Billed as “the tire you didn’t see coming,” the new Hercules Raptis R-T5 merges the best attributes of a UHP radial with a high-mileage all-season touring tire, according to the company, into a product that both challenges the perceptions of a so-called “value brand” and shifts the expectations for performance, innovation and technology.
The Raptis R-T5 features Hercules Tire & Rubber Co.’s new Integrated Performance System, which combines three traction and control elements to enhance overall performance. The system includes Hercules’ EvacuTrack Grooves, an enhanced drainage system that moves water out of the footprint faster for better wet surface handling, the company claimed; 3-D Ultrawave Sipes, which creates more tractive edges while minimizing tread block movement for improved control, braking and handling; and the company’s Coolcourse Temperature Control System, feather-shaped elements on the shoulders that work to dissipate heat build-up for improved performance and tire life.
With an aggressive low-profile design, the Hercules Raptis R-T5 combines aesthetics and science to deliver year-round performance at a high level, Hercules said. In addition to the Integrated Performance System the Raptis R-T5 brings an asymmetric five-rib tread design, a high-grade 95% silica tread compound for longevity, even wear, low rolling resistance and wet traction; and a large contact patch for control and grip.
In head-to-head testing across eight key performance characteristics, the Hercules Raptis R-T5 was more than competitive with a top Tier 1 and a leading Tier 2 all-season UHP tires, Hercules claimed, often besting one or both the tires in categories like road noise, handling, hydroplaning resistance, ride comfort, wet handling and treadwear.
The Hercules Raptis R-T5 earned a 500AAA UTQG rating across all of its 38 sizes, of which 32 are extra load sizes. The Z-rated line covers 17- through 20-inch wheel diameters. Buyers will get a 45,000-mile mileage warranty, road hazard protection and a 30-day “Trust Our Ride” test drive opportunity, Hercules said.
Key target fitments for the Raptis R-T5 include Acura TLX, Audi A4, BMW 3-series, Chevrolet Camaro, Dodge Challenger, Ford Mustang GT, Ford Fusion, Hyundai Genesis Coupe, Infiniti G37, Lexus IS 250, Nissan 370Z, Nissan Maxima, Subaru Impreza, Volkswagen GTi, Volkswagen Passat and Volvo S60.