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With engineers and designers across Europe, Japan and North America, Dunlop boast a truly global Research & Development operation with innovations quickly put to the toughest test of all – racing. With innovations such as low profile tyre shapes, radial constructions, directional and constant curve tread designs, aramid casing materials, Multi-Tread (MT) technology as well as JLT – all directly developed through our passion for motorsport. What we have learnt on the track, we apply on the road, in fact Dunlop were the first to apply race tyre performance standards to street tyres.
Doing 200mph down the SulbyStraight at the IOM TT puts the rear tyre under extraordinary stress, not just from centrifugal force but from heat too. The compound needs to be tough, hard and resilient to survive. But when the racer then cranks his bike through Ginger Hall, the rear needs the grip of a soft compound. Dunlop engineers found the same problem in countless Grand Prix, Superbike races and Endurance championships – both front and rear tyres required different compounds for corners and straights. What Dunlop developed for the racers was Multi-Tread (MT) technology, where the same tyre can display different performance properties when leaning than when upright. So the red compound in the diagram is softer, the yellow band is more hard-wearing. It’s this race-developed technology that Dunlop has incorporated into the current Sportmaxtrack and road tyres – so whether you’re flying down the M1 or cranking through Donington’s CranerCurves, you’ll get the grip you want, with a longevity that would have been impossible only a few years ago.
The red spiral you see here gives an idea of how steel wire wraps around the tyre to create a belt which provides a super-stable base for the tread, which goes on top. Without it, as the bike speeded up, the centre of the tyre would bulge outwards, changing the profile (very bad in corners!) or even rubbing on the bike’s swingarm. The JLB concept came from Dunlop’s hugely successful race efforts at the IOM TT – because of the high speeds, teams were desperate for less tyre distortion and greater longevity. Jointless Belt Construction does both, reducing tyre growth due to centrifugal forces at high speeds from 15mm to 3mm, resulting in in smoother handling and far more straight line stability. High speed weave effect is also dramatically reduced. All these advantages translate directly to road tyres, and JLB perfectly epitomises Dunlop’s ‘Race to Road’ philosophy.
Dunlop’s ingenious NTEC pressure adjust system allows the rider to optimise the tyre by adjusting inflation pressure. For dry track days, deflating the tyre will deliver predictable grip and tenacious handling on the limit. Back on the road, re-inflating to the manufacturer’s recommended pressures will reward the rider with class-leading levels of grip and performance.
Jointless Tread (JLT) strip-winding technology allows different compounds to be precisely positioned so the centre of the tyre can have a harder, longer-lasting compound, while the edges of the tyre are grippier. It’s the best of both worlds and the benefits are numerous – increased wear resistance, better grip from the tread centre to shoulder and superior high-speed tyre stability.
Thinner and longer apex shape provides uniform rigidity in the tyre sidewall. The sidewall deflects evenly when a load is applied to tyre. A firm feeling and high degree of compliance contribute to increased predictability.
Carcass Tension Control System (CTCS) controls casing stress distribution, optimising the tension in different areas, resulting in more consistent and controlled line holding, straight-line traction and better feedback.
Dunlop’s new patented Progressive Cornering Block Technology increases block flexibility to achieve greater slide control, partnered with twin edges to deliver tightened cornering grip.
New Multiple Block Distribution (MBD) features variable pitch sequencing between the centre and middle-to-shoulder block areas, which combined with fewer blocks in the centre improves contact feel, whilst also delivering confident bite and grip.
Heat Control Technology (HCT) combines a long-lasting outer compound with a heat generating and performance-enhancing base layer for maximum durability as well as increased outright grip.