Electric vehicles need tires that were designed with different priorities. And this past week another big player in tires, Goodyear, is recognizing that—with its first North American-market replacement tire specifically designed for EVs.
The Goodyear ElectricDrive GT is an all-season tires with an asymmetric tread pattern scheduled to launch in 2022, according to a company press release. The debut size is 255/45R19 104W XL, which corresponds to a tire size used by for the Tesla Model Y and Model 3 from the factory. That fitment should work for other current EVs as well.
EVs have different requirements for load, torque, noise, range, and rolling resistance compared to internal-combustion vehicles, David Reese, vice president of product development for Goodyear Americas, said in a statement. For example, tire roar is more noticeable without an internal-combustion engine, and engineers have to account for the extra weight of a battery pack. Tires can also have a profound effect on range and efficiency, so EV-specific tires really are a necessity.
Tesla Model Y
The tire also has Goodyear's proprietary noise-reduction tech, and a specialized tread compound for maximum traction, the company claims.
Goodyear is definitely not the first, as other major players including Michelin, Continental, and Bridgestone already offer EV replacement tires. Michelin has even developed an EV version of its ubiquitous Pilot Sport performance tire, which the company claims was designed using lessons learned from Formula E racing (Michelin is the official tire supplier for the series).
And Goodyear has shown some far-out concepts such as a tire that recovers energy from its flexing motion. However, that technology was first shown in 2015 and Goodyear hasn't given many updates since then, or discussed production possibilities.