Continental Testing Tire Prototypes For E-Trucks
Published On 09-Jul-2021
The premium tire manufacturer is currently performing test drives at Contidrom tire testing facility in northern Germany with an electric truck made by electric commercial vehicle specialist Futuricum.
Electric drives are not only becoming increasingly attractive in the area of individual mobility, but are also experiencing a dynamic development in demand in local public transport and freight transportation.
Continental says that it is working on a tire solutions for these special requirements, together with leading vehicle manufacturers and technology companies.
The premium tire manufacturer is currently performing test drives at Contidrom tire testing facility in northern Germany with an electric truck made by electric commercial vehicle specialist Futuricum, which has been in use for DPD Switzerland in regional traffic since March of this year.
The Futuricum vehicle is based on a Volvo FH, which has been converted to an electric drive by the Futuricum parent company Designwerk Products AG.
The 19-ton truck has 680 hp and, with a capacity of 680 kilowatt hours, has the largest truck battery in Europe on board. This allows a range of up to 760 kilometers without freight.
“The vehicle has been on the road in Swiss regional traffic since the beginning of the year and is currently rolling on tires of the Continental EcoRegional product line,” says Hinnerk Kaiser, Head of Tire Development Bus and Truck Tires at Continental.
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“The combination of Conti EcoRegional HS3 and HD3 already enables high mileage and extremely low rolling resistance and thus offers the essential characteristics for the economical operation of electrically powered commercial vehicles.”
According to the tyremaker, the current test series are about increasing efficiency even further. The focus is in particular on extending the range by reducing rolling resistance. In addition to the original tires, the Conti EfficientPro and brand-new prototypes are used in direct comparison.
The Conti EfficientPro is a proven product that was developed in particular for long-distance transportation and emphasizes fuel efficiency. The specially manufactured prototypes were manufactured in Hanover-Stöcken, at the central location of research and development for premium tires from Continental, in an elaborate robot carving process and refined by experienced tire carvers, the tyremaker added.
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“As with all electric drives, the tires for the Futuricum Logistics 18E are exposed to higher torque during start off and acceleration,” explains Hinnerk Kaiser.
“At the same time, the weight and weight distribution of the tractor are increased by the particularly powerful battery. Therefore, the tires must not only have a low rolling resistance, but also withstand heavier loads than tires for comparable vehicles with internal combustion engines. At the same time, they should last just as long and meet the same safety requirements as truck tires for conventional drives.”
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