Global leading tire company Hankook Tire is fitting the BMW X3 M and X4 M with its premium tires – a first for vehicles from BMW M GmbH. The brand-new Hankook Ventus S1 evo Z was specially developed for the UUHP (Ultra-Ultra-High-Performance) segment for use on particularly sporty high-performance vehicles. The Hankook Ventus S1 evo Z is available for both BMW M GmbH models in 255/40 ZR21 102Y tires on the front axle and 265/40 ZR21 105Y on the rear axle and has been adapted to the specific requirements of BMW M GmbH. A high level of grip and very precise lateral guidance for optimum handling behavior, even under very sporty conditions, were decisive criteria during the approval process, which for all M models traditionally includes an extensive performance test on the legendary Nordschleife bend at the Nürburgring.
Ultra-Ultra-High-Performance is the name of the tire category introduced by Hankook this year with the market launch of the Ventus S1 evo Z. As a first for the premium tire manufacturer, BMW M GmbH vehicles, namely the X3 M and X4 M models will feature the new tread. The Hankook Ventus S1 evo Z’s characteristics underline the motorsport DNA of the M models. This manifests as remarkably high dynamics, agility and precision. With a maximum output of 510 hp and 480 ft-lbs. of torque on the Competition models, both models accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds.
In addition to the release tests customary in the industry, the mixed tires used here in sizes 255/40 ZR21 102Y☆ on the front axle and 265/40 ZR21 105Y☆ on the rear axle were also extensively tested at maximum speed on the legendary Nordschleife bend at the Nürburgring. This ensures that the tire construction is robust and able to meet the demands of the M models at all times.
“Our company was founded 80 years ago,” says Jeongho Park, executive vice president and director of OE Division, “So it’s certainly a special gift that our latest product has been able to win over BMW M GmbH, a particularly prestigious customer from the sports car manufacturer segment.”
For this highly demanding vehicle segment, especially when it comes to tires, the Ventus S1 evo Z has been equipped with an aramid composite material in a double-layer carcass. This prevents deformations caused by possible heat development during extensive use. Deformations would otherwise lead to an undesired increase in the rolling circumference and less precise handling at high speeds. Aramid fibres are extremely heat-resistant and are characterized by their very high strength as well as good damping properties with a low weight relative to their size. The new Hankook tread pattern gains additional stability from high-strength steels in the belt and bead areas, which, in combination with the reinforced sidewall, ensure straight-line stability and steering precision, as well as sporty, dynamic handling.
Another focus when developing the Ventus S1 evo Z was on high grip in different weather conditions. The tread compound used is borrowed from Hankook’s motorsport research and development. For an optimal interaction of fillers, silica and natural resins, the latest generation of functional polymers have been used in the mixture. This ensures a consistently high level of grip across a wide range of applications. The compound technology used in production originates from Hankook’s racing tire development, where smaller material batches are processed gently, over significantly longer periods of time.
Often seen with particularly sporty treads, the Hankook Ventus S1 evo Z also uses an asymmetrically designed tread pattern. The arrangement of the individual tread blocks has been developed to ensure optimum block stiffness under various driving conditions. Three main drainage grooves positioned in the inner tread area ensure water is drained efficiently in wet conditions. In addition, special attention has been paid to the outer tread area of the tire, where a significantly increased proportion of tread takes into account the requirements for high-performance cornering and precise lateral guidance, particularly for very sporty driving in dry conditions. Other tires for M GmbH models are already in development at Hankook.
The new Hankook Ventus S1 evo Z is currently used as original equipment by leading premium manufacturers and is currently available in 15 dimensions from 19 to 21 inches with tread widths between 225 and 315 mm in cross-sections from the Series 30 to 45. Throughout the year additional sizes will complement the line-up, with a focus on the high-end range.