For the first time in the company's history, Pirelli have launched an all season tyre - the Pirelli Cinturato All Season. The new Pirelli is also the worlds first "seal inside" all season tyre, to ensure safe, continuous motoring, no matter the conditions or road surface.
With the UK winters characterised by long, cold, wet conditions, interspersed with light snow, many people feel the effort required to change tyres twice a year to full winters is not worth the reward.
The Pirelli Cinturato All Season offers a blend of qualities between summer and winter tyres, and allows you 80% of the performance in the snow of a full winter tyre, combined with the ability to run safely year round, without having to worry about swapping tyres.
Combining summer and winter tyre qualities into a single tyre is a difficult balance. To perform in winter conditions, you need a tyre with sipes (small cuts in the rubber) to enable good ice and snow traction, and a compound soft enough to work in freezing conditions, but to work in warm dry conditions you need solid tread blocks and a compound able to handle heat.
Pirelli have been hard at work to achieve this blend of performances. A directional tread pattern helps snow, slush and aquaplaning performance, while allowing for a certain level of tread stiffness. Pirelli have also heavily optimised the siping, to blend a high number of centre sipes to enable strong snow and ice performance, with a limited number of 3D shoulder sipes to retain cornering stability in the wet and dry. Lastly Pirelli worked heavily on an optimised full silica compound, to allow the compound to grip in a wide range of temperatures
Launched in Sicily near Mount Etna, we had the perfect opportunity to try the Pirelli Cinturato All Season in every season imaginable, from warm, sunny conditions to 3 inches of ice and snow.
In the warm summer road conditions, the Cinturato performed like a regular summer tyre, which is exactly as Pirelli intended. It was quiet, comfortable on every surface imaginable and provided a good amount of steering feel and feedback for a siped tyre.
When tested on a wet and dry track, the Cinturato All Season again performed as you'd expect from a regular tyre, and took some hard track driving better than a full winter would have. The braking felt slightly worse than a summer tyre, but this is a design trade off with siped tyres.
Once we had driven to the top of Etna, the Cinturato All Season showed off its real strength, ice and snow performance.
On mountain slush, the Pirelli Cinturato All Season felt as sure footed as a full winter, and once we'd reached the summit the Cinturato All Season managed roads a summer tyre would have long been stuck on. The Pirelli Cinturato All Season really is a tyre you can safely use year round, without having to worry about getting stuck on ice or snow.
Certain sizes of the Pirelli Cinturato All Season also have the "seal inside" technology. The seal inside technology is a thin layer of film moulded into the inside of the tyre, which will withstand objects such as nails entering and exiting up to 4mm in diameter without a loss of pressure, with none of the ride and noises issues traditional runflat tyres bring.
The new Pirelli Cinturato All Season is already a test winner, placing first in the 2014 All Season Tyre Test.
Praised for its strong dry and wet performance, the Pirelli Cinturato All Season might be the ultimate tyre for year round motoring in the UK.
The Pirelli Cinturato All Season is launched in the following 21 sizes, with more sizes being added to the range throughout 2015.
185/60R15 88H XL
205/55R16 91V - seal inside
215/55R16 97V XL
215/55R16 97V XL - seal inside
205/50R17 93V XL
225/45R17 94V XL
225/45R17 94V XL - seal inside
225/50R17 98V XL