General Motors’ new airless, puncture-proof tires won’t be on the upcoming mid-engine 2020 Corvette.
But don’t be surprised if these state-of-the-art, futuristic-looking tires show up on the 2024 model.
GM and tiremaker Michelin unveiled the Michelin Uptis prototype at a Montreal summit this week.
Appropriately enough, Uptis is short for Unique Puncture-proof Tire System.
A photo of the tires on a Chevrolet Bolt EV shows tires with an inner and outer ring, connected by multiple spokes.
Since there is no air involved, that means the tires won’t ever blow out or go flat. GM believes the tires will also last longer because they would cut out the traditional problem of irregular wear caused by too much or too little air.
On-the-road testing of the prototype tires is expected to begin later this year on a test fleet of Bolts on Michigan roads. Pricing has not been decided, with GM saying that would depend on variables like application and volume.
Steve Kiefer, GM’s senior vice president of Global Purchasing and Supply Chain, calls the trend-setting tire “a great example of how our customers benefit when we collaborate and innovate with our supplier partners.”
After evaluating the results, GM and Michelin may announce use on other vehicles, presumably even the mid-engine Corvette.
Since the Corvette was among the first cars to use run-flat tires many years ago, it wouldn’t surprise us to see these Uptis tires one day on a mid-engine ‘Vette. We wonder how road noise compares to today’s tires, as well as ride and handling characteristics.
What about you? Do you think they should be used on a supercar like the Corvette?