Continental Sport Contact 6 - First Drive

The new Continental Sport Contact 6The Continental Sport Contact 6 is here, and it's fantastic!

Launched 1st September, the new Sport Contact 6 replaces the Sport Contact 5P as Continentals maximum performance summer tyre for sports cars. Initially available in 19 to 23 inches, the Sport Contact 6 pushes the tyre towards the segment the Michelin Pilot SuperSport currently occupies, and while it's not quite as track orientated, it should give the Michelin a little competition for those who enjoy fast road driving.

Already Proven

While the Sport Contact 6 is new to market, it's already a proven tyre. The Sport Contact 6 is the OE tyre for the new Honda Civic Type R, which recently destroyed the Nurburgring FWD record, setting a 7:50.63, only 10 seconds slower than a Porsche Cayman GT4! To further prove the capabilities of the new tyre, Continental invited TyreReviews to Bilster Berg Race Resort in Germany to learn about, and test the Sport Contact 6.

Development

Our biggest criticism of the outgoing tyre has always been steering feel. The Sport Contact 5 and 5P were never short of wet grip, wet or dry braking performance, or even good levels of comfort, but for a sports tyre they felt sluggish, soft and frankly, unsporty.

The engineers at Continental have worked hard to address this. They've designed the tread pattern with "force vectoring", which helps transfer the forces more evenly through the tyre to give a stable cornering force, and added a new "Aralon 350" belt to the carcass, to give the tyre structure higher stability at speed. We'll cover both these technologies in detail over the next few days, but the simple version is they give the tyre a 14% better steering precision over the Sport Contact 5P and 11% better dry handling. When combined with 7% better wear (another weakness of the outgoing tyre), 7% less noise and 10% higher high speed stability, the result is a very capable tyre.

Continental Sport Contact 6 vs 5P

Our Testing

Sadly at the launch Continental didn't provide the previous tyre to directly compare against, but what they did offer us was the ability to run on the tyre in both the dry and wet, on various vehicles.

In the dry, on a VW Golf R, the tyre was impressive. Bilster Berg might have a new surface with a high coefficient of grip, but the tyre was still monstered the lap, giving plenty of lovely feedback right to the limit, and a nice progressive slide past the limit. The same was true of the tyre on the Porsche Cayman GTS, Mercedes A45 and Audi RS3 in the wet, with the Sport Contact 6 harnessing the all wheel drive nature of the Audi and Mercedes to provide quite astonishing traction, and when using the RWD Porsche in torrential rain, still providing incredible grip, communication and balance.

Continental Sport Contact 6 Testing

Conclusion

Continental simply don't make bad tyres, and while the Sport Contact 5 and 5P never really excited us, they were nearly always best in class when tested.

Now with the Sport Contact 6, Continental have produced an exciting, world class sport tyre. Tyre tests in 2016 are going to be extremely interesting!

If you're interested in the technical details we'll be publishing a technical report on the Sport Contact 6 over the next few days, otherwise be sure to leave a review if you buy yourself a set.

Video

Launch Sizes

255/30ZR19 (91Y) XL FR SportContact 6

265/30ZR19 (93Y) XL FR SportContact 6

275/30ZR19 (96Y) XL FR SportContact 6

295/30ZR19 (100Y) XL FR SportContact 6

305/30ZR19 (102Y) XL FR SportContact 6

225/35ZR19 (88Y) XL FR SportContact 6

245/35ZR19 (93Y) XL FR SportContact 6

265/35ZR19 (98Y) XL FR SportContact 6

275/35ZR19 (100Y) XL FR SportContact 6

285/35ZR19 (103Y) XL FR SportContact 6

245/40ZR19 (98Y) XL FR SportContact 6

255/40ZR19 (100Y) XL FR SportContact 6

295/25ZR20 (95Y) XL FR SportContact 6

305/25ZR20 (97Y) XL FR SportContact 6

325/25ZR20 (101Y) XL FR SportContact 6

245/30ZR20 (90Y) XL FR SportContact 6

255/30ZR20 (92Y) XL FR SportContact 6

275/30ZR20 (97Y) XL FR SportContact 6

225/35ZR20 (90Y) XL FR SportContact 6

245/35ZR20 (95Y) XL FR SportContact 6

255/35ZR20 (97Y) XL FR SportContact 6

275/35ZR20 (102Y) XL FR SportContact 6

295/25ZR21 (96Y) XL FR SportContact 6

325/25ZR21 (102Y) XL FR SportContact 6

255/30ZR21 (93Y) XL FR SportContact 6

265/30ZR21 (96Y) XL FR SportContact 6

295/30ZR21 (102Y) XL FR SportContact 6

255/35ZR21 (98Y) XL FR SportContact 6

305/25ZR22 (99Y) XL FR SportContact 6

265/30ZR22 (97Y) XL FR SportContact 6

335/25ZR22 (105Y) XL FR SportContact 6

295/30ZR22 (103Y) XL FR SportContact 6

315/25ZR23 (102Y) XL FR SportContact 6

255/35ZR19 (96Y) XL FR SportContact 6

225/40ZR19 (93Y) XL FR SportContact 6

305/30ZR20 (103Y) XL FR SportContact 6

235/30ZR20 (88Y) XL FR SportContact 6

315/25ZR19 (98Y) XL FR SportContact 6

235/35ZR19 (91Y) XL FR SportContact 6

245/35ZR19 93Y XL FR SportContact 6 MO

265/35ZR19 98Y XL FR SportContact 6 MO

245/40R19 98Y XL FR SportContact 6 RO1

235/35ZR20 (92Y) XL FR SportContact 6

265/35ZR20 (99Y) XL FR SportContact 6

245/30ZR20 (90Y) XL FR SportContact 6 RO1

305/30ZR20 (103Y) XL FR SportContact 6 RO1

245/35ZR19 (93Y) XL FR SportContact 6 RO1

295/35ZR19 (104Y) XL FR SportContact 6 RO1

255/30ZR20 92Y XL FR SportContact 6 RO1

245/35R19 93Y XL FR SportContact 6 AO

Further Reading



Further Tyre Information




Discussion:

comments powered by Disqus