Mon January 30 12:00 am 2006 in category Product news
Bulletin 30 January 2006

Bold newcomer to the 70-year-old Hakkapeliitta family


Nokian Hakkapeliitta 4, praised by consumers and magazine testers, is getting a worthy successor. The newcomer to the 70-year-old Hakkapeliitta family is the Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5. Product development carried out by the tyre manufacturer has honed the studded tyre’s grip to a level of its own. Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5 was developed into a bold conqueror of Nordic conditions; a tyre capable of dealing with the trickiest winter weather and conditions.

The Nokian Tyres’ engineers who worked on the Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5 used brand new development methods to enhance safety and create product features that please drivers.

”Product development called for clockwork precision. To develop an extremely good product into an even better one we had to look deep into tyre operations. We literally put ourselves between the road and tyre to get as detailed an understanding as possible of how the tread pattern and studs behave under critical conditions,” explains Teppo Huovila, Product Development Manager.

Developers studied the operations and synergies of studs, the rubber compound and siping in microscopic detail, using the latest outdoor and indoor testing methods to collect data. Computer models describing tyre operations and laboratory work focusing on rubber compounds led to unique solutions.

Maximum grip from bear claw and square stud

The unrelenting grip of the Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5 comes from several technical innovations.
The bear claw boosts stud operations. The front edge of the tread blocks features a sharp-edged claw-like projection circled by siping, which pre-tightens and supports the stud. The bear claw holds the stud in the ideal position during road contact and braking, as well as in lateral movement. The stud does not twist or give way and thus maximises grip. Especially the grip of the shoulder area, most critical to braking, has improved considerably.

Nokian Tyres introduced the square stud three years ago when it launched Hakkapeliitta 4. The square stud now gets a plus after its name. After further development, not only the hard metal stud pin and bottom flange, but also the body of the stud is now square shaped. This offers two benefits: wider support to the stud improves grip on ice and the stud is anchored more firmly in the tread compound. This ensures tyre safety throughout the tyre’s lifespan.

The square stud plus is an environmentally friendly stud model. A road wear comparison survey carried out by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland showed that the new studded tyre of Nokian Tyres’ main competitor caused 30% higher wear on road surface than did Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5.

Numerous improvements to tyre structure and tread pattern enhance grip. Slide prevention grooves in the shoulder area increase lateral grip in cornering. Their sharp edges stick firmly to the road in the case of heavy swerving following abrupt manoeuvres.

The double block construction in the centre of the tread brings a considerable increase to driving stability and enhances steering response. The new block pattern ensures gentle and quiet road contact.

The longer tread blocks in the shoulder area ensure grip on snow and improve lateral stability on unfrozen roads.

Four rubber compounds in the tread result in top qualities

Product development adopted the multi-layered tread structure, familiar from the Nokian Z summer tyre, for high-speed driving. The tread of the Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5, called quattrotread, features four different kinds of rubber compounds. Nokian Tyres is the first tyre manufacturer to use this kind of a structure for winter tyres.

The use of four different compounds improves driving stability and stud operation. The new tread also dampens tyre noise to a pleasant level.

Signs and indications improve safety

The Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5 is designed for demanding consumers who want to drive safely in the harshest winter conditions. Strict safety goals give no room for compromise, and reaching them calls for big technical innovations that improve the driving properties of tyres. This is the only path to creating a secure and convincing tyre.

In addition to major innovations, safety has also been improved by clever little ideas.
The new tyre has driving safety indicators that clearly indicate the tread depth of the main grooves in millimetres.

The tyre also features four winter driving safety indicators. When the snow flake symbols on the central tread blocks wear off, the driver knows the tyre is no longer safe for winter use.

Drivers can affect the resistance of studs and how they fall into place by running in brand new tyres. Calm and careful driving is recommended during the first 500 kilometres: avoid hard breaking and acceleration, as well as abrupt manoeuvres. All studs are encircled by a run-in indicator that fades at the end of the run-in.

The info field is reserved for tyre pressure and location designations.

Retail sales of the Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5 will begin in autumn 2006. The novelty will be sold on Nokian Tyres’ main markets in Finland, Sweden, Norway and Russia.

Further information: Nokian Tyres plc:

- Teppo Huovila, Product Development Manager, tel. +358 3 340 7701, [email protected]

- Matti Morri, Technical Customer Service Manager, tel. +358 3 340 7621, [email protected]

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- Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5 product presentation