During international trade fairs such as IAA Mobility, Continental said it is presenting sustainable technologies in new tires. As early as 2021, the tire manufacturer said it focused on the use of silica from agricultural waste, polyester from recycled PET and other renewable and recyclable materials with the Conti GreenConcept concept tire. Continental has incorporated many of these technologies into its series tires , like the UltraContact NXT.
“Sustainable innovations belong on the road and not in a showroom. We ensure that innovations and concept tires are made available to our customers and go into production as quickly as possible, without any compromises in terms of safety and performance,” Jorge Almeida, head of sustainability at Continental Tires said. “We were the first to integrate pioneering technologies such as recycled PET into series tires. And we were also the first tire manufacturer to launch a model with a particularly high share of renewable and recycled materials. We walk our talk when it comes to making our world more sustainable.”
PET (plastic) bottles often end up in waste incineration plants or landfills. However, by using ContiRe.Tex technology, Continental said it and its partners have succeeded in producing polyester yarn for tires from recycled PET bottles. Depending on the tire size, between nine and fifteen PET bottles can be reused per tire.
Continental said the Conti-Re.Tex technology is also part of the UltraContact NXT. Many of the technologies contained in the tire were part of the Conti GreenConcept concept tire, which was presented to the public for the first time at IAA Mobility 2021. These include silica made from rice husk ash or recycled PET bottles. Production of the UltraContact NXT started in July 2023 in Lousado, Portugal. With up to 65% renewable, recycled and, mass-balance-certified materials, Continental said all 19 dimensions of the series tire received the top EU tire label rating (A) in rolling resistance, braking in wet conditions and exterior noise. By 2030, Continental says it is aiming to use over 40% renewable and recycled materials in its tires.
Continental also presented its Conti CityPlus technology at this year’s IAA Mobility, which it said increases the overall energy efficiency of a car tire by up to 10%. For electric vehicles (EVs), Continental said this corresponds to a saving of around 0.6 kWh per 100 kilometers (approx. 60 miles). Continental’s latest technology could also be used in production in the near future.