MOTORISTS looking for a car tyre that the makers claim to last longer, perform safer on both wet and dry roads and help slightly improve fuel consumption now have a chance to test it themselves to see if it also improves ride comfort.
Firestone has launched the new Roadhawk tyre which will fit any family car wheel size and the company claims that its built to perform longer and offer best in class wet road grip and dry braking compared to its many rivals in the market.
The company's engineers have carried out thousands of miles of testing across every conceivable type of road through Europe, including the UK, from long motorway journeys to traffic choked city centre streets and in all kinds of weather conditions.
Their key aims were to produce a tyre for any family car that provided better road grip in both dry and wet conditions, improved the steering response for drivers, offered better stability in cornering and also resistance to aquaplaning and creating lower road noise.
With years of experience in making tyres - Firestone was formed over 100 years ago and in 1998 became part of the Bridgestone empire - the backroom team took just two years to develop this new Roadhawk ready for consumers to buy and it's now being recognised officially as the best in class.
The internationally recognised independent institute for tyre and wheel technology in Europe, the TUV SUD, has given its crucial certification mark to the Roadhawk.
Key to this prestigious award say Firestone is the tyre's unique construction which is different to others with its lightweight carcass tuned for low rolling resistance and a compound designed for long lasting tyre tread, more comfortable ride and better safety when it comes to sharp, sudden braking whether on dry or wet roads.
Firestone's product manager, Tom Vandersmissan, said: "Drivers are naturally always looking for better wear on their cars tyres and also better safety when it comes to braking, particularly in an emergency or in wet and dry road conditions.
"It's taken about two years of really hard work to bring this what we think is a unique tyre to the market and totally different," he continued. "In the first place we talked to and listened to thousands of motorists about their experiences with existing tyres and what they wanted to see improved.
"We came up with this new compound which we then put to some severe testing over thousands of kilometres in all kinds of terrain and in all kinds of weather," he explained. "We obviously used our many years of experience in making tyres too and we feel this new Roadhawk is the complete answer."
He went on: "Tests showed that in the dry a family car with Roadhawk tyres on has a braking distance of up to three metres shorter than any rivals while equally crucial that over a 20,000 kilometre test it lasts longer with on average a 20 per cent better wear performance than its predecessor, the Firestone TZ300.
"We know that for most motorists tyres are not as sexy as car styling, interior finishing and the like but they are an essential and vital element of everyday motoring," he added. "We have now shown that with the Roadhawk motorists have a better ride and comfort whilst also improved safety when driving in all kinds of conditions.
But how much will they cost drivers to fit them on their cars?
The latest research around UK tyre suppliers show that they are now readily available with 15-inch wheels the price per tyre is between Â£35 and Â£46, 16-inch wheels around the Â£41 and Â£66 mark, 17-inch wheels around Â£61 to Â£65 and 18-inch it's between Â£66 and Â£81.