Continental has launched a new tire optimized specifically for electric buses operating in urban environments. The new Conti Urban HA3 is optimized for the heavier loads that come with electric buses and their oversized batteries, with a carrying capacity of up to eight tons per axle.
In addition to their heavier builds, electric buses also bring the challenge of instant torque to the table. The ability to get the bus moving more quickly from a stop is surely a benefit when it comes to drivability, but the real work to get the bus moving is done by the tires. Continental took this into account with the new HA3, with a new rubber formulation that provides extra grip, while at the same time, increasing the load rating per axle.
“The new Conti Urban HA3 optimized for electric buses brings to fruition the valuable experience we’ve gathered from our recent collaboration with commercial vehicle manufacturers and municipal bus companies,” says Lutz Stäbner, Head of Product Management for Continental truck and bus tires in Europe, Middle East, and Africa. “Thanks to its balanced performance profile, it provides a safe, comfortable, and cost-effective solution for enabling e-mobility in challenging stop-and-go traffic.”
The new tires achieved the increased load rating by improving the robustness of the casing that provides the structure of the tires. Continental then layered on more than the usual amount of rubber, with a high percentage of natural rubber, which is more resilient and resistant to the abuse exacted by city transit routes than synthetic rubber. These improvements resulted in an increase in the load carrying capacity of 0.5 tons per axle, for a total capacity of 8 tons per axle.
The tread of the tire was also designed specifically to maximize the life and minimize the wear on the tire in a variety of use cases and applications. As with any bus tire, the HA3 puts safety first and was tested by Continental in a variety of climates and weather conditions to ensure that drivers are able to keep passengers safe, no matter the conditions they are faced with.
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