". The concept tire represents a new category of tire that is narrower and features a larger diameter than conventional tires. It was created as a new environmental technology to enable tires to help realize a sustainable society.
The Large & Narrow concept tire technology helps vehicles achieve improved fuel efficiency, thereby contributing to reductions in CO2 emissions. Moreover, the air pressure within these tires is higher than conventional tires, and the design includes new pattern technology and compounds designed specifically for use in these tires. The new brand of innovative technology employed in the Large & Narrow concept tire enables it to realize significantly lower levels of rolling resistance and substantially higher levels of wet grip performance.
The Company is advancing development of this technology with plans to quickly put it into practical use. Possible applications include use of the technology in a new category of tires to be incorporated into Bridgestone's ECOPIA line of fuel-efficient tires. This new tire technology may be introduced as original equipment on next-generation automobiles or other vehicles.
The Large & Narrow concept tire will be displayed at Bridgestone's booth at the 83rd International Motor Show -Salon de l'auto de Genève to be held in Geneva starting March 5, 2013.
As the world's leading tire manufacturer, the Bridgestone Group is working towards 100% sustainable material usage and reducedCO2 emissions through improved fuel efficiency. We believe that this will make it will possible for us to continue providing world class tire products that are also sustainable from both a business perspective and environmental perspective. Going forward, the Group will push ahead with the development of various technologies geared toward contributing to the realization of a sustainable society.
Characteristics of the New Technology
1. Environmental Performance
By giving tires a larger vertical diameter and increasing their internal air pressure, it is possible to greatly limit changes in the shape of the contact patch, the section of the tire that comes in contact with the ground. Further, by optimizing the structure of tires created using this technology and using the most appropriate materials, we achieved a rolling resistance coefficient that is approximately 30% lower than conventional sized tires (175/65R15). Further, making tires narrower reduces air resistance, a major factor that needs to be considered when working to improve fuel efficiency. Due to these features, tires that employ this new technology are able to boast levels of fuel efficiency exceeding those of the fuel-efficient tires Bridgestone has already put on the market.
The narrower size of tires made with this technology helps reduce the pressure placed on the tires by water present on roads when driving during rain or under other wet conditions. In addition, the tires have been specially designed to have a longer contact patch and higher contact pressure, which helps these tires prevent water from accumulating between the tire and the road. These features combined with the benefits of the tires' newly developed, specialized patterns and compounds enable the tires to achieve an improvement in wet grip performance of approximately 8%in comparison to conventional tires, thereby enhancing safety.
The development of the Large & Narrow concept tire is one of Bridgestone's initiatives to achieve the goal of "contribute to globally agreed target (50% reduction in CO2 emissions)" defined for the Group's efforts toward "reducing CO2 emissions" in its long-term environmental vision.