Self-driving car technologies will set requirements for tires.
Sensors could be installed on tires to feed the onboard information system.
These same sensors will open up a whole new world of servicing possibilities.
Smart tires are not a new concept per se however they are about to get far more sophisticated. Nokian Tyre experts think that tires with built-in sensors that will provide real-time data for the car’s computer are only a few short years away.
The ultimate goal behind this smart tire technology is safety and its embedded technology will work in conjunction with existing tire developments such as grip on ice and aquaplaning resistance. The data that will be captured by the tires will be processed by the vehicle’s onboard computer and the driving behaviour will be adjusted consequently. This is of particular importance with autonomous driving technology.
These advancements will arrive ahead of fully-autonomous vehicles, in the next five years according to Jukka Kasi, Senior Vice President of Products & Marketing for Nokian Tyres, and will become common on EVs.
Relatedly, with these newfound abilities, the tires will also be able to monitor their condition (temperature, pressure, and wear) far more precisely than today’s tire pressure monitoring systems. In fact, the tires will send the car and the owner/driver a prompt that will indicate how much longer they will be safe to use. The technology will even contact the nearest tire retailer to set up a tire change. This works much like navigation systems locating the nearest petrol station when the tank is nearing empty.
The big question is obviously cost. Quality new tires can be expensive and with sensors, they’re not likely to be less costly.