In the competitive high-performance all-season tire segment, balance is a must: consumers want a tire with solid dry and wet braking that also handles well in light snow. And, they also want it to look good. For Continental Tire the Americas, its ExtremeContact DWS06 garnered praise for all these features. So, they took that tire and made it better.
During a virtual launch event Wednesday, Continental debuted the tire’s successor – the ExtremeContact DWS06 Plus, an ultra-high performance all-season tire that company officials say outshines its predecessor and competitors.
“Everything our consumers loved [about the DWS06], we made every category better,” said Bjoern Glaeser, UHP product engineer who headed up the project.
In tests, the DWS06 Plus showed almost a 10% improvement in wet braking and 11% improvement in snow traction from its predecessor, Glaeser reported. More than 4,000 tires were tested in dry, wet and snowy conditions over the last four years to achieve the desired performance characteristics, Glaeser said.
From an aesthetic and technological aspect, the DWS06 Plus borrows much from its predecessor with the addition of “2021 technology,” Glaeser said.
“From the feedback we received, everybody really enjoyed the intrinsic and bold design of DWS06, and we wanted to continue to not look like every other tire out there,” he remarked. “For enthusiasts, the tire is now quicker, too, for those who want to try it.
Like the DWS06, its “Plus” successor is built with SportPlus+ Technology, which provides drivers with precise handling, security on wet, slippery roads and excellent tread life, Glaeser said. These characteristics take the form of macro tread blocks, chamfered edges, X-shaped sipes, and traction grooves on the tire’s tread that allow for more tire-to-road contact and enhanced grip.
But the differences between the DWS06 and the DWS06 Plus can be seen in the nuances of its tread design and compound. Glaeser said the tire has bigger, stronger tread blocks and full-depth 3-D sipes for enhanced snow grip. The thin rib on the tire’s tread has also been flipped to provide better dry handling on the outside of the tire.
The new tire also comes with Continental’s QuickView Indicators, visual signals on the tire that alert the driver and dealer of misalignment or decreased performance in certain weather conditions.
Expanding on its predecessor, the DWS06 Plus will come in a whopping 100 sizes to fit the needs of performance-focused drivers of sports and luxury cars, CUVs and SUVs, Glaeser said. When all sizes are available, the tire will cover 96% of the all-season ultra-high performance market.
It will be priced competitively, too, according to Brian Beierwaltes, senior marketing manager of brand development. Compared to its competitors, the tire is “positioned strong…when you look at its performance with its value proposition from a pricing aspect.”
Beierwaltes said various consumer promotions will raise awareness around the DWS06 Plus. Those include social media influencer content, product integrations with various automotive publications, and digital and social marketing tools for dealers. The tires will also be showcased on a social media segment called “Cruising with Continental” that features race car driver Ryan Eversly and racing analyst Rutledge Wood taking a cross-country road trip on the new tires.
To promote dealer sell-out, the ExtremeContact DWS06 Plus is backed by a strong promotional and rebate lineup throughout the year, highlighted by rebates in June and November, Beierwaltes added.
Manufactured in the Americas and in various European plants, the DWS06 Plus will come in 95 sizes at launch. The tire is backed by a 50,000-mile treadwear limited warranty and Continental’s Total Confidence Plan.
The deadline for dealers to place orders for the tire is Jan. 15 with shipping starting Jan. 24.