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Kumho tyres complete 3,174 mile endurance trial

Kumho Tyre (UK) helped the Max Adventure team complete the ‘Driven To Extremes Euro EV Marathon’, as they beat their original target and covered the 3,174 miles in just under four days – using the fully electric Kia EV6 ‘Air’ fitted with Kumho’s ECSTA PS71 EV tyre.

Taking the car from Norway to Portugal, the team knocked 47 minutes off the time set by racing legend Sir Stirling Moss, who undertook the drive in 1952, and was able to add an extra country to the list of those visited.

Designed to show how easy it is to cover huge distances in a short time using a standard EV and existing charging infrastructure, the team relied on Kumho’s patented tyre technology to cross the finish line and mark World EV Day on 9th September.

Kumho’s ECSTA PS71 EV tyre is original fit on the Kia EV6, with 235/55R19 sized examples used by the challenge car throughout the trial.

The tyre is notable for its minimal level of resonance noise, thanks to Kumho’s patented sound absorbing technology – dubbed K-Silent. This optimises the shape and properties of polyurethane foam materials placed within the tyre. This results in a marked reduction in the air vibration generated during contact with the road surface.

Kumho developed the K-Silent system back in 2014 and now holds patents for the unique design throughout the world. Other properties of PS71 EV that make it ideal for tyres intended for use on electric vehicles include low rolling resistance, strong anti-wear performance and excellent levels of grip.

Inspired by an endurance test completed by Sir Stirling Moss 70 years ago, the ‘Driven to Extremes Euro EV Marathon’ is understood to be the first time the route has been attempted in a fully electric vehicle as a continuous trip.

With the support of Kumho Tyre, as well as Kia UK, the team departed from Oslo, Norway on Sunday, 4th September at 15:00 and crossed the border into Portugal, at Vilar Formoso on Thursday, 8th September at 08:12.  This marked the start and stop points for the timing – as per the original drive in 1952.

The team of three in the Kia EV6 worked to a strict rota, taking turns behind the wheel and then navigating, while the third rested. The only stops were made for driver swaps, refreshments and vehicle charging.

Speaking of the Kumho ECSTA and its role in the drive, project leader Mac Mackenney said: “Ensuring that the team member on a rest cycle was able to sleep was vital to the safety of this project and, while an EV produces less vibration and noise than an ICE vehicle, road noise can be a problem.

“The team found that the Kia EV6 with the original fit ECSTA EV tyre delivered a pliant and quiet ride right across Europe. If it hadn’t gone smoothly, we couldn’t have bettered Sir Stirling’s time.”

Speaking of the successful challenge, Kumho Tyre (UK)’s managing director Keon Park added: “Many congratulations to the Max Adventure team on achieving their aim and for beating their target time in the process. It was an amazing feat with which Kumho was delighted to be involved.”