Nokian Tyres will be launching the next generation of its flagship winter product in fall 2017, with the Hakkapeliitta 9 for passenger cars and Hakkapeliitta 9 SUV.
“As we’ve seen during the past few months, the snow and ice of winter results in dangerous driving conditions on the roads,” said Tommi Heinonen, president of Nokian Tyres North America. “Leveraging 80 years and millions of miles driven on Hakkapeliittas, our team developed the safest, most comfortable winter tire that we can’t wait to bring to drivers throughout North America.”
The Hakkapeliitta 9 feature a plethora of new technologies from Nokian, including its new adaptive Nokian Tyres Functional Stud Concept. This technology features two designs of studs on the tire to be used during specific driving conditions for optimal traction in varying winter conditions, Nokian said.
Studs in the center of the tire help maximize longitudinal grip during acceleration and braking, while shoulder studs help provide lateral grip, which assists cornering on slippery surfaces.
“The upper part of the stud body is beveled, which allows the stud to penetrate even deeper into the ice than before; this further improves braking grip and lateral grip,” adds Juha Pirhonen, vice president of research and development for Nokian Tyres.
Additionally, Nokian employs its Eco Stud 9 concept, which is a cushion used to dampen road contact incorporated with the studs to reduce road wear and ensure a quiet ride, the tiremaker said.
The Hakkapeliitta 9 also features a new tread pattern, tire structure and rubber compound.
The tread pattern is heavily grooved with Self-locking 3D sipes that helps the tire react quickly and sensitively to steering for improved handling by locking the tread blocks firmly together on road contact.
On both sides of the middle blocks in the center of the tread, Snow Grip Boosters provide more sharp edges for improved snow grip, while Deep Snow Boosters on the shoulder provide additional grip in deep snow.
The Hakkapeliitta 9’s new eco-friendly winter tread compound contains silica, canola oil for improved tear resistance, natural rubber and the new Green Elasto Proof biomaterial that keeps the compound elastic at low temperatures, Nokian said.
Changes to the overall tire structure include a strong Ultra High Tensile Steel belt structure for precise handling even at higher speeds and the new special Clinch rubber compound in the bead area for driving comfort and durability.