Hanover, Germany, June 23, 2022. The new VanContact Ultra has been specially developed by Continental as a summer tire for delivery services and craftsmen’s vehicles. Therefore the tire comes with important capabilities for economical driving, even in urban environments. Very high mileage, robust design, low tire/road noise and low rolling resistance, make this product a winner when it comes to sustainable van tires. This year, Continental will manufacture 20 variations of the new delivery van tire, for rims between 15 and 17 inches in diameter and for load capacities of up to 1,450 kg (load index 121); approved for speeds up to 210 km/h. Production of the first VanContact Ultra sizes is started in March 2022.
Trips by van in urban environments have seen a particular increase over the years, with experts expecting an annual growth of 7 percent in “door-to-door” deliveries by 2025 (BPEK, Bundesverband Paket- und Expresslogistik e.V., June 2021, German trade association). The sales volumes of transport vehicles and tires are rising in line with this. According to the European trade association ACEA in Europe, vehicle sales in this segment increased by 40 percent between 2014 and 2019 alone. The Alzura Tyre 24 sales platform also reports a rise in delivery van tire sales of 20 percent in the first five months of last year, compared to the previous year.
In addition to providing the best safety, tire development focused primarily on sustainability. For example, Continental uses the latest generation of functionalized polymers in its compound, to combine high mileage, the lowest possible rolling resistance and robustness. The closed outer shoulder featured on the tread design also serves the high service life of the tire, by keeping the tire and road noise particularly low.
To prevent tires from being damaged by stones that get stuck in their tread grooves, “stone stoppers” are attached in the outer two grooves, preventing the teeth intermeshing between the rubber and stones and ensuring that any objects that penetrate are quickly ejected. The reinforced sidewalls are another means with which the new VanContact Ultra is made as robust as possible. They use blocks to protect the sensitive sides of the tire against damage from contact with the curb, which is often unavoidable during delivery in urban areas.
The new VanContact Ultra achieved the following EU tire label certification: a “B” rating in rolling resistance, the top “A” grade for wet braking distance and a “B” for rolling noise.