NOKIA, Finland (Feb. 13, 2003)— Nokian Tyres P.L.C.'s latest snow tire, the Hakkapeliitta 4, features a tread rubber compound that contains rape-seed oil, which the company claims offers both environmental and performance advantages.
Nokian is using the rape-seed oil in place of more environmentally harmful HA-oils with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are banned in Finland. Pressed from seeds of the rape plant—a member of the cabbage family—rape-seed oil is a biodegradable and renewable natural resource, Nokian said. In addition, Nokian claims the oil improves the tire's cold weather properties and enhances its tear resistance.
The tire also features square studs that improve ice grip by about 8 percent over the previous model, the Hakkapeliitta 2.
The Hakkapeliitta 4 is being marketed as a sporty tire in several low-profile 16-, 17- and 18-inch sizes. It is aimed at the Nordic and Russian consumer markets.