DETROITMichelin North America Inc. is upping the ante in the all-season performance tire category with its new Pilot Sport All-Season 3+, which benefits from the company's participation in world-class endurance racing.
The tire maker claims that the tire offers breakthrough levels of dry and wet grip as well as greatly enhanced snow traction.
The Pilot Sport All-Season 3+introduced Jan. 12 at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroitis a third generation all-season UHP tire. It will replace the Sport A/S 3, which launched in 2013 as the successor to the Pilot Sport All-Season Plus that rolled out in 2008.
Michelin claims the new tire has the shortest wet and dry braking of leading competitive tires in the UHP A/S category, more dry grip than the Continental ExtremeContact DW (in size 225/45ZR17 on a 2015 BMW 328i) and 28-percent better snow traction than the Pilot Sport A/S 3 it's replacing.
Among the tires Michelin tested against were the Bridgestone Potenza RE970AS Pole Position, Continental ExtremeContact DWS06, Pirelli P Zero All Season Plus, Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric All-Season, Hankook Ventus S1 noble2 and Yokohama Advan Sport A/S in size 225/45ZR17.
Michelin attributes the performance enhancements to a distinctive tread design mated with the company's proprietary Helio+ tread compound, which incorporates extreme amounts of silica in the tread.
The asymmetric tread design has biting edges in the tread grooves that grab loose snow to help acceleration and braking in winter conditions and circumferential grooves and variable thickness sipes for effective water evacuation.
The tire also uses Variable Contact Patch 3.0, originally developed for world-class endurance racing, which distributes the forces and temperatures more evenly over the contact patch.
Michelin said the Pilot Sport A/S 3+ benefits from Michelin's heritage in endurance racing and arsenal of technological innovations.
...(W)e continuously merge the lessons derived from our global motorsports victories with our uncompromising standards for quality and safety, said Scott Clark, COO.
The tire will launch in March and eventually be available in 90 sizes, Michelin said, ranging from 175/65R15 to 285/35ZR20 with fitments for vehicles such as the Corvette, BMW M3, Audi A5 and Ford Mustang, among others.
Michelin said it will offer a limited 45,000-mile warranty, and the product will start with a manufacturer's suggested retail price of $149.