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Road Legal Track Tyres,whats The Choice?


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New laws are potentially going to kill off road use of semi-legal slicks - could not find info but once read this on Pistonheads

TRACKDAY TYRES TO BE OUTLAWED

New safety regulations spell the end for extreme road-legal rubber

New legislation on tyre labelling and accompanying minimum standards to be introduced simultaneously in November 2012 will effectively end the production of road-legal trackday tyres. Tyres likely to be axed include the Dunlop Direzza, Toyo R888 (currently available on the Renaultsport Megane R26.R), Michelin Pilot Sport Cup (Porsche GT3 & GT2) and AVON ACB10 (Caterham), along with a host of others.

The aim of the new regulation is to both raise all-round performance standards and to give buyers a greater understanding of the performance and environmental impact of each particular tyre before purchase. All road-legal tyres will have to display rating figures for rolling resistance (read: fuel efficiency), external noise and wet grip, and while the rating system and minimum levels have yet to be set, it is unlikely that track-biased tyres will be able to pass on all counts.

Tyres manufacturers are currently lobbying the European Parliament, but it will be very difficult for them to make a successful argument for tyres that allow drivers to corner faster in the dry but which offer a significantly lower level of performance the moment the surface becomes damp.

It is expected that trackday tyres will fall foul of the other parameters too, so their demise is something their manufacturers are already preparing for. James Bailed (nice chap!), Dunlop's PR chief, believes it highly unlikely that trackday tyres will continue in their current form, although the company's official position is that these regulations are positive as they will also remove poor performing cheap road tyres from the market (bye bye ditch finders!) In its own braking tests the difference between the best and worst tyres fitted to a Mondeo stopping from 50mph on a wet surface was as much as five car lengths...

Porsche feels it's too early to comment and that at this stage it is still a matter for the tyre companies. Once the regulations have been set, the German car maker will still request an appropriate level of performance from Michelin for its top models.

So what does the future hold? There will still be high-performance tyres made from a race-style compound though they are likely to have regular road-car tread patterns. However, they won't be as fast or responsive as the current crop of trackday tyres, and for those of us who enjoy extra performance and challenge present by thisa specialist rubber that's a real shame.

-------- Originally printed in EVO Magazine Issue 133 --------

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r888s are awesome compared to normal road tyres(even in damp/wet track) but wear at an alarming rate,on a full day at knockhill, expect the front passenger tyre and maybe rear to be illegal by the time you go home from brand new as they only come with 5mm(ish) cut.if these new laws do come into force,it may make r888s and similar affordable haha. i have tried yoko a048s too and were slightly better in the dry but not as good as r888s in the wet.

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