Fuel economy is one of the major concerns for the tyre companies. It became necessary to come up with a design which could minimize friction and also provide is a road grip. As the focus of this industry shifted towards a better environment, such invention became a necessity.
The tyre distortion on roads generates a lot of heat which is responsible for the rolling resistance of a tyre. 90 percent of the rolling resistance comes from the energy lost in the heat build-up. A minimization in this heal build-up improves the performance and fuel-efficiency of a tyre.
Even though low rolling resistance tyres are available and contribute in saving of the fuel, they do not have a great road grip. Also, these tyres work well for a low-performance tyre rather than a high performance.
Road grip is extremely necessary for proper braking and cornering. Hence the industry had to come up with a tyre which consisted of both the qualities. The shift from carbon black used in the compound of tyres to silica made this discovery possible. It brought both low rolling resistance and road grip to a tyre. Silica brought more elasticity and flexibility to the tyres without a major increase in the temperature. This caused an improvement in the road grip and braking.
However, there are more factors that decide the design of an eco tyre. Let’s take into consideration the Continental’s EcoContact 5 tyre. The tyre design has more details which include a flatter tread in order to reduce the distortion on the surface. Moreover, the presence of super thin sipes in the tread lugs helps in removing and channeling of water for better performance. This invention did not only prove to be better for the environment but also contributed to saving fuel.