motorauthority.com Hankook has revealed a new airless tire design called i-Flex which makes its debut this week in concept form at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show. The i-Flex tire constitutes both the tire and wheel and is similar to previous concepts from Bridgestone as well as America’s own Polaris. Apart from being puncture proof, the i-Flex tire has many other benefits. It is considerably lighter than conventional tire and wheel combinations and it can also provide a level of shock absorbency through the unique mesh structure. According to Hankook, these two attributes alone contribute to reduced fuel consumption and improved NVH levels. However, the benefits don’t end there. The lighter weight means less unsprung mass, aiding handling, and 95 percent of the tire's materials are recyclable. The i-Flex is made from polyurethane synthetics, with the tire manufactured in conjunction with its rim as a single unit. The concept version on display in Frankfurt will measure just 155/590 R14 and be displayed on a Volkswagen up! subcompact. Hankook hasn’t mentioned production plans but it’s only a matter of time until airless tires start to replace their pneumatic cousins. to read more click here: motorauthority.com
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