Commenting on the tyres, UK sales manager Richard Hutchins says, “Hybrid tyres are safer, more efficient and offer better comfort to the operator. Pressure sensor technology is the future of tyre functionality because tyres can run at the optimum pressure on the road and in the field.”
‘Continental TractorMaster VF Hybrid’ tyres are designed to give operators the technology to efficiently adjust the pressure to correspond with the task. The very high flexion (VF) tyres feature a new and unique ‘hybrid’ tread pattern which is designed to offer traction in the field and be more comfortable on the road. It was developed using computer modelling in the research and development unit at Continental’s agricultural manufacturing facility in Lousado, Portugal.
“More powerful, heavier tractors are increasingly being used on the road. The need to reduce wear through road use has inspired the design of the new hybrid tyre. Heat build-up in conventional tyres causes the rubber to soften and wear more quickly. The tread design of the hybrid tyre helps to reduce the temperature of the tyre which reduces the wear rate,” says Richard.
Sensors in the tyre communicate the pressure and the heat build-up to help the operator decide on the optimum running pressure. When coupled with onboard inflation technology the tyre gives the operator the control to increase and decrease pressure according to use without leaving the tractor.
VF technology in the tyre allows the tractor operator to carry the same load at a reduced pressure. The structure of the VF tyre carcass is more resistant than standard tyres so the tyre can operate at lower pressures in the field and at higher speeds on the road.
Underinflated tyres on the road increase fuel consumption, whilst overinflated tyres in the field lead to increased soil compaction. To easily create balance, the hybrid tyre, coupled with pressure check sensors, is capable of being quickly inflated for road use and deflated for field use. When fitted to tractors with onboard air compressors the pressure of the tyre can be monitored and adjusted by the operator without the need to leave the cab.