PIRELLI RUN FLAT: 20 YEARS OF CONTINUOUS INNOVATION TECHNOLOGY BORN OUT OF RALLYING: NOW APPLIED TO COMFORT, SUSTAINABILITY AND NEW ELECTRIC MOBILITY
MORE THAN 1000 DIFFERENT TYPES OF RUN FLAT TIRES DEVELOPED, MORE THAN 70 MILLION TIRES PRODUCED AND OVER 50 CAR MODELS ON THE ROAD WITH THIS TECHNOLOGY
The principal benefit of Pirelli’s run flat technology – introduced to select Pirelli road tires in 2001 using the lessons learned from rallying – is to allow drivers to continue driving for a while after most punctures, rather than being stranded by the side of the road. Rallying is where this technology was tried and tested for the first time, with tires featuring a reinforced structure designed to allow driving after a puncture, which would otherwise cost several minutes in the heat of intense competition on a wide variety of roads.
NEW MATERIALS AND PROCESSES TO INCREASE COMFORT AND SUSTAINABILITY
Non-stop research and development into new materials and processes has helped Pirelli to improve driving comfort in recent years for cars equipped with Run Flat tires. Thanks to new technology in the tire’s structure, as well as advances in the materials used, increased comfort for drivers and better rolling resistance, with reduced fuel consumption and fewer emissions, are possible. These tires are built to absorb bumps in the road, and they offer similar levels of comfort as standard tires, but with the key advantage of being designed to allow continued driving up to 50 miles at 50 miles per hour (mph) to seek assistance after most puncture events – even with reduced air pressure. The particular suspension characteristics of vehicles equipped with Run Flat tires as original equipment should encourage the driver to always use tires with this technology, including as replacement tires when needed, to maximize the performance of the car.
USEFUL TECHNOLOGY FOR ELECTRIC VEHICLES, WITH AN EYE TOWARDS THE FUTURE
Spare tires are not usually available in electric cars, in order to free up more space for batteries. That’s why several vehicle manufacturers choose extended mobility solutions such as Run Flat or Seal Inside to minimize inconvenience and allow the driver to get to a shop in the event of most punctures. Run Flat tires are designed to allow motorists, including those with electric vehicles, to continue driving up to 50 miles at up to 50 mph without loss of air pressure, even after most punctures. Run Flat technology is also expected to play an important role in future autonomous driving systems, by helping the vehicle remain operative in most road hazard events.
OVER 1,000 DIFFERENT VERSIONS DEVELOPED AND MORE THAN 70 MILLION RUN FLAT TIRES PRODUCED
Over the last 20 years, Pirelli’s engineers have developed more than 1,000 different types of tires featuring run flat technology, which are built to allow drivers to keep driving for up to 50 miles at a maximum speed of up to 50mph. It’s a solution that has been adopted by many different manufacturers, who have requested run flat tires as original equipment on their new vehicles – such as Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Alfa Romeo. Throughout these two decades, Pirelli has produced more than 70 million run flat tires, including summer, winter and all-season tires – some of which have been fitted to the most powerful and prestigious cars of recent times, including the entire BMW and Mini range, a substantial part of the Mercedes range, the Alfa Romeo Giulia, Audi Q5 and Q7.
A WIDE RANGE AVAILABLE
There are more than a dozen premium and prestige vehicle car manufacturers that use Pirelli tires with run flat technology today, including Audi, Alfa Romeo, BMW, Jeep, Mercedes-Benz and Rolls-Royce. This technology is available on more than 50 models of Pirelli tires homologated as original equipment for use by car vehicle manufacturers. All these tires carry ‘run flat’ markings on the sidewalls, together with markings denoting the individual vehicle manufacturer they are intended for. On some tires, this technology is combined with Pirelli Elect and PNCS noise-cancelling technology. The former is dedicated to electric vehicles and is focused on low rolling resistance, reduced tire noise, grip, and a structure designed to support the weight of a battery-powered vehicle. PNCS is instead focused on reduction of perceived tire noise inside the cabin, thanks to the use of special sound-absorbing sponge on the inside of the tire. Pirelli Seal Inside is yet another technology made available by Pirelli. In the event of a puncture in most portions of the tire, a sealing substance inside the tire forms a seal around the foreign object as soon as it penetrates the tire, preventing air from escaping and the tire from losing pressure. When the foreign object is extracted, the same material seals up the edges of the resulting hole, until the tire can be repaired, so drivers can carry on driving in control and comfort.
Pirelli’s high-end Run Flat tires are the result of Pirelli’s innovative MIRS production process, which is entirely controlled by computer with ‘raw’ tires made using robots offering a final result with high standards of quality and reliability. Pirelli’s self-supporting run flat system uses special reinforcements inserted into the internal sidewalls, which are designed to sustain the lateral and transversal loads on the car even in the absence of tire pressure.
By: Matthew Anthenelli
Today, Pirelli is proud and excited to announce the introduction of the newest model to their Scorpion AS Plus line, the Scorpion AS Plus 3. The quiet, sporty tire was designed using cutting-edge 3D technology to ensure the most durable, gripping tire possible for all North American crossovers, SUVs, and pickup trucks.
Pirelli is an internationally known brand that is signified by its outstanding quality tires that increase the performance of virtually any kind of car. Their tires are specifically designed to provide the maximum amount of comfortability, quietness, grip, and durability for cars ranging from electric vehicles and hybrids to Formula 1 race cars.
The Scorpion line of tires from Pirelli is designed specifically for North American consumers and was started in 2013. This means that all the tires were manufactured not only to custom fit many popular American car models and brands, but also in order to be able to perform in the conditions of all four seasons and a wide variety of terrain. Another main goal of the Scorpion line is an increased mileage guarantee, with the new Scorpion AS Plus 3 boasting a seventy thousand mile warranty.
The AS Plus line of Pirelli tires have been specifically designed and manufactured to meet the requirements of larger vehicles like crossovers, SUVs, and pickup trucks. Pirelli has always maintained its reputation of providing high quality products that are geared towards performance and innovation, while still being able to be used for both sports and lifestyle purposes.
As a result of the pandemic, CEO Pietro Berardi explained that Pirelli has put more investment into researching their customer base and design innovations than ever before in the past year. The head of Pirelli’s North American Marketing team added that in their research for the Scorpion AS Plus 3, designers were able to use 3D modelling and simulation in order to create the most optimal tread design for the best handling and grip on both tight turns and high speeds. The 3D models are a huge innovation in the design and manufacturing of tires, as designers were able to see in real time the differences in type of treads in different environments as well as comparing how they’d each hold up over time.
Using 3D technology, Pirelli was able to design the Scorpion AS Plus 3 to optimize quietness and comfortability, road-hugging grip, and all-season performance that motorheads and thrill-seekers will depend on. The tires are designed for all North American crossovers, SUVs, and pickup trucks and come in a wide variety of thirty seven different sizes. They even have custom-fit tires for popular vehicles like the Jeep Grand Cherokee and F-150 for customer’s ease and convenience.
The Pirelli Scorpion AS Plus 3 is a highly technologically advanced tire that is a must for anyone driving a crossover, SUV, or pickup truck and looking for a high performing tire to go with it. Featuring tread designed with innovative 3D models and a seventy thousand mile treadwear warranty, the Scorpion AS Plus 3 is without a doubt the most futuristic and cutting-edge tire available today.
Check out Pirelli’s new video featuring Danica Patrick, which highlights the performance capabilities of the new Scorpion AS Plus 3 here! You can also find out more by checking out Pirelli’s Instagram and website.