A new Michelin tire is an all-season street grabber with technical attributes derived from endurance racing.
“This latest addition to the Michelin Pilot family transfers the best of high-performance racing technology and innovation into a street tire made for the diverse weather of North America,” Scott Clark, Chief Operating Officer for passenger cars and light trucks at Michelin North America, said during the tire’s world debut at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
The new Michelin Pilot Sport All-Season (A/S) 3+ uses substantial amounts of silica in the tread compound, a chemical portrait derived from wet endurance race tire technology used in Le Mans competition.
“It’s because we see the track, truly, as a laboratory,” said Clark. “Conditions are exacting and sometimes excruciating, and the feedback is immediate. We test, race, learn, and then repeat the process. Because the research and development cycle is shorter, innovation occurs faster.”
Corvette Racing driver Tommy Milner appreciates Michelin’s track-to-street technology transfer mantra.
“Michelin embeds an engineer with our team for every test, every race, every practice, and all of that information is then fed directly back to the Michelin technical centers,” said Milner, who with Corvette C6.R teammates Antonio Garcia and Olivier Beretta won France’s prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2011.
“Our senior Michelin [race tire] engineer, Lee Willard, is the same guy who designs the tires for production Corvettes. You can’t have a shorter feedback loop than that,” Milner said.
The new Pilot Sport A/S3+ launches as a replacement tire, starting in March 2016. It eventually will be available in 90 sizes, ranging from 175/65/R15 to 285/35/ZR20 in fitments for the Chevrolet Corvette, BMW M3, Audi A5, Ford Mustang, and other vehicles.
Michelin will offer a limited 45,000-mile warranty. Manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $149.