Michelin’s X Tweel SSL airless tyre and wheel combination will be making its UK public debut at this year’s LAMMA Show. For several years, Michelin has sold its range of Tweel products for mowing, agricultural and industrial applications in North America – but the fitment for skid steer loaders will be the first Tweel to arrive this side of the Atlantic.
LAMMA ’18 Debut for Michelin’s X Tweel SSL Tyre and Wheel Innovation
The non-pneumatic tyre and wheel was displayed at the East of England Showground exhibition in Peterborough on January 17 and 18, in conjunction with its launch to market this month.
The X Tweel SSL is available in two versions – the All Terrain (AT), which features a deep, open tread for off-road applications and use on varying surfaces, and the Hard Surface Traction (HST), with its smooth tread featuring a 100 per cent contact patch, for frequent use on hard surfaces such as asphalt or concrete. Both tyres are going to be suitable for applications ranging from scraping yards and clearing slurry to moving bedding and animal feed.
Commenting on the launch, Gordon Brookes, Customer Engineering Support Manager for Michelin’s agricultural division, says: “We are very excited to be introducing the X Tweel SSL. This is a proven product which has transformed the way skid steer tyres are specified across North America. Its introduction into the European market means users in the agricultural and construction markets can benefit from the X Tweel SSL’s excellent performance – and without any risk of a flat tyre.”
The product performs like a pneumatic tyre, but without the risk and costly downtime associated with penetrations and impact damage. It can increase productivity because its outstanding stability enables a skid steer to work rapidly with more comfort for the operator, reducing driver fatigue as a result.
The X Tweel SSL delivers a consistent footprint with strong wear life and there’s little maintenance involved, as the fitment is easy to mount and doesn’t require air pressure checks. Its deep open tread is designed for easy cleaning and good traction, and a buried layer of undertread allows the core to be repeatedly retreaded. High strength, poly-resin spokes provide high carrying capacity, reduce vibrations, absorb impacts and prolong the product’s working life.
Also making its UK debut at LAMMA ‘18, ahead of its international release in February, was Michelin’s ‘2 in 1’ EvoBib tractor tyre – which features a smart tread pattern that evolves to match the application. The tyre – which was awarded the SIMA Innovation Gold Medal last year – was designed to support farmers who increasingly opt for larger machinery to be driven both in the field and on the road.
When set at high pressures for road work, the tyres’ central band grips the road providing the flexible fitments with a road-optimised profile. The adapted tread pattern gives a smoother vibration-free ride, while saving farmers fuel and improving safety. In the field, working at low pressures, the tyres’ footprint spreads across a wider and longer surface, helping to boost traction while preventing soil compaction.
Michelin’s RoadBib tyre range was also given an eye-catching outing at LAMMA ‘18 – taking pride of place fitted to John Deere’s new 6250R tractor. The new generation of agricultural tyre, co-designed by Michelin and agricultural contractors, is the first ever fitment for 200+hp tractors to provide high performance, longevity and traction on machines used intensively on roads.
Michelin’s challenge was to propose a solution that would work mainly on tarmac and hard soil roads, providing high traction and long life, whilst also working well in soft soil fields. To achieve this the Michelin RoadBib features a brand-new tread design – the first time the company has produced an agricultural tyre which is not ‘lugged’ in the traditional sense. Formed of 52 blocks to maximise traction, coupled with a central spine, it allows 40 per cent of the tyre to remain in contact with the road surface – a 60 per cent increase on a typical lugged agricultural tyre.