Filed under: Emerging Technologies
If you have even a passing interest in sportscars, you may have noticed something suspicious about your favorite speed machine’s tires. Typically, manufactures build a certain amount of negative camber (tipping the top of a wheel inward) into the suspensions of their sportscars. This allows the tires’ contact patches to grow larger under hard cornering, thereby giving the vehicle more grip at the same time. Grip is good, but negative camber has plenty of, well, negative side effects as well. For starters, the vehicle’s ride is compromised and the tires are more likely to exhibit uneven wear.
An inventor by the name of John Scott may have come up with a solution that allows most of the benefits of negative camber while maintaining treadwear and safety. Scott designed a tire with a slightly larger circumference on the outer sidewall than the inner sidewall. This allows the suspension to be adjusted with plenty of negative camber while maintaining the contact patch of the tire.
Chances are that the new rubber will be a hit in the aftermarket world where getting a vehicle as low as possible often means building in plenty of camber, but Scott claims that the new tires can benefit nearly every car on the road today by offering up better handling, shorter braking and better grip compared to OE tires.
[Source: The New York Times]