Goodyear and Volvo set some records
In an attempt to prove the capabilities of its I-Shift double-clutch gearbox, Volvo Trucks created “The Iron Knight” – a bespoke 4,5-t, 1 789 kW (2 400 hp) truck. To help it achieve its goal, Volvo called on the expertise of Goodyear to develop and build special tyres, as part of a continuous collaboration and original equipment partnership between the two brands.
The technology for the unique truck tyres, produced by Goodyear for the world speed-record truck, is based on the experience gained in truck racing. The casings are standard, latest-generation Goodyear truck-tyre carcasses, as used every day on European roads, with specially developed tread compounds and tread patterns.
“The ability to develop tyres to break world speed records proves our prowess in using advanced technology and innovation to produce exceptional tyres. This is true for The Iron Knight´s tyres as well as for our standard truck tyres, which offer the highest levels of performance to our customers and help them to reduce their total cost of ownership,” says Laurent Colantonio, director tyre technology commercial of Goodyear Europe, Middle East and Africa.
The 315/70 R22.5 steer tyres are based on Goodyear Truck Racing tyres, as used by all trucks in the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) European Truck Racing Championship. The 495/45 R22.5 drive tyres are capable of withstanding the incredible torque developed by the The Iron Knight.
“With so much power and torque, ensuring that a 4,5-t truck sticks to the track at speeds of up to nearly 280 km/h is a real challenge for the tyres,” says Colantonio.
The result was two broken world speed records for trucks on Goodyear tyres – making them the fastest truck tyres in the world. An average speed of 169,09 km/h was achieved in 21,29 seconds, over 1 000 m from a standing start.
The Iron Knight also beat the record for the 500-m distance, at 131,29 km/h in 13,71 seconds from a standing start. If that is not impressive enough, during the record runs The Iron Knight reached a top speed of 276 km/h.
At the time of publication, the records are being reviewed by the FIA, the international motorsport association.