Goodyear and TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. have teamed up to develop an electronic stability control (ESC) system a spokesman said gives users the ability to customize a tire and wheel package on a vehicle for optimum performance.
The system automatically adjusts the performance parameters of a vehicle's electronic stability control system based on the dimensions and other characteristics of its tires, according to Goodyear, which has been working with TRW since 2003 on the project.
Targeted for production for the 2009 model year, the system will work with virtually any tire as long as there's a radio frequency identification chip embedded in the sidewall of the tire, a Goodyear spokesman said. ``Tires with tags are becoming much more common, and we think the trend will increase by 2009,'' he said.
A sidewall chip tells the ESC system details about the tire, including its size and revolutions it will make.
``As more people seek to customize their vehicles through the use of larger wheels and tires, or exchange tires seasonally, we want to ensure that the on-board systems such as electronic stability control will still offer the intended safety and performance benefits,'' said Phil Cunningham, product business director for TRW chassis products.
To accomplish this, the two firms developed a system enabling vehicle control units to recognize the characteristics and adjust the electronic stability control trim level accordingly.
The system provides ease of implementation to auto makers and allows them to offer more choices to their customers, Goodyear said.
The companies expect it to be particularly helpful in the sport-utility vehicle segment when winter tires or custom wheels and large-diameter tires are used. Tuning the ESC system for the specific tire used improves its performance in any vehicle, Goodyear said.