Building on the performance of its 2017 Dakar, BFGoodrich has unveiled a bespoke new tire: the BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KDR2+. The new tire incorporates the latest technologies developed by the American brand to deliver, what it claims, ‘even greater versatility and resistance than its predecessor’.
“For the drivers, a good tire is one that enables them to showcase their ability,” said Matt Hanlon, the engineer in charge of the BFGoodrich KDR2+ project. “To achieve this, a tire must be capable of responding perfectly to input via the steering wheel and playing a part in maximising the efficiency of the vehicle’s suspension. It also needs to perform consistently in a wide range of weather conditions and over a broad spectrum of surface types. A good tire also needs to be reliable so that the drivers can focus on their speed and navigation.”
During the BFGoodrich KDR2+’s design, the development team’s work focused on the two essential priorities for a Dakar tire, namely versatility and reliability. The end-result is an all-new tire that addresses the needs of two- and four-wheel drive cars alike.
The KDR2+ tire has been engineered to combine enhanced grip with improved steering response and traction – especially on muddy ground. At the same time, it carries over the very best of its predecessor to guarantee optimal efficiency when running on hard-packed or sandy terrain, climbing dunes or driving along aggressive, rocky trails in extreme temperatures.
Improvements made to the tire include a new, more open tread pattern, while the casing has been reinforced to provide added protection against punctures. For the first time on the 2018 Dakar, the KDR2+ tire will equip both two- and four-wheel drive vehicles and deliver the same level of performance for all the brand’s partner teams, irrespective of the type of vehicle they run.
Compared with the 2017-generation BFGoodrich KDR2 tire for two-wheel drive vehicles, the KDR2+ features a more open tread pattern – especially along the shoulders – for enhanced performance on mud and soft ground. In comparison with its predecessor, which was available for four-wheel drive vehicles in 2017, the KDR2+ stands out through its flatter profile which ensures a bigger contact patch, while its overall diameter has been increased by two millimeters. At the same time, the new KDR2+’s construction has been strengthened to cope even more efficiently with aggressive conditions.
For each of the sizes in which the BFGoodrich KDR2+ tire is available (two-wheel drive vehicles: 37/12.5-17 / four-wheel drive: 245/80-16), there is a choice of two compounds: soft (S) and medium (M). This will allow the brand’s partner teams to run different strategies as a function of the stages’ respective profiles and the prevailing weather conditions.