Crain News Service
PARIS (Feb. 26, 2015) — BMW A.G. has selected Michelin's Pilot Super Sport tire as the exclusive optional 21-inch fitment for its latest high-performance X5 M and X6 M models.
From its market launch in early 2015, the X5 M and X6 M fitted with the optional 21-inch forged alloy wheels will be equipped exclusively with Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires, the French tire maker said, in sizes 285/35ZR21 105Y front and 325/30ZR21 108Y rear.
The M versions of BMW's X5 and X6 are the high-performance editions of the German car maker's five-passenger, five-door, all-wheel-drive “sports activity vehicles.” The M versions are equipped with a 575-hp, twin-turbocharged V8.
The fitment is the result of a two-year co-development with BMW, Michelin said. During this development phase, it said, around 1,400 prototype and 500 pre-production tires were produced and tested to deliver the required performance characteristics.
The Pilot Super Sport features Michelin's multi-compound tread and Variable Contact Patch 2.0 technologies. Originally developed for endurance race tires, multi-compound technology uses different rubber compounds on the left and right sides of the tread, Michelin, to provide improved grip and wear resistance during cornering, plus intermediate ribs for optimized steering and handling and an inner shoulder designed to provide grip on wet roads.
The Variable Contact Patch 2.0 changes shape depending on real-time driving conditions for enhanced vehicle control: as the patch's shape changes when cornering, the amount of rubber in contact with the road remains the same.
In the vehicles' launch press kit, BMW notes its engineers worked with tire suppliers Pirelli Tyre S.p.A. and Michelin to develop tires in concert with its own chassis developers. The vehicles' standard 20-inch fitment is the Pirelli P Zero in size 285/40 R20 Y, front, 325/35 R20 Y, rear.