By Denna Bowman
Continental tyres plan to install intelligent sensors on tyre treads to help motorists drive more safely and increase fuel efficiency.
The sensors will calculate if the vehicle is carrying too much weight and warn drivers with a signal to their Smartphone, according to Continental tyres.
Motorists will simply have to adjust their tyre pressure, which will compensate for overloading their back set or car boot.
By having the correct tyre pressure, the Continental tyres initiative will help motorists save fuel and improve driving safety.
Continental tyres plan to install the sensors on the inside of the tyre treads with electronics that identify how large the ground contact patch is and then use this to calculate the payload. The greater the load weight, the larger the contact patch.
Andreas Wolf, head of the Body & Security business unit at Continental tyres, explained: “In the past, it was more or less up to drivers to ‘guesstimate’ to the best of their abilities whether or not the maximum permitted payload of a car had already been reached.”
However, in the future, the vehicle will be able to inform the driver whether the payload has already exceeded the maximum limit or whether only the tyre pressure needs to be adjusted.
Wolf explained that it is essential to ensure van or car tyres are inflated properly. He said: “Otherwise a large part of the excess weight puts the outer tread of the tyre – the tyre shoulder—under strain. This compromises optimum grip.”
Incorrect tyre pressure can have further negative consequences, such as premature wear of tyres and chassis components, non-smooth running, and reduced traction.
In the future, smartphones will also help drivers to calculate the correct tyre pressure with the Filling Assistant. The first step has already been completed and one Asian automotive manufacturer is installing a subfunction of the Filling Assistant developed by Continental tyres as standard.
While the tyres are being filled, a signal informs the user automatically when the correct tyre pressure has been attained.
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