When was the last time you checked the air pressure in your car tires? Most of us don’t pay as much attention to our tires as we should, but Continental recently unveiled two technologies that could pay attention for us. One technology alerts drivers should a tire become damaged, and another could actually change the rim width and tire pressure for better driving on slippery or uneven roads.
Continental is showing off their tire technologies, ContiSense and ContiAdapt, at the Frankfurt Motor Show. With the help of sensors embedded in the tire, ContiSense measures temperature and tread depth and then sends that data to a driver over Bluetooth to a smartphone or to a car receiver, with the help of electrically-conductive rubber. If a nail or something else punctures the tire, ContiSense is able to alert the driver far faster than other systems.
ContiAdapt takes a more active role in tire functionality. Micro-compressors in the wheel can adjust the tire pressure on their own, and the system can modify how large the contact patch is to optimize the tire for varying street conditions. There are four combinations so a tire can cruise easily in wet, slippery, uneven, or normal conditions. Continental says the system also allows for very low tire pressure when, for example, a car is navigating deep snow or black ice.
Continental also has a concept tire featuring both technologies. This tire design boasts three different tread zones ideal for driving on surfaces that are wet, slippery, or dry. The tread zones are activated depending on the rim width and tire pressure chosen by ContiAdapt. New Atlas said the two technologies will soon be added to Continental’s portfolio, which includes ContiSeal, allowing for automatic sealing of holes, and ContiSilent, which reduces tire and road noise.
Images via Continental