Hankook envisions a future where tires no longer need air pressure.
The Hankook iFlex is the latest non-pneumatic (NPT) tire prototype from the Korean tire manufacturer, and it’s made using eco-friendly materials. The company has been researching new tire technologies for NPT since 2011, aiming for a product that has all of the benefits of conventional air pressure tires while enhancing their high speed tire characteristics.
The Hankook iFlex is actually the fifth NPT concept tire from the company and it has been put through a series of rigorous tests focusing on five categories: durability, hardness, stability, slalom and speed.
Equipping an electric car with the iFlex, the company was able to reach a speed of 80 mph noting that NPTs are capable of matching conventional tires in terms of performance.
The company also noted that construction of the iFlex is centered on a new type of uni-material designed to maximize the product’s eco-friendly potential. The material also ensures that the iFlex can be easily recycled and new tire construction techniques allows it to be manufactured in four stages, down from eight, helping reduce the company’s carbon footprint.
“The Hankook iFlex’s ability to deliver the perfect high-speed driving performance is the result of Hankook Tire’s longstanding commitment to independently developing progressive, innovative tire technology. Aiming to strengthen our technological leadership in the global tire market, we will continue to develop cutting edge eco-friendly and future-oriented tires,” said Mr. Seung-Hwa Suh, vice chairman and CEO of Hankook Tire.