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Nokian Launches New Studded Winter Tyres

(Clacton, U.K./Tyres & Accessories) Nokian Tyres’ added two new studded tyres to its Hakkapeliitta product range.

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The Hakkapeliitta 5, a studded winter tyre for passenger cars, and Nokian Hakkapeliitta Sport Utility 5, for SUVs, are both designed to promote safe winter driving.

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The tyres feature what Nokian describes as the ”bear claw,” which is intended to enhance performance and together with the further developed square stud, improve grip properties. The bear claw is a claw-like projection on the front edge of the tread blocks, which holds the stud in position during braking. The stud has been further developed by enhancing its square design. Several improvements to tyre structure and tread pattern are also said to improve the reliability of winter driving.

Analysts have described the Hakkapeliitta 5 as the company’s new flagship tyre and report that it will replace the Hakkapeliitta 4. “Having spoken to management, the new tyre is 4% to 8% better than the Hakkapeliitta 4 on most accounts. Especially wet grip and noise are the areas, which have improved the most,” Deutsche Bank analysts reported, adding: “We believe 2006 will prove to be a much better year for Nokian compared to 2005.”

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During the coming weeks, Nokian Tyres says it will introduce the new products to its “most important interest groups” in Ivalo, Finland, and in Moscow, Russia. The products will be offered to the company’s main markets in the Nordic countries and Russia. Tyre deliveries will start in the second quarter of 2006 and consumer sales will begin in autumn 2006. The size selection reportedly covers all major car brands and models.

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