2018 Wheels Tyre Test: Click here to read the introduction
Even more so than the wet braking discipline, Wet Cornering proved a definitive differentiator between the greats and not-so-greats of the group. Measured by entering a consistently soaked double-apex left-hander at 60km/h, the Commodore revving hard in third gear, Renato would squeeze on power and build G-force during the first part of the corner before truly testing the wet threshold at the slippery second apex.
While the Momo achieved a higher limit than the Hifly and Vitora bottom-enders, it compounded a below-par wet braking performance by giving up when push came to shove. “At 0.92G it was fine and controllable; at 0.93G it massively understeered,” commented our testing ace. The GT Radial clearly telegraphed its limit of grip (with a 0.95G average), however “the transition from max grip to slip is a very small window,” said Renato.
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In contrast, the last-placed Vitora offered “good slide warning on the limit”, however its limit was well below what the exercise-winning Falken could achieve.
Falken Azenis FK510 - Winner
Only three tyres managed 1G or greater in the wet-cornering exercise and, once again, the Falken proved its worth in challenging conditions. With the highest peak G (1.020, on its first and last runs) and an overall average of 1.007G, the Falken underscored why it’s such a superlative all-rounder – “incredible grip in wet cornering; almost no sliding at all doing 73km/h” commented Renato, even though it only needed to complete the exercise at 60km/h. Renato could keep adding power and the star wet-cornering tyres – Falken, Continental, Maxxis, and Hankook – could cop the greater load before transitioning predictably into the inevitable front tyre slip.
THE TYRE TESTS
The swerve-and-recover test, or slalom – just like the skiing event – is an efficient way to gather meaningful data on a tyre’s transient grip level in less than 10 seconds.
You would've thought that simply jamming on the picks as hard as you can and letting the anti-lock braking system (ABS) sort out the rest was a given in a modern car. And it is, but not without one big variable – tyres.
It’s the one discipline that separates the mighty from the mediocre by a big margin … and we’re talking about brand new, correctly inflated, high-spec tyres here!
Few surfaces in the world can match the noise generation of an Australian coarse-chip road, so tyre noise does play a vital part in the driving performance of your vehicle.
TYRE TEST RESULTS
WHEELS TYRE TEST 2018: The Results
From the outset, it was clear the Falken Azenis FK510 was in with a real shot.
2018 WHEELS TYRE TEST
Upping your car's cornering G-force by 10 percent is the stuff of a sports suspension upgrade, right? And cutting a car-length from your braking distance is the work of a set of Brembos? Nope, you just need a great set of tyres